The team of Turkey Drive volunteers from 2018 take a break from the action for a photo. Black Press file photo.

The team of Turkey Drive volunteers from 2018 take a break from the action for a photo. Black Press file photo.

Chamber Turkey Drive officially underway

Members of the public can pledge donations on Thursday, Dec. 5 to support Christmas hamper programs

The annual Turkey Drive is now underway and set to culminate on Thursday, Dec. 5.

Organizers have set a goal of raising $50,000 which will be split between the Salvation Army and the Cranbrook Food Bank for their Christmas Hamper initiatives over the holiday season.

Chris Andrews, with Wildstone Golf Course, helped Jason Wheeldon launch the fundraising drive with a $1,000 donation during a Chamber of Commerce event last week.

The Turkey Drive, now in its 10th year, consists of a volunteer team of local celebrities and community leaders who collect pledges for a charitable cause that has raised nearly half a million dollars over the last decade.

Members of the public can phone the Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce office on Dec. 5th and pledge a turkey donation. Each turkey translates into a $20 donation.

“The Salvation Army and the Cranbrook Food bank give assistance year-round to those in our community, and our Turkey Drive allows them to focus on what they do best: helping individuals and families in our community,” said Wheeldon, returning Chief Turkey. “The Turkey Drive funds a large portion of the Christmas Hamper programs for both organizations, and if they hit this year’s target, we will close in on raising close to half a million dollars for these organizations since the inception of the Turkey Drive.”

It all started when a local community agency put out a call for help with their hamper programs in 2009. Within four hours, Chamber staff and members had banded together to fundraise and meet that need.

“The Chamber is more than just an organization that represents the business community; it is an organization that strives for a healthy community and is proud to partner with the Salvation Army , Cranbrook Food Bank and the many dedicated volunteers that dedicate their resources and time to meeting the needs of our community,” said Jason Fast, President of the Chamber. “We are excited, as a Board, to host this year’s Turkey Drive and help two outstanding agencies deliver the services over the holiday season.”

The pledge team of ‘Little Pluckers’ joining Wheeldon this year include some recognizable names and faces, such as:

• Nathan Lieuwen – Cranbrook Bucks

• Brent Jossy – Scotiabank team

• Josh Lowden and Chad Jensen – New Dawn Developments

• Sean Campbell – Community Futures

• John Salomon

• Tom Shypitka – Kootenay East MLA

• Chris Botterilll – Genex Marketing

• John Hudak – City of Cranbrook councillor

• Karin Penner (affectionately known as the Turkey Drive’s ‘Mother Plucker’)

Penner is consistently the top fundraiser and currently holds the coveted Turkey Platter — the award handed out to the celebrity fundraiser that raises the most donations.

“To me, the true meaning of Christmas is to show love and take care of our neighbour, and the Turkey Drive fulfills that need for Cranbrook and overwhelmingly so,” said Karin Penner, who has been involved since the very beginning and has been lovingly dubbed the Mother Plucker.

Community members can phone the Chamber of Commerce at 250-426-5914 on Thursday, Dec. 5th, and make their pledge. Payment options vary, with credit card, invoicing, personal cheques and a new online feature available through the Chamber’s website.



trevor.crawley@cranbrooktownsman.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A man wearing a mask against coronavirus walks past an NHS advertisement about COVID-19 in London, Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2021. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
92 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths: Interior Health

The region is reporting 92 cases after the weekend

Baker Street in downtown Cranbrook. Trevor Crawley photo.
Cranbrook looks to create a master plan for future of downtown core

City staff is eyeing a master plan to help city council and… Continue reading

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: B.C. seniors aged 90+ can start to sign up for vaccination on March 8

Long-term care residents protected by shots already given

Real estate has been moving very briskly in Kimberley since last summer. Bulletin file
Hot Kimberley real estate market leads to tightened inventory

Real estate sales in the entire Kootenay region have been brisk for… Continue reading

This week the Kootenay East Youth Soccer Association’s  Domino’s Pizza Junior Players of the Week were Mia Molnar and Isabella Savage  (pictured above with Coach Rob Niedermayer ),
Keysa Players of the Week and team standings

This week the Kootenay East Youth Soccer Association’s Domino’s Pizza Junior Players… Continue reading

Langley resident Carrie MacKay shared a video showing how stairs are a challenge after spending weeks in hospital battling COVID-19 (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Stairs a challenge for B.C. woman who chronicled COVID-19 battle

‘I can now walk for six (to) 10 minutes a day’

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s coronavirus situation, May 8, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C.’s weekend COVID-19 cases: 532 Saturday, 508 Sunday, 438 Monday

Fraser Health still has most, eight more coronavirus deaths

Vernon’s Noric House long-term care facility’s COVID-10 outbreak has been declared over by Interior Health. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
COVID outbreak at Vernon’s Noric House declared over

10 deaths were linked to the outbreak at long-term care facility

B.C. Attorney General David Eby speaks in the legislature, Dec. 7, 2020. Eby was given responsibility for housing after the October 2020 provincial election. (Hansard TV)
B.C. extends COVID-19 rent freeze again, to the end of 2021

‘Renoviction’ rules tightened, rent capped to inflation in 2022

Face mask hangs from a rear-view mirror. (Black Press image)
B.C. CDC unveils guide on how to carpool during the pandemic

Wearing masks, keeping windows open key to slowing the spread of COVID-19

Churches, including Langley’s Riverside Calvary Church, are challenging the regulations barring them from holding in-person worship services during COVID-19. (Langley Advance Times file)
Gas prices jumped in Golden to 131.9c this week, a trend that's supposed to continue into the summer. (Claire Palmer/Golden Star)
Columbia River-Revelstoke MLA Clovechok concerned as gas prices continue to rise

Fuel prices are supposed to skyrocket this summer as British Columbians await BCUC analysis

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Most Read