Value Village opened last week in Courtenay across the street from the Lewis Centre, kicking off a three-day grand opening Thursday at 9 a.m.
“We were right down to the wire on that,” store manager Greg Morry said Friday. “There were some construction delays that concerned us. We were straightening ceiling tiles at 8:59 yesterday morning, and we opened up right on time.”
About 85 people had walked through the doors by 9:05 a.m. By day’s end Thursday, more than 1,200 people had visited the thrift store.
While waiting in a bank lineup, Morry overheard someone say they were planning on a third visit on the same day.
“That’s the way the community’s been,” said Morry, who moved to the Valley from Langley. He is in his 10th year with Value Village. “Going back from the hiring fair which was in September until now, every person whose involved with Value Village has basically got a story to tell about how the community has received us.”
He said the employees, all of whom are local, are engaged with the spirit of the Value Village recycling program, which involves clothing, paper, metals and other goods.
“We have billions of pounds a year that is kept out of the landfill,” Morry said.
The store obtains products through public donations and by purchasing through charities. Locally, the store is affiliated with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Victoria and the Canadian Diabetes Association.
Value Village started in San Francisco in 1954. There are numerous stores throughout Canada and the U.S., and another six in Australia.
Stores offer discounted prices on clothing, books, CDs, videos, housewares and other items.
“Our average shopper is roughly 35 years old,” Morry said.
The Courtenay store is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday to Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays.
Christmas is the only day of the year it is closed.