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Spread the Glove, an annual campaign spearheaded by the City of Bristol Tennessee to distribute cold-weather items to those in need, officially kicked off Thursday as Mayor Mahlon Luttrell tied the season’s first hats, gloves, and scarves to trees and lampposts along State Street.
Since its 2015 inception by the City’s Office of Community Relations, the program had collected and distributed more than 4,000 items, making them available at no charge to those who need them on cold days. Each item collected is first tagged with a message that reads “I am not lost. Please take this to keep warm!” or a similar message, then placed in public areas downtown.
“The overwhelming generosity of the Bristol community is heartwarming and vital to the success of the Spread the Glove program,” Mayor Luttrell said. “Individuals, church groups, community organizations, and school children have all joined the cause over the years, providing enough hats and mittens each year to keep our entire city warm throughout the winter months.”
Joining Mayor Luttrell at Thursday’s kickoff campaign were Peg Staton, a long-time Bristol resident who has donated hundreds of handmade items to the program over the years, and community newcomers Marlis and Bill McLain. The McLains moved to the region just over a year ago and approached the City about helping with the campaign to show appreciation for the warm welcome they have received in Bristol.
Their support will be vital to the success of the 2021-2022 campaign, Mayor Luttrell said, and others can also help by placing new, handmade, or gently used items in specially marked bins throughout the city. Bins have been placed at:
For additional information, please contact the Office of Community Relations at [email protected] or (423) 764-4171.