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New York City Celebrates Thrift Store Day

by Rebecca Lewis
A A
A Goodwill in Brooklyn

Rebecca Lewis, WFUV

There's more to celebrate on Thrift Store Day than just good deals.

New York City Thrift Store Day was today and to celebrate, a group of non-profits including Goodwill and the Salvation Army were offering discounts.

Gloria Montalvo's never been to a thrift shop before, but she decided to check out a Goodwill in Brooklyn after hearing about Thrift Store Day.

"I think this is going to be my favorite store," Montalvo said. "Forget Macy's!"

After looking at the selection and the affordable prices, she says she now plans on being a regular customer. But officials say that while the prices are what often draw customers, thrift stores do more than just let people save big.

"Textiles in particular represent about four percent of the residential waste stream," Kathryn Garcia, commissioner of the sanitation department, said on Friday.

Garcia said donating to thrift stores can help keep a lot of items, especially clothes, out of landfills. That's why the Sanitation Department founded the program Reuse New York City two years ago. It's partnered with non-profit thrift stores to promote not just the shops and their environmental benefits.

"They're responsible for diverting well over 16 million tons of goods in 2013 alone."

Getting people to donate items rather than throw them out is big part of Reuse NYC as well. Ben Rose, who runs the program, said when you donate, you know your possessions are going somewhere better than a garbage dump.

"Chances are, there's going to be someone like you who's going to love that crazy end table, or Roman chalise you have to have at home," Rose said.

Over 50 thrift stores are participating and members of the program. Rose said he hopes more non-profit stores will become members in the years to come.

New York City had it's Thrift Store Day celebrations on Friday, before National Thrift Store Day on Sunday.

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