Remember the Socks

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The following was contributed by Guest Blogger Brooke Newsom, Unit Director of The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club of the Kerrville Kroc Center.

Last week as the kids were loading off the bus to attend The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club, I noticed a kindergartner running down the hall.

“Use your walking feet please.” I said as I glanced down at his shoes. I noticed there were no socks on his feet, so I asked him why he wasn’t wearing any.

He shrugged and said, “I don’t have any socks.” I prodded a little more, “You don’t have ANY socks at all?” He shrugged again, “I only get socks when I stay the night at my grandma’s house.”

In the back of my mind I remembered that we had a few packs of boy’s socks, of all things, that were donated to us during the summer time, just sitting in my office.

I asked him, “Would you like me to give you some socks?”

I did not know that a child could get so excited about something as simple and basic as socks. After helping him put a pair on and re tie his shoes, he looked up hopeful and asked, “Do I get to keep the whole package?”

“Yes.” I replied and sent him back to his classroom, hugging his new socks to his chest.

As an after school program director, it is easy to forget the “big picture” when working with the youth we serve. This child reminded me of the truly important things, such as filling a basic need that a child has. The Salvation Army has been meeting needs for a very long time, and I am grateful we haven’t forgotten the small things. We haven’t forgotten the socks.

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To learn more about the ways that you can donate to The Salvation Army – whether monetarily or through goods such as clothing, furniture and household items – please visit our website at www.donate.salvationarmyusa.org.

In keeping with the mission of The Salvation Army, The Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Centers provide facilities, programs and services that encourage positive life-changing experiences for children and adults, strengthen families, and enrich the lives of seniors. Click here to learn more about The Salvation Army Kroc Centers.

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Now That’s a Dedication!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Kroc Center of Greenville, SC certainly knows how to throw a party! Last weekend, the brand-new Center hosted a three-day extravaganza of events to formally welcome the community and to celebrate the long-awaited opening. But I suppose after seven years of planning, fundraising and waiting – the party was richly deserved!

Appropriately named Kroctoberfest, the weekend offered just about any form of entertainment you could fancy. The opening gala on Thursday night presented live and silent auctions with proceeds benefitting the many programs that will be offered at the Center. Special guests George Hincapie, Tour de France champion, and Jane Robelot, nationally acclaimed television news correspondent, were among the VIPs at the event.

Area kids enjoyed soccer and tennis clinics, arts and crafts, zumba dance parties, and basketball in the gymnasium. Not to be dismayed: the 76,000-square-foot facility also boasts a 25 yard lap pool with a water slide, a boys and girls club, a fitness center, and an impressive theater and worship center – all to be enjoyed at the grand opening October 17.

Along with touring the facilities, guests enjoyed an inspiring concert from the Greenville Symphony Orchestra on Saturday afternoon – the first live performance in the Collins Performing Arts & Worship Center.

The weekend appropriately ended on Sunday with a worship service- the first ever at the Kroc Center. A dedication ceremony followed the service with 150 community members witnessing the ribbon cutting- symbolizing the end of seven years’ hard work.

Did you know that there are several Kroc Center locations? As part of Joan Kroc’s vision, the Kroc Centers are strategically placed in communities that prove the most need and sustainability, capable of organizing, fundraising and establishing community support. Good job, Greenville, for making Joan Kroc’s dream a reality!

Click Here to learn more about membership.

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Thousands Gather for Kroc Center Grand Opening

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The grand opening of The Salvation Army Kroc Community Center of Quincy, IL brought thousands of community members together on Sunday afternoon. Following a ribbon cutting ceremony, guests had an exciting sneak peak at the finished product – one they’ve been waiting to see since the project began seven years ago. Soon-to-be members strolled through the gleaming hallways and admired the grand state-of-the-art amenities which became officially available to the public on Monday.

Grand it is! The beautifully constructed community center boasts an aquatic center, rock wall, worship and performance center, gym and day care center.

Upon her passing, donor Joan Kroc left The Salvation Army $1.5 billion for the development of approximately 30 Kroc Center’s across the country. The centers are intended to create positive effects on the surrounding areas – strengthening the family and community bond, bettering the economy and creating opportunities to grow and learn.

As part of her gift, she asked that the communities wishing to acquire a community center be capable of raising half of the money needed for the project- an effort to ensure sustainability. We admire communities such as Quincy that were able to organize, fundraise and establish the needed community support.

The best part? Memberships are very affordable! These can be purchased on an annual or monthly basis with prices ranging from $336 per year for an individual to $600 per year for a family. Want to know how you can become part of the Kroc Community in Quincy? Contact Angie Duerr at 855-872-5762.

Check out the video above to get a closer look at all of the fun options available to members!

For more information on The Salvation Army Kroc Centers, please visit our website at www.SalvationArmyUSA.org.

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You’re Invited: Kroc Center Grand Opening in Biloxi, MS!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Salvation Army Kroc Center of Biloxi, MS would like to invite YOU to their official grand opening this coming Saturday, September 17! After nine years, the $22 million structure is sparkling and ready for public enjoyment. The community center offers a variety of programs to people of all ages including athletic, art and music programs.
The fitness center offers classes for members of all abilities! A professional and trained staff is on site to show members how to properly use the equipment. Group classes like Zumba and Yoga offer a fun alternative to regular exercise. For a list of classes and programs offered through the athletic department, Click Here.
Unique to the Gulf Coast is an aquatics center complete with a recreation pool, lazy river, slide, hydrotherapy bench and two lane lap pool! The center enables members to learn new skills, make friends and improve fitness. A number of activities will be offered, namely water aerobics which provides joint-friendly exercise options. To learn more about the scheduled classes and programs, Click Here. The Kroc Center of Biloxi was founded as a way to give new life to an area that was devastated by Hurricane Katrina. Founder Joan Kroc, sympathetic to American cities in need, had a strong desire to build a community center in Biloxi as a way to help residents realize their full potential. The Center aims to encourage a spiritual mindset and healthy body. We hope you can get on board! Click Here to learn more about The Salvation Army Kroc Centers.

Come join the fun this Saturday!

The Kroc Center of Biloxi is located at:

575 Division Street

Biloxi, MS 39530

For more information on the Kroc Center of Biloxi, please call 228-207-1218. You can also visit them on Facebook or Twitter.

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Kroc Center Opens in Greenbay, Wisconsin

Friday, September 2, 2011

The Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center of Greenbay, Wisconsin warmly welcomed the community at the grand opening on Saturday, August 20 after seven years in development.

Area children and families are excited as the impressive 95,000-square-foot Center will provide a great source of entertainment and learning opportunities throughout the year. The Center includes a fitness center, performing arts auditorium, swimming pool, library, computer laboratory, dental clinic, dance studio, gymnasium and more!

The official dedication and ribbon-cutting of the $24 million facility took place on August 27. Following the dedication, the Center hosted the “Kroc and Roll Ball”, a 1950’s-themed opening gala honoring founders Ray and Joan Kroc. The theme recalled the decade that Ray Kroc founded McDonald’s.

Gala guests enjoyed dinner and music provided by an appropriately themed barbershop quartet.

“The impact of this facility will go far beyond a building,” Captain Ken Shiels, Brown County coordinator, stated. “It will be a place for kids, families and individuals to develop new interests and life-changing and life-affirming skills. The Kroc Center is an extension of our mission to serve people as our resources allow, raising people up and strengthening, encouraging and enriching their lives.”

The Salvation Army Ray & Joan Kroc Corps Community Centers are being constructed in various cities across the country in an effort to provide opportunities that facilitate positive, life-changing experiences through art, athletics, personal development, spiritual discovery and community service.

There are currently 13 Centers across the country, with ten in the works. Each center is open to people of all ages and income levels.

You can learn more about the Greenbay Kroc Center by visiting their Facebook page or Website.

For more information on The Salvation Army Kroc Centers, please Click Here.

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San Diego Charger Marcus McNeill Visits Kroc Center

Monday, August 22, 2011

The Kroc Center of San Diego received a special visit from San Diego Chargers’ Marcus McNeill! The acclaimed Offensive Tackle stopped by the Kroc Center Day Camp to encourage “getting fit and having fun” as part of his mission to end childhood obesity.

Whether its food banks, blood drives, or scholarships, the San Diego Chargers football team has a long-standing reputation for helping the San Diego community.

Marcus was greeting by Majors Lee and Michele Lescano. Along with discussing the importance of exercise and nutrition, Marcus also guided the kids (300 of them!) through various physical challenges. You’ll get to see just how much fun the Kroc Center Day Camp really is by watching the video below!The Kroc Center Day Camp program provides children the opportunity to play and grow in a positive and safe environment. We strive to develop the whole child- mentally, physically, and emotionally through structured group activities that aid in socialization and self-confidence,

For more information on The Salvation Army Kroc Centers, please visit our website by clicking here.

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Kroc Center Grand Opening Draws Crowd of 9,000

Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center of Augusta, GA swung open the doors on August 6 and embraced the public after seven years of planning and developing the 100,000-square-foot center.
Over 9,000 guests visited throughout the day and night, munching on hotdogs and celebrating the Center’s opening. First-arrivers were entertained with a performance by the Salvation Army Band in the impressive Franklynn Hall Arts and Worship Center. Augusta Green Jackets team members signed autographs for a long line of eagerly awaiting fans. Guests were even offered free massages!
The day ended with a rockin’ performance by local band Cowboy Mouth and an impressive fireworks show timed to traditional Salvation Army Brass Band music. By the first full day of operation, 1,004 memberships were sold representing 2,374 members!
“Our Grand Opening far exceeded my expectations. After planning for so long and after our team had put so much work and heart into this project since its beginning, it was an amazing feeling and a beautiful sight to behold. It was fun, it was filled with laughter, learning and depth and with over 9,000 guests coming onto the campus that day, my heart was blessed. I was reminded over and over again of this wonderful gift from Joan Kroc and the blessing the Lord has bestowed upon the Greater Augusta Area because of that gift”, said Captain Todd Mason, Kroc Center and Area Administrator.
The massive structure which sits on 17 acres in historic Harrisburg boasts a spectacular pool and waterslide, gymnasiums and fitness centers, recreational rooms for kids and adults, an amphitheater, and a banquet hall.
In keeping with the mission of The Salvation Army, The Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center provides facilities, programs and services that encourage positive life-changing experiences for children and adults, strengthen families, and enrich the lives of seniors.

Click here to learn more about the Salvation Army Kroc Centers nationwide.

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Country Crooner Josh Kelley Supports a Hunger-Free Summer with a Musical Boost

Friday, August 5, 2011

While on tour for his newly released album, Georgia Clay, country artist Josh Kelley visited the Salvation Army Kroc Center in Omaha, NE on Monday. Following a special musical performance, the children enjoyed a morning full of sports, crafts, and lunch with the acclaimed musician.

His stop at the Kroc Center is one of several visits to food banks and summer food program sites across the country- a joint effort with the ConAgra Foods Foundation and Feeding America. The partnership is an effort to raise awareness about the issue of child hunger in the United States.

When school lets out for the summer and free and reduced-price school lunch programs become unavailable, millions of children in the United States are without food. The Hunger-Free Summer Program was started to ensure children have enough to eat during the summer by expanding summer meal programs to more children in more places. Their goal this summer is to serve an additional one million meals and feed 10,000 more children through unique and innovative community-based programs.

Visit www.HungerFreeSummerTour.org to learn more about the program and the 23 food banks that received Hunger-Free Summer grants.
For more information on the Salvation Army Kroc Centers please visit www.salvationarmyusa.org.

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First Patrons Visit New Salvation Army Kroc Center in Augusta

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Some couldn’t wait to get on the water slide. Others couldn’t wait to hit the basketball court. Others headed towards classes in weight lifting, step, cardio-combat, spinning, yoga, tai chi,…

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Get Your Golden Ticket

Friday, July 1, 2011

Who hasn’t wished for Charlie’s infectious excitement when he finds a coveted golden ticket in the film favorite “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory”?
Starting this July 2 weekend, 5 lucky people will get to live the dream as The Salvation Army of Augusta Kroc Center is distributing five “Golden Tickets” of their own.nThe prize may not be a chocolate factory tour with singing oompa-loompas, BUT winners will get a behind the scenes tour of the Kroc Center, plus a three month membership!
If you live in the Augusta, Georgia area, look in your July Supersaver coupon package that comes in the mail to see if you’ve won a Golden Ticket. Lucky recipients should call the Augusta Kroc Center at (706) 922-0170 to claim your membership and schedule a tour.
Good luck!

PS: The Augusta Kroc Center is holding their Grand Opening weekend August 6. Get more info about all the opportunities this Center will offer at www.krocaugusta.org, or find them on Facebook (@Kroc Center of Augusta) and Twitter (@RJKroc).

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