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Polina Groman and her husband Elliot. Source: SpinGreen via Forbes.

Polina Groman and her husband Elliot. Source: SpinGreen via Forbes.

Free coats – and free food – are coming to the Kings Bay YMCA this Sunday, December 14, courtesy of a community coat drive organized by SpinGreen, a 1733 Sheepshead Bay Road-based textile-recycling company, and Investors Bank.

The event is set to run from 11am to 3pm outside the Y at 3495 Nostrand Avenue, off Avenue V, and is the culmination of a six-month-long coat drive effort at all 13 Investors Bank branch locations in Brooklyn, said Investors Bank’s Assistant Vice President Branch Manager Gene Svetnikov.

“We get involved with the community a lot and [this year] we partnered with SpinGreen because especially with winter, [our donation trunks] have a good surplus and we’ve been getting a lot of coats, so we wanted to help families in need,” said Svetnikov.

“If anyone needs a coat, they are welcome to come or just stop by to see what we are doing,” added Elliot Groman, director at SpinGreen, which was founded in February 2013, by his wife, Polina. 

“We’re accepting sweaters and jackets and have contacted churches and synagogues in the area, so we’re hoping we’ll have around 150 coats and 50-60 sweaters of all sizes,” Groman said.

Groman and Svetnikov don’t anticipate having any coats left over after the event, but if there are, then the clothing will either go towards SpinGreen’s next coat drive in the Bronx or be recycled as textiles to be used as stuffing for toys, seat cushions and other items.

As noted in a Forbes profile this past August, SpinGreen works with reputable charities to donate all wearable items to local families in need, with the remainder being sold to to recyclers and the profit going back to charity and the property owners who host the bins.

“Our main thing is to keep clothes out of landfills [because] the U.S. wastes over 13 million tons of clothing a year,” said Groman. “And Americans only recycle about eight percent of that.”

 

The day was misty and chilly, but that was not enough to dampen the spirits of around 200 people who came out on Sunday to march, cheer for and honor the men and women who serve our country.

The annual Memorial Day Parade and Observance on Emmons Avenue, organized by the Sheepshead Bay / Plum Beach Civic Association, was a festive occasion full of flag-waving, smiles and revving of motorcycle and antique car engines. Students from P.S. 52 and adults from the new AHRC Stephen B. Siegel center marched alongside members of local veterans and community organizations such as the Jewish War Veterans and the Knights of Columbus.

“We come out every year,” said Dorothy Scarpati, who, with husband, Captain Michael Scarpati, stood on the sidewalk, waving to parade-goers. “It’s an event for everybody to get together and show unity as Americans.”

Keep reading about the parade, and view the photo gallery.