Hazel Pettit's
Abilities Plus
Resale Shop

310 N. Main St. in Kewanee, Illinois
Open Thurs. & Fri. from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
          Sat. from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Donations accepted anytime the shop is open.

The shop boasts a wide array of items, including clothing for men, women, teens, and children, as well as, linens, toys, books, housewares, jewelry, collectibles, and seasonal items.  Our selection changes every week, so stop by and see what's new.

One hundred percent of the profits from the shop benefit Abilities Plus.  The revenue is used to provide services to children and adults with developmental disabilities in Henry, Stark, and western Bureau Counties.  The shop is run entirely by volunteers.  Since it opened in 1982, the shop as raised over $500,000 for Abilities Plus.

Guidelines for Donations
Donations of items are accepted any time the Resale Shop is open.  Donations should be lightly used and in good repair.  Items accepted include clothing, linens, small household appliances, and toys.  Some furniture is accepted, depending on its size.  Used mattresses, box springs, garage sale leftovers, and tube televisions are not accepted. 

Volunteering Opportunities
The store needs volunteers to receive, sort, and price clothing and other merchandise. They also assist in keeping the racks on the sale floor stocked and organized, as well as greet customers, offer assistance, make change and bag purchases.  If you are interested in volunteering your time and talent at Hazel Pettit's Abilities Plus Resale Shop, please visit the Volunteering page for more details.

The Abilities Plus Resale Shop started on April 18, 1982.  Four ladies from Geneseo; Kathryn Fehlman, Esther Desplinter, Maxine Marchese, and Hazel Pettit were the driving force behind its creation.

Hazel Pettit, one of the founders, shared that the Resale Shop had its early beginnings with a group of ladies that served as an auxiliary for Abilities Plus.  The group held bake sales, yard sales, and ice cream socials in the Geneseo Park.  The funds were used to help with client needs.  At the time, the agency was in danger of closing its birth to three program (Early Intervention) due to lack of funds.

At the same time, Abilities Plus had a committee of parents and public figures interested in the success of the agency.  George Fehlman was the chairman of the committee, and he was also the mayor of Geneseo.  When Hazel joined this group, George’s wife (Kathryn) joined the auxiliary group.  She suggested starting a resale shop, similar to one she had been involved with in Naperville.  That resale shop gave their proceeds to an institution similar to Abilities Plus.

Hazel approached the director of Abilities Plus with the idea, and he helped secure a building.  It was situated across from the J.C. Penny’s store (on 2nd Street, near the current Union Federal Savings &  Loan building).  Despite the lack of plumbing and heat, the shop stayed open all winter.

The shop moved to a nicer building with a bathroom and heat (on Central Boulevard, located where the First Federal Savings & Loan parking lot is now located).  After three years the owners chose to tear down the building, so the shop moved again to the corner of 2nd and Lexington Streets (near the current Gustafson Ford location) in August of 1988.     The initial group of ladies called the resale shop “God’s shop” “because it was a miracle how much money we made with only being open 13 hours each week.”

In 2012, the resale shop moved to its present location on Main Street.  The move increased the visibility of the shop with a location near downtown and Good’s Furniture.  The new location also boasted additional parking, wood floors, storage, and a built-in dressing room.

About Hazel
Hazel Pettit is one of the founders of the Abilities Plus Resale Shop.  She began volunteering at Abilities Plus 38 years ago, after the birth of a granddaughter with disabilities.  She was instrumental in beginning the shop, and managed the store's activities from its inception in 1982 through her retirement in 2012.

In 2012, the Resale Shop was named after Hazel for her outstanding commitment to the success of the Resale Shop and people with developmental disabilities.

If you need more information about the resale shop, including volunteering opportunities, please contact Resale Shop Liaison Julie Landwehr at (309) 852-4626 or jlandwehr@abilitiesplus.org for more information.

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