READY AND WAITING — The Country Corner Thrift Shop, a part of the Foothills Rural Community Ministry, is gearing up to help both shoppers looking for great deals and area residents in need.The thrift shop, located in the Twin Churches on the village green along Route 365, offers a wide variety of items, including a host of children’s and teen clothing. (Photo submitted)

Ministry aids neighbors, bargain hunters

Published Sep 3, 2017 at 9:00am

HOLLAND PATENT — It’s back to school time bargain, and the Country Corner Thrift Shop, a part of the Foothills Rural Community Ministry, is gearing up to help both shoppers looking for great deals and area residents in need.

The thrift shop, located in the Twin Churches on the village green along Route 365, offers a wide variety of items. Donations arrive weekly, ministry officials say, allowing for a constantly changing inventory — from “beautiful handmade bed quilts, to 50’s era collectable tableware and cookware, to a new, unused food processor, still in the box.”

The shop is open on the first three Saturdays and the fourth Thursday of every month, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Back-to-school shoppers will find plenty of bargains, according to a ministry announcement, with all youth and teen clothing — including new items — currently on sale.

The thift store also feartures a “bag sale” on the first and third Saturdays of every month, when shoppers can purchase up to 20 clothing items (excluding outerwear, shoes and purses) for $4. Clothing not on sale is typically only $1 per item (excluding outerwear and boots), or unless marked otherwise.

Proceeds from the Country Corner Thrift Shop benefit the Foothills Rural Community Ministry — a coalition of area churches and organizations serving needy people in our rural area of Central New York. “The Mission of the Foothills Rural Community Ministry is to respond with care and concern to rural persons and families in need by providing information, assistance, and support, and to build a sense of community through our activities,” the organization says on its website.

The ministry began in 1985 with five congregations, the Presbyterian Churches of Holland Patent and South Trenton, the United Methodist Churches of Floyd and Stittville, and the Unitarian Church of Barneveld, coming together to create the Foothills Churches United for Action. Other churches, including St. Leo’s Roman Catholic of Holland Patent and St. David’s Episcopal in Barneveld, would soon join, the effort to assist those in need in the region.

Throughout the late 1980s and 1990s, the ministry grew in scope and service, the
organization’s website says, adding programs, services and volunteers.

“To this day our major outreach programs remain the same:  The Food Pantry, Thrift Shop, Christmas Baskets, and Park Coffee House.  During the intake process for the Food Pantry our volunteers have an opportunity to provide information and to make necessary referrals for our Food Pantry clients,” the ministry says, adding “The support from this community has been tremendous.  We have many volunteers in each of our programs. We are supported by financial donations from individuals, churches, townships, and many other community organizations.  We have strong leadership from our directors and the council.  Together, we can take pride in what we accomplish.”

Donations to the Country Corner Thrift Shop are essential, the Foothills Rural Community Ministry says, to its success and ongoing viability. Volunteers are also appreciated and always welcome, the group adds. Drop-off times are Mondays, Thursdays and the first Saturdays of each month upstairs at the shop. Although summer donations will no longer be accepted, as space is limited, other donations, are gladly accepted.

In addition to clothing, thrift shop visitors will find toys, jewelry, decorative items, antique dolls, house ware, sports equipment, books of all kinds (including a section for cooking, self-help, and children and teens), as well as a variety of other items.

Accordng to its website, the Foothills Rural Community Ministry Executive Council include Joan Kotwica, moderator; Dee Krutz, secretary; Bonnie Churcher, treasurer; and members Gail Brett, Tom Cassidy, Doug Churcher, Wayne Clemens, Cheryl Edmiston, Mary Evans, Sharon Firley, Cathy Martin, Deborah Ouderkirk, Karen Pike-Roberts, Pat Robinson, Fred VanNamee, and Anthony Zammiello.

Van Namee serves as the organization’s community relations director while Sonya Ellinger is the ministry’s office manager. Edmiston is the food pantry chair while Denise Routhier is the thrift shop coordinator.

Brett serves as the coffee house manager; Firley and Lorraine Pawson are the Christmas basket co-chairs while Kathy Hughes oversees the group’s backpack project. Pat Pepe leads the Food $ense program; Pike-Roberts heads Sarah’s Pet Pantry and Eric McCue, leads the community garden effort. Churcher and Bill Hajdasz chair the Trenton farmers market.

For more information about the Foothills Rural Community Ministry or any of its programs and services, including the Country Corners Thrift Shop, go online to http://www.foothillsruralcommunityministry.org.