It's not a new idea, but it's new to Casper. Wyoming Food For Thought Project will be holding a Grand Opening of their new Free Store on Saturday, August 11th at 140 East K Street.

"Were all familiar with thrift stores, and the Free Store takes that concept a little further," says Jamie Purcell, Executive Director for Wyoming Food For Thought. "Sometimes we have people donate things to us and they don't want those items sold, they want them given directly to people in need."

After some research, they settled on the Free Store concept. "Essentially what it is, is a store just like any other that you would go into but instead of having to pay, you take what you need. And it brings dignity to access, there's no justification needed for your need, you just say you're in need and I need, says, a new pillow or clothes for my kids, whatever the case may be, and if we have it in stock, then it's yours to take," says Purcell.

The space was donated by the Casper Housing Authority, and the store will also utilize items they pick up every week through their Good 360 partners, Bed, Bath, and Beyond. "We were just looking at another mechanism beyond food to bring more access to things that people need in our community," she says.

Free Store director, Laura Gamble, has been the lead organizer of the store by gathering donations and organizing the store. "I plan to be open once or twice a month after the grand opening, probably on Saturday afternoons, but since the Free Store relies solely on volunteers, it will depend upon the number of volunteers we have," says Gamble.

The Free Store Grand Opening

  • Saturday, August 11th, from 2:00-5:00 pm
  • The Free Store is located at 140 East K Street, on the grounds of The Landing at Roosevelt
  • Free hot dogs and hamburgers as well as food from the Food for Thought Urban Farm will be served.

After the Grand Opening, the Free Store will put out a call for more donations but current storage areas are full. However, most Friday afternoons, someone will be available to take donations at the store and appointments are recommended for donations. Contact Laura: (307)797-0067 (call or text) or email lauragamble8485@yahoo.com

Current needs and wants include wants: baby and toddler items and clothing, and men's clothing.  Any and all donations that are in good condition are welcome and accepted, with the exception of perishable foods and weapons.