Rome, N.Y. - The line of cars seemed to be a mile long leading up to D & D Carpets of Rome on West Dominick Street Saturday morning for the 4th annual Back to School Book Bag Giveaway put on by D & D Carpets of Rome and the Lake Delta Kiwanis Club.
The cars, with a parent driving and very excited kids in tow, all waited patiently for the much coveted bags of supplies.
Felicia Sanquiche of Rome brought her son and daughter, "I am right here with Jacob and Rebecca. We are so excited and really grateful for this event."
Rachel Nicholas, also of Rome, says she's glad she heard about the book bag giveaway on Facebook late Friday night, "I was worried last night when the papers came out (from school) and what we would have to get and what I was going to have to spend, and then seeing this on Facebook, so we showed up."
D & D Carpets of Rome owner Nazie Adolfi says the event this year may be a little different due to COVID, but he says the smiles on the kids' faces is exactly the same as the past three years, "A little different this year, we’re doing a drive-up for the COVID, usually we set up everything inside, you know the kids will walk in pick a bag out, pick a book out, and go through and get their supplies."
Adolfi says last year, 200 book bags filled with supplies were given out, and this year, becasue he knew the need is greater, the group purchased more items and put together more than double last year's number of book bags, at 413.
Rachel Nicholas says she is very grateful for the backpacks for her kids and now she turns her focus to the kids' learning, "I'm working from home from 8:30 to 5 so it’s going to be hard having a kindergartner and a third grader be on a computer for five hours a day while I’m also on the computer for eight hours a day. We’ve set up an office upstairs in our house to try to make it a little school room environment for the kids."
The Rome School District announced that the first six weeks of the school year will be entirely virtual learning like it was for the last three months of the last school year this spring.