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Efforts underway to provide coats for kids

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After a brief flirtation with cold weather over the past weekend, Romans realize that winter is actually on the way and several groups are sponsoring coat drives to help people bundle up during the winter months.

Missy Alford with Rome Cleaners said the business is partnering with the Salvation Army, Heritage First Bank and ServiceMaster to conduct Coats for Kids winter coat drive that will culminate with a giveaway on Black Friday, Nov. 24.

People can bring coats for all ages to Rome Cleaners on 712 Broad St. at East Eighth Street, ServiceMaster off U.S. 411 East, or any of the Heritage First Bank locations in Rome through Nov. 22.

“If businesses or people want to get a bunch together I will be more than happy to go pick them up as well,” Alford said.

The coats will be cleaned at Rome Cleaners and then made available to needy families at the Salvation Army Thrift store on Second Avenue on Nov. 24. “We’re doing it on Black Friday because we want them to feel kind of like they are going shopping,” Alford said. People can contact Rome Cleaners for additional information.

Third Street Ministries will be giving away winter clothing, more than just coats, from the parking lot of First United Methodist Church in Rome this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and again on Nov. 7 from 2 - 4 p.m.

A group called Saving Our Streets will also be conducting a winter coat drive Saturday at the Hop N’ Shop, 301 Calhoun Ave. The group will be taking in winter clothing and coats for both adults and children from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The distribution for that particular effort will be held Nov. 18 from 1 - 4 p.m. at the Unknown Soldiers Motorcycle Club, 3 Callahan St. A special pre-Thanksgiving meal will also be served during the same hours.

People can contact Minister Selahdeen Muhammed at 706-388-0212 for more information.

By the way, forecaster Matt Sene at the National Weather Service office in Peachtree City said the 90-day forecast through the end of January does call for warmer and drier than average conditions across Northwest Georgia.