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Salvation Army Pasadena Looking To Raise $100,00 With Their Red Kettle Campaign This Christmas Season

Published on Tuesday, November 15, 2022 | 6:25 am

After going online and hybrid in the last couple of years, the Salvation Army Pasadena’s Red Kettle Kick-Off Breakfast will be a traditional in-person breakfast on Friday, Nov. 18, at the Salvation Army’s facility on 936 Walnut Road in Pasadena.

The Red Kettle campaign aims to increase public awareness of the Salvation Army’s year-round services, expanding the image of the red kettle and Christmas toys to an everyday Army that serves as the one of the nation’s top providers of social services, not only during the holidays but throughout the year.

Major Roy Wild, leader of the Pasadena Salvation Army Tabernacle Corps, said they’re looking to raise about $100,000 this holiday season, starting with Friday’s Red Kettle Kick-Off.

Attendees can also expect to learn about what the Salvation Army has been doing serving individuals and families in need, in partnership with the City of Pasadena and other organizations.

“They’ll be able to find out about our plans for the future,” Major Wild said. 

“We are going to be talking about our Hope Center that’s going to be opening in May of 2023, which is our permanent supportive housing; it will be 65 units of city apartments for homeless individuals, and 15 of those will be for vets.”

The Salvation Army will also provide an overview of all of the programs they do throughout the year, including Christmas when they’re out in front of the public to raise funds to provide services for those in need.

This year’s keynote speaker for the Red Kettle Breakfast will be interior designer and lifestyle network HGTV host Carmine Sabatella, whose show “Inside Out” features how he and partner Mike Pyle transform homes into stunning masterpieces. The program will be emceed by veteran NBC weathercaster Fritz Coleman, who currently hosts the Media Path podcast.

The Salvation Army has been serving in the Pasadena area for over 130 years, covering Pasadena, Altadena, South Pasadena, Sierra Madre and San Marino.

During the holiday season, the organization actively solicits support for its programs that benefit children and families in need, homeless individuals and senior citizens at a time when most people are reflecting on the many blessings and the joy that the holiday season brings.

Our ability to serve individuals in need really comes from the residents of Pasadena who have been very generous over all those years and continue to do so,” Wild said. “And we really couldn’t serve the people in need here in Pasadena without the support of the residents of Pasadena who are always very generous to support the mission and the ministry of the Salvation Army.”

To support the Red Kettle Campaign, you can register to join the event as an individual or join a team, and you can donate online as well.

For more information, call (626) 773-4400, email Major Roy Wild at, or visit

The tradition on the “kettle” started in 1891 in San Francisco, when Salvation Army Captain Joseph McFee, resolving to provide a free Christmas dinner to the poor, remembered a sight he saw in Liverpool, England during his sailor days: a large pot displayed on the Stage Landing, called “Simpson’s Pot.” The pot took in donations put in by passersby.

Taking this idea, McFee asked for permission from San Francisco city authorities to place a crab pot and tripod at the Oakland ferry landing. The kettle – and McFee’s call of “Keep the Pot Boiling!” – drew in passengers and donations.

In 1900, Salvation Army Officer Cadet Amelia Kunkle started the bell ringing tradition when she stood for her kettle duty in New York City and waited patiently for donations from passersby. She found a small bell with a short wooden handle in a nearby Woolworth’s supermarket, paid 10 cents for it, and used it to draw attention to the collection pot.

In modern times, innovations from the crab pot now include self-ringing kettles, booths that play Christmas music, and credit card capabilities.

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