Vicksburg enthusiasm gets Jacob’s Ladder extra $5,000

Published 11:51 am Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Vicksburg’s Jacob’s Ladder Learning Center, winner of $5,000 last week through the McAlister’s Tea Freaks competition, has been awarded an additional $5,000 for its strong finish.

Ken Alexander, manager of the local McAlister’s, said company CEO Frank Paci was so impressed with community involvement in support of Jacob’s Ladder lifting it into second place nationally, he doubled the award.

The $10,000 will be presented after Aug. 22, Alexander said. That’s the date the first place finisher, McAlister’s in Joplin, Mo., will receive $15,000 to benefit the Joplin Recovery Fund, set up after the town was slammed by tornadoes in May.

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The Tea Freaks contest, which began June 20 and ended July 29, was at McAlister’s Delis nationwide, and each location chose a nonprofit organization to support.

McAlister’s of Vicksburg chose Jacob’s Ladder, and the organizations worked together to drum up local support and votes.

Supporters then logged onto Facebook to vote for their favorite McAlister’s location.

Kathy Conway, president of the Jacob’s Ladder board of directors, said the board was setting priorities for spending the prize.

“It’s a godsend,” said Conway. “Our building is in need of repairs and maintenance, and possibly now we can offer some scholarships, too.”