The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

January 31, 2013

Richland Rotary Rock Fest coming to Ace's Feb. 9


JOHNSTOWN — The Rotary Club of Richland Township wants to help people shake off winter’s chill with hot music.

The club is hosting its second annual Rotary Rock Fest at 9 p.m. Feb. 9 at Ace’s, 316 Chestnut St. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.

Patrons can expect to see and hear three well-known area bands.

Rotary board member Shawn Lasko, a musician with nearly 30 years’ experience who is coordinating the event, said the Rotarians have established a good foundation on which to maintain Rock Fest as an annual event.

The featured bands are Shades of June, Maiden America and Wyld Syde.

Lasko, a guitarist for Wyld Syde, said organizers have tweaked the event from the initial effort in 2012.

“This year, doors will open at 8 (p.m.) because last year, there was too much down time from when the doors opened and the bands took the stage,” Lasko said.

“Music will begin at 9 sharp for a full evening of fun, dancing and partying.”

Lasko said each group plays similar genres of music, including contemporary, classic rock and metal.

“They are all great bands, and each plays super dance music,” he said.

“Bands can’t survive unless they perform music people can dance to.”

Gary Matolyak, owner of Ace’s, is cooking up a special ethnic plate for $7.50.

“He’s offering an ethnic feast of chicken, haluski and cabbage rolls as part of each meal,” Lasko said.

Proceeds benefit community projects and humanitarian endeavors undertaken by Rotary Club of Richland Township, which was founded in 2009.

The Rotary’s worldwide mission is to battle polio and provide clean water to under-developed countries.

“The musicians and their fans will get together, have fun and support a good cause,” Lasko said.

“Some of the proceeds also support Richland Rotary Club’s community-improvement projects in local neighborhoods.”

Lasko said streamlining the event also includes having the bands share equipment to maintain a quick changeover between sets.

“We also will be chancing off four or five quality gift baskets,” Lasko said.

“Last year, we had about a dozen, but decided to combine more of the gifts in order to make each basket more desirable.”

Tickets are $10 in advance or $12 at the door.

All advance ticket holders will be eligible to win raffle prizes.

“We hope to attract as many as 300 people,” Lasko said.

For advance tickets, contact Lasko at 412-610-0043.

If you go ...

What: Second annual Rotary Rock Fest.

Where: Ace’s, 316 Chestnut St. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.

When: 9 p.m. Feb. 9; doors open at 8.

Tickets: In advance; call 412-610-0043.

Cost: $10 in advance; $12 at the door.

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