Photo by Alyse Horn
By Alyse Horn
Mr. McFeely of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood was at the Children’s Museum this morning to kick off the 17th Annual Sweater Drive.
There were 108 students from Fort Cherry Elementary Kindergarten Class and Children’s Museum Pre/K-Head Start programs that is operated by Pittsburgh Public Schools.
The Sweater Drive first began in Denver on the 30th Anniversary of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, and Director of Marketing Bill Schlageter said bringing the drive to the Children’s Museum was his first project when he began working at the museum in 2000.
“[Mr. McFeely] and I teamed up during the first year to get this going,” Schlageter said. “It’s a very rewarding experience.”
Since 2000, the Children’s Museum has collected more than 39,000 sweaters to share with families in need. This year, the collected sweaters will be distributed between December 19-23 to families by the Presbyterian Media Mission, The Homeless Children’s Education Fund, Veteran’s Leadership Program of Western, PA, Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh Ambassadors: Kids at Heart, and other agencies that work in families and children in the region.
Director of Presbyterian Media Mission Greg Hartung said these sweaters most go to families that have parents who are working two jobs and “just need help.”
Sweaters are being collected until December 16 and can be dropped off at the Children’s Museum. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Museum’s Sweater Donation Hotline at (412) 322-5058 ext. 363.
Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood is now available on Netflix and Amazon, and can also be viewed on PBSkids.org, or at WQED on the weekends. There is also a Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood installation at the Heinz History Museum that contains items from the set of the TV show.