The Salvation Army kicks off the red kettle drive with a cattle drive around Ridgmar mall in Fort Worth. (credit: Chuck Schechner/KRLD NewsRadio 1080)

FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM)The Salvation Army kicked off their Tarrant County red kettle drive with a Texas-style cattle drive. Cowboys mounted their horses with their cattle dogs alongside at in Fort Worth.

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“We are kicking off the kettle drive in Fort Worth by having a cattle drive around Ridgmar Mall,” Salvation Army Captain Michele Matthews explained.

Decades old visions of wagons pulled by horses and sounds from the Salvation Army Brass Band were also part of the kickoff. But there was also new high-tech information from the charity. This year nearly 500 of the red kettles across North Texas will have QR codes.

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“More and more people are having smartphones and so we think that this is just a new way, an innovative way in which people an still make a difference,” Matthews said. “Every kettle sign has two QR codes on it and so if you have a smartphone you can scan those codes and make either a $5 or a $10 donation.”

Red kettles have been out at select locations for a few weeks, but things will kick into high gear over the next few days. “On Black Friday we’ll be out in full force, you’ll see the red kettles everywhere.”

Salvation Army officials say the red kettles allow the non-profit to serve millions of Americans in need, and the money raised in Texas stays in Texas. This year’s goal for the metroplex kettle drive is $5,000,000. The money will go to help the more than 70 programs and services that the Salvation Army operates.

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