A Project of Sustainable Community Initiatives / 34,000 sq. ft. of Low Cost Building Materials!
We stock Alco appliances!
Visit the Warehouse
and See What's New!

4671 Tanglewood Drive
Hyattsville, MD 20781

Click here for directions

Hours: Wednesday 12-7
Thurs-Sat  9-5

A huge THANK YOU to all who participated in our recent survey--we really appreciate the honest feedback!


Some highlights:

The overwhelming request for more hours was to be open on Sunday afternoons--we're looking into what staffing needs we will have to meet your request!

Overall, you gave us high ratings on all attributes of our Customer Service--the one thing you thought needed improvement was the Quality of Products, specifically getting rid of some of the junkier items!  You think that we take too many donations of items that are too far gone to be useful to anyone anymore, and that the prices are great overall but the broken/junky items should be drastically reduced in price, given away free, or simply thrown out.  We'd like to remind you to check out our Free Friday Discount Aisle--many items with drastic discounts are located there.

When it came to general suggestions for our warehouse, overwhelmingly the biggest complaint is the lighting, with several customers even suggesting that we rent out headlamps at the register!  You'll be happy to hear that we've received some grant funding that will help with capital improvements such as better lighting!  Meanwhile, we do have a drawer full of flashlights and tape measures at the front desk that customers are free to use--just ask a staff member or volunteer, and leave your keys as a deposit to make sure we get them back!

You also ask that we work harder on our store organization and displays, especially including signage.  We are working on this, but rely in large part on volunteers to help us with sorting and organizing all our donations--please be in touch with Ruthie if you have a few hours to help out.

94% of survey respondents said that you shop here primarily for your own home, and 25% of respondents additionally said you shop here as a handy-person.  Partly in response to this, we are planning a series of How-to workshops to enable local handypeople to acquire additional skills, and to increase the knowledge of area homeowners for simple do-it-yourself projects involving reused materials available at CF.  Read the article at the right for more info!

Bea Trickett,
Special Projects Coordinator


Nancy: What do you listen to in the car?
Bea: The radio now that I have an antenna again--country, gospel, top 40, jazz, and slow jams are most often playing.

N: What is your favorite beverage?
B: Sparks!  But it's been outlawed now, so I need a new one.  Coffee and tea are what I drink most often.

N: What do you do for recreation?
B: I like dancing to rockabilly & zydeco with old gentlemen in honkytonk bars--but I haven't found as many good places to do that here as there were in Minneapolis!  I also like making ridiculous videos, fixing bikes, volunteering interesting places as a means of learning new skills, having friends over for potluck dinners, craft skillshare nights, and turning any kind of event into a contest or arm-wrestling match.

N: Where did you grow up?
B: Partly in New Orleans, mostly in northern Virginia--and we lived with my grandparents in Cornwall, England almost every summer.  (My mum is British and my dad's from Louisiana--I'm a dual citizen.)

N: What brought you to Community Forklift?
B: Initially Ruthie--I met her at a neighborhood party, and then I came to volunteer for the Green Festival where I saw the job posting.  I like how CF is a great community resource!

N: What is your passion?
B: I want my life to be about helping people remember skills our society doesn't value anymore, like sharing things & skills with each other, finding things outside the economic system, shifting peoples' priorities, putting less dependency on money making our decisions for us--moving folks towards self-sufficiency & genuine independence.

The shorter & more specific answer is growing food and equipping people with the confidence and skills to do so in an urban setting!

Bea works part-time at CF, maintaining the website, database, craigslist postings, newsletters, ordering supplies, and bottom-lining the new workshop series!

Bea can be reached by email at
[email protected]

or by phone at

Earn free stuff!

As a nonprofit, we don't have the budget to buy ads.  We have grown only because YOU have been spreading the word!  Thanks to all the Forklift Fans that have put up flyers at their offices, posted messages on town listserves, and talked to their neighbors at community festivals.  

Now that spring is here, we're getting even more invites to events...so we need help!

Can you pitch in on one of the dates below? 
We need volunteers to hand out brochures at our booth, as well as folks to help at the store.  Just call 301-985-5180 or email [email protected] to find out more.  Remember, you earn free stuff; volunteers get $5/hour in store credit!

* Sat, March 7, 14, and 21, Volunteer Orientations - show up at 10 am to get a behind-the-scenes look at the Forklift  
* Sat. March 28, Tool Sale, Community Forklift warehouse
* Sat. & Sun. March 28-29, Go Green America Expo, Gaithersburg
* Sat. April 4, Howard County GreenFest, Columbia
* Sat. April 11, Frager's Hardware Festival, Capitol Hill
* Sun. April 19, River Road Unitarian Universalist Congregation Earth Day Celebration, Bethesda
* Sun. May 17, Spring Cleaning Work Day (tentative), Community Forklift warehouse

March Sales!

Semiannual Tool Sale March 28!
Come at 9 am to get the first look at our vintage and modern hand tools, small power tools, and hardware!
(Volunteers may use up to $75 of their store credit on tool sale items)

50% off Ceramic Tile
Take half off all regular ceramic tile (Sale does not include subway, mosaic, stone, glass, or other specialty tile).

50% off Toilets
Take half off all tanks, bowls, lids, and complete toilets marked $35 or below. 

50% off salvaged Wood Windows
Take half off all used rectangular wood windows with clear glass (Sale does not include surplus windows; vinyl windows; specialty shapes or frosting; or antique, pebbled, or painted glass).

Cherry Armoires: NOW ONLY $125!
We have over a dozen wood armoires, which measure approximately 3' wide and 6' tall, and 2' deep! They were used in hotels as TV cabinets, and some of them even include a 19" Phillips TV set!

Low, low prices on surplus fire-rated slab steel doors! 
Priced as marked.  Doors usually sell for $120 - $150 retail.  Our price is only $15 - $20! 

We hate to have to say this, but...
don't bother scratching price tags off!  Any item without a price tag
is not eligible for the March sale.

Attention Contractors:

Give your customers a break!
Don't pay to dispose of used building materials

Now more than ever, people want to save money on home projects.  You can offer them a tax deduction for donating their salvaged building materials to Community Forklift.
Sign up for a "Contractor/Handyperson Orientation" at Community Forklift and find out what we take, how it works and how to make it work for you!  We will answer all your questions so that you are prepared to offer these services. We make it simple and easy.  Space is limited, so please make sure you are available!

** SUNDAY, MARCH 22 at 11:30am, serving coffee and doughnuts OR TUESDAY, MARCH 24 at 3:30 serving pizza and soda.

To sign up please email [email protected]. Send her your contact information (name, phone number, email) and the date you would like to attend.
Presenting...CF's 1st Ever
Workshop Series!

Customers are always asking us how to use certain items that we sell--we're working to put together a comprehensive how-to workshop series that will enable our customers to make better use of our reused materials!

Once a Month, Sundays at 2pm

March: How to re-use materials in your garden, facilitated by CF employee Bea Trickett, CF Customer Helen Williams, & CF Board Member Elizabeth Leigh

April: How to rewire a simple light fixture, facilitator TBD

May:  How to diagnose and repair a leaky water wasting toilet, taught by Plumber YB Leaky

Limited Space
Pre-Registration and Pre-payment Required

$15 per person workshop fee
($17 if using Paypal to cover their fee)

Click here to sign up, and for more details!

If you or someone you know would like to facilitate a workshop teaching some aspect of working with reused materials, please contact Bea Trickett at [email protected]

Clutter beware -
there's a Tiger on the loose!


On January 26th, Community Forklift got an unusual donation!  Local home & office organizer Judy Tiger, of DC-based "Just That Simple" (www.just-that-simple.net) celebrated "Get Organized (Go) Month" by providing a pro bono day of office organizing services.  Said Judy, "The goal of this mini-makeover was a more efficient and enjoyable work space for a very deserving nonprofit leader.  I chose Community Forklift because of the great work they do for the community and for the environment."

I know this is hard to believe (snort), but some of our staffers are packrats.  Also, we're so busy in the warehouse that papers tend to stack up in the office.  But Judy was fantastic!  She helped Jim reorganize his space more logically, so that filing is less of a hassle.  She also gave Ruthie advice about attacking the piles and staying motivated.  Check out these drastic before & after photos:

Jim's Office
Jim's office BEFORE

Jim's office AFTER!!!

Ruthie before
Ruthie's office BEFORE

ruthie after
Ruthie's office AFTER!!!

It was a typical job for Just That Simple, which serves homes and offices across the DC area.  They offer personalized, non-judgemental, creative, and practical solutions to clutter and chaos, including hands-on organizing and creating systems to stay organized.  From one closet to a whole house, from one desktop to the whole office, Just That Simple helps people reclaim their work spaces and homes.  The goals?  Homes and offices that are enjoyable and efficient, where there are easy-to-find places to put everything away, where it is easy to work and to relax, and where friends and guests are welcome.  

Just That Simple is a member of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) and the local WDC Metro Area Chapter of NAPO.  This is the fifth year that NAPO has dedicated the month of January to GO Month, to raise awareness of the benefits of getting organized and of hiring NAPO professional organizers.  During GO Month, NAPO's dozens of chapters and thousands of members hold events across the country.


Fill out this coupon and bring it in to receive a FREE FIREPLACE INSERT!!
(Eligible inserts are marked with price tags of $25 or less.  Coupon does not apply to surplus inserts, fireplace screens, or inserts without pricetags.)

Print out the coupon, fill in your name, and hand it to the
cashier at checkout
to receive your free gift!

Name: _______________________________
Zip code: ____________________________

While supplies last.

One discount per household - may not be combined with other offers or used more than once. Not valid toward consignment items. Valid thru 3-31-09.

Cashier Initials: ____________     Date Used: _____________