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Students to host benefit house concert for charity

February 24th, 2015 Posted in Opinion

A big living room and wood flooring were the first things Seth Merrill noticed about his new house in Logan. The Utah State student immediately thought his home would make a great venue for a live acoustic show.

“I’m kind of an introvert but I love communications and event planning,” said Merrill, who will host his fourth Adams Park House Show on Friday at 8 p.m.

The first show, held in October, was intended to showcase local talent and gain exposure for Merrill’s cousin, Jake Martin, a guitarist, songwriter and aspiring producer.

By the second concert the shows became a way to raise money for charity. Friday’s donations will be going toward Utah State’s Best Buddies chapter.

Best Buddies is an international organization that pairs students with individuals who have intellectual or developmental disabilities in order to create one-on-one friendships. Volunteers are matched with their buddies for an entire school year. Each pair keeps close contact with one another and attends monthly chapter activities together.

“I’ve always chosen the charities that are local and in urgent need,” Merrill said. “It’s more meaningful for people to give charitably when they can actually see where the money is going.”

Rachel Hilton, the vice president of USU’s Best Buddies, posted on social media asking for help to raise money and Merrill responded quickly. He said picking Best Buddies was an easy choice because he has always admired what the organization does.

“It’s hard to get a whole fundraising effort going when half of the members can’t participate,” Hilton said. Any time we can receive funds that we don’t have to put out an insane amount of effort for we are very grateful.”

The chapter must send one representative to an annual conference in order to be recognized by the organization, so the proceeds will be going toward traveling fares in addition to activities and materials.

“Having these funds means we can continue what we’ve been doing,” Hilton said.

“Best Buddies is a great program and I’m glad we’re supporting it this go ‘round,” said Spencer Jensen, one of Friday’s performers. This will be his second time playing for the series.

“People go to shows to have fun and when you throw supporting a great cause on top of a good time you have to come out of it with a positive experience,” he added.

Jensen will be playing alongside Jake Bury and will be followed by Taneesa Wright, Golden Money and Adam Jones. Each set will last 30 minutes and DJ Colton Packard will host a dance party afterward.

The event is free but Merrill encourages attendees to bring a $2 donation. The show will be held at 606 N. 500 East in Logan.

Aubri Liechty, Kayla Swenson, Andrew Chen, Conner Rumsey and Sawyer Hemsley contributed to this report.


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