If you’re looking for a new place to shop while giving back to the community and helping rescued animals, look no further than the recently opened Brand Spankin Used Thrift Store, located at 34366 Yucaipa Blvd., Suite G.
Todd Wallace and his wife Annamarie Mora’s journey in helping others began when they opened Buffet Ranch Animal Rescue in Morongo Valley, about 15 years ago. “We wanted to help all the lost and abandoned horses in the area,” said Wallace. “It started small and now we are a 501©(3) and have saved over 2,000 animals, not just horses. We have had everything from dogs and cats to rattle snakes. We take care of the animals and get them healthy, the wildlife gets relocated and released when ready while dogs and such are rehomed.”
“We have a thrift store, of the same name that has been open for about four years in Yucca Valley. We were looking to branch out and we just really love the area here in Yucaipa. We have come out here before to pick up donations and it is just an amazing town,” said Mora.
Mora and Wallace have a passion for helping others and have started many programs through the thrift store in Yucca Valley that they are beginning to implement in Yucaipa as well. “We have a program called the Mountain Program, where we work with local schools and help students that do not have much with school clothes and supplies. I have been in contact with many schools in the area and we have gotten a lot of response already,” said Mora.
“We also have a program called Will to Read that I began after meeting a 10-year-old boy named Will who just loves to read. The program distributes coupons to schools that can be given to kids to bring in for a free book,” Mora continued.
The Yucaipa store is primarily run by the couple’s daughter Jacqueline Streuli. “We work closely with the welfare and community services department helping those who need to fulfill hours or need clothing. Currently we have two volunteers that are working to earn their community service hours,” said Streuli.
You can’t beat the prices at Brand Spankin Used. Jeans can be found for under $5 and kids clothes go for 75 cents each. If you purchase 10 or more pieces of children’s clothing, they are only 25 cents each. Books line a wall, while children’s costumes line another. There is something for everyone.
Walking into the store it is hard to miss Mora’s handmade items for sale. Hanging from the ceilings and along the walls are dream catchers of all kinds. She also creates and sells tutus and piñatas, all of which can be custom ordered.
Donations primarily stock the store, although Wallace and Mora also visit estate sales and bid on storage units. Donations can be brought in anytime during business hours. “We can pick up donations as well and we accept anything that is in sellable conditions. We have even had people donate cars before,” said Wallace.
As for future plans for this amazing couple and their thrift store, “Annamarie is always thinking of ways to help and to give back to the community,” said Wallace. “I would like to get a morning farmers market going here, maybe a few car shows,” said Mora.
Brand Spankin Used Thrift Store is open Monday through Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. You can visit them on Facebook or Instagram for more information and to see new items in stock.
For more information on how you can help or to make a donation, call 952-3459.