Salvation Army Bell Ringers to Attempt World Record with National Bell Ringing Contest
24 Participants Across America Will Seek to Ring For More Than 36 Hours Straight
Contest Celebrates 120th Anniversary of Nation's Longest Running Fundraiser
Alexandria, VA (December 13, 2011) - On Thursday, December 15 at noon (ET), 24 Salvation Army volunteer bell ringers in cities across America will compete against each other in an attempt to set a world record for the longest continuous hand bell ringing by an individual. The contestants will seek to raise awareness for The Salvation Army's 120th Red Kettle Campaign and support the Mission of The Salvation Army in serving people in need. Bell ringers will set an official Salvation Army record for 2011 when they surpass the 36 hour record set in 2010 and many hope to ring for as many as 60 hours.
"The world record attempt is a truly unified effort by The Salvation Army to raise awareness of the Red Kettle Campaign and encourage Americans to ring a bell or give this Christmas to help their neighbor," said Major George Hood, National Community Relations Secretary for The Salvation Army. "For the past several years, we've seen increased demand for assistance due to the recession, and we hope this sacrifice by our volunteers will inspire others to dig deep."
Bell ringers, which include Salvation Army officers, staff and community members, will volunteer their time as they ring a bell for the 120th annual Red Kettle Campaign. The bell ringers participating in the world record contest will be stationed from coast to coast, as well as in Alaska and Hawaii, at a red kettle located at a destination of their choosing. Each participant must follow several rules that could push them mentally and physically during their attempt.
1. Participants must stand the entire time.
2. Participants may not eat.
3. Participants may drink hydration products only such as water, Gatorade or juice.
4. Participants must ring a bell at all times.
5. Participants only may use a bathroom once every 4 hours, during a ten minute break.
A previous benchmark was established in 2010 by a 2011 participant, Salvation Army Captain Kyle Smith in Spokane, WA. Captain Smith stood outside, ringing a bell for 36 hours with no food or sleep. Already this year, Salvation Army bell ringers are shooting to surpass 40 hours of bell ringing and encourage Americans to support the iconic red kettles.
"This is an exciting challenge that not only tests participants, but also challenges the American public to support people in need. Each bell ringer has already become a part of something big, that will have a lasting impact in their local communities," said Major Hood.
Contestants participating in the Bell Ringing World Record Contest include:
• Ryan Althaus; 4th Street Live, 400 S 4th St. Louisville, KY 40204
• Captain Quentin Boyle; Wal-Mart, 5307 State Route 251 Peru, IL 61354
• Lieutenant James Curry; Wal-Mart, 1501 S. Rangeline Road Joplin, MO
• Captain David M. Davis; Wal-Mart, 3715 Ocean Beach Longview, WA 98632
• Ken Fankhauser; Ted Stevens International Airport, 5000 W Intl Airport Rd Anchorage, AK
• Latonya Ford; Wal-Mart, Denver, CO
• Lieutenant Matthew Jensen; Foods Co. 1465 South Broadway, Santa Maria, CA
• Alan Jermyn; Wal-Mart Supercenter, 9350 Highway 49, Gulfport, MS 39503
• Lieutenant Sean Kelsey; Wal-Mart, 34500 Monterey Avenue, Palm Desert, CA 92211
• Matt Linville; Wal-Mart, 2241 Rockford St. Mount Air, NC 27030
• Captain Marcos Marquez; Wal-Mart, 252 Cheney Drive, West Twin Falls, ID 83301
• Sergeant Greg Maxwell; Wal-Mart, 641Gulf Freeway LA Marque, TX 7756
• Leilan McNally; 40 Monument Circle, Suite 700 Indianapolis, IN 46204
• Captain Kenneth Perine; Wal-Mart, 4840 Shawline St. San Diego, CA 92111
• Jason Perkins; Wal-Mart, 2701 North Texas, Fairfield, CA 94533
• Daniel Perry; Wal-Mart, 2710 N Broadway St. Pittsburg, KS (South Door)
• Saundra Shearon; Wal-Mart, 1616 West Henderson Cleburne, TX 76031
• Captain Kyle Smith; Wal-Mart, 9212 North Colton Street, Spokane, WA 99218
• Captain Marcelino Soriano; Macy's, 170 O'Farrell Street San Francisco, CA 94102
• Captain Jerome Spalding; Wal-Mart, 6625 S. Memorial Drive, Tulsa, OK 74133
• Tiga Stevenson; Coborn's Superstore, 900 Cooper Ave. S. St Cloud, MN 56304
• Caleb Stokes; 40 Monument Circle, Suite 700 Indianapolis, IN 46204
• Darrell Tureskis; Schnucks Supermarket, 2801 Chatham Road Springfield, IL 62704
• Dustin Walsh; Safeway, 2449 W. Kettleman Lane, Lodi, CA 95242
See the full list of 2011 Salvation Army World Record Bell Ringers.
The Red Kettle Campaign is the longest running fundraiser of its kind and was started as a fundraiser by Salvation Army Captain Joseph Mcfee in San Francisco in 1891. Since that time, the Red Kettle Campaign has grown into one of the most recognizable and important charitable campaigns in the United States. As part of the campaign, more than 25,000 Salvation Army workers and volunteers spread throughout the country to ring bells daily and solicit spare change donations to the iconic red kettles from holiday shoppers. In 2010, the campaign collected more than $142 million nationwide, a new record supported by the public's nickels, dimes, quarters, dollars, credit cards and helped The Salvation Army serve 30 million people in communities where the money was raised.
For updates on the world record contest as it takes place, please visit www.facebook.com/SalvationArmyUSA or www.blog.salvationarmyusa.org.
More information on the Red Kettle Campaign is available at salvationarmyusa.org.
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for more 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. 82 cents of every dollar The Salvation Army spends is used to support those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org.