Stephanie Quick and LaVonne McCrill spend a lot of hours in the Gift Shop at Buena Vista County Hospital. Quick has been volunteering in the Gift Shop for the past 17 years. McCrill has volunteered for the past 12.
The gift shop, which is located through the hospital's main entrance, is open Monday through Friday from 9-4 p.m. It is also open on an occasional Saturday morning.
"We spend a lot of hours in here," McCrill said. "Sometimes we're in here for short periods of time and other times we're in here for long periods of time."
The two women agree they work hard and have done well. In the last two years, the gift shop has brought in over $55,000 in profit.
"It's a lot of work, but it's also fun," Quick said. "We've done really well and I think we can credit the Beanie Babies for a lot of it."
The hospital gift shop had people visiting from all over when Beanie Babies were the hot item and has since attracted numbers of new visitors.
"I think people knew they could get the Beanie Babies here and they were always waiting when we got a new shipment in," Quick said. "The staff and the volunteers here are great and always come to check things out in the gift shop."
Quick and McCrill volunteer their time in purchasing unique items to sell in the shop as well as setting the displays up.
The two women travel to market in Minneapolis at least twice a year, where they choose items that they want to put on display at the gift shop. The gift shop is blessed with numbers of items that include greeting cards, calendars, kids toys, baskets and more.
"The market is an exciting place to go," McCrill said. "We are always careful what we choose. There's so many things to find there."
"We try to find things that people will like and we know what they like from past experiences," Quick said. "It's fun when we find things that others really enjoy."
Quick and McCrill purchase the items, unpack them, price them and put them on display in the hospital gift shop.
Read the rest of this article in the 11/02 Pilot Tribune.