Landis thrift store helps church missions

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 6, 2012

By Shavonne Potts
LANDIS – On her 81st birthday Kat Hall spent the morning shopping at Helping Hands Thrift Store in downtown Landis.
Hall browses the racks at least once a month and usually walks away with a purchase.
The thrift store has been open since 1995 and helps support various ministries of North Kannapolis Baptist Church.
In May 2009, the store moved a few doors down but has been at its current location, 113 S. Central Ave., ever since.
“It just reaches out to the community,” said Margaret Propst, administrative assistant to finance for the church.
The store helps fund many church projects including an ongoing outreach program.
The money raised from the store also provides college and seminary scholarships.
There have been situations where donated clothing to the store has been used to help families who’ve lost clothes in a house fire. The store also gives clothing to people in need.
The store proceeds also support youth mission trips, Propst said.
The store was started by a group in the church and has always been affiliated with the church, she said.
Hall, who is a member of First Baptist Church in Kannapolis, likes that her money goes to a good cause.
“That’s the reason I come because of the church,” Hall said.
When Hall sees a sale sign in the window, she pulls into a parking space.
She is on a fixed income, but finds the prices unbeatable. Hall often shops for herself, her children and grandchildren.
Hall once found three dresses that had never been worn. The original tags read $70, but Hall only paid less than $4.
On her Wednesday morning trip to the store Hall intended to buy items for herself, but couldn’t resist a black shirt with a rhinestone heart for her granddaughter.
“She would like this,” Hall said running her fingers over the rhinestones.
When regular customers come into the store they are usually greeted by store director Tonya Goodman.
Goodman recognizes the regular customers and often knows them by name or face.
It’s nothing strange to see the customers stand at the front of the store to chit chat with Goodman.
She and customers swap stories and catch up on each others lives since their last shopping trip.
Goodman began working at the store in 2001.
Sue Lowery of Mooresville not only shops at the store, but occasionally donates items to be sold.
When Lowery gets her hair done on Thursdays in the area, she usually makes a trip to the store.
She stopped at the store Wednesday because it was the first sale day of the new season. The store changed out summer items and began Wednesday with fall and winter items.
The store has heavily reduced items on sale a week before the new items are displayed.
Betty Lingle and her daughter Betty Duncan, both of Faith were at the store browsing.
Lingle likes to look at the clothes. She’s a petite woman and has found some items at the store that fit her small frame.
Duncan stops in at least every three weeks to see what’s new. She likes being able to give to the church.
“I’d rather give the church my money instead of something commercial,” she said.
Lori Underwood of China Grove once bought a vanity for her 15-year-old granddaughter. She paid very little for the vanity and her granddaughter was able to strip the piece and refurbish it.Underwood went to a consignment store in Mooresville and saw a $72 stool she thought would be perfect with the vanity. She left the stool in the store in hopes of finding it cheaper at Helping Hands Thrift Store.
“I came back to see if they have one,” Underwood said of Helping Hands.
She’ll return until she finds one in the store.
Julia Bunn works in Landis and shops at least three times a week at the store.
“They help a lot of people,” Bunn said.
She doesn’t plan to buy a specific item, but sometimes walks away with a good purchase.
“I like to see people get things they can use and not pay a lot of money for it,” she said.
Bunn believes God expects people to help others and that’s what the store is about.
The store is open Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
For more information about Helping Hands Thrift Store, contact 704-857-9510.