RHINELANDER - A Rhinelander clothing drive going strong for the fifth year in a row.
Nearly 200 people stopped by the "Warm for Winter" clothing give away this afternoon.
The organizers open the free shop the last Saturday of every month during fall and winter.
They say turnout grows every year, this season they've seen close to 1,000 people.
"A lot of people come, a lot of people take things, and so the donations it kind of evens out because we get rid of a lot but then we get a lot in... we can always tell by the number of hangers that are left on the racks", said Warm for Winter organizer Jan Leschke.
Organizers are grateful for the community's support and bedding donations from local hotels.
With the amount of people they've served Warm for Winter can always use more, the drive is particularly in need of childrens clothing.
"We also have toys now, people donate toys, and it's fun to watch the kids they're not too interested in clothes their parents are getting them clothes but they go through the toys, that's really nice", said organizer Gale Willcox.
There are two more Saturdays to stop by or donate to the drive, January 25th and February 22nd, but organizers plan to open up shop again next September.
They have also talked about becoming a year-round facility in the future.
If you'd like to donate stop by their location at 900 Boyce Drive in Rhinelander the last Saturday of the month, or call Jan Leschke at 715-362-7157.
LAC DU FLAMBEAU - Ruby's pantry opened their doors Tuesday in Lac du Flambeau. This is the first time the Ruby's pantry has set up shop there. They decided to come to Lac du Flambeau because of the good turnout in Rhinelander. The food pantry asks that people give a $20 donation.
“It's not your typical food pantry,” says Gloria Cobb, Ruby's Pantry Lac du Flambeau Lead Coordinator. “This is an opportunity to give people dignity, to serve with dignity, and it's a donation base.”
“I mean look at the hustle and bustle going on we've got the community coming together not only Lac du Flambeau but the surrounding community coming together to meet a very basic need and that's to help with hunger,” says Cobb.
The pantry offered items like strawberries, cake mix, and toilet paper. More than 400 people were expected to show up.
“A participant will go through the line with a laundry basket and or box and they will be offered items,” says Cobb. “They can refuse them however we will encourage them to take the item because somebody else that they may know may have a need.”
“They get a certain amount of each item and they go through the line like an assembly line,” says Cobb.
The pantry had more than 21,000 pounds of food to give away.
WAUSAU - Students at Northcentral Technical College in Wausau got to see Tibetan monks create a work of art steeped in Buddhist history.
The Mandala Sand Art is an ancient Tantric Buddhist tradition dating back thousands of years.
The Tibetan Monks from the Drepung Loseling Monastery are on an international tour called Mystical Arts of Tibet where they create mandalas in front of an audience.
"The colored patterns we are using, we are following the scriptures, the Buddhist scriptures. It's a very old tradition, more than 2,500 years ago," says Geshe Loden, head of the Mystical Arts of Tibet.
The monks' last visit to Northcentral Technical College in 2011 was so popular, they were invited back.
"At NTC we feel like it's important to offer our students a variety of different programming, and one of the things we feel our responsibility to do is expose our students to other cultures, other religions, other ideas," says Director of Student Development Shawn Sullivan.
The monks work hours at a time placing sand delicately in the lines of the intricate pattern.
The mandala will take them four days to complete, but the beautiful creation won't last long.
"After finishing this, making the mandala, we consecrate this completed mandala, and we dismantle it to symbolize the impermanence of all the conditioned things, all the phenomena," says Loden.
The monks' tour raises money for more than 3,000 monasteries in India. They also do it to raise awareness about the plight of Tibetans.
"Lord Buddha had started this, and that tradition keeps going on."
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