Jan 22, 2024


The 2023 Red Kettle Campaign was the most challenging it has been within the last 5 years due to inflation and a shortage of ringers staffing Red Kettle locations. Thankfully, because of many compassionate supporters including one very generous individual who made up the difference at the end of the campaign period, The Salvation Army of Petoskey reached it’s 2023 Red Kettle Campaign goal of $145,000.

Demand for services rose slightly in 2023 due to inflation but are leveling out to a new “post-pandemic norm” which is more than double the amount of assistance that was needed pre-pandemic. Last fiscal year, The Salvation Army of Petoskey disbursed $751,498 in emergency financial assistance and provided an additional $96,667 in leveraged utility assistance via case management resulting in a total of $848,165 of assistance provided to struggling residents of Emmet, Charlevoix and Antrim counties.

“I would like to sincerely thank the organizations, service clubs and many other volunteers and supporters that made this campaign a success. We could never hope to fill so many hours or raise the amount of money needed to help our struggling neighbors without your support” says Envoy Roman Hank.

Many local businesses and service clubs showed their support. The Northern Knights Motorcycle Club brought Christmas joy to many local children by raising $17,026 for the Petoskey and Cheboygan Salvation Army locations to split. David Meyer kindly agreed to be the Red Kettle Campaign Chairman once again for 2023 and continued being an inspiration to others to raise money for those in need. Meyer Ace graciously agreed once again to collect donations in both of their Petoskey locations raising $2,000 during the final week before Christmas. On Giving Tuesday, David Kring Chevrolet matched $2,500 while staff rang the bell at Oleson’s Food Store creating a $5,000 kettle and Fletch’s GMC-Buick-Audi matched $500 which brought in over $1,000 at Walmart.

Although it was challenging finding volunteers, many organizations, churches and service clubs joyfully carried on the tradition of ringing in Emmet County including Rotary, Lions and Kiwanis Clubs. In Charlevoix County, Boyne City Rotary and Charlevoix Lions Clubs rang for the first time in more than a decade. Hopefully the tradition will continue in years to come since the Boyne Valley Lions Club and East Jordan Community Church were the only other organizations ringing annually in Charlevoix County. In Antrim County the Central Lake Lions solely manned Merrie’s Market, Elk Rapids Rotary rang most of the season at the Village Market and the Bellaire Fire Department continued their annual night of ringing at Family Fare. Hopefully more organizations will volunteer in 2024 as need continues to rise.

The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the Universal Christian Church. Its message is based on the Bible. Its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination. If you would like to donate or if you would like to learn more about The Salvation Army of Petoskey’s programs and services, please visit or call (231) 347-3531.

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