On Feb. 23, a capacity crowd poured into the PAC to attend San Luis Obispo Responds, a fundraiser to provide disaster relief for Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricanes Irma and Maria and for Santa Barbara County after its horrific fires and mudslides.
The musicians unselfishly played without charging a cent. They offered the most precious and sacred part of themselves — their music! At a critical moment in the planning stages, Chris Miller of the PAC stepped forward, offering to have PAC Outreach sponsor this complex event. He cheerfully said, “It’s the right thing to do!”
Through their sponsorship and that of community partners, plus a generous gift from Joan Gellert-Sargen, we were able to devote the ticket revenues and donations entirely to disaster relief. We ended up raising over $36,000 for the cause! Countless community members strove to make this a success, serving on planning committees, rehearsing, working with the charities (United Methodist Committee on Relief, United Way, Direct Relief), housing musicians and speakers, supplying a banquet of food for starving musicians, and publicizing the event.
So, to all involved — including the hundreds who attended or donated — I exclaim, “Hats off. Kudos. Mil gracias. THANKS!”
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Craig H. Russell, San Luis Obispo