WINCHESTER — 1980s dance music pairs surprisingly well with shopping for lumber and hardware, as people happily discovered at the grand opening of the new location for Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore, which took on a celebratory air.
The home supply store, which sells donated goods, is now located at 400 Battaile Drive in the city’s southern end. Its previous location on Abrams Creek Drive was less than half of the size of the new 24,000-square-foot building.
“We needed more space,” ReStore manager Cathleen Henderson said. “Habitat needed a change in direction in order to continue growing.”
ReStore is the only revenue-generating arm of the local Habitat chapter, which serves Winchester and Frederick and Clarke counties. The nonprofit group builds homes for low-income people, who help with the construction and then take over a fixed-rate mortgage once the home is built. The aim is to help people become homeowners while revitalizing blighted or developing neighborhoods.
All revenue from ReStore goes to the charity’s “build fund,” Henderson said.
Habitat plans to build three new homes this year.
With the added space, ReStore is now organized by department, like a traditional home supply store. Before, everything was stacked in boxes. Now, the inventory is shelved and on display, and signs advertise various specials.
Shoppers can find lumber, tools, home appliances, household goods and garden supplies, among other things. Everything is donated, “right down to the toilet paper we use,” Henderson said.
The new location officially opened April 4.
“This is a great place for the DIY’ers ... the landlords, the treasure seekers,” Henderson said. “[This store] can be the go-to place to inspire people in our community.”
Henderson and four other full-time employees were hired about six months ago to staff the ReStore.
The store’s new set up is partly a result of Henderson’s 22 years of experience in corporate retail.
“This is a completely different setup that they’ve ever had before,” she said.
Habitat is renting the new space from Mark Smith of Greenway Engineering.
Local attorney Karen Holman, a past president of Habitat’s board of directors, said, “This store has been a long time coming. I get a little emotional.”
Laurie Shifflet, a disabled homeowner whose house in Shawneeland was built by Habitat in 2013, said she gets a lot of supplies for her beekeeping hobby at the ReStore. “I get my hinges, I get my paint.” She said anyone with a hobby can likely find the materials they need at the ReStore. They might even be able to find a hobby there. “Life’s an adventure ... this place makes it neat,” she said.
Marvin Messick, of Frederick County, owns his own handyman business. He said he used to shop at the old ReStore, but he finds the new location more open and appealing.
“They got a lot more stuff, which is always a good thing,” Messick said. “It’s just easier as you’re coming in to look for something.”
Mike Cutrana, interim president of the Habitat board, worked the grill on Saturday, serving up hamburgers to customers.
He talked about going to Clay County, W.Va, with his wife last year to help flood victims, not because they knew anyone or were personally affected, but because they wanted to help. Habitat gives him the same opportunity.
“Building houses ... helping the city, helping low-income folks have a better life ... we give back.”
For more information, call ReStore at 540-662-9704.
— Contact Onofrio Castiglia at email@example.com