Tree of Lights sets goal at $220,000

Because Thanksgiving Day is always on the fourth Thursday of November, it falls on the latest possible date -- Nov. 28 -- this year, which means there's less than four weeks of tradition holiday shopping and festivities between Turkey Day and Christmas.

This means there are fewer days for the traditional season of charitable giving as well. As a result, both retailers and organizations like the Salvation Army are starting their holiday activities well before Thanksgiving.

The Salvation Army had the lighting ceremony for its Tree of Lights last weekend at Westfield Shoppingtown West Park. The goal this year is $220,000. Last year's campaign raised $197,000.

Red kettles used for collecting Tree of Lights donations are all around the area. You can help meet this year's goal by being generous as often as possible.