The story of how Las Amigas purchased and built our Turnabout Thrift Shop and our Chapter House
Fourteen initial volunteers with vision and determination formed the Las Amigas group that became Assistance League of Laguna Beach in1952. A parcel of land was purchased in 1956 that would become the site for the present Assistance League of Laguna Beach Thrift Shop.
The cost of the Glenneyre lot was $13,000. The lot was paid for in full with the help from a small loan of $10,000 from Magadline Pointreux. A note was agreed to at six percent interest rate, to be paid quarterly and the chapter could reduce the principal at any time during the designated time period.
Now the real hard work began – gathering resources, talent and time to create the plans for the Thrift Shop. Between 1958 and 1960, the chapter purchased two pieces of property, one on Glenneyre and one on Mermaid. The building committee thoroughly studied the pros and cons of building on the Mermaid lot versus the Glenneyre lot. Architect Don Williamson met with the building committee and recommended that the league move forward and build on the Glenneyre lot and sell the Mermaid lot.
By 1960, the plans for the new building for Glenneyre that would become the Thrift Shop was completed and the members expended every possible ounce of energy in a vigorous fund raising campaign. A $10,000 grant was received from the Irvine Foundation with the stipulation that it be matched. Donors were acknowledged with bricks used to build the foundation.
Architect Don Williamson prepared the design and plans for the Thrift Shop. Beach Construction was contracted to build it. On July, 1961, a groundbreaking ceremony took place with Joan Irvine Burt given the honor of turning the first shovel.
Assistance League of Laguna Beach Thrift Shop was a labor or love for the initial fourteen volunteers, and additional members who also wanted to help their local community. The tenacity and ingenuity of these early women are the foundation of what is now the successful Assistance League of Laguna Beach.