Inflation Driving Enterprise at Aurora Space Thrift Shops


I all the time get pleasure from visits to Hope Chest, the resale retailer in Aurora Downtown, run by Wayside Cross Ministries, as a result of there’s all the time one thing that catches my eye.

As soon as upon a time it was a pastel shell bracelet that value just a few {dollars}; One other time, I purchased a classic however fantastically restored classic nook chair which, to this present day, stays one in all my favourite items of furnishings.

I respect this second-hand store as a result of it is all the time been so organized, so clear, so effectively maintained and extra superior than what I’ve seen because the final time I stayed.

That is all thanks, largely, to supervisor Rose Somerville, who admitted that she takes her time sifting via the 1000’s of charities that come to the Wayside Cross warehouse as a result of she needs to be sure that each merchandise that goes on show. – Typically tagged with the unique worth – is the very best of the very best.

Why? “As a result of the individuals who rely on this resale retailer deserve a extremely good place to buy,” says Somerville, who additionally owns the Elgin’s Hope Chest department in addition to the Candy Charity on Montgomery Highway in Aurora manages.

This dedication to excellence hasn’t escaped Rossiella Clerc, who has been buying at Hope Chest for the previous decade and famous how “good” it has gotten through the years.

“All the things is all the time so clear, it smells nice.” And the material, the Aurora resident stated, is of “top quality.”

Like resale retailers all over the place, Hope Chest can also be having fun with extra visitors nowadays as inflation is forcing folks to push their {dollars} additional. Goodwill Industries, with its 3,200 shops within the US and Canada, together with some in our area, experiences fast gross sales this yr, which is not any shock. And the neighborhood thrift retailer on Farnsworth Avenue requested to name me again one midweek morning as a result of “we’re simply too busy.” And once I had an opportunity to speak to a supervisor later he agreed that there’s undoubtedly extra visitors, extra gross sales nowadays.

Jovita Robles, a gross sales clerk on the downtown Hope Chest retailer, situated south of New York Avenue on Lincoln Avenue, has “sufficient.”

“Oh, I’ve undoubtedly seen extra folks” on the retailer, agreed the clerk, who went buying with just a few associates, together with Sharon Armstrong of Naperville, who had kids’s underwear on prime of their shared cart.

“I am all the time selecting issues up” for youthful members of the family as a result of their job “barely pays the lease.”

The shop has truly acted as a lifeline for some residents, particularly mentioning a household that began coming in after shedding their jobs in the course of the pandemic and shifting from a furnished house to an empty condominium. Acquired myself with a month for it.

He instructed me, they not solely want furnishings, but in addition want kitchen home equipment like range and fridge.

There isn’t any doubt that this store has quite a bit to supply together with furnishings, books, toys and home items. There are many eye-catching shows scattered all through the ground, from sports activities attire—the store offered Michael Jordan jerseys that morning—to seasonal objects and boutique jewellery.

However the factor that actually caught my consideration was this most up-to-date go to to the center of the shop show that includes an fascinating assortment of huge hand puppets just lately donated by Marge and Invoice Haley of North Aurora .

Shortly after the couple’s marriage ceremony in 1975, she started volunteering most of her free time for a church puppet ministry, which quickly took on a lifetime of its personal, with Marge stitching puppets and Invoice wrote the music and scripts for a whole bunch of productions. yr.

However because the exhibits received greater, extra work wanted to be executed. Plus, the recognition of the puppets was beginning to fade, the couple instructed me, so the characters grew to become much less used, even by Hailey’s personal kids and grandchildren.

“It was time,” Marge stated of her determination to don the 80 or so puppets, which solely held on a number of favorites, together with a personality like Fonzie named Joe Cool and his sidekick Ferdy.

About two dozen went to a ministry in Canada, and one other 55 got to Wayside Cross. Which has up to now earned plenty of {dollars} and cents for the ministry. In response to Somerville, a girl just lately purchased one price between $600 and $700 for her daughter, who’s a choir teacher.

“Even when folks do not buy them,” she stated, “they’re plenty of enjoyable to observe.”

Puppets are undoubtedly one more reason to take a look at this beloved resale store, which has one thing to supply nearly everybody, greater than ever.

“For the previous 94 years, Wayside Cross has been dedicated to serving to our neighbors no matter financial circumstances,” stated Steve Clever, operations supervisor, noting that Hope Chest makes up 9% of the ministry’s finances. And that features providing a “clear, pleasant and inexpensive place” to search out important objects for his or her properties and households.

“Greater than ever we’re dedicated to those values,” he stated, “particularly in occasions like these.”

dcrosby@tribpub.com



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