MARINE CORPS AIR STATION NEW RIVER, N.C. – -- For the cheapest goods around, members of the military community can visit Ramblin’ Rose Thrift Shop aboard Marine Corps Air Station New River.
The volunteer-run store features free uniforms and uniform accessories for active-duty service members and cheap clothes, household items and other wares for its customers.
"Our objective is to support military families," said Kelly Bower, a volunteer at Ramblin’ Rose Thrift Shop.
They accomplish their goals in several ways. They keep their prices low so any family can shop there and donate all funds raised to military-focused organizations.
"We’re available to the military community," said Bower, a native of New Albany, Mississippi. "We want to help families."
The free uniforms, including maternity items, offer direct help to active-duty service members.
"We’ve been able to help a lot of Marines and sailors on tight budgets," said Bower.
Lance Cpl. Thomas Cook, a logistics and records clerk with Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 26, visits the shop occasionally to see what’s new.
"I come out to check out some deals and see if there’s anything I can use," said Cook, a native of Tupelo, Mississippi. "You never know what you’re going to find. Most people spend $60 on a new shirt, I can get one here for a few dollars."
The thrift shop is led by the New River Staff Non Commissioned Officer’s Wives’ Club, who look to provide financial and moral support to groups who assist the air station, as well as encouraging unity throughout the enlisted military community.
"The thrift store is just one of the things we do," said Bower.
The group hosts food drives, bingo games and other activities.
The club is open to all enlisted spouses as well as the spouses of retirees, but anybody can volunteer and help at the thrift shop. Volunteering offers an opportunity to give hands-on-help and meet the community.
"I love talking to the customers and getting to know everybody," said Ashley Enslow, a native of Bicknell, Indiana and the Thrift Store Chair with the New River Staff NCO’s Wives’ Club.
Volunteers can gain job skills at the shop while forming friendships.
For more information, call 910-449-5396 or visit www.facebook.com/pages/New-River-Staff-NCO-Wives-Club.
A volunteer looks through clothing hanging on a rack at Ramblin’ Rose Thrift Shop aboard Marine Corps Air Station New River, Nov. 20. The thrift shop is run by the New River Staff Non Commissioned Officer’s Wives’ Club, but anybody can volunteer.
Lance Cpl. Erick Ramirez, an aviation electrician with Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 26, looks at free uniform accessories at Ramblin’ Rose Thrift Shop aboard Marine Corps Air Station New River, Nov. 20. All military uniforms and accessories are free to active-duty service members at the thrift shop.