Most cats might get a catnip mouse on their birthday if they’re lucky. Maggie is a rescue cat from McPhillips Animal Hospital who now lives in the Thrive Thrift store at Spence and Sargent in the West End.
To mark her 15th birthday in November, shoppers were treated to a 15 cent sale that ran for eleven days. Moms were able to outfit all their kids with boots for just 15 cents a pair. Families could leave with garbage bags of clothes for all ages for just a few dollars.
The store was low on large bags as clothing, books, cookware, household items and everything in between left the store pretty quickly. It may have been Maggie’s birthday but the whole community benefited during her birthday party. But that was just the prelude to her real birthday.
On Nov. 15 a cake appeared together with Happy Birthday plates and Happy Birthday balloons for the kids.
Without those you might not have realized that it was a cake as the tin foil pan with the new cat litter scoop (bought especially for the cake), graham cracker crumbs for the cat litter and long hand rolled chocolate pieces looked uncannily like a litter box. The thrift store staff, especially Kristy Muckosky, the manager, are really creative here and like having fun.
Maggie herself is a little shy. She makes the occasional appearance in the store but spends a lot of time curled up in the volunteer area in the back.
If she’s feeling especially shy she’ll hide behind Kristy’s desk. “She really loves going to visit her grandparents who really spoil her,” said Kristy.
“I take her home too and when she gets back to the store she always walks around re-familiarizing herself with the shelves.”
A poem about Maggie penned by Kristy hangs in the change room after she unwittingly wandered under the door one day scaring the customer trying on clothes. She hadn’t known there was a store cat so got quite the surprise and scare when Maggie joined her in the change room.
If you do see her out and about in the store, there’s a jar of cat treats you can feed her on a shelf by the door. Just remember that she doesn’t like being picked up.
With no birthday this month prices aren’t quite as good but women’s blazers and Christmas items are 50% off and coats are just $5.
Find out more about the community programs they offer at ThriveCommunitySupportCircle.com. They are an inner-city agency dedicated to offering services that support women, men, pregnant women, children; in all stages, to cultivate life, to empower individuals and to grow community.
A Therapy Department, a Resource Centre and a Childcare Centre are operated onsite and in the neighbourhood. Volunteers of diverse abilities and skills can gain work experience in the thrift store which sells clothing and household goods at very low prices.
With all the great things they do, you can feel good about donating items to the thrift store. And you never know what neat free events they’ll be having. At Halloween they held a caramel apple making class. They’ve had moccasin making classes and more.
Stay tuned and pick up their colourful newsletter when you’re in the store.