A quarter of a century ago, Bill Clinton was president, a little television show called “Friends” started and an annual effort in north Fulton County to collect coats for people who needed them began.

This year, North Fulton Community Charities is celebrating the 25th anniversary of Warm Coat Day. The effort, which is now part of the organization’s efforts, was actually started as a service project for Girl Scout Cadet Troop 628 from Crabapple Middle School.

“The girls in Troop 628 were very involved in service projects,” said Andrea Weitzman, who was the troop’s leader at the time. “It’s very gratifying that the Warm Coat drive is still going strong since its inception 25 years ago!”

North Fulton Community Charities began collecting coats for this year’s drive this past week. Throughout the month of October, north Fulton residents can drop off new or gently used coats, hats, scarves and gloves for adults or children at locations in the area.

It will build up to this year’s Warm Coat Day, which will be Oct. 26. That is when the items donated will be distributed.

“Warm Coat Day is so important to the families who participate because it allows them to prepare their family for winter without the burden of that extra expense on their already stretched budgets,” North Fulton Community Charities Director of Programs Eden Purdy said.

“Our community has always been so generous in providing for those in need during the coat drive.”

From now until Oct. 24, north Fulton residents can drop off coats at:

♦ Alpharetta Presbyterian Church, 180 Academy Street in Alpharetta

♦ CoreMatters, 1144 Canton St., Suite 104, in Roswell

♦ Ed Isakson/Alpharetta Family YMCA, 3655 Preston Ridge Drive in Alpharetta

♦ St. David’s Episcopal Church, 1015 Old Roswell Road in Roswell

There will also be a distribution center where community members can drop off items from 2 until 5 p.m. Oct. 24 and 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. and 2 until 5 p.m. Oct. 25, but the organization has not yet announced where it will be.

I'm a Crawford Long baby who grew up in Marietta. I eventually wandered away from home and attended the University of Southern Mississippi, in Hattiesburg, Miss., where I first tried my hand at majoring in film for a couple of years. And then political sc