Newspaper hawkers were on street corners Tuesday in Modesto, raising money in the annual Kids' Day campaign for The Salvation Army.
Dozens of other community volunteers and Bee employees sold copies of the paper for $1. Proceeds go to the Red Shield Center, which administers programs for needy and at-risk children in south Modesto.
This is the 14th year for Kids' Day. Over that time, volunteers have raised nearly $700,000 for Red Shield programs. Tuesday's event generated about $50,000 — roughly $12,000 from street sales and $38,000 via donations from local businesses and residents.
About two dozen volunteers covered the intersection of Briggsmore and McHenry avenues. Ten-time fund-raiser Maria Arellano said her team was "a little bit busier than last year."
She and others used red-light stoppages in traffic to explain what Kids' Day and the Red Shield Center are.
Donning red shirts, the volunteers weaved in and out of traffic to collect money and hand out newspapers.
Newcomer Sandy Sanville said she enjoyed the day and interacting with donors. She organized a group of volunteers from the Visiting Nurse Association of the Central Valley. They staked out the corner of Briggsmore and Coffee Road in front of Memorial Medical Center.
"I had more fun than I expected," said Patricia Simmons, rehabilitation coordinator with the VNA.
Volunteers said a teacher came by and bought 25 papers to take to her students. Another didn't have a whole dollar but donated all her change.
To motivate volunteers, Sanville said she started a friendly wager to see which shift and volunteers could gather the most money.
"I think I'm going to adopt this corner every year," said Sanville, director of patient services at the VNA.
Patty Tharp, a Bee circulation executive, said more volunteers hawked papers this year than last year. "We had more of a presence on the streets, and sales are going well," she said just before noon.