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Ready to give?

A crowd fills the YMCA at the Red Wing Gives event last year. (Republican Eagle file photos)1 / 3
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Last year’s Girls on the Run station included hair styling. Nonprofits set up booths with information and sometimes activities at the Red Wing Gives event.3 / 3

Local nonprofits will once again gather to raise awareness about their work, fundraise and network at Red Wing Gives on Thursday.

Nov. 14 is the Give to the Max Day statewide, a fundraising effort for nonprofits throughout Minnesota. Locally, it’s also the day of the third Red Wing Gives event at the YMCA.

The event focuses on local nonprofits, encouraging the public to donate and featuring entertainment, activities and opportunities to learn more about the organizations.

As of Tuesday, 33 nonprofits were signed up to participate in the event this year, said Elaine O’Keefe, social responsibility director at the YMCA.

St. Joseph’s church will hold its events at its building rather than the YMCA.

The day will include activities such as hula-hooping with the Red Wing Area Seniors, a performance from SoundStrings, a proclamation from Mayor Dan Bender and a demonstration from the Red Wing High School’s robotics team, all in Gyms A and B at the YMCA from 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

“Our stage presentations have kind of amped up the interest factor,” O’Keefe said.

New this year is the creation of a community mosaic. Donors will be able to come to the YMCA and add a tile to the large work of art throughout the day.

“It’s just kind of a representation of how we can all come together and make something really beautiful,” O’Keefe said.

The mosaic will be displayed at the YMCA and potentially in other public spaces after the event, she said.

The goal is to draw at least 2,000 donors to add tiles to the piece.

The Red Wing Gives event, now in its third year, has proven successful for nonprofits who want to raise more funds while also increasing awareness and working with each other, O’Keefe said.

“It’s a really kind of grassroots feel to it,” she said.

Those who want to donate to the participating nonprofits can do so in person at the Red Wing event, where computers will be set up. If people cannot make the trip to the YMCA on Thursday, they can donate at

Last year, more than 53,000 donors statewide gave $16.3 million to nonprofits as part of Give to the Max.

There is prize money for statewide donation leaders, and this year a greater Minnesota leader board was added.

There are also “power hours” scheduled throughout the day that will add $1,000 to organizations that receive the most donations.

Locally, drawings sponsored by First Farmers and Merchants Bank and Red Wing Shoe Co. could also mean extra funds for nonprofits.

GiveMN is also set up to take donations via smart phone and tablets.

For more information on Give to the Max or to donate, visit

Bowl to the Max Another local Give to the Max event will include possibly setting a world record.

Bowl to the Max will raise awareness for nonprofit Spare Key while aiming to set a world record for the most bowling pins knocked down in a 24-hour period.

Spare Key is a Minnesota-based nonprofit that provides rental and mortgage payments to families with seriously ill or critically injured children in the hospitals in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin.

Free bowling will be available at Treasure Island’s Xtreme Bowling Center from 7 a.m. Nov. 14 to 7 a.m. Nov. 15 for the event. There will be prizes along with food and refreshments.

For details and to sign up to bowl, visit

Danielle Killey

Danielle Killey covers local government for the South Washington County Bulletin. She has worked as a reporter for other Forum Communications newspapers since 2011. She graduated from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities with a journalism degree.

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