A quartet of area bands will gather Thursday, March 24, at 6:30 p.m. for a rock and roll evening, but the night will be focused on supporting a Rochester family.
Organizers are calling it “Honor Connor” for 13-year-old Connor Johnson, a Rochester youth who was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor late last year. Connor has undergone proton beam radiation therapy at Mayo Clinic and faces further radiation and chemotherapy treatments.
Dianna Parks, the organizer of the event, says Connor’s prognosis is “very, very good,” but even with solid health insurance, the Johnsons face crushing out-of-pocket health-care costs. The concert doesn’t expect to defray those costs entirely, but the organizers hope to put a dent in them. The event also is meant to rally around and be an emotional support of the Johnson family.
Free-will donations of $10 per person are suggested. Auction items also will be available.
“The expectation isn’t that we’re going to change their lives financially necessarily, but I do think that this will go a long way to show how many people support them,” said Parks. “The event will have value for talks who aren’t connected to the family because the music is going to be really good.”
The event will open with a mashup of the bands Parks & Kliest and Smash and Grab playing each others’ songs. It will be followed by the band Chester Bay. The headline will be the Heart tribute band, “Crazy on You,” fronted by Parks and Mary Lieser, the lead singer for Incognito and Smash and Grab.
Parks said the event also was a reflection of their appreciation of Connor’s father, Curtis, who has been a staunch supporter of the local music scene. Johnson is a disc jockey who for years has does a weekly music show on KRPR that highlights local bands.
“He comes to do everything we do, and he helps promote us,” Parks said. “We just felt we wanted to do something for his family. And since music is such a big part of how we’re all connected, that’s why we chose to do this type of event.”
If you go
What: “Honor Connor” event featuring a fundraiser on behalf of Connor Johnson.
When: 6:30 p.m. Thursday, March 24.
Where: Wicked Moose Bar & Grill, 1201 Eastgate Dr. S.E., Rochester, Minn.
Featured bands will include Smash & Grab and Parks & Kleist at 7 p.m., Chester Bay at 8 p.m. and the Heart tribute band, “Crazy on You,” at 9 p.m.