Bob N Lu’s Thrift store gets national recognition, award

By: 
Dwight Harriman

When Casandra Weisgerber found out that her business, Bob N Lu’s Thrift, had received national recognition, her first thought was: “Are you sure?” thinking it was mistake.

But it was no mistake. Bob N Lu’s, a Livingston business co-owned by Weisgerber and her husband, Joe Weisgerber, had indeed been chosen a winner in the 2017 American Small Business Championship. The award is hosted by SCORE, which described itself in a news release as “the nation’s largest network of volunteer, expert business mentors.” The network is supported by Sam’s Club.

A total of 102 entrepreneurs across the country were named SCORE champions “for their dedication to the success of their small businesses,” the release said.

Only two Montana businesses — Bob N Lus and Montana Quilts/Parker Snowe Fiber Art in Helena — won the award.

The Weisgerbers purchased Bob & Lu’s, located at 219 S. Main St., in October. Since then, they have worked hard to transform the store into a place where locals can find just about anything — anything — in a peaceful, friendly environment, aided by a cookie and a cup of tea. The vast collection of wares ranges from crafts to kids’s clothing to collectibles, furniture, books and wedding dresses. The store features a huge LP record collection numbering in the thousands.

One of reasons Bob N Lu’s won the SCORE award is their comittment to the community. 

The Weisgerbers run a charity out of the business called 3S Gives. It provides for people in need by allowing them to come and shop in the store at no charge. Clients are generally referred by local agencies like Abuse Support Prevention Education Network and Human Resource Development Council.

Bob N Lu’s also donates to many other local charities with in-kind goods for their fundraising auctions, like ASPEN’s Soup to End the Silence. The business has provided at least $5,000 worth this year.

Bob N Lu’s also collects items year-round for the annual Spread the Warmth Winter Clothing Drive, and gave Winans School 12 50-gallon containers of shoes for a recent school fundraiser.

Also, the Weisgerbers have widened the store’s aisles for handicap access

Cassandra Weisgerber headed to Dallas Monday for the SCORE awards ceremony, where special business training will also be provided.

Bob N Lu’s is getting a $1,000 Sam’s Club gift card and the store is eligible to receive a $25,000 grand prize that will go to three businesses in the U.S. 

Cassandra hopes they can win it to fund another store effort.

“That will give us our handicap access,” she said of the next wheelchair access project they have in mind for the store’s basement.

Bob N Lu’s is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday to Friday; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday; and during the summer, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sundays.

For more information, visit the store’s Facebook page, Bob N Lu’s, or call 222-9225.

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Dwight Harriman may be reached at dharriman@livent.net.

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