The Thrill of the Hunt

February 8, 2021

Where can you find a metal six-foot knight in shining armor, a beautifully adorned treasure chest, signed artwork and deer mounts?  How about name brand clothing, housewares, antiques and collectibles?  You’ll find all of these items and more at your local Cypress Basin Hospice Thrift Store.  “Going into a Cypress Basin Hospice Thrift Store is an adventure in shopping,” said volunteer June Lass.  “The inventory changes daily and you never know what you’ll find.  You might not find what you’re looking for one day, but the next day it will be on the sales floor,” she added.

Kelly Rigby, the Pittsburg store manager is always amazed by the generosity of donors.  “Everything in the store has been donated.  We recently had someone who was retiring bring in dozens of name brand dress jackets and blouses.  Many times, donated items still have the sale tags on them,” said Rigby.  All items are sold at a fraction of the cost of what they would sell for in the store, typically at one quarter to one third of the price.

Rigby and Bernadette Kinslow, the manager of the Mt. Pleasant store, spend hours online researching the value of items.  “I learned that the 1940’s Royal Swirl dish set from Japan was valued at $675 online.  Someone will get a great buy because we’ve priced it at only $99,” said Kinslow.  “We also currently have a piano made in 1889 by the Georgia Piano Company listed for only $350.  Refurbished, these pianos are selling for $14,000 to $20,000,” she added.  Both Rigby and Kinslow have used Facebook and Ebay to sell some of the more unique items that are donated to the stores.

Both Mt. Pleasant and Pittsburg rely on volunteers to assist with sorting and pricing items.  Billy Bradford has been volunteering at the Pittsburg store for more than 15 years.  “I love getting to see what’s come in each week.  There’s something for everyone, from wedding dresses to hunting gear.  Someone recently even donated a boat trolling motor,” said Bradford.  “It’s amazing what people give away.  I guess one man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” she added.  “People donate beautiful linens and houseware, as well as nice quality clothing and accessories.”  Volunteers evaluate each item before pricing it for the sale floor.  “Anything that doesn’t go on the sales floor is donated to a charity who sends the items to third world countries,” said Rigby.

People from all walks of life frequent the Cypress Basin Hospice Thrift stores.  “We have a lot of regulars and a strong repeat customer base,” said Kinslow.  “We know what our customers like and sometimes call them to let them know that something has come in that they might be interested in.  I guess you could call us personal shoppers,” said Rigby.  “Donations, sales and spending habits have changed drastically since the pandemic began last year.  Sales are down but on the other hand, people who are now working from home are finding us for the first time,” added Rigby.

To encourage repeat shopping, both thrift stores offer a loyalty card.  For every $10 or more spent, you can have your card stamped.  Fill your card with ten punches and you’ll receive a $20 store credit.  Both stores also offer discount days.  On Tuesday’s those 55 and older receive a 25% discount and on Thursday’s anyone under the age of 55 receives a 25% discount.

Funds raised from the thrift stores allow Cypress Basin Hospice to serve patients who do not have insurance.  Cypress Basin Hospice cares for all hospice appropriate patients regardless of their ability to pay. Through our Community Care Patient Program, patients that do not qualify for Medicare or Medicaid, but qualify for charitable care, will receive the same medications, supplies, equipment, and clinical support as would a patient with Medicare or Medicaid. Cypress Basin Hospice is able to provide this program through the support of community fundraisers, community donations, and memorial donations.  In 2019, Cypress Basin Hospice provided $135,000 in charitable care.  We are following our calling and mission of taking care of all of our brothers and sisters in need, and we invite you to partner with us in continuing to provide care to those who need comfort, care, and compassionate support.

Cypress Basin Hospice has two stores in the area.  The Mt. Pleasant location is located at 109 North Madison and the Pittsburg store is located at 933 North Greer Blvd.  Both stores are open Tuesday – Friday from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.  Donations are accepted during these times.   Volunteers are also welcome at both stores.

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