“It was cool to see. If you’re in trouble and need a little help, people will come together.”
That was the reaction of Sharon Ruston of the Blackpool Hall committee following an impromptu benefit community concert held at the hall Friday evening, Feb. 24.
About 100 local residents came to hear close to 20 musicians perform to raise money for a Clearwater man who is suffering from cancer. Over $2,500 was raised.
“It all started with a phone call from the town of Wells, a man named Dennis Manuel,” Ruston recalled. The cancer patient is a musician and Manuel had performed with him in the Cariboo. Manuel asked Ruston about using the hall for a concert to benefit the cancer patient.
“Those musicians, they stick together,” said Ruston. “They’re like a family.”
Things quickly came together from there, said the Blackpool Hall spokesperson. People baked cookies and other goods to sell, a list of musicians was lined up, and the event promoted.
One of the fundraisers was a draw and, as it turned out, the winner was Dennis Manuel, the man who originally phoned to set up the benefit.
“It was $151.50 and he donated it back to the fund for Felix, Heather and family,” Ruston said.
Musicians who performed at the benefit included Doug Fenwick, Jack Perry, Bruce Klassen, Calvin Lutz, Betty Schulte, Mary Stewart, Randy Hedlund, Bob and Linda Mackenzie, Tom Coles, Mike Woodman, Bart Chenuz, Loyd Bishop, Andy Leese, Rosetta Paxton, and Steve Filipchuk and the Prairie Kids.
Donations included a $250 cheque from the Jack Patterson Memorial Fund, which was set up several years ago in memory of Clearwater’s former ambulance station chief.