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Bands play on to benefit cystic fibrosis research

August 23, 2009|By DAVE McMILLION

HAGERSTOWN -- Music usually is played inside at Hager Hall & Conference Center on Dual Highway, but on Sunday it blared away in a parking lot.

Five bands played over a span of seven hours during a daylong party at the local venue that includes Cancun Cantina West and Barefoot Bernie's.

"It started (when) we wanted to have a big party out here," said Jennifer Hare, co-owner of Hager Hall.

When it was discovered that two members of one of the bands have cystic fibrosis, Hager Hall's Brew and BBQ Backyard Bash turned into a fundraiser to fight the battle against the disease, Hare said.

Hare said the lead singer and the drummer for the band Diesel have cystic fibrosis. The band played mid-afternoon and the heavy bass in their music pulsated through the crowd.

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One of the band members talked between songs about the importance of cystic fibrosis research to keep the band "rocking for you guys."

The fundraiser for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation raised money through $25 entrance fees and drink sales, Hare said.

Hare said Sunday night that about 700 people attended the event. She said she would not know how much was raised until Monday.

"But it was good and everybody was extremely generous," Hare said.

Drink booths, food booths and fans were scattered along a three-tiered parking lot behind the conference center. The bands played in the lowest parking lot.

The food included barbecue sandwiches and ice cream, and thirsty fans could line up at a trailer with beer taps.

Hank Fales of Mercersburg, Pa., made his way through one of the parking lots, sampling a barbecue sandwich.

"I love the music," Fales said when asked what attracted him to the event.

The headliner, Better than Ezra, had Fales pumped up.

"Every time they play, I try to make my way there," Fales said.

The event also included the showing of 15 Chevrolet Corvettes. The car show, put on by the Free State Corvette Club, included a rare 1963 Corvette with a rear split window, organizers said.

"It's neat," Cal Miller of Woodbine, Md., said of the event. "It's certainly for a good cause," said Miller, who was sitting in an area with Corvette club members.

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