The Sidney Sun-Telegraph - Serving proudly since 1873 as the beautiful Nebraska Panhandle's first newspaper

'Store' Open To Serve Community Needs


January 3, 2018

Forrest Hershberger

Virginia Goesch explains the different sections of clothing and merchandise on display at St. Patrick's Catholic Church Rummage House.

The racks display recent additions of polo shirts, dress shirts, work uniforms and varied sports jerseys. To the right is an assortment of games. The women's section includes a wide variety of fashion.

There is also a department of foot ware, small appliances and furniture.

These are all available at prices customer-friendly to any budget, from the most destitute to the financially blessed.

The St. Patrick's Rummage House opened its doors in 1965, providing quality useable clothing, furniture, appliances, electronics, books and many other useable items. Everything offered in the Rummage House is donated. Clothes are sorted and cleaned.. Electronics and appliances are tested and cleaned. Items that are not fit for resale are discarded.

"If things don't work, they're tossed out," said Virginia Goesch. "We don't even try to fix them."

Donations are processed in a specific order. Clothes are sorted. What can be used is then washed, then pricers label the clothes before they are hung for display. Clothes are then organized according to seasons and holidays.

"We try to get every main holiday that comes along," Goesch said.

The Rummage House operates with a staff of volunteers, about 30 altogether.

"Our mission is stewardship," said Tish Treimen.

She said the focus is to provide for people in need. When people cannot afford the stated prices, they can go to the church for a voucher. The Rummage House also receives referrals from Head Start, the Department of Health and Human Services, DOVES, area schools, Panhandle Community Services and King's Daughters.

Many of the volunteers value their time at the Rummage House like a second career, with personal benefits. Most are retired, but not tired of serving people in need. They spend a few hours each week at various tasks preparing for shoppers with limited budgets. In exchange, they have the fulfillment of helping people and the company of supportive friends.

Betty Mika has been volunteering at the Rummage House for about six years. Her husband died seven years ago and she was encouraged to volunteer at the center.

"I love it," Mika said.

She said she enjoys being out of the house, with people, getting a different perspective.

"People are nice. They're very thankful we have this for them," she said.

Treiman said after the staff's morning break, they have a prayer, including praying for people in the community with special needs.

The building is located at 14th and King Street. The original two-story house was built in the early 1900s. The first owner was Mary C. Law. The St. Patrick's Parish purchased the house and property in 1952. It was used for male borders who attended St. Patrick's Academy, and later housed the St. Patrick's coach. In 1967, the church's rummage enterprise was moved from its former location to the house. The Rummage House was located in the St. Patrick's Youth Center while the new Rummage House was under construction.

The former Rummage House, at the same location, was razed in 1992, making way for the newer and more efficient building.

Excess from the Rummage House is delivered to The Orphan Grain Train in Julesburg.


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