ROCKY HILL, CT (WFSB) - The annual Coats for Connecticut drive kicked off on Thursday.

Coats for Connecticut (2021)

Channel 3 partnered with Best Cleaners for the annual drive.

People can drop off gently-used winter coats to any Best Cleaners from Nov. 4 through Nov. 12.

The first coats came in around 6 a.m. on Thursday. One of the donors was Buzz Wooldridge, who has been donating to the cause for more than a decade.

The annual Coats for Connecticut drive kicks off on Nov. 4.

Wooldridge said he collects dozens of coats from family friends and neighbors, then brings them to the Best Cleaners location in Glastonbury.

"I love doing things for people," he said. "I love doing this particular thing because I know people are cold. It’s cold this morning."

"We clean them get them, just like any other customers' clothes go through here," said Shawn McCann of Best Cleaners. "So, they get a nice coat they can wear."

McCann and his team clean them up and take them to the Salvation Army, which then hands them out to families in need.

The drive has taken in 130,000 coats over the last 13 years.

"The need truly never has been greater for families in Connecticut," said Major Debra Ashcraft, Salvation Army. "When you give to the Salvation Army and you help others, just remember that you’re touching their heart you’re giving them hope."

Ashcraft said they have a particular need for children's coats.

"I know there are people out there that don’t have coats and all my friends are always good about getting them to me, so it’s fun," Wooldridge said.

Drop off spots include:

  • Best Cleaners, Berlin, CT
    138 Mill Street | 860-828-9386
    Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday-Friday;
    8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, Bristol, CT
    100 North Street | 860-583-3935
    Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, Canton, CT
    1 Lovely Street | 860-693-0056
    Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, Farmington / Unionville, CT
    1684 Farmington Avenue | 860-673-0139
    Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, Glastonbury, CT
    2759 Main Street | 860-633-0591
    Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m - 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, Middletown, CT
    522 South Main Street | 860-347-9449
    Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, Middletown, CT
    1088 Newfield Street | 860-632-2217
    Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, North Haven, CT
    94 Washington Avenue | 203-234-BEST (2378)
    Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, Old Lyme, CT
    90 Halls Road, Old Lyme Marketplace| 860-434-7743
    Open 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, Plainville, CT
    69 East Street | 860-747-6221
    Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, Rocky Hill, CT
    2349 Main Street | 860-721-0500
    Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, Simsbury, CT
    1227 Hopmeadow Street | 860-408-9868
    Open 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Saturday
  • Best Cleaners, Windsor, CT
    292 Poqounock Avenue | 860-688-3300
    Open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday-Friday
    8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday

The annual Coats for Connecticut drive kicked off on Nov. 4 at Best Cleaners locations around the state.

More information can be found on the Coats for Connecticut website here.

Copyright 2021 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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