Elgin Community College's Project Backpack -- its annual school supply giveaway -- will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at ECC's Spartan Events Center, 1700 Spartan Drive.
Volunteers Thursday and Friday packed about 1,800 backpacks in preparation for the event.
Last year the line for backpacks formed at 3 a.m. When the giveaway started seven hours later, about 4,000 people were in line.
Katie Storey, ECC's student life coordinator, has led the organizing team since Project Backpack started four years ago. Every year they have collected more supplies than ever but there continues to be a greater need than they can fulfill.
Students in Bartlett, Burlington, East Dundee, Elgin, Gilberts, Hampshire, Lily Lake, Pingree Grove, Plato Center, Sleepy Hollow, South Elgin, St. Charles, Streamwood, Wasco, Wayne, West Dundee and parts of Algonquin, Campton Hills, Carpentersville, Hanover Park and Lake in the Hills are all eligible for the free supplies at ECC's event.
Parents must provide proof of residency in ECC's community college district or proof of school enrollment like a registration or report card to take advantage of the service.
All backpacks are first come, first served. Storey said organizers will let people in line know how many backpacks are left as the day progresses.
In addition, representatives from local businesses and nonprofits will be available Saturday to connect families with resources they and their children will need to get the school year off to a good start.
For details, visit project-backpack.org.