Habitat for Humanity's ReStore planning to open in two weeks

Saturday, October 20, 2007
UPS workers Shawn Williams of Rolla, Mo., foreground, and Tom Reeves of St. Louis worked on assembling shelving at the Cape Area Habitat for Humanity ReStore on Friday. (Matt Sanders ~ Southeast Missourian)

The Cape Area Habitat for Humanity ReStore is inching closer to its official opening date as its materials stock grows larger.

ReStore manager Jim Bequette said Friday he anticipates the store to open to the public at its 117 N. Middle St. location in about two weeks, with a grand opening to take place in mid-November.

Once the store opens, Bequette said, Habitat is hoping for huge growth in the amount of business the fundraiser store conducts.

"We want to generate enough business to outgrow this facility as soon as possible," Bequette said Friday of the ReStore's 9,000-square-foot warehouse space.

Getting the ReStore up and running has been a project for the Cape Area Habitat for Humanity for about two years, said board member Paul Lloyd.

On Friday, nine UPS volunteers from throughout the state helped stock the ReStore, assembling shelving, measuring donated rolls of carpet and moving items from the old SEMO Video store on Broadway to the ReStore.

The volunteer effort was coordinated by the United Way of Southeast Missouri, which gives $40,000 a year to the Cape Area Habitat for Humanity.

Before the UPS employees began working at the ReStore, they took a tour of the United Way offices on Broadway. UPS is the largest giver to United Way on the national level, said Holly Lintner, director of development for the local United Way.

Sally Lee, employee and community relations manager for UPS in Missouri, said UPS employees in Missouri are No. 2 in the nation in the amount of volunteer hours they put in.

The ReStore takes donations of household items and appliances in new or near-new condition from individuals and businesses, Bequette said. Those items are then sold to raise money for Habitat for Humanity building projects in the area.

The money is especially important in light of the Cape Area Habitat's recent expansion.

Robin Cole, local Habitat secretary and chair of the organization's development committee, said the local Habitat chapter has recently expanded its building projects into areas outside of Cape Girardeau, such as Sikeston, Advance and Perryville.

The ReStore does more than just raise money for Habitat projects, Bequette said.

"It's also providing a recycling service," he said, by keeping items donated to the ReStore out of landfills.

Bequette will sell items now if people catch him in the ReStore, though the store isn't officially open yet. When it does open store hours will be 9 a.m. to noon on Thursdays, 12:30 to 5 p.m. Fridays and 9 a.m. to noon Saturdays.

For more information about donating to or purchasing from the ReStore, call the store office at 651-9080.

msanders@semissourian.com

335-6611, extension 182

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