Herald JournalHerald Journal, Oct. 17, 2005

Binky Patrol comes to Montrose

By Liz Hellmann

Staff Writer

As the winter months approach, the Montrose United Methodist Church has found a way to bring warmth all the way from California into the lives of children in need.

Binky Patrol is a non-profit organization, based in California, that supplies children and babies in crises with blankets, or “binkies,” books, and teddy bears.

The Igniting Ministries missionary group for Montrose United Methodist is hosting its first Bink-A-Thon from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 22.

“This is our first attempt at it, we are hoping to make as many blankets as possible,” said Sue Hylland, member of the Montrose United Methodist Church.

During the Bink-A-Thon, volunteers will donate time, materials, and money to make blankets. The blankets can be sewn, crocheted, or knitted with machine washable goods.

So far, the church has received donations for materials, especially fleece.

“I think we will be making a lot of fleece blankets because they are fairly easy,” Hylland said.

The group is receiving help from the closest official Binky Patrol chapter, based in Zimmerman.

The blankets, books, and teddy bears can be sent to the Zimmerman chapter, or donated around the area.

“Since this is our first time, we’d kind of like to keep it local,” Hylland said.

The church will be donating items to agencies like the local fire department, Wright County Courthouse foster care system, and possibly the crisis nursery.

People can donate materials, or money for the project at any time, or stop by on Saturday to help make blankets.

“We’ve had several people donate money and we just went out and bought the fabric, so they don’t have to go hunting around for bargains,” Hylland said.

Even the Sunday School children have gotten involved.

“Each one got a 12-inch square of fabric to paint, and I’m going to be sewing them together,” Hylland said.

Hylland first discovered the Binky Patrol while researching ideas on the Internet that the Igniting Ministries group could participate in.

The Binky Patrol officially began in Laguna Beach, Calif. about nine years ago.

Founder Susan Finch originally began making blankets for unwed mothers, and shortly after, the Binky Patrol was born.

Since then, it has grown to include more than 160 chapters and an estimated 20,000 volunteers nationwide.

“If this takes off, we are hoping to start a Wright County chapter,” Hylland said.

For more information, or to donate, call Sue Hylland (763) 682-4459 or Diane Folkestad (763) 242-6311.


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