Hooray! The Umezono House in Umezono will have new store hours. It was open only on 2nd Saturdays and Sundays of the month from 9AM (or 10?) to 3PM until last weekend. However, using the Umezono House was very inconvenient since the NPO that runs the shop often changed the bazaar (that's how the association refers to the shop when it's open) dates to 1st or 3rd weekends and they didnít have a website to announce their schedules. Well, they still donít have a website, but there wonít be no more confusions on bazaar dates starting September because the shop will be open every Sunday from 10Am to 3PM!
For those who are not familiar with the Umezono House, itís a thrift shop run by Asian Friendship Association which is a Tsukuba Chapter of SAEFI, Group for Supporting Asian Education Fund Ibaraki, and the proceeds from the sales go to SAEFI, disaster relief fund and other international support. They also help and work with international students and residents in this area, so Iím sure some of you who are reading this blog are far more familiar with this group and its activities than I am.
The Umezono House is a one-story house located across the street from the Umezono Park. The ďTsukuBus Route 5Ē (http://tsukuba.wikia.com/wiki/TsukuBus) stops in front of the Umezono Park, and for those of you who donít mind a bit of walking, you can also take Kanto Tetsudo Bus (http://tsukuba.wikia.com/wiki/Kanto_Tetsudo_Bus) and get off at Namiki Danchi Minami which is right in front of the Joyo Bank building on Higashi O-dori.
The shop looks like a regular house, but inside is packed with used and some new clothes, dishes, books, toys, small electric appliances, and lots of other things. A black elementary school bag or randoseru, was still there when I went there last weekend. The Umezono House isnít like the commercial recycle shop such as Off House, so the items on sale might have some stains and tears. As long as you donít mind those problems, I think the Umezono House is the place to find the cheapest used clothes, kimonos or yukatas.
If you already have too much stuff in your apartment/house or if you are moving, you can also donate items to the Umezono House. I think they will accept almost anything, but please check with them if you are thinking about donating large furniture or electric appliances. Please note that you will be asked to donate around 300yen per bag or box to cover the cost of shipping used clothes to Asian countries because thatís what the Asian Friendship Association also does.
Umezono House: Tsukuba City, Umezono 2-32-6
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