Hundreds bask in the warmth of North Township coat drive

2012-11-17T12:28:00Z 2012-11-19T00:52:05Z Hundreds bask in the warmth of North Township coat driveBill Dolan bill.dolan@nwi.com, (219) 662-5328 nwitimes.com
November 17, 2012 12:28 pm  • 

HIGHLAND | The weather and the reception was bountiful Saturday for hundreds of needy families who took advantage of North Township Trustee Frank J. Mrvan's annual coat drive.

Workers for the charity event said the line, estimated at more than 900 people, extended from the Wicker Park pavilion out to the park entrance on Ridge Road at one point during the morning event.

Mrvan said he was happy the temperature was in the middle 50s late Saturday morning for the event.

"We've had worse days," he said.

Mrvan said his office partners with Kusiak Cares to arrange the event. NIPSCO, BP and Salzeider Family Charity donate money for new coats and the township collects used coats. Mrvan estimated about $10,000 in coats were on racks in the pavilion for families to choose.

David Kusiak of Highland-based Kusiak Construction, said he first got the idea to work with the township several autumns ago.

"The weather had changed. I went into my closet for a coat and I had at least four in there and I asked Frank if there was any way to donate surplus coats."

Mrvan said, "We partner with the school systems in the township who put out a notice. We also contact the churches. Every year it grows. People just bring people."

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