With all the talk over domestic and world issues, it’s important to keep in mind ways that you can be involved in matters that directly support your local community. And no better to do so than while having a blast as well.
A new nonprofit organization, Artists For Local Agriculture, launched a grassroots campaign this year to engage in supporting the community in local, sustainable agriculture by way of a statewide concert series that was held May 15-20 at several venues: Why Sound in Logan, Poplar Street Pub and Urban Lounge in Salt Lake City, The Basement in Ogden and Muse in Provo.
These concerts featured prominent Utah bands such as Muscle Hawk, Dark Seas, John Ross Boyce and His Troubles, and Cornered By Zombies, as well as independent artists Keith Hanes, Patric Bates and more. AFLA was founded under the theory that people are drawn toward art; that through art we can engage and involve communities with positive change as the best possible route to do so.
Proceeds from the events will directly benefit farmers, community-garden associations, AFLA, and the sustainable food movement. At least $1 per patron in attendance at each show will be donated to promote sustainability.
Additionally, AFLA announced the launch of their website, AFLArevolution.org, that will provide education on issues surrounding corporate food production, artwork, interviews, exclusive song and video downloads, and how to engage in action to help involvement for positive change in their local communities.
Coming up on May 25 is the Rock Your Tits Off fundraiser at Bar Deluxe, organized by friends of Aaron Bain, an FTM person who identifies as transgender, will be undergoing top surgery. Donations from local businesses will be raffled off, and revenue from the event will be used to help Bain fund his surgery.
Organizer Mauricio Casteñeda Melgar stated, “Now this is not being organized by queer people only — it has a lot of heterosexual people contributing to the cause for the benefit of someone to be who they deserve to be.”
The event will be $5 for entrance, but it is encouraged to donate more if possible. Think of it as skipping that Starbucks for the day and instead donating to the cause. Even this starving columnist can swing that.
In addition to the raffle, Rock Your Tits Off will feature performances from The Broken Spells, Handicapitalist, Nostrum Girls and DJ Melissa Lewis, and gourmet cupcakes will be available for purchase from Lady Cakes. How does it get much more exceptional than drinks, good music, a good cause and cupcakes? I’m compelled to believe it doesn’t.
With no lack of events and festival programming this summer, we all have the choice to throw our money at corporations, or to make that crucial and awesome decision to support members and businesses in our neighborhood. This summer, I will be making it a point to attend events and patronize businesses that directly support our local community, and it is my hope that you will be joining me.