Local bands to perform at Rathskeller to raise money for Habitat for Humanity

Katie Young

In an effort to raise money for Habitat for Humanity, four local bands will perform at Humanity Fest at 7 p.m. today in the Rathskeller. The price of admission is $2, and all proceeds will go to Habitat for Humanity.

The event features The Speedbumps, Hayden Calling, Professor Greenhouse and The Know Nothings. Attendees can also purchase raffle tickets and enter to win prizes from local businesses.

Rachel Smith, a member of the Kent State chapter of Habitat for Humanity, said the show was organized to raise money for the Portage County affiliate. “If they don’t have funds, people don’t have houses,” she said.

Mary Shaffer, executive director for Habitat for Humanity of Portage County, said the organization has only budgeted to build three houses in 2009, as opposed to the five built in 2008.

“The loss of a grant has slowed down our production,” Shaffer said. While the Portage County affiliate does get federal funding, it won’t come into effect until late 2009. Shaffer also said the Portage County affiliate has plans extending into 2010, including the construction of two houses in Kent.

Jake Porter, vocalist and guitarist for Hayden Calling, said he and his band were glad they were asked to be involved. “It’s a good chance to get some people out and raise money for a good cause,” he said.

Both Hayden Calling and The Speedbumps are no strangers to philanthropy.

Hayden Calling donates 10 percent of its yearly earnings to a charitable cause. The Speedbumps have participated in benefit shows for Kent’s Race for the Cure and Canton’s Foundation for Community Betterment.

This is the first benefit show for The Know Nothings and Professor Greenhouse.

Smith said she is excited for the event, and has high hopes for a successful turn out. “It would be great to see members of the community come out and support the people they live around.”

– Katie Young