Kyle Rudge

Kyle Rudge

Monday, 11 September 2017 09:10

Exciting News in Thrift - Sept 11, 2017

This week's news includes a list of 7 things you just can't ignore when thrifting, a brilliant story about a Knight in thrift-store armour, and using story to get you more excited about thrift. 

7 Surprising Thrift Store Finds You Should Never Ignore!

Sept 11, 2017 | TipHero

You see, thrift stores, particularly ones that are larger and experience a high turnover of merchandise, have been known to dole out extra good deals to their customers—sometimes without even knowing it! Unless that particular shop has an appraiser on-hand, there’s a good chance they may be selling undercover gems for a fraction of what they are worth.

Read the Full Article

Knight in thrift-store armour

Sept 2, 2017 | Winnipeg Free Press

"He’s fearless, he really is," the acquaintance says. "And he’s not afraid of offending anybody. He’ll speak his mind to anyone. He’s fiery, but in a respectful way. But he’s got a caring inside of him that’s really extraordinary."

Read the Full Article

Could “Thrift Story” Get You to Part With Beloved, But Never Used, Things?

Sept 8, 2017 | Scout Somerville

Boston area public radio producer Lydia Emmanouilidou is as guilty of that as anyone. “I walk into my room every day, and there are a million things that I don’t want, necessarily, or need … but I’m holding on to for that sentimental value,” she says.

Read the Full Article

Tuesday, 05 September 2017 08:54

Exciting News in Thrift - Sept 5, 2017

Who knew that concrete statue in the thrift shop would be actually an inetgral party of a 100 year old fountain? Other exciting news includes a heart-warming story of Barbie and a thrift shop and the truth of your organic t-shirt and it's destiny.

San Antonio artist makes amazing discovery in thrift store

Sept 1, 2017 | MySanAntonio

Duran bought it anyway. While doing research for another project, he made a surprising discovery: The sculpture was once part of “First Inhabitant,” a fountain on the Commerce Street bridge created by sculptor Waldine Tauch in 1915.

Read the Full Article

Thrift shop Barbie means a happy Christmas for little girl: A Greater Cleveland

Sept 5, 2017 |

The 6-year-old is troubled because she has been led to believe that the Barbie is not for her, that the doll is to be a gift for a young cousin.

Read the Full Article

Your organic T-shirt is doomed to end up in a dump

Aug 31, 2017 | TheConversation

But if an organic t-shirt ends up in a landfill, it’s still a t-shirt in a landfill. It doesn’t matter how sustainable it is.

Read the Full Article

Monday, 28 August 2017 12:58

Exciting News in Thrift - Aug 28, 2017

Giving art a new life is so much of the heart of thrift. An artist is on a mission to do just that, a rare doll collection, and prototype Air Jordans discovered on thrift excursions.

Art: Thrift art gets new life

Aug 23, 2017 | The Sentinel

The old adage that “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” could be used to describe the most recent exhibition at the Perry County Council of the Arts’ Landis House.

Read the Full Article

Rare doll collection for sale at AL thrift store

Aug 24, 2017 | Thousand Oaks Acorn

Markert also amassed an extensive doll collection that includes dolls from Naber Kids, Baker Bears, Effanbee, Bonita Bears, the Gorham Doll Collection, Lissi Dolls, Ursula Stevana, Cabbage Patch Kids, Robert Raikes Bears, Dolls by Pauline, Karine’s Yesterday, Disney Collectible Classics, Charlotte Clark, Lenci, Robin Woods, 1930 Mickey Mouse and Boyd Bears and Friends.

Read the Full Article

Travis Scott's Air Jordan Collaboration Popped Up at a Thrift Store

Aug 24, 2017 | Sole Collector

The "Cactus Jack" Trunner LX first surfaced in July. No plans for a retail launch have been announced, but it may be worth stopping by your local thrift spot for a possible come up.

Read the Full Article

Monday, 28 August 2017 10:38


canada conference 2018

Monday | April 16, 2018

  • 3:00pm - Registration Opens
  • Evening - Meet & Greet

Tuesday | April 17, 2018

  • 8:15am - Ready to go!
    • Plenary Session
    • Break
    • Breakout Session 1
  • Lunch
    • Plenary Session
    • Breakout Session 2
    • Break
    • Breakout Session 3
    • Plenary Session
  • Supper
  • Evening Activity

Wednesday | April 18, 2018

  • 9:00am - Plenary Session
  • 9:30am - Shop tours (Includes Lunch)
  • Supper
  • Evening - Shop Tour Debrief

Thursday | April 19, 2018

  • 8:15am - Plenary Session
    • Focus Group Session
    • Break
    • Plenary Session
  • 12:00pm - Ready to go!
Monday, 28 August 2017 10:37

Bus Tours

canada conference 2018

Bus tours are currently being finalized. Check back soon for more information.

Monday, 28 August 2017 10:37

Travel Info

canada conference 2018

MCC Thrift Canada National Conference Travel Info

Saskatoon, SK | April 16 - 19, 2018

Flight Information

Fly into Saskatoon Airport (Airport Code: YXE) on April 16th, 2018. Conference registration is open from 3pm - 7pm.

Unfortunately there is no direct hotel shuttle from the airport but there are other transportation options available to you. Please communicate your travel arrangements to your provincial coordinator.

Hotel Information
Radisson Hotel - Saskatoon
Address: 405 20th St E, Saskatoon, SK S7K 6X6
Phone: (306) 665-3322
DO NOT book your room privately. We will book your room with your conference registration to ensure you get the conference rate.
Thursday, 23 November 2017 11:36


canada conference 2018

All shop managerial staff and board/council/committee members are invited to join us for this inspiring and informative national conference. Come ready to develop fresh strategies while being personally renewed and refocused on the mission and operations of your MCC Thrift shop.

Topics and themes will be presented in a variety of formats. You can look forward to:

Plenary Session with Ken

Ken ThiessenDr. Ken Thiessen has 25 years experience working in nonprofit organizations. For the past 7 years Ken has devoted his energies to coaching nonprofit executive leadership teams and boards in strategic and effective planning, and plan implementation to help organizations transition from survival to thriving sustainability.

Through his work he has found that nonprofit executive leadership teams and boards often struggle to find the time to engage in a thoughtful and effective planning process. When the suggestion is made that the board and executive leadership team might benefit from engaging in a planning process the common response is, “We don’t have time for that!” Those that do decide to engage a planning process often try to have the process facilitated by someone internal to the organization which is well-intentioned but rarely yields the greatest benefit to the organization. Economics and cost savings are the typical motivating factors for the decision to have someone internal to the organization facilitate the process. Occasionally these organizations will access an external facilitator and the executive leadership team and board will meet for a one-day off-site planning session. These sessions tend to generate short term enthusiasm and excitement but rarely result in clearly defined organizational priorities, identified action plans with assigned accountabilities, timelines and measurable outcomes. As a result, valuable staff and volunteer time is wasted on a process that generates little positive benefit or change to the organization moving forward.

Time with Ken - Forum for MCC Thrift Managers

During this time with Ken and an MCC Thrift manager panel we will explore questions that are pertinent to the work of a manager. Ken and the panel will dive into the relationship dynamics between the board/staff, building a strong staff team, and how understanding the financial reports impact the planning for the future. Board/committee/council members in attendance will also find this session interesting and informative as they get a glimpse of the work of a manager through a manager’s eyes.

Time with Ken - Forum with MCC Board / Committee / Council Members

During this second time with Ken we will be featuring a MCC Thrift board/committee/council panel. This panel will focus on specific questions that boards have to assist them with decision-making as well as thinking strategically about the future viability of their MCC Thrift shop. This will be an excellent discussion as managers get to see the work of their thrift shop through the lens of the board.

Break Out Sessions

Effective Planning and Implementation

Ken will outline a proven framework and identify the key components of an effective planning process. This frameworkhas helped nonprofit leaders move beyond short term enthusiasm and excitement to develop a comprehensive plan for implementation and follow through with clearly identified organizational priorities, action plans, assigned accountabilities, timelines, and measurable outcomes.

Staffing for Success

As good stewards of the thrift businesses that we are each connected to it is important for us to make thoughtful decisions around our complement of paid staff. This session will explore some key principles and strategies for building a strong and successful staff team. We will explore some specific thrift scenarios as we work together to solve some challenging staffing problems.

Staff Care for Success

The work of an MCC Thrift manager is difficult. Not only do they have to deal with the day to day operations of a retail space, receiving and processing a wide variety of donations, but there is the emotional toll that it takes to work in this context. Dealing with the large number of volunteers and staff and the significant life events that happen at times creates trauma – direct or vicarious trauma takes a toll on a person’s health, well-being, and work life. In this session we want to explore ways for you to identify the stressors in your shop, how to take care of yourself, your colleagues and your volunteers. 

Volunteer Programs for Success

Volunteers have often been called the “heartbeat” of our shops. If that is true, how do we engage volunteers in a way that values both them and the organization? During this session, you will be introduced to guiding principles and tools related to preparing for, involving and retaining volunteers. The recently published MCC Thrift Network Volunteer Engagement Manual will be our guide. 

Conflict Transformation

Each of us carries who we are into interactions in our shops - at times resulting in a unified spirit, at other times discord. How do we approach conflict within our organizations? Do we see conflict as something to be avoided or controlled, or do we see it as an opportunity to learn from each other? During this session, we will look at real case studies of conflict in shops. The goal will be to come away with an awareness of the many perspectives you may encounter, along with tools for intentional communication as you build a healthy culture in your shop.

Analytics, Baselines, Conversions oh my….what do the numbers tell you? 

Few of us have degrees in finance but we are all stewards of some very successful businesses. We need to expand our financial literacy and not be afraid to dig into numbers – to assess our progress and to make changes where needed. This session will help you understand how to use the numbers from your shop to aid you in appropriate decision-making. We will utilize a variety of data and reports to dig a little deeper into the health of your shop.

Tuesday, 24 October 2017 10:49

Keynote Speaker

Ken Thiessen

kenthiessenKen has a 30 year track record of leading, consulting, and coaching organizations to realize their imagined future.

A true entrepreneur, Ken brings a wealth of diverse experiences and expertise to his coaching and consulting practice. He owned and operated a restaurant, spent a number of years in retail store management, was a highly successful commission territory sales person, and effectively led a number of nonprofit organizations through significant transitions and growth. Ken has an earned Doctoral degree with a specialization in organizational systems.

He has been trained to use the various organizational tools developed by Human Synergistics and is a certified coach with Gazelles International, a network of business consultants and coaches who help mid-growth companies and nonprofit organizations apply the Mastering the Rockefeller Habits Four Decisions model of strategic thinking and execution planning to maximize the effectiveness and growth of their organization.

An engaging and inspiring speaker and facilitator, Ken will motivate your team to accomplish things they never dreamed possible.

The Entrepreneurial Nonprofit: The Key To Maximizing Sustainable Impact

ken thiessen bookAmazon synopsis of Ken's book:

Most non-profit executive leaders and board members hold firmly to the conviction they're running an efficient, sustainable operation. Few of the organizations they lead engage in a disciplined process of strategic thinking and execution planning. Most of them resist employing best business practises because "we're a nonprofit!" They do so at their own peril.

Weaving fable and theory, Dr. Ken Thiessen speaks to the heart of the issue facing most nonprofits today. Given the way in which the world is changing, the old way no longer works! Many nonprofit leaders lie awake at night wrestling with that realization but are too afraid to think entrepreneurially. Ultimately that’s the only way to avoid the tsunami about to hit your organization. It’s also the key to maximizing sustainable impact for the people you care most about! Building on the 4 Decisions Planning Model Ken illustrates how nonprofit organizations can employ best business practises without compromising their core values, core purpose and ultimately their mission and do so in a way that increases sustainability and enhances the organization's ROI - Return on Impact.

Purchase your copy of The Entrepreneurial Nonprofit on Amazon




Wednesday, 15 November 2017 11:20

MCC Canada Thrift National Conference 2018

canada conference 2018

Register Now for Conference 2018

All shop managerial staff and board/council/committee members are invited to join us for this inspiring and informative national conference. Come ready to develop fresh strategies while being personally renewed and refocused on the mission and operations of your MCC Thrift shop.

Canadian National Conference | April 16 - 20, 2018

Saskatoon, SK 

sk radisson1

We will be staying at the beautiful Radisson hotel in downtown Saskatoon. Meals will be provided by the hotel, however dinner will be up to you as you browse one of the many restaurants within walking distance that Saskatoon is truly known for.

Hotel Amenities Include

  • High-speed Internet
  • Pool with Waterslide
  • Fitness Center
  • Suites
  • Pets Allowed
  • On Site Restaurant

Conference Cost: $250 per person
Accommodation Cost: $129 + Appl. Taxes (Single occupancy per night) * ┼

* Room cost can be shared but it is up to you prearrange your own roommate which you can identify on the registration form.
┼ Single occupancy rooms are limited and attendees are encouraged to share rooms.

Monday, 21 August 2017 11:54

Exciting News in Thrift - Aug 21, 2017

With National Thrift Shop Day last week there was certainly some amazing stuff to be found, like historic documents and authentic NASA spacesuits for starters. 

Students Find Spacesuits In Thrift Store

Aug 16, 2017 | NPR

Two college students in Florida found several spacesuits in a thrift store and bought them all for less than two dollars. The American Space Museum says they're authentic and worth thousands.

Read the Full Article

How subversive artists made thrift shopping cool

Aug 15, 2017 | The Conversation

Leading the charge, artists have connected secondhand wares with individual creativity and commercial disdain. What started with the surrealists continues today with the hipsters, vintage lovers and grad students who celebrate the outré options and cost-saving potential of discarded goods.

Read the Full Article

8 Thrift Shopping Tips For Amateurs

Aug 17, 2017 | Across America Patch

From coffee table books to antique wingback chairs or an amazing purse you won't find anywhere else, thrift shops are the perfect way to infuse something unexpected into your wardrobe or home.

Read the Full Article

A thrift store in Coleman received a historic surprise in a donated box

Aug 17, 2017 | Big Country

152 years later, a framed piece of paper dropped off in a box has been brought James King's Civil War story back to life, a history Copely said she plans to keep alive.

Read the Full Article