National Training Conference
Fall 2023 - Registration Now Open!

October 2nd, 3rd, & 4th • Knoxville, TN


What to Expect

On October 2nd to 4th, SMCo Thrift will host its next thrift conference at Bridgewater Place (205 Bridgewater Rd. Knoxville, TN 37923) focused on equipping leaders in the industry to Do Thrift Better. Principles, strategies and tools proved successful in the 150+ locations where the SMCo Thrift team has assisted will be shared.

Who is a Thrift Conference For?

Every conference is unique because of the people who attend. We recognize the value of different viewpoints so come prepared to share your challenges as well as your successes. While no thrift store is exactly the same, we do believe that certain strategies can be deployed to encourage success. No matter the size of your thrift operation, we are certain that this conference can benefit you.

What You'll Learn

Expect to hear about, and then see, the interconnected elements within a thrift operation – such as receiving donations, sorting & pricing individual items to retail sales. Directors, managers and other leaders will walk away with practical steps to implement at existing thrift operations to grow your social enterprise. 


We are so excited for this Fall’s Conference.  Every year we set a schedule with a goal to encourage new ideas, learn best practices, and engage with others in the thrift industry.  Check out the session topics for this Spring, and be sure to stick around for day three to see these practices in action!

Monday, October 2nd

Snacks will be available throughout the day. Lunch is provided.

Pick up your name tag, meet other attendees, grab a cup of coffee and get ready for a day of learning!

  • Importance & Value of Donations
  • Capturing Key Data
  • Making Informed Decisions

We will host a reception with heavy hors d’oeuvres inside our venue –  Bridgewater Place.

Tuesday, October 3rd

  • Customer Service
  • Interacting with Donors & Volunteers
  • Targeting Different Audiences
  • Marketing Mediums & Resources
  • Identifying Obstacles
  • Defining Key Components

Interaction Session to Answer Any Thrift-Related Questions

  • Building Displays
  • Store Planograms
  • Capture the attention of your customer
  • Expanding Your Thrift Operation
  • Selecting the Right Property
  • Wholesale Business Component
  • Connecting Your Thrift Operation

Snacks will be available throughout the day. Lunch is provided.

Wednesday, October 4th

Two store tours will be available starting at 8:30am, one featuring a small format store and the other featuring a large format store. Small Format Store Tour – 7101 Kingston Pike Knoxville, TN 37919 Large Format Store Tour – 10612 Kingston Pike Knoxville, TN 37922
Following the store tours, sessions to help with software setup and to discuss best practices for PickUpMyDonation and ThriftTrac are available starting at 10:30am.  User Groups Location – 9329 Kingston Pike Knoxville, TN 37922


We would love to have you and your team join us this Fall!

Conference Registration is now open for the 2023 Fall Conference.  

Bring your entire team!  Regardless of experience, we believe this is an event that will help as you and your organization strive to Do Thrift Better.

Be sure to check out the information below about lodging, transportation, and food.  If you have any questions, send us an email at
Be sure to check out the information below about lodging, transportation, and food.  If you have any questions, send us an email at

Fall 2023 National Training Conference

Knoxville, TN
$ 425
  • Admittance into the conference
  • Invitation to reception on first day
  • Access to slides after conference

Planning Your Trip

We are pleased to offer a hotel block at a great rate for the SMCo Thrift National Training Conference. Within a 5 minute drive from our venue, Drury Inn offers wonderful amenities, comfortable stays, and a convenient location. Your stay even includes a complimentary hot breakfast and complimentary drinks and snacks every evening.

In order to take advantage of this event rate, please use the group number 10044600 when you book online at or via phone at 1-800-325-0720.

If you would prefer to stay at a different site, many other hotels are in the area of  this year’s venue – Bridgewater Place – 205 Bridgewater Rd. Knoxville, TN 37923.

While You're in Knoxville

There are many wonderful restaurants near the venue so make plans to enjoy your own “taste of Knoxville” during your visit. Check out Visit Knoxville for recommendations or ask a SMCo Thrift team member while you are at the conference.  The reception on the first day is a great time to meet other attendees and make dinner plans for the rest of the week!

Planning to stay an extra day? There are plenty of sights to see and activities to do.  Gatlinburg and the Smoky Mountains are only a short drive from Knoxville, TN.  Regardless of the activities you decide to do, we are sure that you will enjoy your time here in East Tennessee. 

The goal of this conference is to help equip our attendees with the tools they need to succeed.  Without the tools and services of many of our vendors, our lives would be much more difficult.  Be sure to check out our Vendor page to register and learn more about the benefits of partnering with SMCo Thrift.

A Few Perks of Partnering With SMCo Thrift