After being closed for about three and a half months, the door to the Salvation Army thrift store in Houlton is back open, and community members are thrilled.
“I was extremely excited to have it back, I love it – its my favorite store..every time I come to town this is my first stop, always,” said Heidi Hall of Amity.
Hall is one of many in the area that were worried about the store, after it temporarily closed back in December because of safety concerns. After what Envoy Damon Hayward calls a lengthy inspection process, the store opened back up on Tuesday.
“We’re very grateful that we were able to reopen the doors to help meet the need,” said Hayward.
Hayward says throughout the last three months, people were constantly calling his office and his superiors downstate asking about the store’s status. Though they’re happy to be open, he says it will take through the rest of the year to make up the income they lost over three months.
“It was just a financial bind all the way because we wanted to have the thrift store open but just could not,” he said.
And of course, with the closure of the Salvation Army store in Presque Isle weeks ago, this is now the only Salvation Army thrift store north of Bangor. The funds from the store are used to help fund the Salvation Army’s social services and camp for kids, and Hayward says though it will be difficult to fund those this year, they’re still going to. And it’s that dedication to doing good that keeps customers like Heidi Hall coming back to this store over and over.
“I’d much rather purchase it here if i can than purchase it at a local other store because its going for a good cause,” she said.