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Annual Operation Backpack event hoping to get hundreds of bags filled with supplies

Operation Backpack is a month-long event in the Toledo area with the objective of making sure kids are able to start the school year with everything they need.
Credit: WTOL11

TOLEDO, Ohio — It may be early in summer break, but some people are already thinking about school supplies for area kids.

One local business, the Toledo Hemp Center, is spearheading the effort to make sure all the things on kids' supply lists are checked off before they return to the classrooms.

Operation Backpack is a month-long event in the Toledo area.

"A lot of children don't have everything to go to school and this really helps, not only with extras but helping them get the supplies they don't have," said Kevin Spitler, owner of the Toledo Hemp Center.

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Backpacks, folders, markers and all other school supplies can be dropped off at the Toledo Hemp Center. Spitler says their goal is 200 backpacks, and they are well on their way.

"So far, we've collected about 75 backpacks. Some local businesses actually went through Amazon and just randomly sent them to us through the Amazon store, which is kind of cool. So we're getting there," said Spitler.

After the donation period, the Toledo Hemp Center and other local businesses host their annual fall community cookout for the kids. 

They grill hundreds of burgers and hotdogs and give away the backpacks, filled with supplies. 

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"So we do this and put this together every year. I believe this is our 7th or 8th year we've been doing it," said Spitler. "It's an awesome event that raises a lot of awareness and brings a lot of people together as well."

Backpacks and other school supplies can be dropped off from now until August 12th.

The Toledo Hemp Center is located at the Miracle Mile Shopping Center on the corner of Lewis Ave. and Jackman Rd.

There is also another drop-off location at 5Pints Bar and Grille at 1519 Eleanor Ave. in Toledo.

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