MEDFORD, Ore. — The Salvation Army's local chapter will be kicking off its yearly red kettle bell-ringing campaign with a boost from several businesses on Friday, November 22.
Most people are familiar with the Salvation Army bell ringers and their iconic red kettles outside of major retail stores during the holiday season. However, during this year's kickoff, local businesses will be matching donations up to a total of $1,000 on friday.
"This year our Kettle Kickoff is vital because we need to raise $50,000 to make up for the loss of six days of bell ringing due Thanksgiving being later in the month this year," said Major Jason Koenig, Jackson County Coordinator for the Salvation Army. "We have a goal of $170,000 to raise in Jackson County and the Kettle Kickoff will help us to start the season with a great boost."
The kickoff campaign includes financial support from Bill Whitson with Hunter Communications, Kelly’s Automotive, Oregon Pacific Bank, U.S. Bank, and The Salvation Army Advisory Board.
"The Salvation is known for the saying, 'Need Knows No Season.' Throughout the year, The Salvation Army is providing vital services to help change lives," Koenig said.
Funds raised during the red kettle campaign support multiple Salvation Army programs, including the Hope House transitional housing, Meal Program, Food Distributions, Senior Assistance, and Christmas assistance.
The Kettle Kickoff event will have the support of volunteer bell ringers from Oregon Pacific Bank, Kelly’s Automotive, Medford Digital Radio, The Dove Media, and members of The Salvation Army Advisory Board.
There will also be entertainment scheduled throughout the day at the Medford Center Village Plaza. The event goes from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Friday and includes the following activities:
- 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. - Reading time with Elsa from Frozen & The Little Red Kettle book
- 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. - Preview of the Velveteen Rabbit from the cast of the Collaborative Theatre Project
- 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. - Local Artists: Singer Songwriters Gary Margason and Rob Diaz
- 2:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. - Visit from Santa Claus
- 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. - The Salvation Army Youth Brass Band/ North Medford High School Band Students/The Salvation Army Timbrels
The Salvation Army's bell-ringing season runs between November 22 and December 24. The organization is still looking for volunteer bell ringers to fill 32 locations from Monday through Saturday of each week. Volunteers can sign up by going to www.ringoregon.org or calling The Salvation Army at (541) 773-6965.