Since 2013, Alesen Corella and the Gatherings Thrift team has worked with a mission to be a light in the community by using the thrift shop as a platform to pay-it-forward. The business model gives patrons the opportunity to select from a list of local charities that they would like their purchase to benefit after shopping at the store — and Corella opened a Paso location called Gatherings Emporium on Park Street.

Gatherings Emporium opened its doors in time for the Elegant Evening in November. The large space is laid out with boutique quality clothing on the right with an eclectic mix of unique decor and gift items showcased on the left — where local artisans are given open space to show off a variety of goods with the theme of up-cycle and re-purpose throughout.

Corella set the Emporium up with an open concept where the goods are blended throughout to give the store an easy flow. The bottom line for Corella is how much the new Emporium can give back to the community in many other different ways as well.

“It is a really unique business model,” Corella said, “and we are targeting the locals. It is exciting that every purchase is a gift back to the community. A woman today was finding treasures she liked, and she bought a lot. I know we will get the tourists, but I want to give back to the community, and make it a place the community enjoys coming in with great stuff at great prices!.”

Visit Gatherings Emporium at 1335 Park Street, or call 805-369-2599.