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Golf tourney to support Backpacks N July

Daniel Zimmerli is trying to collect 600 well-stocked backpacks for Pearl River County, Picayune and Poplarville students as part of his second annual Backpacks N July.

Last year, Zimmerli was able to collect 300 backpacks stocked with school supplies like notebooks, binders, crayons and colored pencils that were distributed to students attending Pearl River County and Picayune schools, he said. Backpacks N July was barely able to meet the 300 backpack goal, but Zimmerli said he was challenged to double the number of backpacks this year, and could not resist. So, the organization hosted the first Backpacks N July Golf Tournament on Friday at Millbrook Golf and Country Club to raise additional funds for even more backpacks, Zimmerli said.

The backpacks will be assembled July 27 at a yet to be determined location, so donations of backpacks and school supplies are welcome, Zimmerli said. Backpacks are distributed in the fall and as needed.

Zimmerli said delivering last year’s backpacks to the local schools was overwhelming, but that was not what motivated him to collect them.

“It’s about knowing I have the capacity to do something like this,” Zimmerli said. “I knew I could make a difference even though it’s small.”

Anyone who needs a backpack or knows someone who needs a backpack can contact the Backpacks N July Facebook or go to Kiki’s Play Gym or Zim’s Fun Zone, Zimmerli said.