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They came from near and far throughout the day Saturday. Thrift shop addicts and the just-plain curious from Chiefland mingled with their counterparts from Bell and Bronson, from Fanning Springs and High Springs, from Old Town and Orlando and from numerous towns and cities in between.
Converging on the site of Levy County’s newest bargain outlet, they came to participate in the grand opening celebration of Hospice of the Nature Coast’s Thrift and Gift Shoppe at 2202 North Young Boulevard in Chiefland.
There, they formed a constant stream of bargain hunters and fun lovers who found great buys mixed in with something for everyone. Children lined up for cupcake decorating, face painting, kids tattoos and fingernail art offered by Thrift Shoppe volunteers. Snackers enjoyed hot dogs fresh off the grill. Shoppers took advantage of special sales, a silent auction and discounts for everyone. “But most of all,” said Shoppe Manager Millie Yazell, “the community welcomed us and enthusiastically embraced our cause, which is helping those we serve.” All proceeds from operation of the Thrift and Gift Shoppe benefit Hospice of the Nature Coast’s local patients and their families.
Adding to the atmosphere of celebration, throughout the day vocalist and steeldrum band leader Kokomo Chris filled the air with island music while KTK Radio’s Storm Roberts energized the crowd with prize drawings, raffle announcements and his own special brand of humor.
Dozens of attendees walked away winners of prizes ranging from T-shirts and water bottles to tickets for entertainment in Gainesville, Jacksonville, Key West and Punta Gorda. But the big winner of the day was Trish Johnson of Chiefland, whose name was drawn for a coveted pair of tickets to Universal Orlando.
The real winners, of course, are and will continue to be community neighbors who are patients served by Hospice of the Nature Coast, which is a program of Hospice of Citrus County, Inc., licensed 1985. A not-for-profit charitable organization serving 12 north central Florida counties, this hospice provider has been awarded the Gold Seal of Approval from the Joint Commission.
The Thrift and Gift Shoppe – open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday – can be reached at 352-493-9300. For information on patient services and family support, call toll free 866-463-1385 or visit the organization’s Web site: www.hospiceofthenaturecoast.org.