Coat Drive Delivers Over 300 Coats

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The fourth annual Livingston Coat Drive has gotten off to a successful start, having collected and delivered a total of 360 coats so far.

"Well, the winter weather has arrived, and I think it's a good bet that it's here to stay," said Livingston resident Jeff Friedman, organizer of the Coat Drive. "But thanks to the residents of Livingston and the other towns in which we are collecting, we have been able to provide coats and winter accessories to those who would otherwise have had to somehow manage without. Can you imagine trying to face the winter without a warm coat to wear?"

Friedman, who is known affectionately as the "Coat Guy," has reported that he and his "Dream Team" of volunteers have made three major deliveries of coats to distribution partners in Newark. The Jamaica Organization of New Jersey in Newark received 75 coats; the Family Success Center in East Orange accepted a delivery of 173 coats; and North Reformed Church in Newark received 112 coats. "That's 360 people who didn't have coats before who now do," said Friedman. "Think about that… that's 360 men, women and children who will not freeze this winter, thanks to  the generosity and compassion of our donors."

However, as the cold weather has just started for real, he said, "the need for coats has begun to intensify. Now more than ever, we're asking folks to step up and help out their neighbors in need. Please, check your closets, your attics, your basements. If there are any coats you're not using, please donate them to someone who can."

Coat Drive volunteers have worked hard to make donating as easy and convenient as possible, explained the Coat Guy. "If you're going to the ShopRite, you can drop coats off right next door at the West Essex Tribune office. You can also drop them at West Orange Jewelers on Eisenhower Parkway. Or you can e-mail me for private pick-up in Livingston."

Coats may be left at the Tribune, 495 South Livingston Avenue, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; at West Orange Jewelers, 16 Eisenhower Parkway, Roseland, during business hours, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursdays; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays; and at the Village Laundry Center, 213 Bellevue Avenue, Upper Montclair.

For private pick-up in Livingston, send an e-mail to Friedman at; and for pick-up in Montclair, e-mail his sister-in-law, Joyce Friedman, at

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