St. Vincent de Paul opens new thrift store

By Jeff Kurowski | The Compass | August 14, 2013

Grand opening of Green Bay store is Aug. 19


GREEN BAY — The “Bike, Camp, Ski” signage on the face of the building at 940 Hansen Road in Ashwaubenon will be replaced by “We Help People.” A new St. Vincent de Paul store will open on Aug. 19 in the former Denis Sport Shop. The retail space replaces the St. Vincent de Paul store on Lombardi Access Road, which closed on July 25 following four years of operation.

A new sign was installed above the front entrance of the St. Vincent de Paul thrift store in Green Bay. (Sam Lucero | The Compass)
A new sign was installed above the front entrance of the St. Vincent de Paul thrift store in Green Bay. (Sam Lucero | The Compass)

According to Bill Gosse, executive director for the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Green Bay District Council, the lease for the Lombardi location was set to expire at the end of the year.

“The building is newer and much bigger — 15,000 square feet compared to 6,000 square feet at the old location,” said Gosse. “It will allow for a greater volume of merchandise. The more revenue we can raise, the more people we can help.”

The repurposing of the building included a major cleaning effort, new energy-efficient lighting and minor structural changes to open up the space. Light fixtures, scrap metal and office partitions from the sports store were either recycled or sold. New items, including merchandise racks, were purchased with the funds.

“We will maximize every inch of space in here,” said Barb Erlandson, director of store operations. “Our other facility (1529 Leo Frigo Way in Green Bay) is our processing center. It’s just a huge facility over there, so we are bringing a lot of merchandise from the east side of town to the west side store. We held a closeout sale at our old west side location, so we are starting with all new (never offered before) merchandise.”

The west side store will carry similar types of merchandise as the east side store, added Erlandson.

“The only difference between the two facilities is there will be an expanded furniture space on the east side,” she said. “Otherwise, it’s just a little bit smaller footprint of everything.”

Erlandson, whose career background includes designing retail space for ShopKo, is merchandising the new St. Vincent de Paul store with the customer in mind.

“We want to makes things visually appealing as you walk in the door and create a traffic flow that makes sense from how a customer shops,” she explained. “We will have the ladies section in the front of the store. Kids and toys will be in the back corner. When shoppers enter they want to see something seasonal, so we will have Halloween items in the front.”

Books will also be near the front due to high traffic in that department. The store will feature a special Packer section, which will flow into men’s clothing.

“Men don’t like to travel too far into the store, so we have them right off to the side,” said Erlandson. “It’s going to feel like an upscale thrift store. It’s going to be very inviting to shop and will provide that treasure hunt feel because, every day, we will be putting out new merchandise.”

Approximately 40 people line up for the east side store to open each day. Erlandson hopes to see a similar enthusiasm at the new location. She expects treasure hunters to visit both stores.

“You have to keep it fresh, keep it current, at prices they want to pay,” she said.

Carol Skavarda will serve as the manager of the new store, which will be staffed by seven full- and part-time employees and numerous volunteers. Gosse sees great potential in the location.

“It’s easy access from Oneida Street,” he said. “It’s right next to Sir Bounce-A -Lots. Parents can do some shopping while their kids have some fun next door.”

Merchandise donations are accepted at the west side store. Some volunteers from the east side store are planning to relocate to the new location because it’s closer to their homes, but more volunteers are needed, said Erlandson. Interested volunteers should call Jody Kasten, volunteer coordinator, at (920) 435-4040, ext. 107. Normal store hours for the west side location will be 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesdays; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.


[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_message color=”alert-info”]

Grand opening

A grand opening celebration for the new St. Vincent de Paul store at 940 Hansen Road, Ashwaubenon, will be held at 9 a.m. Monday, Aug. 19. Deacon Tom Mahoney will lead the ceremony. Other dignitaries are expected to attend. The store will open for business immediately following the gathering, which is open to the public.


Related Posts

Scroll to Top