The East End community is rallying together to show its support for hurricane victims around the country during a Hurricane Relief Benefit Concert at Bay Street Theater in Sag Harbor. Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman will serve as emcee of the event, which will be held on Sunday, October 1 from 4 to 6 p.m.
“These storms have moved across so much of our country and the islands, and have destroyed literally everything people had. It’s so hard to imagine starting over with absolutely nothing,” noted Tracy Mitchell, Executive Director of Bay Street. “So we must help. It’s important that we all do whatever we can, even if it’s in our own small way, to help. Fortunately we live in a place where our East End artists are always willing to step up.”
The evening will feature spectacular sets from local favorites, including Joe Lauro & The Hoodoo Loungers and Gene Casey & The Lone Sharks, and maybe even a few special solo artists or duets.
“When Bay Street calls we respond! When disasters strike (as they too often do) we all wonder what we can do to help,” Gene Casey reflected. “Musicians play music, and we are happy to put our passion to good use, to a good cause.”
So, it was an absolute no-brainer for the band to participate. “It’s an honor, and our duty to pitch in, and we are happy the folks at Bay Street are quick to organize this event and know the community will respond,” Casey explained. “One of my fantasies as a musician is to have been part of a Jerry Lewis telethon — so this is as close as we’ll get!”
Ticket and raffle proceeds will be used for hurricane relief efforts through the Red Cross, the Salvation Army, and Team Rubicon, a disaster response organization. Donors can choose which organization they prefer to contribute to and any funds not specified will be equally split between the three organizations. The fundraiser will also include a Special Raffle with items and prizes donated from local retailers and restaurants like a yoga private in the Hamptons by Bruce Bailey, a hour massage in the Hamptons by Tika Udomsit, a two night stay (off season) at the Breakers Motel in Montauk, a $200 gift certificate to Buddha Berry in Sag Harbor, and much more.
“Since Harvey made landfall, Team Rubicon has deployed 854 volunteers to Texas in support of the ongoing hurricane relief effort. An additional 148 provided remote support from our National Operations Center in Dallas,” noted Marc DeNofio, Communications Manager, Region II, Team Rubicon. “Volunteers have serviced 202 homes and are currently serving the following communities in Texas: Houston, Rockport, Port Aransas, Beaumont, Magnolia, Friendswood, Dickinson, Port Arthur, Katy, and Wharton.”
Team Rubicon is also aiding those in Florida that were impacted by Hurricane Irma. “Team Rubicon is currently conducting Hurricane Irma responses in Clay, Brevard, and Collier Counties in Florida,” DeNofio said. “Our teams will be based in the communities of Jacksonville, Melbourne, and Immokalee, FL. 78 volunteers have deployed to assist with damage assessments, debris management, chainsaw operations, and expedient home repair.”
The organization is also closely monitoring another storm that could have a devastating impact on the United States. “On top of that we are gathering information on Hurricane Maria,” DeNofio explained. “For Team Rubicon and the communities the main need is donations. Donations allow for us to most effectively direct the dollars to where they can have the most impact. Those who wish to make a donation or sign up to register as a volunteer can do so at teamrubiconusa.org. Supporters can also text CARES to 87872 to make a donation.”
When Hurricane Sandy rocked the East End, Team Rubicon formed a partnership with East End Cares, a local online forum that unites those in need with people who want to assist. “East End Cares is proud to participate in this event in support of our disaster response partner organization, Team Rubicon,” shared Melissa Berman of East End Cares. “Two of our volunteers are currently on the ground in Texas working with Team Rubicon, helping people begin to put their homes and lives back together. We expect more volunteers to join them and more people to donate in the coming months – as they continue their amazing work in Texas, Florida, Mexico and likely the Caribbean (assessments are still underway).”
Admission to A Hurricane Relief Benefit Concert is a suggested donation of $20 for adults and $10 for children, but any amount will be accepted. Donations can be made at the Bay Street box office only. The box office is open Tuesday through Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and after 2 p.m. on Sunday, October 1.
“This month has been devastating to so many, in so many places, it is always heartwarming to see our East End community come together and show how much we care,” added Berman. “Bay Street rocks for making this event happen.”
Bay Street is located at 1 Bay Street in Sag Harbor. For more information, call 631-725-9500 or visit www.baystreet.org.