The community might not realize there is a hidden gem of a place to shop right in their backyards. The McChord Thrift Shop has so much more to offer than one might think. The thrift shop is entering its 59th year of operation and giving back to the community. The McChord Spouses Club owns the McChord Thrift Shop, and while they do have three paid staff members, 90 percent of their staff is made up of volunteers, some of which have been there for over 40 years. The McChord Spouses Club and the thrift shop strive to give back to the community in as many ways as they can. This year, they are thrilled to roll out some new events and programs to continue to help support their community in new ways.
On March 10 from 5:30-8 p.m., the McChord Thrift Shop will be hosting an exclusive formal dress sale. With the generous donations from a dress shop in Tacoma, the McChord Thrift Shop has 92 formal dresses up for sale. The dresses range in size from 0-12 and will be sold for just $15-$25 during the event. Photos of the dresses that will be for sale can be found on their Facebook website. The McChord Thrift Shop is ecstatic to be able to have this wonderful event that offers gorgeous dresses at a reasonable price.
The McChord Thrift Shop frequently receives donations of items they cannot resell such as packages of diapers or baby wipes. Assistant manager Anna Kearney realized that people in the community still need such items and did not want to see them get thrown out. She created Operation Diaper Drop and implemented the program almost two weeks ago. The goal of the program is to have donated baby items available for pick-up 24 hours a day, seven days a week. "Anyone can stop by and take what they need, and maybe down the road, donate leftover items back for someone else to use," said thrift shop manager Jennifer Bayes. There are two cabinets located in the front of the store full of items like diapers, pull-ups, baby wipes, breastfeeding pads, and even bottles. "It is all absolutely free," said Bayes. "We would rather see them used by someone who needs them instead of throwing them out."
The formal dress event and Operation Diaper Drop are only two of the positive ways that the McChord Thrift Shop gives back to their military community. For the past several years, the McChord Spouses Club has proudly given out nearly $35,000 in scholarships and welfare requests. They also happily take consignments in the thrift shop, knowing that for some people, consignment is a way to supplement their income. Bayes is extremely proud of the McChord Thrift Shop for all that they do, but also because of the positive environment in which she works. "We have dedicated volunteers who all strongly agree with giving back to our military community," she said.
McChord Thrift Shop, 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Tuesday-Thursday and first Saturday of each month; 4-7 p.m., Tuesday nights, Building 717, corner of 4th and Battery Street, JBLM - McChord Field, 253.982.2468, Facebook.com/McChordThriftShop