By Kristen Garrett
Herald Staff Writer
The United Way of Mercer County is trying to attract new donors for this year's campaign and encourage regular donors to increase their contributions by giving away a car and other prizes.
The campaign goal for this year is $1,150,000 -- a $130,000 increase over last year's total pledge amount.
"It's going to be a tough campaign," said James E. Feeney, campaign chairman. He said he hopes the incentives will motivate them to give.
The grand prize is the winner's choice of a Chevrolet S-10 pickup, a Chevrolet Cavalier, a Dodge Neon SXT, a Ford Escort ZX2, a Ford Focus LX, a Honda Civic, a Hyundai Accent, a Mitsubishi Lancer, a Nissan Sentra GXE or a Toyota Echo.
Car dealers involved in the drawing are Ben Bissett Chevrolet Oldsmobile and Bill McCandless Ford Mercury, both Mercer; Dodge City, Hermitage Mitsubishi, Mel Grata Chevrolet-Toyota and Shenango Honda-Nissan, all Hermitage; and Preston Ford and Sharon Chrysler-Plymouth, both Sharon.
The second-place winner will receive two airline tickets to anywhere in the continental United States from Plaza Travel, Hermitage, and Continental Airlines. The third-place winner will receive his and her rocker-recliners from Goldstein Furniture Co., Hermitage.
The goal for this year's campaign is "very optimistic to say the least," Feeney said. He said campaign officials hope to use the incentive program to entice new givers.
As the economy weakens, the community's needs increase, but people don't have as much money to give, Feeney said.
Feeney, who served as a campaign chairman 25 years ago, said United Way was collecting $1 million in pledges then because there were more donors.
Anyone who pledges at least $1 a week more than last year gets two tickets for the drawing. Anyone who pledges at least $2 a week more gets three tickets, and those who pledge $3 a week more than last year get four chances for the drawing.
The prize winners' names will be drawn at noon Dec. 18. To qualify for a chance to win, donors' signed pledge cards must be turned in to the United Way of Mercer County office in Sharon by noon the day before the drawing.
For more information contact the United Way at (724) 981-1884.
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