RICHMOND (WRIC)—It's mid-November and getting chilly out there, but thousands of Richmonders, including children, can't afford a coat this winter.
During the month of November, 8News is teaming up with Puritan Cleaners to keep kids in Central Virginia warm through the annual Coats for Kids drive. On Saturday, 8News and Puritan Cleaners joined the Richmond Flying Squirrels at the Diamond to host the Ballpark Warming Party.
"I think we had about 8 or 9," said Cherita Ellis, who donated several coats at the event on Nov. 9. "We do this every year; gotta give back."
Hundreds of people dropped off coats at the party; more than 1,300 were donated. All will go to people who need them.
"Well, we enjoy buying ‘em," said coat donor Marie Warder. "Sorry we have to do that—‘cause we've got a problem here in Richmond. But, we are happy to do it."
Since 1988, Puritan Cleaners has collected more than 400,000 coats for the needy.
"We collect coats through the month of November," said Puritan Cleaners President Gary Glover. "But the earlier the better, ‘cause we need to take a lot of time to clean ‘em, repair ‘em and get ‘em to the Salvation Army for distribution."
Over the years, other businesses and organizations have joined in to support the cause, including 8News and the Richmond Flying Squirrels.
"We try to make sure that we're a 12-month-a-year-type organization that [is] making an impact throughout the region" said Todd "Parney" Parnell, vice president and COO of the Flying Squirrels. "This event here—I just see kids and families walk up … is another good example of how we try to create memories for families at all times."
Copyright 2013 by Young Broadcasting of Richmond
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