Marty Mercer is a musician. He was about to take the stage for a performance when he got a great idea.
"I was performing at the Lockport Moose," the Joliet resident said. "I thought I should do a food drive; it was just getting cold outside.
"I was just thinking of a couple of boxes or something."
As soon as he put the thought out into the universe, other groups came forward to partner with him to help get food and coats to MorningStar Mission in Joliet.
"I talked to MorningStar Mission and I asked if they distributed everything to people in Joliet and they said yes, so I decided to donate there," he said.
And now there are three places where you can donate your food or coats.
- Cantigny VFW, 826 Horseshoe Drive
- St. Joseph's Academy, 51 W. Jackson
- Coldwell Banker Honig-Bell, 950 Essington Road
These businesses were added after Patch announced its partnership:
- Plainfield Library, 15025 S. Illinois St., Plainfield - coats only
Although Patch does not have a physical location at which you can drop off your food or clothing, we promised to partner with Mercer and remind you all about giving back to the community. If additional businesses jump on board for the drive, we will update the post to add the location and its address.
"I've been living out here for 12 years," Mercer said. "This is my community and it’s time to give back.
"I just thought it was time to initiate something. It was so easy to do too that’s the crazy thing."
The day he put the boxes out at Cantigny, the boxes started to be filled.
"Just the first night, I got the one box full of coats and blankets and a half a box of food," Mercer said.
If you cannot make it over to any of the three current locations, you can drop off donations right at MorningStar Mission, 350 E Washington St. Donations are accepted the following times:
- 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Friday
- 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday
- 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday