News and notes from Reston (tm).

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

At Vantage Hill, Cleanliness Leads to Shoelessness

RESTONCONDOSHOESPKG_640x480.jpgA wacky, sitcom-like mishap at Vantage Hill Condominiums in Reston has left a number of residents shoeless.

A Salvation Army collection in Reston, Va., netted some shoes not intended for donation.

It's not uncommon for the residents at Vantage Hill Condominiums to leave their shoes outside to keep their homes clean, but when the Salvation Army asked for donations to be left out for pick up, some shoes were mistaken charitable gifts.

"The people from Salvation Army came through and basically took everything that wasn't nailed down," said resident Ben Plater.

A volunteer took the Randos' cedar chest along with the shoes and boots inside.

"So my husband called to complain about that," Ellie Rando said. "The gentleman that was there at the Salvation Army -- what I guess was their warehouse -- has suggested that he go to Manassas and pick up the shoes if he wanted them back."

Now, those shoes are among hundreds of others in two 3-foot-deep bins. The Salvation Army will return the shoes if their proper owners drive to the Manassas facility to claim them -- about a half-hour drive from the shoes' rightful home.
And then they'll have to face the elite Salvation Army itself, what with its tanks and machine gun nests and bellringers and kettles and whatnot. War is hell!

(As a fun side note, do NOT do a Google image search for "bare feet" unless you want to be scarred for life, the end.)


  1. That's terrible! We do our donating to Purple Heart, and I know their policy is that all donations have to be *clearly labeled*. I can't believe that the S.A. doesn't have the same policy- sounds like their driver really screwed up.

    I would be really angry if this happened to me. Shoes are expensive.

  2. Wow - that's their response? I would call the police on them for theft. They don't own everything that's not stored indoors.

  3. This happened many years ago to my parents' neighbor- they stole all her potted plants and her grill- everything on her front porch that wasn't permanently attached to the house. Not sure what happened.

    I would report them to the police. If I make off with the stuff stored on someone's property, it's theft. The law is no different for a salvation army driver. Perhaps if the Salvation Army had to deal with a police officer they might instruct their drivers to stop doing this.

    Not everyone who lives in this area is affluent and can afford "forced contributions" to charity.

  4. Anon 10:56, there was an expose on TV some years back of Purple Heart. They said very little of what they raise goes to vets. Purple Heart is not even listed on Charity Navigator.

    I donate stuff to The Closet in Herndon. At least I know it does some good instead of enriching scam artists.

  5. CHO in Vienna also is a good place to donate used clothes and furniture (depending on where in Reston you live). CHO mainly serves Vienna, Oakton, Dunn Loring, and Merrifield but will service nearby neighboring areas.

  6. This must be a new custom. I've seen it before but it was rare. It's very common in Asia.

  7. >>I would be really angry if this happened to me.
    >>Shoes are expensive.

    Protip: Don't leave valuable stuff outside

  8. Sorry, but you should be able to assume that the salvation army isn't going to come onto your private property and take your stuff without permission.

  9. Hi Folks! The above is a link to my 2 cents worth!

  10. Peasant From Less Sought After South RestonMarch 10, 2010 at 7:43 PM

    Maybe this incident was actually an attempt at salvation for some immortal soles?

  11. kickbikes

  12. Peasant, that was laugh out loud funny. And a welcome relief.

    By the way, if folks are interested in actually DONATING their shoes to a good cause, Soles4Souls gets them to people in developing countries who have none...

  13. It appears that the Salvation Army disaster has more lost soles than the Titanic.

  14. Ha! Someone did report this to the police as a theft -- the latest (March 12) activity report from the Fairfax County Police has an item "11600 Vantage Hill Road - shoes stolen from residence."

    Do I get a reward if I phone in a tip "Officer, try looking at the Salvation Army warehouse in Manassas..."


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