With his connections to other Syracuse-area musicians, Lyons, guitarist and singer for local band The Fabulous Ripcords, decided to get by with a little help from his friends. So on Thursday, Dec. 10, Neighbors Helping Neighbors will feature Syracuse New Times Syracuse Area Music Award (Sammy) winners Ron Spencer and the Ron Spencer Band, Kim Monroe and Lyons’ Ripcords. “It’ll be a Sammys kind of evening,” Lyons mused. More music will come from The Siders, Dusty Pascal, the Auburn High School Chamber Singers and the Auburn High School Rent Party.
“A Sammys kind of evening:” Among the artists helping raise funds for the Cayuga Community Health Network are Kim Monroe and The Fabulous Ripcords (below). MICHAEL DAVIS PHOTOS
“By virtue of me being a local musician, those commitments came very easily,” Lyons said. “They all told me, ‘Sure, we’ll help you.’ But I think they would have helped out anyways because they’re very generous.”
For her part, Monroe considers her 45-minute set a returned favor to Lyons, who remembered the singer-songwriter from her participation in a charity event five years ago in Skaneateles. “He had helped me out in terms of getting to play that show when I was so brand new,” she noted. “Now that I’ve gotten a little more established, he thought to invite me back again, and with the whole ‘Neighbors Helping Neighbors’ theme of the event, I wanted to become involved.” In addition to playing a John Mayer tune and one by Adele, Monroe and her new guitar player, Jim Crandall, will debut two new songs that will be featured on her upcoming CD.
But music isn’t the only feature of this benefit. Your $10 admission gets you Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, a cash bar and a silent auction. Items up for bid include hotel stays, gift certificates and tickets to sporting events.
All proceeds will benefit the Cayuga Community Health Network Diabetes Prevention Program and Auburn Meals on Wheels. Lyons became executive director of the health network last March, and has been working ever since to find funds to run the nonprofit in the face of mounting governmental budget cuts.
“Nonprofits are faced with funds that are drying up from the state and federal government,” he said. “In order to create sustained funding for the agency, I have been organizing special events, which is my background. For $10 I don’t think you can beat what the lineup is. And to be able to provide support to some of the local not-for-profits that are providing services to the local population, it’s all good.”
The Cayuga Community Health Network’s mission is to increase the efficiency and accessibility of health care services in Cayuga County and to promote healthy lifestyles. The network administers several health care programs, including a workplace wellness initiative, the diabetes prevention program and the Partnership for a Drug Free Auburn.
“The agency is 12 years old, and I’m the third executive director,” Lyons noted. “I have a background in sales and marketing. I think the board wanted an ED that could create more visibility for the network and could bring in special events and get creative in fund-raising. The money is not there anymore, so we have to find a way to create sustainability.”
Neighbors Helping Neighbors is set for Thursday, Dec. 10, from 3 to 9 p.m. at the Auburn Public Theater, 108 Genesee St., Auburn. For tickets and more information, call 252-4212.