United Way inches closer to 1999 goal

Published 12:00 am Monday, November 22, 1999

The United Way of Mower County, Inc.

Monday, November 22, 1999

The United Way of Mower County, Inc. moved closer to its goal of $600,000 last week.

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On Tuesday, Quality Pork Processors, Inc. representatives presented United Way with a check for $64,577 after an amazing 76 percent of the hourly and salaried work force contributed to the fund drive.

That put the current campaign at the $556,847 mark or 93 percent of the goal.

Only some $43,000 was needed to reach the goal.

Seventy-two hours later, Amy J. Baskin, executive director of the United Way, collected two checks which moved the campaign even closer to a record-extending 20th consecutive year.

On Friday, Target of Austin presented Baskin with a check of $6,826 after a successful debut campaign at the business.

Weyerhaueser Paper Company presented Baskin with a check for $11,600.

With Austin Packaging Company, Inc. employees expected to also make sizable contributions, as well as Holiday Inn of Austin and Norwest Bank Austin workers, and other smaller pledges to be tallied, reaching or surpassing this year’s $600,000 goal can be called a "sure thing."

At both Target and Weyerhaueser, incentives were used to spur employees to participate in the business’ United Way campaigns.

Justin Metz, Target’s executive team leader for soft-lines, said incentives and "having fun" were keys to the store’s successful fund drive.

Beginning Sept. 3, an in-store carnival raised $133 and a week later a bake and craft sale raised $60. Then came a car wash that raised $80, a potluck that raised $60, a dunk tank that raised $270, plus an NFL Day and Blue jeans Day employee incentives which added to the store’s contribution.

In all, the United Way events raised $653, deductions from workers and managers raised $5,096 and one-time contributions totaled $77.

Another $1,000 came from the Target store’s parent company.

"For the first year of a United Way campaign, we were very pleased," said Metz. "Our goal was to raise $5,000 and we passed that amount and raised 116.5 percent of the goal."

Also Friday, Baskin picked up money and pledges from Weyerhaueser Paper Company’s Austin plant.

Robbin Knudtson, human resource manager, also credited incentives with helping Weyerhaueser’s campaign to succeed.

"Both Local 9 and the Weyerhaueser company believe in the United Way," Knudtson said. "We have a great group of people here who believe in the community and want to support the community through the United Way."

United Way campaign prize drawings say Denny Bray and Ron Wise win color televisions, the top prizes, and Derek Poshusta, $50; Ed Elleby, Jeff Johnson, Sterling Brody, Lon Prizler, $20 each; Michelle Kreimeyer, Tim White, $10 each; and Bob Doe, two Minnesota Timberwolves game tickets, and Dan Lee, two Minnesota Vikings game tickets. Mark Holgate won an autographed Vikings book and a Vikings ball cap and Ryan Flanagan won a Vikings T-shirt.

With 150 employees, the Weyerhaueser contribution of $11,600 becomes one of the highest per-capita pledges to the United Way campaign.

This year’s campaign was also bolstered by Hormel Foods Corporation. Corporate pledges/contributions totaled $93,000 and Austin plant contributions totaled $47,000.

"We’re about half-way to the finish line after Tuesday’s report and our goal should be reached," Baskin said Friday. "We really appreciate everyone’s contributions and pledges."