FAIRMONT - The bells are ringing and the turkeys on hand as the Salvation Army in Fairmont kicks off its holiday season.
On Thursday, the Salvation Army received its annual donation of a dozen turkeys from the South Central Minnesota chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation. Some of these birds will be cooked, along with all the trimmings, for the Salvation Army's traditional Thanksgiving dinner.
The dinner will be served from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thanksgiving Day at the Salvation Army Center, 114 E. Blue Earth Ave.
BIRDS?— Major JoAnn Hixenbaugh of the Salvation Army in Fairmont accepts a donation of a dozen turkeys from Joe Dubke, chairman of the local chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation.
The meal is open to the public. Reservations are appreciated and can be made by calling the center at (507) 238-9797.
The Salvation Army's familiar red kettles have made their holiday debut at various locations throughout Fairmont.
"This year our goal for fundraising is $80,000," said Major Dale E. Hixenbaugh, local corps officer. This is the same goal as 2012, and it was reached.
Kettles are located at Hy-Vee, Fareway Foods, Walgreens, Walmart, Shopko and Five Lakes Centre.
Monies raised from kettle donations and a mail appeal will be used to provide holiday food baskets and toys for children. Funds also will help support the corps' operation throughout the year.
Individuals, families or organizations interested in volunteering to help with the Thanksgiving dinner or manning the red kettles should call the center.
"The Salvation Army has seen an increase this year in needed assistance," Hixenbaugh said.
Families needing Christmas assistance can sign up from 9:30-11:30 a.m. weekdays from Dec. 2-13 at the Salvation Army Center.
Individuals must bring the following when applying: state photo ID for all adults 18 years of age and older; postmarked mail or current bill received within the last 30 days; Social Security card for all household members; birthdates for all household members; proof of income and expenses for the entire household.