Alaska Salvation Army kicks off holiday season

Mariana Morari, with the Alaska Division’s Community Relations and Development department, carries a kettle to the counting room.

The Salvation Army Alaska Division kicked off its holiday fundraising season Nov. 6, raising $109,659 at its annual Season of Giving Luncheon held at Anchorage’s The Hotel Captain Cook.

The event was the official kickoff for bell-ringing season, which in Alaska begins the Saturday before Thanksgiving this year and runs through Christmas Eve. Season of Giving donations last year helped provide more than 275,000 meals and nearly 30,000 toys and gifts for children, as well as addiction treatment for hundreds of Alaskans.

This year’s program spotlight was McKinnell House, an Anchorage homeless shelter providing temporary transitional emergency shelter and case management services to families with children. The event also included live performances by the University of Alaska Anchorage Glee Club and The Salvation Army Anchorage Area Brass Ensemble—as well as a surprise appearance by guest and supporter Governor Sean Parnell. Maria Downey of KTUU emceed.

Major Jeanne Baker with Jenni Ragland at the Season of Giving Luncheon 2014 (Photo by Bill Chambers)
Major Jeanne Baker with Jenni Ragland at the Season of Giving Luncheon 2014 (Photo by Bill Chambers)

This year’s honorary co-hosts were Bob and Anne Bulmer, of Alaska Executive Search. Bob Bulmer said his respect and support for the Salvation Army goes back 50 years. When the 1964 Good Friday Earthquake devastated the village of Ouzinkie, sweeping away his father’s cannery and leaving residents without food, water, heat or clothing, others wouldn’t help without a hefty cost, he said. But, “with just one phone call from my father, The Salvation Army responded with ‘How may we help?'”

The event’s top four kettles were Udelhoven, which raised $37,705; BP, raising $12,500; General Mechanical with $7,350; and The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary, which raised $6,800.

Top corporate sponsors at the luncheon were Silver corporate sponsors BP and Udelhoven; Bronze corporate sponsors Alaska Executive Search and Anchorage Construction Union; and Copper sponsors Alaska Waste Management, EZ Commercial Real Estate, Avante Medical Center, Megawatt Electric LLC, Neeser Construction and Verna von der Heydt.

More photos may be viewed here.

The following table hosts helped ensure a successful event: Alaska Communications, Alaska Dispatch News, Alaska Executive Search, Alaska Oil & Gas Association, Alaska Tracy, Anchorage Construction Unions, Avante Medical Center, BP, Buzzbizz  Studios, Carolyn Leman, Colony Inn, First National Bank, Fred Meyer Inc., Gail Brazier, General Mechanical, Jenni Ragland, Keller Supply, Klebs Mechanical, McKinnell House, Megawatt Electric LLC, Neeser Construction, Udelhoven, Visit Anchorage, Women’s Auxiliary and Yu Beauty Lounge.


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