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Mitten tree doubles items from previous year


Bulletin report

For more than 10 years Thomas Branigan Memorial Library, 200 E. Picacho Ave., has coordinated an annual mitten tree. This year’s tree was a huge success.

Each year, the community comes together to donate mittens, gloves, blankets, scarves, socks, baby items and many other needed personal items to help Las Cruces’ needy.

At the close of business Dec. 17, Branigan Library staff packed up the tree and counted 1,515 items, including mittens, blankets, scarves, masks, socks and baby clothes, the City of Las Cruces said in a news release.

All items will be delivered to La Casa, Inc. domestic violence program, Mesilla Valley Community of Hope and Las Cruces Gospel Rescue Mission.

“Library staff were surprised by the number of items, once they finished packing everything up,” said Library Administrator Margaret Neill. “In 2019, the last year we had the mitten tree up, we collected and donated approximately 613 items. This year, we had more than double that!”

This annual library tradition, which was not able to happen in 2020 due to the pandemic, was a welcome and thoughtful acknowledgment of giving after so many months when the community was not able to physically come together, the city said.

“It’s a wonderful tradition,” Neill said. “And I’m glad we were able to bring it back this year and, with the generosity of the community, help so many in need.”

For information, call 575-528-4000.