When the Society of St. Vincent de Paul opened its Thrift Store on Milwaukee Avenue in Libertyville in November, items were trucked in from the organizations two other locations—Chicago and Midlothian—in order to have clothing, furniture and other goods to sell.
These days, though, most of the donations are coming in from the Lake County area, said Store Manager Jonathan Zaworski. And sometimes those items can be an incredible find for bargain-hunters, Zaworski said. There have been the occasional Garmin GPS units or Xbox gaming systems. Zaworski said some antiques have been donated, including a solid, wooden dining table.
"There's a lot of good stuff in here," he said.
The Society of St. Vincent de Paul, in researching towns to expand to, found that there were not a lot of other thrift stores in the Libertyville area, Zaworski said. The store opened its doors Nov. 19, 2012, and a grand opening celebration will be held Feb. 25 through March 2.
The store is full of a variety of items, including rows and rows of clothes for all ages and sizes. There are shirts, pants, pajamas and coats. There's a large selection of shoes as well.
In addition to clothing, there are dishes and knick-knacks/collectibles. There's also furniture, linens, art, books, movies and CDs.
"Everything's reasonably-priced," said Zaworski. Children's clothes, with exception of coats, are generally $1 apiece. Jeans are largely just $4 a pair, and most shoes cost $5 or less. Zaworski said staff uses their judgment to price items.
He added that staff and volunteers are "very picky" when it comes to the items that are sold. Staff and volunteers sort through every bag of clothing, for example, and weed out the items that are stained, ripped or extremely worn.
The sorting room contains a mountain of bags waiting to be opened. There's also an entire extra space dedicated to storing items that won't yet fit on the regular sales floor, including many more pieces of furniture.
Proceeds from sales at the Thrift Store go into the Society of St. Vincent de Paul's outreach efforts, including helping people pay rent or bills.
The Thrift Store employs about 10 people, and volunteers are welcome to come in and help sort or clean up the store.
"If someone whats to volunteer, we'd love to have them come in and help us," said Zaworski.
Items can be donated at the store, located at 1125 S. Milwaukee Ave., during regular store hours. The store is open from Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. until 8 p.m. Zaworski said the store can also do free furniture pick-ups. Call (847) 367-4700 and ask for ext. 102 for more information.
For the grand opening, there will be a ribbon-cutting ceremony—including a store blessing—at 10 a.m. Feb. 25. There are special sales planned for the whole grand opening week, including: All day half-off everything, Feb. 25; half-off white tags, Feb. 26; half-off furniture, Feb. 27; half-off books, CDs, DVDs and VHS, Feb. 28; 25 percent off clothing, March 1; and $5 off a purchase of $15 or more, March 2.