Salvation Army kicks off kettle drive

November 19, 2005|By MARLO BARNHART

WASHINGTON COUNTY - Recently back after 14 long, hard days in Louisiana, Maj. Butch Mallard of The Salvation Army in Hagerstown said he was tired, but very proud of the $100,000-plus response from area residents for victims of the hurricanes along the Gulf Coast.

As the 2005 kettle drive officially kicked off Friday morning at Valley Mall, Mallard and others said they are confident that Washington County residents will continue to give generously to help the needy here as well.

"We're a little worried, but this community always responds well," said Harry Barger, agency development director.

This year's kettle drive goal is $110,000. Last year, the goal was $80,000, and more than $106,000 was raised.

"If you ask for a little, you get a little," Mallard said of the ambitious goal for this year.

That sum coupled with the direct mail drive - which has a separate goal of $85,000 this year - goes toward supporting clients' Christmas needs and other programs throughout the coming year, Mallard said.


"Lots of people say it isn't Christmas until The Salvation Army rings the bell," said Capt. Roy Williams, division secretary for Maryland and West Virginia. "Do the most good is our mission, and that goal is attainable."

Christian Wright, president of the Kiwanis Club of Hagerstown, got this year's kettle drive off to a good start with a $1,000 check from that organization.

This year, there are 14 kettle sites in operation from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Five kettles are at Valley Mall, while Wal-Mart and Prime Outlets Hagerstown have two kettles each. Other kettles are at Big Lots, Kmart, Michaels, Ollie's Bargain Outlet and Sam's Club.

Last year, 850 families were helped at Christmas and 1,658 children received toys through The Salvation Army's efforts in Washington County, Williams said.

Through a variety of programs, The Salvation Army helps approximately 40,000 people in Washington County, Mallard said.

The Salvation Army serves approximately 100 meals each weekday and maintains 30 beds for people in need of housing, but the beds usually are filled.

Food and toys will be distributed Dec. 20 at 8:45 a.m. at the old Routzahn's building in the Long Meadow Shopping Center, Barger said.

For more information, call 301-733-2440.

Kettle locations

Kettles for The Salvation Army's annual fundraising drive can be found at the following locations in Washington County.

· Valley Mall (5 kettles) - Hecht's, Sears, three floating locations)

· Prime Outlets Hagerstown (2 kettles)

· Wal-Mart at the Centre at Hagerstown (2 kettles)

· Big Lots at 111 Maryland Ave.

· Kmart at Valley Plaza

· Michaels at Crosspoint Shopping Center

· Ollie's Bargain Outlet at Valley Plaza

· Sam's Club at 1700 Wesel Blvd.

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