The Main Stream

Dec 7, 2012 12:30 AM by Sam Salzwedel

Bell ringers collecting less money for Salvation Army

TUCSON - The Salvation Army is making less money from bell ringers with their red kettles this year.

They are $40,000 short compared to last year, which was also a bad season.

"It's been a tough year," Salvation Army Maj. Edward Markham said, "and it looks like it's still going to be a little bit tough for a few more months to come."

Fewer businesses are allowing bell ringers on their property.

"There is a lot of legalities that are involved with letting somebody be in front of your store location," Markham said, "and we sympathize with the store owners."

The remaining kettles are getting less money than usual.

The Salvation Army gets 20% of its funds from the red kettle program.

"That's a good chunk of our revenue," Markham said, "and we need that money to help with the programs that we do right here in Tucson."

Bailey Kinsky dropped some money in the kettle as she went to see a movie at Foothills Mall.

"I feel like it's not Christmas until I hear the bells ringing," she said. "I want to be able to give back because I'm thankful for what I have."

Helen Brewer said she noticed fewer bell ringers than usual. She left some money in the bucket.

"No matter how unfortunate you feel," Brewer said, "I'm finding there's always more unfortunate than you."

There are still 125 places to donate to the kettles in the Tucson area.

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