Salvation Army kicks off efforts for the holidays

Published 1:16 pm Saturday, October 31, 2009

November is here and many families may already be planning their Thanksgiving feasts. The Salvation Army is hoping the community will help ensure that every family in the area enjoys the holiday this year.

The organization began taking applications to receive Thanksgiving Baskets — filled with Turkey and all the fixings — last week.

In three days, the organization took in 103 applications. Last year they received about 300 applications in total.

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“We expect need to be way higher this year,” Maj. Marlys Anderson of the Salvation Army said.

“We are seeing an increase in need for just about everything,” she added.

The Salvation Army will hold a Turkey Drive Nov. 23 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., where the public is asked to bring in turkeys or hams to donate.

A greater need for turkeys

Maj. Anderson said they have a greater need for turkeys since Hormel donates plenty of hams.

Any other Thanksgiving foods are also appreciated — like cranberries, frozen pies, rolls and canned vegetables. Recipients of the baskets are able to choose their sides from whatever selection the Salvation Army can offer.

Volunteers are also needed to help distribute the baskets on Nov. 24, and to serve a Thanksgiving meal on Nov. 26. from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The Salvation Army is seeking volunteers for many other upcoming efforts too.

Volunteers are especially needed for The Kettle Bell Ringing effort, which begins Nov. 13 and formally kicks off Nov. 20.

“We are hoping volunteers will help us to meet all of this need this year,” Maj. Anderson said.

Families can apply for Thanksgiving Baskets through Nov. 13 at the Salvation Army office, 409 First Ave. NE. After that, families can apply for Christmas Baskets, which include a holiday meal and gifts.

Volunteer opportunities

Thanksgiving Basket distribution — Nov. 24

Thanksgiving Meal — Nov. 26, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Bell Ringers — Nov. 13 through Dec. 24

Toy Shop organizers— beginning Dec. 1 at Oak Park Mall

Distribution of Toys — Dec. 22

Contact Tami at 437-4566 to volunteer.