Resale shop celebrates 10 years of supporting OCS

Hidden Treasure in Port maintains its mission of helping school, community

HIDDEN TREASURE RESALE Shop has been providing nearly 100% of its profits to Ozaukee Christian School for 10 years. Co-managers Litha Mueller (left) and Nancy Leveile stood outside the downtown Port Washington business that is offering customers a 10% discount on all items. Photo by Sam Arendt
By 
JOE POIRIER
Ozaukee Press Staff

Hidden Treasure Resale Shop in downtown Port Washington has been supporting Ozaukee Christian School for 10 years.

“Nearly all of the proceeds go to the school. It’s one large apple-pie fundraiser that we don’t have to do,” Principal Kris Austin said. “The mission of the shop is to serve the community and support Ozaukee Christian School.”

In honor of the anniversary, the store at 139 W. Grand Ave. is holding a two-week sale ending Saturday, Jan. 30, with all items are 10% off.

“We want people to know we appreciate their support during hard times,” co-manager Litha Mueller said. “We’ve been noticing a great amount of support through this whole Covid thing. Small businesses need support, and we have a good support system here in Port Washington and surrounding communities like Grafton and Cedarburg.”

Although the store noticed a dip in sales for seven weeks beginning in March when it was shut down during the coronavirus pandemic, Austin said the shop has been providing approximately $35,000 in revenue to the school for the past three years.

During the shutdown, Mueller said, volunteers passed the time by cleaning, painting and reorganizing the items.

“When we reopened, we were ready to grow,” Mueller said, adding some of the most popular items are furniture and antiques along with jewelry and clothing.

In addition to serving Ozaukee Christian School, the resale shop supports several charitable organizations in Milwaukee.

“When we hear that there is a need, like if there is a fire, we have people come in to see what types of clothes they could need,” Mueller said. “A lot of times it is things you wouldn’t think of like a laundry basket or pots and pans. That’s what you do if you are part of a community. You help out your neighbors.”

Mueller and co-manager Nancy Leveile said there are typically 10 to 15 volunteers who help out each week. When working on larger projects, they call on families from Ozaukee Christian School to help.

Mueller said it can be difficult for people to part ways with some of their possessions, but she promises her store will find a good home for the goods.

“Our biggest point we want to make is we understand that these are your treasures that you are giving us, and we are going to keep them clean and display them nicely,” Mueller said. “We do our best to make people feel comfortable giving us their stuff. We don’t throw it in bins.

“We’ve had people tell us that they are glad after they speak with us because they know where their stuff is going.”

Austin said the building where the store is located was previously owned by a parent of a board member, who allowed the shop to operate at a reasonable rate.

“They wanted to see the school thrive and succeed. God put it in their heart to help us support the school,” Austin said.

The school opened in Saukville in 1990 and moved to the Town of Trenton two and a half years ago to broaden its reach in Washington County.

“The move allowed us to be more strategically positioned because we are the only nondenominational school option for parents in Ozaukee and Washington counties,” Austin said, noting the student body has grown since the relocation from 40 students to 82.

 

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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

125 E. Main St.
Port Washington, WI 53074
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