Some business owners say they were duped into giving to Juneau Fest


Several businesses in Juneau say they were duped into a giving to a charitable event without realizing the event was intended to be a revival.

“They flat out lied,” said one local business owner, who refused to be named because he said he didn’t want to alienate his customer base. “At the very least they were very deceptive.”

Another local business, whose owner also declined to be named for the same reason, complained it was false advertising, saying no religious affiliation was disclosed in the event’s advertisements.

“It definitely wasn’t made clear initially that it was a religious organization or that it was a religious event,” he said.

Businesses in Juneau have donated more than $25,000 in retail value to Juneau Fest, which is being sponsored locally by Sam Dalin, a volunteer chaplain for the police and fire departments and the pastor and co-founder of his church, River of Glory Church.

The free electronics, sporting goods, toys and household items were to be given out as free gifts and prizes for members of the community attending the event, the business owners were told by a couple tasked with soliciting the donations.

But what the owners did not know until later is that the event was supposed to be a revival.

Fliers had been passed out around town advertising the event as “The Great Awakening” as part of the Great Awakening Tour by the founder of the River at Tampa Bay Church, Rodney Howard-Browne, who is a longtime friend of Dalin’s.

That led many to believe the group was attempting to lure people to the event under the guise of free Xboxes and iPads, including the local church coalition, which chastised the group for being deceptive.

“We disagree with what feels like deceptive, manipulative techniques to bring people into a relationship with Jesus,” Rev. Tari Stage-Harvey, the coordinator of the Cooperative Church Council, said in a phone interview Friday. “That is kind of the bottom line.”

Stage-Harvey added, “There’s nothing wrong with a revival, and go for it, but there’s a lot wrong with tricking people into it.”

By the time business owners were being solicited for donations, the “Great Awakening” fliers had disappeared. The businesses were only shown a new flier that made promises of free giveaways and two nights of honoring the police and fire departments. There was no mention of any religious affiliation.

Written By: Emily Russo Miller
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  1. “We disagree with what feels like deceptive, manipulative techniques to bring people into a relationship with Jesus,”
    Such as for instance telling people they will be rewarded with admission to Heaven in the afterlife?

    Out of the mouths of morons …

  2. I don’t know.. shooting little girls in the head for asking education still leads by 12 points. 

    Back to topic. I assume the store owners will be taking legal action to revindicate their property? It was obviously gained under false pretences  The  excuses from Jody and Regis Andrews and pastor Dalin sound incredibly weak.

  3. You didn’t adjust your score to reflect the Average Standard of Brainwashing Index or ASBI.

  4. Volunteer chaplain Dalin: “There’s some things that just baffle me”.

    Believing in a god should be one of them.

  5. Although Dalin denied the accusations, he admitted in the same interview that he didn’t think anyone would come to a revival, which gave rise to the free giveaway idea.

    Caught red-handed with this comment. They knew the “event” would fail unless they used deceptive tactics. Allegedly this group targeted children/teenagers by giving them fliers at school bus stops. This is sad, if true, because I thought school zones were supposed to be drug-free.

    The use of Police and Firefighters in the advertising is also slimy when both agencies had to deny they were involved in any way. Arajag is right: lying for Jesus.

    Attached is a picture of the early poster they used to get the donations. Not a word of religion on it. 


    EDIT: I emailed the reporter because there is an underlying story here that wasn’t touched on. A business owner in the article states he was “flat out lied” to but didn’t want to give his name for fear of alienating customers. Just think about that. The story that needs to be fleshed out is the underlying menace of blackmail that Big Faith wields in society. This person was lied to and is afraid of telling the truth ostensibly because of a fear of offending potential religious patrons. Talk about Orwellian! Truth is bad, lying is expected. And now I must stop because my blood is boiling.

  6. Peering closely at the flyer I see this:

    Remington Rifle Giveaway for Honoring Firefighters.
    Glock Handgun Giveaway for Honoring Law Enforcement.

    Wow.  Makes sense I suppose, if it’s harder to get close up to the firefighters.  

    Odd use of the word “honor”.  Is it like in Honor Killings?

    So easy to shrug and say “Crazy Americans”

  7. Rev. Tari Stage-Harvey added, “There’s nothing wrong with a revival, and go for it, but there’s a lot wrong with tricking people into it.”

    How else would you get people to believe your fairy-tales, eh Rev?

  8. And?  There are plenty of instances of groups who claim to be religiously associated, which are not affiliated with any religiousness at all (might even be atheists!), but manage to dupe businesses out of goods and donations.   Nothing new here.  Serves the business people right if they don’t know enough to ask for a charitable business number, or other such credentials, before giving.

  9. And…society should ignore impropriety because, apparently, it’s rampant?  And…business owners should forfeit all recourses for justice because, hey, they deserve the consequences of being too polite?

    Help me out here. I live in the town we are talking about.


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