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Carrie Underwood to Kick Off The Salvation Army's Red Kettle Campaign During Dallas Cowboys Thanksgiving Day Halftime Show

Live, Nationally Televised Performance Celebrates 115th Anniversary of Christmas Fundraising Campaign

 

Contact: Matt Meenan, The Salvation Army, 202-289-4001; Emily Robbins, Dallas Cowboys, 972-556-9359

 

DALLAS, Nov. 22 /Christian Newswire/ -- Tomorrow, country music superstar Carrie Underwood will be the featured performer for the tenth anniversary of the live, nationally televised Dallas Cowboys Thanksgiving Day halftime show to officially kick off the annual Salvation Army 2006 Red Kettle Christmas fundraising campaign.

 

Photo: Carrie Underwood

 

Underwood, the American Idol winner, who was recently named Female Vocalist of the Year at the 2006 Country Music Association (CMA) Awards, will perform songs from her quadruple-platinum selling debut album, Some Hearts, which contains three #1 country singles. Since Carrie Underwood was named the 2005 American Idol winner, she has collected numerous awards including two wins at the CMA Awards and nominations at the upcoming American Music Awards and People's Choice Awards. For the tenth consecutive year, the Red Kettle campaign will be launched as part of a special live concert at Texas Stadium during the Cowboys' traditional holiday game. This year, the Cowboys play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the game will be televised nationally on the Fox Network beginning at 3:15 CST, Thursday, November 23.

 

"I am so glad to have the opportunity to spend Thanksgiving in Dallas this year," said Ms. Underwood. "My family and I have been spectators several times in the past, and now I am thrilled to be performing at halftime this year! I look forward to teaming up with The Salvation Army and the Dallas Cowboys for a great day. See you on the 23rd."

 

"Our halftime celebration at Texas Stadium has become a very unique and visible part of the family holiday tradition that is Thanksgiving in America," said Jones, the Cowboys' owner and general manager. "There's not a better way to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the Red Kettle Kickoff than having all of us who support the special work of The Salvation Army know that our collective efforts during the past decade will result in the one billionth dollar dropped in a kettle some place in America this Christmas season."

 

Since 1997, the nationally televised Cowboys Thanksgiving Day game halftime show has officially launched the Red Kettle Christmas Campaign at the national level. During this time period, the campaign has raised nearly $900 million to help an average of 37 million people in communities nationwide. Previous halftime performers have included: Sheryl Crow, Destiny's Child, Toby Keith, LeAnn Rimes, Creed, Jessica Simpson, Billy Gillman, Clint Black, Randy Travis and Reba McEntire.

 

As part of the celebration, Ms. Underwood and Mr. Jones will be among the first to make donations to the Red Kettles, which help to raise money for holiday toys, coats, rental and utility assistance, and many other Salvation Army social services provided throughout the year.

 

"We continually see increased demand for our services and the annual Red Kettle Campaign is a major reason why we are able to provide assistance to those in need in over 5,000 communities nationwide," said Commissioner Israel L. Gaither, National Commander of The Salvation Army. "We have been privileged over the years to have The Dallas Cowboys allow us this tremendous national forum, and we are pleased that Carrie Underwood has agreed to help us kick off the 2006 campaign."

 

From its humble beginnings as a fundraiser started by a Salvation Army captain in San Francisco in 1891, 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 volunteers fan out across the country to ring bells and solicit spare change donations to the iconic red kettles from holiday shoppers. In 2005, the campaign raised a record $111 million nationwide, with nickels, dimes, quarters and dollars (and the occasional diamond ring or gold tooth) all being returned to help those in the communities where they were raised. Last year, the funds helped The Salvation Army to provide assistance to more than 31 million Americans in need.

 

The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination since 1865. Over 31 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. About 83 cents of every dollar raised is used to support those services in more than 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org.