Juneau's Salvation Army Celebrated Their 100th Anniversary

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - The Salvation Army held a celebration of festivities at Savviko Park from 1 pm to 4 pm on Saturday, May 14th in honor of their anniversary.

    The celebration featured festivities commencing at Douglas Island Pioneer Pavilion in Savikko Park.

    The event was free and family-friendly.

    Some of the festivities included a bouncy house, face painting, free food, and music.

    Among the musical performances were the Ati-Atihan, the Salvation Army brass band, Alaska Choir, Juneau String Ensemble, and Spirit Lodge Drummers.

    It started off with an opening session from Mayor Beth Weldon.

    Juneau Corps Officers, Majors Shane and Gina Halverson hosted the weekend’s programs, with Juneau Mayor Beth Weldon and Representative Sara Hannan in attendance.

    Gina Halverson helps run the Salvation army.

    She expressed excitement that for 100 years they have been helping the community.

    Halverson grew up in Hoonah and says many generations of her family were involved in the Salvation Army.

    "The Salvation Army's mission is to meet human needs in His name without discrimination, so we're here to just help as many people as we can and let people know that we are a church as well," Halverson said. "It's really exciting because we have so much going on and we're bringing the community together. The Salvation Army is grateful to be a part of it. We do food, vouchers, medical, and rent; we try to help in any way we can. We run a church program with youth activities, different women and men ministries."

    Halverson also had this news to say.

    "The Salvation Army is also going to be recognized by Sara Hannan. She is going to be handing out a citation for all the work we've done here," said Halverson.

    The Salvation Army 100th anniversary also welcomed the national program secretary, one of the national leaders' Commissioners, Jolene Hotter to Juneau from Virginia.

    Hotter has roots in Juneau; her parents were officers in the capital city 60 years ago.

    Hotter gave a heartwarming speech about unity in the community and how when we come together we are strong.

    She believes this is how Salvation Army has come successfully to 100 years in Juneau.

    "I just wanted to also mention that we have a really unique history here in Juneau, the daughter of the international leaders of the Salvation Army Evangeline. Booth was in Skagway over 100 years ago and she came to Juneau and started the mission here in Juneau. So we have a direct tie to the original leaders of the Salvation Army. The organization started in the mid-1800s in London and has grown internationally since that time," Kathy Muñoz, a chair member of the Salvation Army advisory board explained during the event.

    The Salvation Army can always use more volunteers for social services and programs at the church.

    Volunteer work includes going into jails to set up a mini-store at Christmas time, allowing inmates to choose gifts for their children.

    They also set up Christmas trees around town to give anonymous children gifts that are in foster care.

    480 children were delivered toys last year.

    Volunteers also deliver food to people's doorsteps.

    Over 500 Thanksgiving meals were delivered last year, as well as over 310 groceries.

    The Salvation Army also accepts donations through a phone call or online at juneau.salvationarmy.org.

    Go to juneau.salvationarmy.org to sign up for meal deliveries.

    "You do not need to be a part of the church," Mayor Beth Weldon said regarding the help Salvation Army offers. "You just have to have a name."

    Above: The Salvation Army is recognized by Sara Hannan from the House of Representatives with a citation. Below: Spirit Lodge Drummers during their performance.

    Below: The opening performance by Ati-Atihan.

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