(03/21/13) - The grand opening of Burton's new Volunteers of America Thrift Store brought out quite the crowd early Thursday morning.
"We needed it bad. Everyone's on a tight budget these days and this [is] perfect for everyone around here," said Heather Carsen, customer.
This is the fourth VOA store in Michigan. One opened in Corunna last year. The new store sits in the old Kroger building near 69 and Belsay Road.
"We're thrilled. Opening a new store in Burton is something we've been working on for over a year," said Alex Broderick, VOA Michigan president and CEO.
"We have a business place that had closed down and now something has come back into our community, reopened, and what a great thing in our community, employing 25 people," said Cheryl Sclater, Burton Chamber of Commerce Pres.
Proceeds from sales go toward a wide variety of programs that Volunteers of America provides throughout Southeast and Mid-Michigan.
"We run veterans services, a lot of homeless programs, have an open community kitchen, we do adopt a family at Christmas," Broderick said.
As far as merchandise - it's all donated, and a little bit of anything and everything, including plenty of big name brands.
"We have some Coach shoes that look like they haven't been worn for $29. If I were to go to a store to try to buy these, probably over $100. We have some Coach bags and Dooney and Bourke. These are probably $300 to $400 at a store. They're $20 here," said Erica Medvinsky, VOA Donor Relations Manager.
If you consider yourself to be a world champion bargain hunter, you're going to like this - a Lucas Films limited edition light saber - Star Wars. $7 here. We found it on eBay Thursday with a current bid of $81.
"I'm a collector of Star Wars things. I just had to have it. I just had to have it. May the force be with you," said customer Terry Jones.
The Volunteers of America store accepts donations, and plans are in place to open a new store every year.
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