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Re’Source’ center in the works

By Staff | Nov 12, 2010

(Chronicle photo by Jennifer Wabnitz) Laurel Parker and Karen Valentine have combined their green-minded hearts to develop ‘The Source,’ a store that will feature a recycling center, market place and much more.

The Source is a new store with an old concept.

Laurel Parker and Karen Valentine have organized the idea store for years. It will open for business Nov. 15.

It is the embodiment of their green-minded hearts. They both have backgrounds in eco-awareness and habitat restoration and share a passion for educating the community.

The Source will be a resource for the Shepherdstown community. It will be an information center, a market place, a recycling drop off center, a spring water supply and more.

They have many goals, one of which is to help people reduce waste.

Waste ranges from plastic water bottles and grocery bags to candle nubs and used batteries.

“To affect change, sometimes you have to show people how to do it and then be patient,” Valentine said.

She and Parker want to educate others on how to reduce waste through leading by example. Their store is outfitted with reused fixtures. Using a little creativity, they have made a functional and inviting shop.

Valentine runs a company called Go Green Gals which assists others in finding ways to do business in a more environmentally friendly way. She organizes recycling drives at local schools and is a resource to connect people with green supplies. The store will be an extension of her services.

Parker has been an integral part of both the Habitat and Roots and Shoots committees at the Shepherdstown Elementary School. This mother of four has taught many of her children’s classmates about gardening, recycling and caring for our earth. The store will be another teaching arena.

The store will be stocked by a variety or suppliers:

local preserves, jams, and eventually produce;

dry food in bulk;

green cleaning supplies and laundry soap;

balled and burlap Christmas trees; and

donated card stock.

One of the suppliers will be the Jefferson County Co-op. The co-op will send surplus to the Source.

Carol Sanders of the Co-op explained her enthusiasm.

“It will be great to have a store for the college kids to run in and not have to join the co-op,” she said.

Parker said that they will have a very orderly inventory system.

“We need to be respectful of the trust our vendors place in us,” she said.

For example, if a vendor supplies 10 jars of jam, a monthly print out may reveal four jars were sold. The vendor receives a check for those four jars and the monthly inventory report.

The store will also have two computer terminals that visitors will be welcome to use. The goal is to share their wealth of information that they have accumulated for years.

They will help people trade resources. People can post their wants and needs on the green board in the store and on the website.

Recycling will be another aspect of their store. Individuals will be able to drop off certain items like small appliances, used batteries, plastic bottle caps, ink cartridges, candle nubs, wax crayons and more.

The store is ready. The shelves are stocked. Now all they need is customers.