Concert for the Causes, an outdoor concert benefiting three local nonprofits — League of Dreams, Wounded Heroes Fund and MARE Riding Center — will be held June 5 at Kern County Raceway Park.
Nonprofits rely on donors and community supporters to keep them afloat. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many nonprofits and small businesses have been hit severely, either limiting their resources or forcing them to shutter.
League of Dreams Executive Director Jessica Matthews said one of the members of one of the three nonprofits had an idea to create this event to raise money.
Because it's the first event of its kind, Matthews acknowledges organizing a concert is not a small feat.
"We came together knowing we got to raise money for the organizations and the programs that we provide for the people that we serve," she said. "We knew that we had to find a way to make money for our organizations to continue serving our needed clients, but we also knew Kern County specifically wanted to get back to a normal life and be able to do things, so having something outdoors would be the best option for us."
Matthews said Concert for the Cause will be just like any other concert, except there will be additional safety precautions.
To ensure guests' safety, Matthews said all volunteers and staff have been vaccinated and will take an additional coronavirus rapid test the day of the event. The venue will also include sanitizing stations and areas where guests can social distance from others and still enjoy the show. Though it is an outdoor event, masks and social distancing among guests are still encouraged.
Concert for the Causes will include three local performing acts by headliner Granger Smith featuring Earl Dibbles Jr., Joe Peters, Boones Farm Trio and "The Voice" season 19 runner-up, Bakersfield's own Jim Ranger.
The event will local food and merchandise vendors such as Chef Lino's Grill & Catering and Dewar's Candy Shop, to name a few.
Matthews said many local nonprofits rely on donors and sponsors to stay fully funded and provide services to community members.
"Nonprofits are small businesses, too. We've suffered just like other small businesses trying to make sure that we provide our program and trying to get back on track for the clients that we serve," she said.
"The camaraderie between the nonprofits is a big deal in Kern County and we are setting the stage for future partnerships for nonprofits to come together to raise money," Matthews said.