The Salvation Army in Michigan City has cashed in on a gold bar found in one of its kettles.
Lt. Bill Brutto, administrator and pastor at the Michigan City Salvation Army, said the gold was discovered Friday night wrapped in a $1 bill in a kettle at the Walgreens at US 421 and US 20.
It appeared when the kettle was emptied to count the money, which included a $50 bill.
''Really exciting. It was the first time I had ever found gold in a kettle,'' said Brutto, who came to Michigan City in July after being with the Salvation Army in Chicago the past 10 years.
The 1-ounce bar, about the length of a needle and thin as a sheet of paper, was sold to a ''private buyer'' for $1,300 or slightly above the market price for gold, which is now selling for just over $1,200 an ounce.
''It was very tiny,'' said Brutto.
Who dropped the gold into the kettle was not known.
In many communities, the Salvation Army is seeing a drop in giving this Christmas, but the branch in Michigan City is doing very well.
Brutto did not want to disclose current totals, but said the $165,000 kettle drive goal this year has been exceeded.
He said the totals will be revealed soon after Christmas.
''A huge blessing. The community has really come out and supported us,'' said Brutto.