P.E.I. musicians hold concerts for Fort McMurray relief effort

Sally Cole scole@theguardian.pe.ca
Published on May 11, 2016

Richie Bulger, left, Todd MacLean, and Cynthia MacLeod kick it up in preparation for the May 13 fundraiser for Fort McMurray at the P.E.I Brewing Company. Island artists unite for an evening of music, fun and fundraising for the Canadian Red Cross in support of wildfire relief. Tickets can be purchased at the P.E.I. Brewing Company (96 Kensington Road) and Kwik Kopy Printing (91 Euston Street).

©Heather Taweel/The Guardian

The plight of people impacted by the Fort McMurray wildfire has hit home for P.E.I. singer-songwriter Joey Kitson.

His sister, Buffy, and her husband, had been working in Fort McMurray when they were evacuated after a wildfire swept through their community last week.

“They managed to evacuate to the Edmonton area. It was a bit disturbing when they had to leave and it was a long journey down, but they were lucky to get in the first wave. They are settling in, staying with friends,” says Kitson.

At the same time his thoughts went to the thousands of people who were struggling to get out of the fire-ravaged area.

“It became a big concern.”

So when a fellow musician, Ritchie Bulger, asked him to take part in Fortnight: A Fundraiser for Fort McMurray Brewing Company on Friday, May 13, 7 p.m. to 2 a.m., he was eager to help.

“It’s going to be very expensive. So if we can lend our talents, in any way, whatever needs to be done, we’re there,” says Kitson, who will be sharing the stage that night with Paper Lions, the Eastern Belles, the Wannabeez, Muddy Buddy and Vintage.

Tickets are $20, with 100 per cent of sales from the night going to the Canadian Red Cross for disaster relief. A silent auction and 50/50 draw are also planned. Tickets may be purchased at the P.E.I. Brewing Company (96 Kensington Rd.) and Kwik Kopy Printing, 91 Euston St., Charlottetown.

Moved by the devastating fire, the P.E.I. band, Ten Strings And A Goat Skin, also wanted to try and make a difference.

The band is donating 100 per cent of the proceeds from its May 14 concert at Harmony House Theatre in Hunter River to the Canadian Red Cross in support of efforts in that province.

“Our thoughts go out to all those who have been affected,” says group member Jesse Périard, adding tickets are available online or by calling 902-964-2255.

Still another fundraising concert for Fort McMurray will be held Friday, June 3, at the Winsloe United Church at 7 p.m. The proceeds of which will go to the Canadian Red Cross.

Organizers of Ceilidh in the City and the Winsloe United Church ceilidh are planning the event.