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Fighting the flood with a concert fundraiser


La Crosse, WI (WXOW) – With sunshine in the forecast over the next week, those impacted by recent flooding may soon have a break from the destruction. To help them get their lives back on track area organizations collaborate to create a new event in La Crosse. 

What started as a special Moon Tunes event grew as more organizations got involved, evolving into the first Fight The Flood concert.

Organizers describe the event as a party with a purpose.

“Not only raising funds but it’s going to raise some spirits,” Steering Committee Member for Fight The Flood Pat Stephens elaborates, “I think if I was affected by it, just knowing other people are concerned and want to help just makes it that much better,” Stephens adds.

Less than 48 hours after conversations started, organizers had over 20 bands interested in performing.

A previous Moon Tunes concert

“It’s an entire Moon Tunes season in one day, and those are bands that were reaching out to us,” Andy Hughes, Steering Committee Member for Fight The Flood continues, “all the food vendors and the beer vendors, those are people from our community. Businesses and people that reached out to us because everyone had the same idea, how do I help?” Hughes explains.

An active member in the La Crosse area music community, Hughes helped fill the concert’s 10 hours of performances.

They aim to utilize space in La Crosse unaffected by floods to support impacted communities.

“I think if the shoe is on the other foot some of these other communities would be helping La Crosse too if we had that kind of devastation out here. It’s nice to be able to do it, we have the resources, we have the people, the volunteers and we have the hearts,” Stephens describes.

There will be no entrance fee for the concert. They are trying to reach their goal of raising $150,000 through only at-will donations.

They will utilize Rotary International’s Rotary Works Foundation to connect families with funds they need.

“All of the money that comes in will go out and it will go out based on advice and guidance from these Rotary Clubs throughout the region,” Bill Hoel, District Governor for Rotary District 6250 explains.

On Friday, Mayo Clinic Health System jump-started their goal with a $15,000 donation. 

The concert will run from 11 A.M. until 10 P.M. on Thursday, September 13 on the south side Oktoberfest grounds.

Those unable to attend can call in any pledges by contacting (608) 782-9307 from 6 A.M. until 11 P.M. on Thursday to contribute to the cause.

Checks are also accepted by mail. Interested parties can make checks payable to RW Foundation-Fight the Flood, and can be sent to RW Foundation, P.O. Box 1571, La Crosse, WI 54602-1571.

The Salvation Army will be on hand to collect non-perishable food items as well.

MORE: Volunteer Signup

READ MORE: Flood Relief Benefit Concert helps families in the Viroqua area

Peter Lenz

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