Christmas comes but once a year â€“ unless you go to the East Lincoln Christian Ministry.
The ministryâ€™s Christmas in July sale kicked off this week with hundreds of festive, wintry items available.
â€œThere are some very unique and interesting items at very affordable prices,â€ said Pat Tryson, a volunteer. â€œEverything you want to connect Christmas with.â€
There are pillows, sweaters, dolls, plastic snowmen, trees, ornaments, dish towels and figurines. Lisa Kennedy left with two armfuls of goods.
â€œI am one of the crazy Christmas people,â€ she said. â€œMy husband and I are just big kids.â€
So when a Christmas-themed bargain comes her way, she canâ€™t resist. This results in an ever-growing collection of seasonal items.
â€œWe do it big, and we enjoy it, and all the neighborhood people love it,â€ Kennedy said.
Lisa Kennedy, a customer and Christmas-lover, stocked up on holiday items Tuesday morning. Sarah Grano / LTN Photo
The Christmas in July sale will last throughout the end of the month. The ministry is open from 9 a.m. to noon Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday.
Throughout the year, the ministry sells clothes, furniture, accessories, home goods and more.
â€œEverything is donated and everyoneâ€™s a volunteer,â€ said Al Levin, ministry president.
Many of those volunteers are very dedicated. Claire Notrica and Ann Lenihan have served the ministry for eight years. They organize all the holiday goods â€“ everything from Christmas to Easter to Valentineâ€™s Day.
â€œWeâ€™re the holiday people,â€ Notrica said. â€œWe mark, we throw out, we give away.â€
Traffic at the store has been high throughout the summer season. Christmas in July and a clearance sale helps.
â€œI think customers like the prices and the bargains,â€ said Joanne Henley, one of the storeâ€™s coordinators. â€œThey also know the money goes towards helping the needy.â€
Money made at the thrift store funds the ministryâ€™s operations including its home-delivered meals and crisis program.
Want to go? The East Lincoln Christian Ministryâ€™s Christmas in July Sale is open during ministry hours â€“ 9 a.m. to noon, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday. The ministry is located at 4278 Catawba Burris Road in Denver. For more information call (704) 483-4415.
by Sarah Grano