|Salvation Army Musicians Vital Part of Christmas Season and Red Kettle Campaign
For the fourth consecutive year, The Salvation Army in Central Virginia utilized musicians throughout the Red Kettle Campaign, supplementing the traditional bell ringer.
Several full time musicians returned from last year, including; Dean Sims, cornet; Jan Sims alto horn; Steve Sutton, cornet; and Melissa Little, alto horn. This campaign also included several new musicians, including; Jim Squirrell, cornet; and John Adams, trombone.
This campaign also, for the first time, included volunteer musicians from the United Kingdom who arrived in Central Virginia to participate in two-week intervals.
These musicians included; Bevan Spencer, euphonium, from Yorkshire, England; Racheal Power, cornet, from Waringstown, Northen Ireland; David Blackmore, cornet, from Oxford, England and Ken Freeman, euphonium, from Llaelly, South Wales.
Each day, these musicians played at a Red Kettle location, performing Christmas carols for upwards of six hours.
The musicians were also involved in special events including an indoor concert at Chesterfield Towne Center, two performances at Short Pump Town Center and participation in the National Capital Band Concert in Richmond.
They also visited several retirement home, including Lakewood Manor, Emeritus at Deep Run and Chesterfield Heights, playing to audiences ranging between 50-80 people.
On Sundays, they attended various Salvation Army churches in throughout Central and Northern Virginia.
"These musicians had a profound impact on people's lives throughout the season, and gave many great blessings," said Matt Sims, The Salvation Army School of Performing Arts Director.
"The ministry provided was immense and many prayers, chats and hugs were given out to people who really needed someone to care for them, even if it was just for a few minutes."
"Once again, it was a Christmas to remember and it is my hope that next year, even more musicians will be part of the experience."