Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and area residents were in the giving spirit Wednesday.
A stream of people flowed through the parking lot of Rich Products Corp. from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. with enough donations to fill a tractor-trailer.
By noon, another truck was brought in after the first one became full and eventually four trucks filled.
The tractor-trailers will transport the provisions to downstate residents still recovering from Hurricane Sandy.
“The turnout exceeded our expectations,” said Dwight Gram, Rich’s vice president of corporate communications.
Rich’s headquarters at the corner of Niagara and West Ferry streets was the drop-off site, where residents, businesses and Rich employees made their donations.
Donated items included work supplies like shovels, gloves and rakes. People also contributed clothing for youngsters such as jackets and hats, baby supplies and pet supplies.
Even four beds – box springs and mattresses – were donated.
Jesse Ball, a Buffalo resident, stopped by with cleaning supplies.
“I feel like there is so much left to do. It’s going to be a long haul,” she said.
Representatives from the Martha P. Mitchell Community Center and Greater Royal Church drove up with a van full of clothes, coats for children, food, water and paper products.
“People helping people,” said Albert D. Wilson Jr., pastor of Greater Royal.
Aside from the two tractor- trailers that will be hauling the contributions from the public, Rich Products also donated $100,000 worth of food products, including 60,000 servings of breakfast and dessert items for volunteers and victims alike.
A third truck will transport the food to the Hurricane Sandy relief team at Happaugue, Long Island.
Debra A. Norton, an attorney with the law firm Paul William Beltz PC, dropped off some cleaning supplies and clothing, but she felt she and others could do more.
“We could provide temporary housing here. I have two empty bedrooms in my house that single moms with little kids or elderly people could use,” she said. “Then they wouldn’t feel so isolated.”
Rich Products partnered with Empire State Development Corp. and the Edge 103.3 FM for the event.