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Sunday, February 17, 2013

Goodwill store opens in Annandale

The opening of the Goodwill store on John Marr Drive Feb. 16 greatly increases the amount of retail space in Annandale—along with the options for thrift shopping.

The new Annandale Goodwill, with 25,000 square feet, is the largest of the 14 Goodwill stores in the Washington, D.C., region, said Brendan Hurley, senior vice president for marketing and communications at Goodwill of Greater Washington. It’s the fourth Goodwill store in Fairfax County.

The grand opening celebration—with free coloring books for kids, face painting, and hot dogs—drew crowds of people finding great deals on clothing, toys, furniture, knick knacks, DVDs, and more. About 5 percent of the merchandise is actually new items overstocked by regular stores.

Sen. Dick Saslaw was on hand on opening day, as well officials from Capital One Bank, which contributed $150,000 in seed money to open the new store. The company provides volunteers, as well as funding, to Goodwill as part of its Investing for Good program, said Anthony Pica, market president of Capital One’s business banking division. Capital One will also deliver financial literacy education to participants in Goodwill’s career training center.

Left to right: Dave Sullivan, vice president for donations and retail at Goodwill of Greater Washington (GGW); Catherine Meloy, GGW president and CEO; Virginia Sen. Dick Saslaw; and Capital One official Anthony Pica. 
A back room has been set aside in the Annandale facility for the career center, and renovations on that area are expected to start next month, said Hurley. The career center will provide free training for people with disabilities or other disadvantages, including the long-term unemployed and people trying to get off welfare.

Training focuses on jobs in hospitality, retail, and unarmed protective services. The latter program, which targets military veterans, has been established in partnership with Northern Virginia Community College. People who complete the program earn five college credits from NOVA.

The production center.
Some of the 45 employees at the Annandale store have been through the Goodwill training program. Some  work on the sales floor, while others work in the store’s large production center, where they sort and refurbish items that are dropped off.

The Annandale Goodwill store is open 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. on Sunday. The donation center is open seven days a week, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Production Manager Robert Chambers at the back door where donations are dropped off.

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