COPPERAS COVE — Crystal Magness has carved out a treasure trove with her family at her downtown Copperas Cove store.
Magness, owner of Hidden Wonders Thrift Store, couldn’t find work after leaving her job at Walmart. As a child, her mother, Fran Arellano, ran a thrift store, and her own fond memories of those days inspired her to do the same.
“It’s something that was always fun when I was younger,” Magness said. “When my grandmother passed, that was when this really became something I wanted to do. She loved thrift stores, and this store was opened in her honor.”
The store has been open for two years.
“My husband thought I was crazy,” she said. “We had nothing. He told me I was crazy, and I showed him.”
Crystal’s husband, Tim, often helps out customers at the store while corralling their youngest daughter, Jordan.
Hidden Wonders has become a popular destination, with customers coming in from as far as Waco and Austin to peruse Magness’ wares.
“We put out a lot of information on Facebook,” Magness said. “We use Facebook to advertise our weekly deals and take pictures of merchandise as it comes in. I tell people that when they see something, buy it, because it won’t be here next time.”
Magness estimated the store has more than 10,000 items.
“We have so much that I donate a lot to local churches and homeless shelters, because I don’t have enough room,” Magness said. “I was donating so much, they told me to stop, because they didn’t have enough space.”
The shop doesn’t just deal in donated goods; new and gently used items are purchased and resold in the shop. Hidden Wonders sells furniture, sports memorabilia, baby supplies, VHS tapes and much more. Magness declines to sell appliances and animals.
“Someone dropped off kittens once,” she said. “Who can say no to kittens?”