The Thrift Shop is a community service, making available clothing and household items at a low cost.
2nd and Walnut Ottawa Kansas
Hours 9 am to 12 noon Wednesday, Friday, Saturday
History of the Thrift Shop:
While World War II was raging, Grace Guild (later changed to the Episcopal Church Women) became interested in operating a thrift shop. Mrs. Sam Ober, Grace Guild president, and the Rev. Robert Scott, rector of Ottawa and Olathe, decided to visit with the Olathe women who already operated a thrift shop for ideas on how to start. The Women decided instead of holding their usual rummage sales, bridge benefits, selling baked goods, cabarets, and home talent musicals, they would drop all projects and concentrate on a future thrift shop.
The first chairman of the Thrift Shop Committee was Mrs. F. R. Nuzman. The committee cleaned out a donated, vacant room over the O. L. Hankins Drug Store and on February 1, 1945, their dream became a reality. The Grace Guild Thrift Shop officially opened for business. The first item sold was a pink and lavender bedspread, and then a young man, preparing for his wedding, bought his wedding wardrobe including an overcoat.
Workers from those early days were Mrs. Bert Anderson, Mrs. Fred Nuzman, Mrs. Sam H. Ober, Mrs. George Hougland, Mrs. Ralph Hanes, Miss Eunice Ott, Mrs. Basil Kelsey, Mrs. Fred Kaiser, Miss Maye Halloren, and Miss Frances Sands. Although electric washing machines were uncommon, two women who had them would occasionally wash the soiled items. Miss Maye Halloren took it upon herself to repair the toys and dolls.
The shop occupied several different sites before moving into its present location at Second and Walnut. Open 3 half-days per week, the Thrift Shop was designed to offer both a place for people to donate unwanted articles, and a place to buy needed items at a low price.
From the beginning, Grace Guild (E. C. W.) has had a very close relationship with the church, raising the needed money to buy, renovate, and furnish the original church building. This relationship continues today with the E. C. W. being able to provide monetary support to the church and special projects while meeting the needs of local families.