Goodwill hosts annual Shoe and Mitten Party

Published: Dec. 4, 2021 at 5:53 PM CST
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SIOUX CITY (KTIV) - Shoes, mittens and hats, oh my! The Goodwill of the Great Plains annual Shoe and Mitten Party has been an annual tradition in Siouxland since the 1940′s.

Children got to pick out a brand new pair of shoes, along with other winter essentials.

“Volunteers come back year after year. So, there’s like a family of volunteers that come in and they like to see the kids. And the kids are happy and it’s just a fun day. It’s an opportunity for people to give back to the community,” said John Hantla, Goodwill of the Great Plains CEO.

And for those volunteers...

“It’s really the highlight of my Christmas season. Seeing this. The kids get so excited when they’re walking out with a brand new pair of shoes and mittens and gloves. And just knowing that they’re going to have warm, dry feet for the winter is really nice,” said Terry Keime, Board Member.

Around 1,200 kids are served through the shoe and mitten party, highlighting the importance of the event, as the colder weather begins to stick around.

“Some of these kids, this is the only pair of shoes they get all year long. In years past, I’ve had kids come in that are wearing shoes two and three sizes too small. So, it’s just really important that they have the right size shoes so that they can concentrate more in school and just be happy when they’re walking around, playing with their friends,” said Keime.

But of course, the best part of the Shoe and Mitten Party?

“Seeing the looks on the kids’ faces. Seeing their excitement in getting the new shoes. You know, they’re sitting there and the volunteers are trying on the shoes on the children’s feet and you can tell that they really like it. You know it’s just great that they can come out and be served,” said Hantal.

The longstanding tradition helps make sure kids have what they need to stay warm this winter.

Children also talked to Santa after grabbing their winter essentials and a treat bag.

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