Owner has plans for Buckley Thrift

Usually when an entrepreneur buys an existing business, payment is made in cash. John Brehmer paid for the Buckley Thrift Store in buses.

“I drove tour buses for over 20 years, and for a while I ran my own tour bus company,” he said. “I saw the Craigslist listing that said (Buckley Thrift Store) was for sale, and I worked out the trade with the owners.”

The new owner is already making changes big and small, including expansion of both space and goods, redirecting profits to charity and, as Brehmer put it, being “a lot friendlier, cleaner and warmer.”

Brehmer took control of the shop Dec. 1 and claims big first month gains – triple the revenues brought in by the previous management, he said.

He’s betting big on Buckley, planning to double the size of the store by purchasing a second 2,700-square-foot storefront space three doors west of the current location.

Brehmer will be adding furniture consignment and a consignment art gallery to the store’s product line.

“The art gallery is just because I love art,” he said. “And there is a major calling in this area for good and inexpensive furniture.”

Other items the consignment store accepts for sale are clothing, miscellaneous knickknacks and handmade crafts. Sellers can pay monthly rent for sale space on the floor or offer the store a consignment fee at 30 percent of the sale price.

A portion of all revenues will go to nonprofit Spiritual Journeys, also run by Brehmer, for the purpose of aiding domestic violence survivors and funding children’s funerals.

Brehmer started Spiritual Journeys after a friend’s godson was killed in an accident. He raised money for the funeral.

The store, at 745 Main St., takes donations of cash and sale items, for the nonprofit, from noon to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday.

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