The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

February 1, 2014

Richland Rotary hosting Rockfest

Ruth Rice

JOHNSTOWN — The Rotary Club of Richland Township is again offering hot bands to chase the winter chill.

The third annual Rotary Rockfest will be held at 9 p.m. Saturday at Ace’s, 316 Chestnut St. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.

Doors will open at 8 for an evening of food, raffles and music.

Rotary board member Shawn Lasko, a musician with nearly 30 years of experience, is coordinating the event.

Featured bands are Maiden America and Rust, both from Johnstown, and Capture, a rhythm and blues band from Ohio.

“Matt Bost, another Rotarian, is the keyboard player for Maiden America, and they played some shows together in Ohio with Capture,” Lasko said. “Matt asked them if they’d be willing to come play here. We’re going to try to show them a good time.”

Rust is a three-piece band playing hard rock, and Maiden America is most known for ’80s pop music.

“Maiden America does rock plus pop,” Lasko said. “They do ’90s too, and some modern.”

Once again, the bands will share equipment to maintain a quick changeover between sets.

“It worked out well last year,” Lasko said. “Everything went smoothly even though we had to do some troubleshooting.”

Gary Matolyak, owner of Ace’s, will cook up sandwiches and side dishes, and there will be a cash bar. There also will be raffles for baskets from businesses in the Johnstown area.

Lasko isn’t sure how many baskets there will be, but said everyone had a good time with them last year.

Proceeds will benefit community projects and humanitarian efforts of the Rotary Club of Richland.

 The club, which was founded in 2009, is an offshoot of the Rotary Club of Johnstown and has 12 to 15 members.

Members have provided assistance to Cambria and Somerset humane societies, Saturday’s Kitchen, 4-H clubs, Hurricane Sandy victims, Oklahoma tornado victims, Cinderella Project, highway cleanup for Scalp Avenue, anti-bullying initiative for Richland and Forest Hills students and monetary scholarships for Richland High School students.

Lasko said there will be no advance tickets this year. All tickets will be $10 at the door.

Ruth Rice covers Features for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow her on Twitter at