Since 2015, we have looked forward to our annual Fire & Ice gala each December. This is Greater Mankato Area United Way’s largest fundraising event of the year and makes all the difference in raising the needed funds for our partner agencies serving Blue Earth, Le Sueur, Nicollet and Waseca counties.

We are excited to announce this year’s Fire & Ice, presented by PrimeSource Funding, is going virtual on Saturday, Dec. 5. Tickets are available now, and we invite community members and businesses to participate.

We have all experienced challenges this year, and we have all felt the impact in some way. Needs are escalating, from mental health to domestic abuse to hunger. We knew it was vital that we continued this important event to ensure people in our region are supported.

Sponsors, donors and volunteers from throughout our region have committed their support to ensure a safe, entertaining and meaningful evening. Virtual Fire & Ice will include an amazing online auction, virtual program, unique event packages, the opportunity to give and more. Proceeding with Fire & Ice in a safe and socially distanced way will ensure the well-being of those in our region while allowing us to continue working to improve lives.

As with all of our Greater Mankato Area United Way events, no donor dollars are used for Fire & Ice. We are grateful for the generosity of sponsors, in-kind donors and volunteers whose support means that funds go directly to support people through basic needs, health and education.

There are three different ticket packages available for you to participate in a way that’s comfortable for you and follows recommended CDC guidelines. Enjoy the program from the comfort of your home or with a small group. The week of the event, participants will pick up their event package of printed program, goodies and other items. Visit Bidpal.net/FireIce2020 for complete ticket options.

The online auction will begin November 30 with a variety of packages donated by community and corporate givers. The virtual program begins at 6:30 p.m. the evening of December 5. For continuous updates on this virtual event, follow our Fire & Ice Facebook page.

Fire & Ice is just one example of how you can get involved to make a difference.

As of Nov. 5, our campaign is at 42 percent on our way to the goal of $2.06 million in needed funds for our 56 partner programs. Donate online at MankatoUnitedWay.org/donate or fill out an online pledge form at MankatoUnitedWay.org/pledge.

You can also call our office at 507-345-4551 or send a check to Greater Mankato Area United Way, 127 S. 2nd St. #190, Mankato, MN 56001. We invite your business to hold a workplace rally, whether virtually or in-person, where we can share the impact of United Way’s work. If you are unable to give financially, consider volunteering your time. Contact our office for more details. Thank you to everyone who is lending their support to build a better tomorrow for all.

Barb Kaus is CEO of Greater Mankato Area United Way, which covers Le Sueur, Nicollet, Waseca and Blue Earth counties.

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