Thrift shop offers more for less

By Jalen Dixon
NCCU Staff Writer
the Durham VOICE


Twice Is Nice Thrift Shop is where they give from the heart. The shop at 706 South Alston Ave. opened in 2009 when owner Katrina Harris saw the recession coming on.

Harris, a long-time Durham resident and bus driver for Durham Public Schools, felt obligated to give back, so although it looks like any other business, it is actually a non-profit. The store’s merchandise is all donated and after covering her rent and operating costs, all of her proceeds go to help others in the community.

She has seen people facing hardships ranging from burn victims, runaway teens, domestic abuse cases, and she tries to help out as she can.

“There are so many stories, I can’t just pick one,” said Harris.

Harris believes that her faith and good customer service allow her to make a difference in the community.

“Business has been good,” said Harris. “Still the beginning started with some rocky roads. I feel the relationship between the community and me, you can consider mutual respect. There are people who look after my shop because they respect what we’re doing.”

Harris hopes the word continues to get around and that the shop’s growing clientele also steadily increases.

At Twice is Nice Thrift Shop, shoppers can find the things they need and take comfort in how they are caring and contributing to the community. Donations are also accepted during the store hours of 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Saturday. (Staff photo by Jalen Dixon)

Twice Is Nice provides clothes, furniture, housing appliances, and much more for affordable prices. Another way they give back is by donating books to the Durham County jail.

“Selection wise, there is something for everybody,” says David Penny, Harris’s son who helps out in the shop.

The shop also works with the juvenile court system offering community service.

“More for less” is Harris’s slogan.

“We focus on providing more than a thrift shop. We provide a place to escape where spirits can experience enlightenment, you know, relax,” said Harris.

On any business day the thrift shop has cold drinks and good conversation for visiting customers at its location on Alston Avenue or the second store that Harris opened at 1514 Holloway St. last fall.

The success of the thrift shop can be attributed to many people. Harris said God is first, but she said credit should also go to her foster mom Annie May Freeland and mother Mary Jean Wolfe.

Harris’s future plans consist of expanding the Twice Is Nice Thrift Shop to different cities and continuing to help where needed.

She also hopes to start a transportation service that she plans to call “Family Connections.” It will help families visit loved ones who are incarcerated.

Harris hopes that the Durham community will find Twice is Nice to be one of a kind and a blessing to many. So if you appreciate good service and good people you should stop by, ask for Katina Harris who has giving back as her top priority.  The shop is open Monday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.