Mitten Tree at Miller Home Furnishings … warming area children for 41 years
TINA L. SCOTT
This year, 2022, marks 41 years Miller Home Furnishings in Merrill has been warming the hands, heads, and hearts of area children with their Mitten Tree.
In truth, the tree collects more than just mittens. Area residents and Girl Scout Troops, along with Miller’s customers, collect and cover the tree with hats, scarves, and socks, in addition to mittens.
Knitted, crocheted, sewn, or purchased, new donations of these items are welcomed and appreciated and can be brought to the Mitten Tree and hung on its evergreen branches during normal business hours. Community members are invited to help by purchasing needed items and bringing them to Miller Home Furnishings, 120 N. Prospect St., in Merrill. The Mitten Tree is visible through the front window.
As the tree’s branches fill with donations, Steve Hass, Merrill Mayor and this year’s Mitten Tree coordinator, will divide the donations up and take the items to area schools, both public and parochial, so teachers can distribute them as they see a need, ensuring children in the Merrill community will be warm this winter.
Miller Home Furnishings owner Wally Smith, along with Mayor Hass, a 30+ year employee at the store, say they are proud to sponsor the Mitten Tree. “We’ll make sure it stays for as long as we’re here,” Hass said.
Originally sponsored by Merrill’s West Side Merchants and Smith, the Merrill Area Girl Scouts [including Daisy, Brownie, Junior, Cadette, Senior, and Ambassador Scouts in the area] have taken on advertising and promoting the project, as well as collecting needed items for the tree. They make and put up posters in the community to publicize the Mitten Tree and the need for donations.
It ends up being an entire community project, and the girls work together, focused on being a sisterhood, rather than differentiating between troops, leaders say. They work together as one big collective for the Mitten Tree.
For more information, contact Steve Hass, the Mitten Tree Coordinator, at 715.536.5922 at Miller Home Furnishings.