Beverly Rolfe is so excited about her new thrift store that she did a little dance of anticipation beside the front counter this week.
She tucked her elbows at her side and did a little shimmy. Charity Thrift Store opens at 9 a.m. today.
Behind her, two parakeets in a cage chirped. Rolfe called them her "guardian birds."
Charity Thrift Store, 14 Rand St., is host to a menagerie. A female rat named Charity was donated with the cage and all. Rolfe has it priced at $10.
She carefully picked the rat up out of the cage, "she's very nice," Rolfe said. Charity crawled up around to the back of Rolfe's head and perched there for a bit.
Rolfe worked six hours everyday for the last month to get her 1,000-square-foot shop in order. She invested about $4,500 into making it a success. She's a little embarrassed that the store's name is painted on the store-front window.
Rolfe will donate a minimum of 10 percent of the quarterly profits to her favorite organizations, Meals On Wheels and the Carson City animal shelter. Her shop isn't a nonprofit. Rolfe decided she just wanted to give back to the community.
"This is something I've talked about for ... I don't know how many years," she said. "I hemmed and hawed and then I decided I'd either do it or forget about it."
Prior to Charity Thrift Store, she owned a cleaning business and worked at Carson Plaza Retirement Residence.
"I'm a junk collector. It's always been my dream to have my own store."
The receiving room is full of the things other people haven't wanted. Rolfe said the store isn't even open yet, but she's already received a surprising amount of donations. Her husband, Steven, and daughter, Minnette, stocked the store with the donations.
Minnette's son, 4-year-old Jared, vied for their attention by rapping on the rat cage, or taking a spin around the room with the donated seeder. Her other son was napping.
In addition to pets, the birds aren't for sale, and children, also not for sale, the thrift store is full of collections. These collections were Rolfe's hobbies, objects she's grown out of.
She's selling her salt and pepper shakers, shoe ceramics and purse collections. The store has antique furniture, plus-sized clothing, a section for books, kitchenware and toys for men. This includes a broken tricycle, otherwise known as a project, a movie collection and a motorcycle helmet.
Contact reporter Becky Bosshart at firstname.lastname@example.org or 881-1212.