The 36th Annual Celebrity Bell Ringing at Macy's Union Square

Dec 1, 2016 | by Sally Robb Haims

The Salvation Army 36th Annual Celebrity Bell Ringing Day

See some of San Francisco’s finest celebrities, media personalities, costumed characters, Santa, musicians, and more together in one location at Macy’s Union Square to ring bells at the 36th Anniversary Salvation Army Celebrity Bell Ringing Day on Friday, December 9, 2016 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Kick off the season of giving as The Salvation Army spreads holiday cheer while helping families and individuals in need.

The Macy’s Geary Street entrance will provide local musicians opportunities to showcase their talent while giving back to others and encouraging the public to support a good cause. 

Celebrities, musicians, Bay Area media personalities, Santa, costumed characters, San Francisco Giants’ mascot Lou Seal, The Salvation Army Brass Band, and more

Musical performances include: Swoop Unit, Dick Clarke & Noah Griffin, Simmons Family Band, and more

Celebrities Include:

  • San Francisco Giants mascot, Lou Seal
  • Tom Sweeney, legendary doorman of the Sir Frances Drake Hotel
  • Several of the Bay Area's favorite television and radio news anchors
  • And of course... Santa Claus!

Organizations competing in contest to raise the most funds for the needy:

  • First Republic Bank
  • Fitness SF
  • Pamakid Runners Club
  • Rotary Club of San Francisco
  • Wells Fargo

Macy's Union Square (majority of celebs stationed at Geary Street entrance)

Friday, December 9, 10:00am to 2:00pm

To raise awareness and support for The Salvation Army's programs and social services helping San Franciscans in need

In the winter of 1891, Salvation Army Captain Joe McFee put a crab pot on San Francisco docks and asked citizens to "keep the post boiling" by making donations so he could feed needy San Franciscans at Christmastime. These days, we all know this "crab pot" as The Salvation Army Red Kettle seen on city streets around the world during the holiday season. 

In 1980, Chief of Protocol for the city of San Francisco Charlotte Shultz (Then Charlotte Swig), created the event to bring together many of San Francisco's community leaders to ring bells for The Salvation Army. San Francisco Chronicle Columnist Herb Caen wrote about the inaugural event, noting Charlotte's remarkable talent for raising money and awareness for the city's most vulnerable men, women, and children. The Salvation Army recently honored Shultz at the Holiday Luncheon for her energy and enthusiasm as the Army's most dedicated volunteer. 

Photo Ops & Interviews

  • Media Personalities, community leaders ringing bells and performing wacky antics to collect change for The Salvation Army (many often compete to see who can raise the most in an hour)
  • Live musical entertainment at the Macy's Geary Street entrance
  • Interviews with Salvation Army staff including Lt. Cols. Tim & Cindy Foley and select celebrities (as willing)

About The Salvation Army
Since 1883, The Salvation Army has been serving the San Francisco Bay Area, offering practical support, spiritual comfort and a critical safety net to people in need.  The Army has 16 facilities throughout San Francisco providing a myriad of services, including youth programs, meal delivery, drug and alcohol rehabilitation, transitional housing, and nutritional and housing support for seniors.  In addition, the Army also provides disaster relief services. For more information on Salvation Army activities in San Francisco and Central California, visit online at:

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