Norwalkers scarf up free coats; AIDS Memorial Quilt headed our way

The Knights of Columbus celebrate their free coat giveway, Saturday at the Ben Franklin Center in South Norwalk.

NORWALK, Conn. — Around Norwalk:

  • Winter coat giveaway draws ‘incredible’ demand
  • AIDS Memorial Quilt coming to Norwalk
  • City releases Thanksgiving week schedule


Coat Drive’s record-shattering response reveals community need

More than 220 brand-new and 75 gently used winter coats donated by the Knights of Columbus (KOC) were claimed within just 45 minutes at Saturday’s “Coats for Kids” event at Family & Children’s Agency (FCA), according to a press release.

A Knights of Columbus volunteer helps a boy try on a free coat, Saturday in South Norwalk.

KOC Councils from Norwalk, Darien, New Canaan, Westport, Weston, and Wilton had bought the new coats as part of  KOC’s “Neighbors Helping Neighbors” initiative, which has distributed more than 390,000 coats across the U.S. and Canada since 2009.

“While society is pushing us to purchase items for the Christmas season, we don’t want to forget those who need basic necessities for the upcoming winter season,” KOC Project Chairman/District Deputy George Ribellino, Jr. is quoted as saying. “It’s great to see brother Knights from different councils combine resources to help more people in need.”

During the coat distribution, fresh groceries were dispensed outside by Connecticut Food Bank’s mobile pantry in partnership with FCA and weekend children’s meals provider Filling In The Blanks.

“By bringing the incredible generosity of the Knights of Columbus and the vital resource of the Connecticut Food Bank into our community, we make it easier for our neighbors to access services they need,” said FCA President Robert F. Cashel.   “The incredible response to the coat drive shows how great the need in our community is.”



AIDS Memorial Quilt to be shown

A section of the AIDS Memorial Quilt will be displayed from Dec. 4-20 at Circle Care Center, located at 618 West Ave.  A pre-opening ceremony with honored guests is slated for 6:30 p.m. Thursday Dec. 3, and is open to the public.  Art from Rene Soto Gallery will also be exhibited.

Comprised of over 48,000 panels commemorating departed aids victims, the enormous quilt is displayed in 12’ x 12’ sections, each having 9 memorial panels.  “Many of our patients have personally battled this disease for decades and have lost loved ones to it.” said Circle Care Center CEO Mark Hammond in a press release.  “Displaying the AIDS Memorial Quilt at our facility will be a chance to reflect on the impact of HIV/AIDS since the beginning of the epidemic, the progress made along the way, and to remember those no longer with us.”

Founded in 2012, Circle Care Center is a primary care practice with an on-site specialty pharmacy. In addition to primary care, the Center specializes in stigma-free care for people living with HIV, the LGBTQ community, as well as HIV prevention (PrEP & PEP), Hepatitis C and STI testing and treatment.  Hours and more info are at https://www.circlecarecenter. org/

Thanksgiving week schedule

  • Garbage and recycling will be collected as usual Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. No collections on Thursday, Thanksgiving Day.  Thursday routes will be collected on Friday, and Friday routes will be collected on Saturday.
  • The Crescent St. transfer station and Smith St. yard waste site will be closed on Thanksgiving, and will resume normal hours on Friday.
  • Norwalk Public Schools will have a two-hour early dismissal on Wednesday.  Schools and administrative offices will be closed Thursday and Friday.
  • City Hall will be closed Thursday and Friday.
  • Both Norwalk Public Library branches will be closed Thursday and Friday.


More information is at norwalkct.org or at the Customer Service Center  (203) 854-3200.

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