MADISON, Wis. -

On Madison's east side, backpacks were given away at a local park Saturday morning.

The group 100 Black Men of Madison" held its annual "Backpack for Success" picnic, where bags filled with school supplies were given away free to Dane County students in need.

"When you look around here, you can see the impact we're having today," said event coordinator Chris Canty. "I hear from friends who are teachers all the time. They say, 'I see kids with your backpacks at our schools.' You don't know how much that means. These kids would not have a backpack if it wasn't for this group."

Event officials handed out around 1,700 bags Saturday.

They said some people drove as far as 45 minutes to get a backpack.

For more information on how to help area teachers get ready for school, head to "Classroom Connection," where you can help send donated supplies to teachers.

The average teacher spends $500 out of their own pockets each year on classroom supplies.