Dayton Strong concert aids long-term tornado recovery for Dayton region

Tornado Recovery

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – The Dayton Strong Benefit Concert is coming to Riverscape MetroPark on Saturday to benefit victims of the Memorial Day tornadoes. 

The free concert benefits the Greater Dayton Disaster Relief Fund and was put together by a partnership between Five Rivers MetroParks, SOCHE, and The Dayton Foundation. 

One hundred percent of the benefits will be awarded to pre-selected, vetted, non-profit organizations that have been created to address the long-term needs of storm-affected communities. 

The all-day concert will feature artists The Sinclair Community College Faculty Jazz Combo, All Community/Unity Choir, Just Vince and the Fellas, Jamie Suttle, Moment’s Notice Band, and Dayton Funk All-Stars. 

The event will also feature food from local food trucks including Pa’s Pork, Twisted Taco, and more. 

The Dayton RTA will also be participating in an all-day free shuttle to the event for those concerned with parking or transportation. 

The Greater Dayton Disaster Relief Fund was established by The Dayton Foundation in the aftermath of the destruction created by the Memorial Day tornadoes. The fund was created as a way to easily distribute funds to properly established charities that are assisting Greater Dayton with the long-term storm cleanup. The goal is to allow citizens or businesses quick access to the numerous aid choices that have become available through area charities and donations. 

Cassie Barlow, President of Southwestern Ohio Council for Higher Education (SOCHE), said that the event was put together as a way to not only aid the ongoing needs of local communities but also to celebrate what has already been accomplished.

“It’s a way for people who just have been through so much in the last few weeks to take a little bit of time to enjoy their neighbors,” said Barlow. 

As other local organizations such as The Dayton Foundation and Five Rivers Metropark were trying to accomplish the similar tornado relief goals, they decided that it would be best for them to combine their efforts. “It was really a match made in heaven for all of us to come together and work on putting together this benefit concert.,” said Barlow. 

“The way the process works is The Dayton Foundation is collecting the funding and then organizations in need apply to the Dayton Foundation,” said Barlow. “Several organizations have done that already and have been granted some funds to help people in the Dayton region.”

The concerts largest goal is help those in need with the long-term assistance required in some situations. 

“The reason we wanted to do this now,” said Barlow, “is because we know that it’s going to take a while for the relief of our neighbors. What we wanted to was to be able to have funds there in the future as they’re still recovering six, eight, nine months from now. So that we make sure there is still funding available.”

One of the acts performing for the concert is local music performer Jamie Suttle.

Jamie Suttle is a Kentucky-born country/rock singer who now calls Dayton her home. She said that performing in the concert was an easy decision for her to make and that attendees can expect a fun show featuring a mix of Country and Rock.

“Dayton has such an incredible group of musicians that were super excited to get together and raise money for whoever is still in need,” said Suttle. “I think Dayton is such a tight-knit community and we just wanted to help out wherever we could.”

Suttle said that even though the event was created to benefit a local tragedy, she still hopes music and performances continue to bring people together and that events like this can lift the spirit of the community. 

“I’ve been performing in Dayton for a long time,” said Suttle. “I’m completely blown away by our city and how tremendously fast and efficiently they’ve come together throughout this entire process.”

The event runs from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, July 13th. Admission is free. Donations are encouraged.

To make a donation, visit here.

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