Wisconsin Tourism Breaks “Big Bundle Up” Record With Over 30,000 Items Collected

MADISON, Wis. As cold temperatures sweep through the state, Wisconsin residents came together to donate warm winter items to those in need as part of the Wisconsin Department of Tourism’s sixth annual “Big Bundle Up” campaign. A record-breaking 31,697 winter clothing items, including hats, mittens, scarves, coats and snow pants, were donated to charities throughout Wisconsin. The campaign has totaled more than 103,400 donated items since 2011. 

"This campaign continues to grow every year and so does the generosity of Wisconsinites, local businesses and tourism industry leaders who donate their time and resources to provide warm clothing to those in need,” Governor Scott Walker said. “Once again, this campaign successfully brought communities together to positively impact residents around the state, and we thank everyone who took part in this effort."

The Big Bundle Up stemmed from the 2011 “Great Lakes Mitten Campaign,” and has grown into an annual tradition inviting the public to donate new and gently used winter items to participating Travel Wisconsin Welcome Centers, chambers of commerce, convention and visitors bureaus and local businesses. After the completion of the campaign on Jan. 2, tourism partners donated the collected items to local charitable organizations and shelters. This year’s total of 31,697 winter items equaled nearly half of the campaign’s five-year total of 71,800. 

“Every year we are so proud to see the dedication and enthusiasm of our tourism partners who help make this campaign a tremendous success,” said Tourism Secretary Stephanie Klett. “It’s gratifying to know that so many charities across Wisconsin are receiving extra donations to help keep residents warm as a result of The Big Bundle Up.”

Wisconsin leaders and businesses also did their part to help keep the state warm this winter. The campaign has grown to draw corporate donations, including an annual donation from Milwaukee-based Wisconsin Knitwear. The company donated 3,000 hats this year, an increase from last year’s donation of 2,000. The campaign also received 5,100 hats from an anonymous private business. 

The mission of the Wisconsin Department of Tourism is to market the State as the Midwest’s premier travel destination for fun by executing industry-leading marketing programs and establishing strategic partnerships. The Department plays a significant role in generating greater economic impact and jobs for Wisconsin. The portal for traveler information can be found at: www.travelwisconsin.com.

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