It’s become a sound that’s been associated with Holidays and helping  since 1891 when a tradition was started by  Salvation Army Captain Joseph McFee;  The ringing of a bell, by Salvation Army volunteers, on street corners, next to a kettle. 

In 2011 the local Salvation Army continues that long, long tradition while gathering contributions, donations of food items, and distributing meals to those most deserving. 

I spoke with Kyla Montoya, at the Laramie Salvation Army Service Center recently.  She reported that this year will see the same push for the needy of our community.  The season for bell-ringing will begin Friday, November 25th and run through December 24th.  Volunteers are always needed to cover the kettles.  The kettles this year will be located at K-Mart, Wal-Mart, Safeway and the Post Office.  Monies collected at the kettles will remain here in Laramie to help the less fortunate in our community at Christmas and into the coming year. 

In addition to the kettles, an Angel Tree will also be located at Wal-Mart between November 25th and  December 17th.  Anyone interested in helping is encouraged to choose a tag from the tree at Wal-mart and purchase new gifts for the child in need.  Items are then returned to customer service desk for distribution by The Salvation Army.  Applebees Restaurant will host the “Tree of Hope” with the same purpose.   
If you are interested in contributing Holiday food items (including frozen turkeys) you can also drop them off with the The Salvation Army.  Sponsorships of particular familes can be obtained from the Salvation Army as well.
It’s important to remember that if you or your family might be in need this Holiday season, that you contact the The Salvation Army, 100 S. 2nd Street or call 742-5414 for more information. 
Times are tough across many neighborhoods in Wyoming.  The Salvation Army wants to let you know that they are here to help you bring a little cheer to someone this season.  They send out a sincere invitation to join them in their commitment to those in need.
Again, if anyone needs more information, please feel free to contact Kyla Montoya at The Salvation Army Laramie Service Center at 307-742-5414.  Or 100 South 2nd street.  Oh, and Happy Thanksgiving and a very Merry Christmas.