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Free store for Marshall Fire victims opens in Louisville

Anyone impacted by the Marshall Fire can shop at the free store in Louisville.

LOUISVILLE, Colorado — Anyone impacted by the Marshall Fire can pick up clothing and other goods they may need at a free store located off of McCaslin Boulevard in Louisville. 

The store is open to anyone impacted by the fire, not only those who have lost their homes. 

The store is located off of 375 McCaslin Blvd. Before the Marshall Fire, the space was empty. Years prior, it was home to a hair salon.

Acme Fine Goods owner Eric Reed knew about the empty space and collaborated with others to use it to benefit fire victims.

"A lot of people understand that clothing is the first thing you need when you wake up in the morning. I think the donations have continued to come from every which way and farther," Reed said. 

He has been using his retail connections to bring items, often with tags on, to stock the store. 

"The general rule is that if it’s something you yourself wouldn’t wear or put on your own child, then it’s probably not meant for this place," Reed said. 

While donations have poured in to help fire victims, he wanted to open the store to ensure that people had a space to pick out items they would typically choose for themselves. He is hoping to avoid people wearing clothing that is in poor condition, doesn't fit, or just doesn't match the person picking it out.

"We live in a community where people really need to have some dignity back, and putting a shirt on that fits and looks like they would pick out themselves is what we are actually trying to do," he said.

The store is run by volunteers. On Tuesday, Tiffani Bearup was running the store and guiding new volunteers throughout the day. 

"It is a sense of community, and it is a profound experience to be a part of people giving and receiving in equal measure," Bearup said. 

The store is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day of the week. Reed hopes to keep the store open for as long as there is a need in the community. 

People interested in donating or volunteering can visit the store's Facebook page. If you are interested in donating, the page provides a daily list of goods the store needs. They ask that you do not bring random items to the store--only what they ask for online.

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