GRAND FORKS — Red kettles popped up outside businesses in Grand Forks Friday, Nov. 8, as the Salvation Army kicked off its biggest fundraiser of the year.
It’s the 123rd year of bell-ringing Grand Forks, and Salvation Army Lt. Matthew Beatty said this year the charity is trying something a little different.
"As many folks know, we just don't carry cash anymore,” he said. We're becoming a cashless society and so you need to adapt to that."
For that reason, the charity now has smartphone pay options for donations, in addition to the traditional bucket for coins and cash.
People with iPhone 10s can tap the Bump Pay logo on the sign next to the red bucket and it'll bring up a donation page on the phone. Donors with an older iPhone or an Android can snap a quick picture of a QR code.
"It will open up a link. You can touch on the link and you can actually pay through Apple Pay or Google Pay," Beatty said.
Last year, people in Grand Forks gave around $150,000 in donations — about 40% of the Grand Forks Salvation Army’s yearly income, Beatty said. The money went to disaster relief efforts in Grand Forks and services including the Salvation Army’s food pantry.
To donate, go to the Salvation Army's website.