Saving Grace Moving adds a thrift store; Big Dog's Patio in Plant City changes owners

Published Aug. 16, 2012


When people are moving to a new house or apartment, they often ask the moving company to help them get rid of old furniture.

For the past three years, the people at Saving Grace Moving have taken all that unwanted furniture off their customers' hands. The company donated some of the items to charity. The rest went into storage.

Last month, the company unveiled a new name, Saving Grace Moving & Thrift, and opened a thrift store where it sells all those used goods it has collected over the years.

"We had storage units full of stuff," said co-owner Brooke Sperry. "We saved it up until we had enough to open the store."

Sperry and her partner, Jason Spomer, are donating half the profits to local charities or to individuals in need.

"We want to help anyone we can help," Sperry said. "That's what the name 'Saving Grace' means."

Since the shop opened last month, business has been going "very well, surprisingly well, in fact," Sperry said.

Customers of the adjacent Laundromat often come in to kill time by browsing through the shop, Sperry said.

And as the word has spread about the shop, people have been donating more items, so the stock has grown to include clothing, appliances, CDs and just about everything in between.

The Saving Grace Moving & Thrift shop is located at 1705-C Jim Redman Parkway, in the same plaza as Southern Hospitality Furniture.

It's open from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. seven days a week, although Sperry said she usually opens early and stays late. Call (813) 367-7072 or visit the website at

Big Dog's Patio under new ownership

PLANT CITY — Steve and Sandi Shea have introduced some new tricks at the old Big Dog's Patio.

The couple took over the venerable downtown bar last month. They've introduced daily features and new customers have been pouring in.

"Business has been really good," Steve Shea said. "It seems like every night there are more people than the night before."

Monday is poker night, Tuesday is beer pong night. Every Thursday features a different kind of live music. (It's jazz this Thursday.)

There's live music every weekend, both inside and on the patio. The Chippendale Dancers are scheduled to appear Sept. 6, and during the NFL season patrons can watch any game they want on one of the 10 televisions in Big Dog.

Big Dog's doesn't have its own kitchen but serves typical bar snacks and invites outside vendors to come and serve food from portable stations and food carts.

It's located at 103 N Palmer St. Call (813) 754-8950 or visit

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