REED CITY — It was a cold day, brisk, to say the least when at least half a dozen people showed up with a mission.

Thanks to dozens and dozens of people from throughout the area, these folks came to help haul coats, jackets, boots, scarves, mittens and hats in to the old Seventh Day Adventist Church located in Reed City.

Those now will be made available to anyone who needs them. And there’s no charge.

According to Mary Lou Proefrock, it is an annual Reed City Area Ministerial Association project, and she estimated that more than 300 winter coats and jackets alone had been donated.

Some were collected at various businesses, many area churches, and at schools and by individuals. The goal is to make sure area residents can be warm this winter, “and it should happen,” she said.

She explained that in recent years the items had been taken to the free store which recently closed in Reed City just north of the Depot, “and we wanted to have them distributed somewhere where there would be no questions asked, nothing to fill out, and no charge. Those are the wishes of the Ministerial Association, she said, “and we were able to find just such a place.”

They will be available on Tuesdays from 2-5 p.m., the regular hours a free store operates out of that old church which is located on the southwest corner of Chestnut and Bittner.

Proefrock said that site was picked primarily because it was available. The church is no longer being used for worship, since the Seventh Day Adventist Church had a new church built out east of Reed City along US-10.

The church itself is for sale in Reed City.

Proefrock said that Deb Richardson is in charge of distributing the items, and they are pleased to have her help and the church family’s assistance in providing a nice space for distributing the items.

Richardson said she is looking forward to the opportunity to assist with the project. No appointments are necessary.

After huge bag loads of items were hauled into the church building recently, the jackets were sorted by size, and placed in piles on the backs of pews, to later be displayed for people who are in need to select what will help them this winter.

Those who spent a recent day hauling and then sorting at the church included Steve Lowery, Todd Grothe, Heather Hicks, Proefrock and Richardson.

In addition to those items, Richardson said there are other items available and free to anyone who can use them. “I had some divine appointments recently, and when I chipped a tooth it meant a trip to the dentist,” she said.

That trip took care of her problem and her dentist contributed dozens of toothbrushes, toothpaste, and dental floss among other items to be given out for free as well, compliments of Professional Dental Associates in Big Rapids.

She is accepting household items, personal care items, “just about anything that we can pass through here and give to people who need it for free.”

She noted that she can be called at 231-832-2856 anytime and a message left to make arrangements for any donations.

Richardson the “whole name of this is really Seventh Day Adventists Community Services Outreach Center. It’s important for people to know that this building will be used as an outreach center as long as it isn’t sold.” She agreed there may be some people who just may start praying it won’t sell.