The Salvation Army of Tyler broke ground Tuesday on its newest building, which will be mainly used to expand the scope of the Women's Auxiliary's sales.
"Now we can have a separate building for our clothing during sales, instead of having to cram furniture and clothes together," Jackie Stroud, auxiliary president, said.
The auxiliary boasts about 450 members, and the group's sole purpose is supporting the mission of The Salvation Army. Typical annual sales are held in the Old and New Spence buildings on Bow and Spring Streets, and the new building will be next to the New Spence building on Spring Street; it will be 3,750 square feet heated and cooled, with an overhead door at the back parking lot for loading and unloading and a front faade resembling the New Spence.
The group typically raises $120,000 annually with its spring, fall and Christmas sales alone, and were challenged to raise more this year to cover the costs of the $280,000 building. The group raised $4,000 with their first "Designer Sale" in September alone, and can have more sales throughout the year with the extra space, said Chantel Millin, community and corporate relations coordinator.
The items collected for sales are donated, many of them leftover from estate sales, Mrs. Stroud said. The events feature low prices on hundreds of clothes, jewelry, furniture, dishes, art and other miscellaneous items.
Ultimately, the new building will allow for more opportunities to raise much needed funds for The Salvation Army which will go to support the programs and service that they offer.
The Salvation Army Tyler Women's Auxiliary is one of few auxiliaries that owns their own buildings. The buildings are paid for with fundraisers and building fund donations outside of the $120,000 that the auxiliary commits to The Salvation Army each year. All bills and maintenance are paid for by the auxiliary.