Rhode Island’s ‘Buy Nothing Day’ stands in contrast to Black Friday

The largest distribution site will be on the Statehouse lawn. –Shutterstock / ARENA Creative

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — While shoppers head to the mall for Black Friday, people in need will pick up winter coats at sites throughout the state for what has become a holiday ritual in Rhode Island: Buy Nothing Day.

The new organizers of the annual coat exchange are adding something special to the racks this year at the largest distribution site, the Statehouse lawn: purses.

Pam Testoni and her daughter, Lauren, took over from longtime organizer Greg Gerritt for the 21st annual event.