The day after Hurricane Irene ripped through Margaretville, Arkville and Fleischmanns, Rob Laing started thinking about how to bring people together. Laing’s band, Country Express, performs its rollicking style of country music across the Catskills, and Laing decided that the thing the community needed was a benefit concert.
“I know so many folks in the stricken towns of Margaretville, Arkville, Fleischmanns, Roxbury and Grand Gorge and I didn’t know how to help other than to try to raise some money for the folks,” Laing said.
“Rob Laing’s almost immediate response to the flooding was to contact us to offer his band to play at a benefit for our communities,” said Carol O’Beirne, the executive director of the Central Catskills Chamber of Commerce, which is sponsoring the event. “He has been persistent about this too, knowing how crazy we all were, yet kept calling until he made contact.”
Laing recruited another local band, the popular rock act Detour, to donate its talents to the flood-relief cause, and the two are playing a flood relief double-header on Sunday, November 6 at Margaretville Central School.
The festivities start at 1pm and go to 5:30pm. There will be desserts and baked goods for sale, as well as flood-relief T-shirts. There will also be activities for kids. The benefit committee is still looking for volunteers to help coordinate a 50/50 raffle and sell T-shirts. To volunteer, call 845-481-0155.
A $10 donation will get you in the door, and kids under 12 are free and must be accompanied by an adult. All proceeds raised at the event will go directly to flood victims in the Town of Middletown through the Interfaith Council’s flood victims’ fund.
To donate to the fund, make your checks payable to the Interfaith Council, and write “flood relief” in the memo area. Checks can be sent or dropped off at NBT Bank, PO Box 140, Margaretville NY 12455.