The eighth annual Warners’ Warm-Up Coat Drive in Franklin County is underway.

The drive kicked off Nov. 1 and will run through Nov. 14, according to Gretchen Farrell, county organizer.

Last year, approximately 1,300 coats were collected. This year’s goal is 1,500-2,000 coats, Farrell said.

Warners’ Warm-Up has been held annually in the St. Louis area for over 18 years.

People are encouraged to donate new or gently used winter coats.

Coats of all sizes are needed, Farrell said, especially children’s coats. The coats will be distributed by area agencies to those in need.

The coats can be dropped off at specified locations throughout the area.

Farrell said all of the coats collected at the Franklin County collection sites and boxes will be distributed to eight area agencies and groups. These groups include:

Loving Hearts and Pregnancy Assistance Center, both in Washington; Washington Emergency Relief Fund; Agape House of Pacific; Agape House of St. Clair; Franklin County Children’s Division; Union Food Pantry; and Meramec Mission in Sullivan.

Coats can be dropped off at the following collection sites:

Washington Area — Schnucks, Applebee’s Restaurant, The Missourian downtown office, The Presbyterian Church, Our Lady of Lourdes School and Church, The Creek Grill and Sports Bar, Mercy North and Mercy South buildings, Campbellton Elementary, Clearview Elementary, South Point Elementary, Washington West Elementary, St. Francis Borgia Grade School and St. Francis Borgia Regional High School.

Union — Fricks Market, Zion UCC and KLPW Radio Station.

Pacific — Scenic Regional Library branch.

St. Albans — The Fulton School.

Farrell said more collection sites may be added.

The coats will be sorted Saturday, Nov. 18, beginning at 10 a.m. at the Presbyterian Church of Washington. Volunteers and community service groups will help sort all of the coats to get them ready for distribution.

All businesses and organizations participating in the drive will be listed on Kurt Warner’s First Things First website www.kurtwarner.org.

Farrell said she is assisting longtime Franklin County organizer Keith Whittemore this year as he has been sidelined with knee surgeries. Also working on the drive are Nicole Addison, Todd Obermark and Kevin Frankenberg.

For more information or anyone interested in volunteering to sort coats, contact Farrell at 314-578-1730 or tom2000@charter.net.