TEWKSBURY, Mass. — More than 350 people gathered recently at the UMASS Lowell Inn & Conference Center for Hearts Warmed, a celebration of Anton’s Cleaners’ 100 years in business.
The gathering collected money for Caring Partners Inc., a charity organization that develops and implements programs to collect and distribute good-quality clothing to children, individuals and families in need. Through individual ticket sales, sponsorships, and donations, the event raised nearly $210,000.
Hearts Warmed honored Arthur C. Anton Sr. for his vision, compassion and devotion to giving back to the community. He became president of Anton's Cleaners in the 1960s, and with brothers Socrates and Alexander, guided the company’s growth.
“What better way to celebrate our 100th anniversary than to both honor my father [Arthur Anton Sr.] and raise funds for a nonprofit organization that we at Anton’s hold close to our hearts,” says Arthur Anton Jr., COO of Anton’s Cleaners.
During tough economic times, the number of people turning to Anton’s for help is outpacing its ability to ensure that each person in surrounding communities that need a winter coat or a prom dress gets one. The funds raised from Hearts Warmed will allow Caring Partners to expand its efforts and reach more individuals than ever before.
“We weren’t really sure what to expect when these programs [Coats for Kids and Belle of the Ball] began,” says President and CEO Charles Anton. “We knew it was important to give back where able, however, they have grown beyond our wildest dreams — collecting nearly 60,000 coats a year and outfitting nearly 500 girls a year for prom.”
Anton’s Cleaners owns and operates 42 stores in Massachusetts and New Hampshire.