Any Wesleyan student worth his salt can find something enticing in a thrift store. Whether you are an ecofeminist whose urges morally bind you to owning only pre-used teapots, a jock in need of some cheap furniture, or anyone who’s intrigued by a “Trictor”—a portmanteau of tricycle and tractor—your needs will be fulfilled at Second Time Around, a new thrift store located next door to the Gasman station at the end of Broad Street.
Superficially, the store is unimpressive, but the dull façade and concrete parking lot are the perfect cover for the hidden gem inside. Despite the drab exterior, this vintage store exudes hominess on the inside, which is where it counts. When you enter, quaint couches, vintage phones, and a collection of records greet you. As you travel further through the store you arrive at a wall of board games adjacent to The Gift Shop. A disturbingly large Barbie doll, a rocking bed for stuffed animals, and yarn for knitting can all be found in the section of the store that houses The Gift Shop.
Soon, Second Time Around will also be purchasing a hotdog cart to cook and sell hotdogs to customers—another justification for making the strenuous trek down William Street. The Middletown residents who work at the store contribute to the open and unassuming atmosphere.
“They are very comfortable,” Molly Zuckerman ’16 commented. “My friend played with the register and broke it—he thought it was for sale but it was actually the register. They just laughed at him and jokingly put him in a time out corner. They wouldn’t give him the customary free bubbles, but the lady was very friendly.”
While breaking the register is definitely not recommended, the employee’s reaction is a testament to their affability.
“It was clearly a family-run store that was for Middletown and they were very personable,” agreed Brett Klapper ’16.”
“We started as a tag sale,” the owner explained. “We put some stuff on the curb and someone asked me if the stuff was on sale, and before you know it we had a full-grown business off of our sidewalk. So we decided, after we sold the house, to serve the community. Now they can have a place to buy stuff cheap without having to go to brand named stores.”
From 30-dollar love seats to 50-cent toys, the thrift store is a perfect combination of affordability and functionality.
“I loved it because I was able to bargain the price in half,” Zuckerman said.
For those who need to tighten the purse strings but still need to furnish a bare dorm room, Second Time Around is a store that can’t be missed. Additionally, you can even sell or donate your old stuff and make a pretty penny. This store is a place to not only earn but also save, money. The ambiance, affordability, and the adventure of potentially finding something you never knew you needed make this thrift store a spot you must visit.