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7/26/2013 10:24:00 AM
The Dyer Neck Gang Presents a Music Showdown Benefit
The Dyer Neck Gang hosts a Music Showdown Benefit for The Dempsey Center for Cancer, Hope and Healing, on the Boothbay Commons Aug. 4.
The Dyer Neck Gang hosts a Music Showdown Benefit for The Dempsey Center for Cancer, Hope and Healing, on the Boothbay Commons Aug. 4.
By Eleanor Cade Busby

On Sunday, Aug. 4, the Dyer Neck Gang will hold a fundraiser day to benefit The Dempsey Center for Cancer, Hope and Healing. There is no admission charge.

Beginning at noon on the Commons in Boothbay and continuing until 6 p.m., four bands will take the stage for an afternoon of free entertainment. The Murky Water Band, Cold Blue Steel, Sweating Bullets and the hosts of the event, The Dyer Neck Gang, are all donating their time and musical talents.

This event is a 100 percent fundraiser for the Dempsey Center for Cancer, Hope and Healing and along with the great entertainment, a silent auction and several raffles will afford visitors donation opportunities.

Among the many great items in the silent auction are dinner for two at the Oxford Casino and the Boston Red Sox donated a Steven Drew autographed baseball.

"Local businesses have been amazing," said Garry Blackman Jr., the Dyer Neck Gang drummer and an event organizer.

"We have a lot of really wonderful things that will be auctioned on the 4th," he said.

It is a family affair for the band members. Sarah Blackman is organizing much of the event, including the auction. Zachary Blackman, 15, took to his bike selling raffle tickets door to door.

The band members' families have pitched in to try to meet or exceed the team's goal of a $10,000 donation to the Dempsey Center. "We are at about $3000 now, thanks to Zack and his bike," said Blackman, "and we would like to go over the top at the Showdown."

There will be booths set with vendor and activities planned for children including face painting.

The Knights of Pythias will be flipping burgers and serving hot dogs so plenty of food will be available right on the Commons.

The Dyer Neck Gang got involved with the Dempsey Challenge last year. Garry Blackman and Joe Dalton were watching their wives run in a Dempsey Challenge Race.

"We started talking and decided it would be a great thing for the band to have its own team and take up the challenge" said Blackman, "We thought it would be cool to raise money while doing what we love, making music."

The event's host are also the headliners: The Dyer Neck Gang, playing modern country, features Garry Blackman on drums and vocals; Rod Morton on guitar and vocals; Joe Dalton on guitar and lead vocals; and Sherwood Olin on bass with vocals.

Funds raised by The Music Showdown will help to keep all services available at The Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing at no cost to anyone impacted by cancer.

Since the doors opened in 2008, the Dempsey Center's contacts have increased consistently, demonstrating the need for services.

In September 2012, the Center moved to a new location at 29 Lowell St., Lewiston, to better accommodate the needs of those they serve.

Funds raised through the 2013 Dempsey Challenge support the expanding nutrition program; meet the growing demand for massage therapy services; and help develop a distance learning initiative to make programs available anywhere.

The Dempsey Center is only able to provide free services thanks to funds raised via the annual Dempsey Challenge, corporate sponsors, foundations and grants, and individual donations.

To learn more about how one can contribute to the Dempsey Center, please visit

The Music Showdown on the Boothbay Commons is a fine way to make a difference and to enjoy great music, while checking out the silent auctions. Consider a Sunday outing on Aug. 4 with the whole family and stop by for a down home good time.

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