Barbara Lawlor, Nederland. Last Thursday, a couple of Eldora Mountain Resort cars pulled into the Nederland Community Center parking lot in front of the West Wing. Kristi Vendetti, founder and manager of the Nederland Community Clothing Closet greeted the arriving EMR administrators warmly, gratefully as the resort elves pulled bag after bag filled with ski pants, jackets, and warm clothing from the vehicles and hauled them into the clothes closet.
Last month EMR general manager Brent Tregaskis showed up at the Nederland Food Pantry to give Chris Current a check for $600 to spend as she saw fit. As Tregaskis looked around the food pantry, he also leaned about the Clothing Closet, Nederland’s free store; where people can find clothing for all ages, all seasons and can drop off the clothes they don’t wear anymore.
It is the perfect non-profit for Nederland folks, where kids outgrow their winter clothes in one season. This unique form of recycling works for sharing good clothing that is no longer worn; and finding the good clothes when it is needed.
It is the consummate recycle venue, where people give some and take some and the store more or less maintains itself, except for organizing the clothes, which is handled by volunteers who are coordinated by Vendetti.
Tregaskis says, “I was really impressed the Food Bank and then I learned about the Clothing Store and I think I picked the best non-profit in town for this week.”
EMR throws about three employee parties a year, charging about $2 for drinks, which goes into a fund for a local non-profit. The locals agreed that the clothing closet was a good choice and many of them went through their closets looking for ski clothes that had been collecting dust. Dozens of Patagonia ski pants found their way into the shop, warm and always in style, a great gift from the resort. The bar revenue had totaled over $360.
Vendetti’s face lit up. “Now I can get some more shelves, “ she said. The closet averages about 200 shoppers a month. Vendetti founded it five years ago, when she saw the need and has been totally supported by the community. The Town donated the space and the clothes shop runs under the food bank umbrella.
With donations like this, she can better serve the community and have what is needed available to local families.