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Everything $1 at new clothes shop in Dundee

Dundee news — Proceeds go toward the renovation efforts of historic community center


Organizers of a new charitable initiative in Dundee are eager to get the word out about their effort to provide unworn or almost new brand name clothing to the community for pennies on the dollar.

Held twice a month at the Dundee Community Center, the initiative — the Community Clothes Closet — was founded earlier this year by local resident Debbie Russ and her husband, City Councilor David Russ, who continue to head up the project with the support of volunteers and the Dundee Woman’s Club. The Russes began the Closet at Dundee Covenant Church before relocating it to the community center a few months ago.

The Closet receives the bulk of its merchandise from an organization in Portland, though some items come from individual donors as well. Like any secondhand or thrift store, its inventory changes regularly, but it carries a wide variety of clothing items (everything from shirts and pants to accessories like purses and scarves), sizes and brands (including Nike, Abercrombie and Fitch, Coach, Hollister, Christian Dior and more).

What makes the store fairly unique — as well as cheap and easy to shop at — is that every item is sold for the same price: $1.

“A pair of jeans for a dollar is a great price,” noted Debbie Russ, who said it’s not unusual to see customers leave with “Santa Claus” bags full of clothing slung over their shoulders. “It’s a real joy when we see people go out with a bag full of clothing. We see people who come in with big families and financial issues, and they’re able to pretty much clothe their whole families.”

Russ said the proceeds from sales go toward the Woman’s Club fundraising effort for the restoration of the community center. Recently, the store has been carrying a particularly large line of coats, sweaters and other winter clothing, which can be helpful for children and families whose wardrobes aren’t well equipped for cold weather.

“The winter clothing is a lot more expensive, and we do have a lot to choose from,” she said.

In addition to seeking to increase the Closet’s customer base and the number of people it serves, Russ said she and her husband are also in need of additional volunteers to help staff the store when it’s open from noon to 2 p.m. the first and third Sunday of every month. Volunteers’ duties are limited and include sorting, folding and organizing, and the job comes with one big perk:

“We tell volunteers they can take whatever clothing they find for free,” she said. “If you can carry it, you can have it.”

The next time the Community Clothes Closet is scheduled to open will be from noon to 2 p.m. Jan. 19 at the community center (located at the intersection of Highway 99W and 11th Street). For more information about the store or volunteering, call Debbie Russ at 503-828-1278.




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