Oct. 30, 2023
Network partners with more than 80 organizations statewide to collect sweaters for those in need
CONWAY, Ark. (Arkansas PBS) – Arkansas PBS and more than 80 organizations across the state have partnered to sponsor the Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood Sweater Drive as a tribute to Fred Rogers and his example of being a caring neighbor. The drive will be held Nov. 1-30.
"The timeless values that children learn from Fred Rogers continue to resonate,” Arkansas PBS Executive Director and CEO Courtney Pledger said. "Fred Rogers' iconic cardigan sweater symbolizes the gentle spirit and kindness of the neighborhood.
“Arkansas PBS is honored to carry forward his legacy, collaborating with remarkable partners throughout the state for the Mister Rogers' Neighborhood Sweater Drive."
During the Neighborhood Sweater Drive, members of the community are asked to donate new or gently worn sweaters, as well as other cold-weather clothing, at participating libraries, schools and businesses statewide, or at Arkansas PBS headquarters in Conway. Sweaters collected in this drive will be distributed by various local charities.
Participating organizations include:
- Alma Public Library.
- Atkins – Pope County Library System.
- Batesville – Independence County Library.
- Benton – Saline County Library.
- Booneville – Logan County Library.
- Bryant – Saline County Library.
- Cabot Public Library.
- Calico Rock Elementary.
- Carlisle Public Library.
- Clinton – Van Buren County Library.
- Conway – Faulkner County Library, UCA Torreyson Library, Winrock Automotive and Honda World of Conway.
- Damascus Public Library.
- DeQueen – Sevier County Library System.
- Dover – Pope County Library System.
- Dumas Branch Library.
- El Dorado – Barton Library.
- Fayetteville Public Library.
- First Friends Preschool, Rogers.
- Forrest City Public Library.
- Gillham – Sevier County Library System.
- Greenbrier – Faulkner County Library.
- Greenwood – Scott-Sebastian Regional Library.
- Harrison – Boone County Library.
- Hector – Pope County Library System.
- Horatio – Sevier County Library System.
- Horseshoe Bend Library.
- Huntsville – Madison County Library.
- Huttig Library.
- Izard County Consolidated Elementary, in association with 4-H.
- Jasper – Newton County Library.
- Jonesboro – Craighead County Public Library.
- Junction City – Harper Memorial Library.
- Little Rock – Arkansas Flag and Banner, the Arkansas State Library; and Central Arkansas Library System locations including Adolphine F. Terry Branch Library, Dee Brown Branch Library, Esther Dixon Branch Library, Hillary Rodham Clinton Children’s Library and Learning Center, John Gould Fletcher Branch Library, Main Branch Library, Oley E. Rooker Branch Library, Roosevelt Thompson Branch Library, Sue Cowan Williams Branch Library and Sydney Sanders McMath Branch Library.
- Lockesburg – Sevier County Library System.
- Lonoke Public Library.
- Malvern – Arkansas State University Three Rivers Library, Hot Springs County Public Library.
- Maumelle – CALS Maumelle Branch Library.
- Mayflower Public Library.
- Melbourne Elementary.
- Monticello – South Arkansas Regional Library.
- Mount Vernon – Faulkner County Library.
- Mountain Home – Baxter County Library.
- Mountainburg Public Library.
- Mulberry – The Ralph D. Graf Library of Mulberry.
- Nashville – Howard County Public Library.
- North Little Rock – Argenta Library, William F. Laman Public Library.
- Norphlet Library.
- Ozark – Franklin County Library.
- Paris – Gattis-Logan County Library.
- Pea Ridge Library.
- Perryville – CALS Max Milam Library.
- Piggott Public Library.
- Pocahontas – Randolph County Library.
- Prairie Grove Public Library.
- Rector Public Library.
- Russellville – Pope County Library System.
- Sheridan – Grant County Library.
- Sherwood – CALS Amy Sanders Branch Library.
- Smackover Library.
- Springdale Public Library.
- St. Paul Public Library.
- Strong Library.
- Stuttgart Public Library.
- Twin Groves – Faulkner County Library.
- Van Buren Public Library.
- Vilonia – Faulkner County Library.
- Warren Public Library.
- Wrightsville – CALS Millie Brooks Library.
Supporting sponsors for the statewide Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood Sweater Drive include Walmart and Honda World of Conway.
“All of us, at some time or other, need help,” Fred Rogers said. “And, whether we’re giving or receiving a sweater, each one of us has something valuable to bring to this world.
“That’s one of the things that connects us as neighbors – in our way, everyone is a giver and receiver.”
Additional information is available at myarpbs.org/sweaterdrive.
To help set the tone for a “comfortable” visit with his young viewers, Rogers put on a sweater and changed into sneakers to help children settle in for “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.” All of Rogers’ original sweaters were knitted by his mother, Nancy McFeely Rogers. Each year, she knitted a dozen sweaters and gave them to family and close friends at Christmas.
For more than 40 years, “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood,” PBS’s longest-running children’s series, earned four Daytime Emmys. As a testament to his legacy, Rogers received a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1997 and was recognized in 2002 with a Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor, for his contributions to children’s development and education using broadcast television.
The Fred Rogers Company was founded by Rogers in 1971 as the nonprofit producer of “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” for PBS. In the years that followed, it not only created hundreds of episodes, but it also extended Rogers’ values and approach to other efforts in promoting children’s social, emotional and behavioral health and supporting parents, caregivers, teachers and other professionals in their work with children. The Fred Rogers Company continues to build on his legacy through a wide variety of media and by engaging new generations of children and families with his timeless wisdom. Additional information is available at FredRogers.org.
About Arkansas PBS
Arkansas PBS, Arkansas’s only statewide public media network, empowers learners of all ages by educating, informing, entertaining and inspiring communities. Arkansas PBS serves as a daily and essential resource for Arkansans by creating, sharing, celebrating and driving conversation around Arkansas stories and classic, trusted PBS programs through multiple digital platforms, including livestreaming at myarpbs.org/live, on-demand services and YouTube TV, and the distinct channels Arkansas PBS, Arkansas PBS Create, Arkansas PBS KIDS, Arkansas PBS WORLD and Arkansas PBS AIRS on SAP. Members with Arkansas PBS Passport have extended on-demand access to a rich library of public television programming. Arkansas PBS depends on the generosity of Arkansans and the State of Arkansas to continue offering quality programming. Additional information is available at myarkansaspbs.org. Arkansas PBS is broadcast on KETS (Little Rock), KEMV (Mountain View), KETG (Arkadelphia), KAFT (Fayetteville), KTEJ (Jonesboro), KETZ (El Dorado), KETS (Russellville), KETS (Forrest City), KETS (Gaither) and KETS (Yancy).