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Concert being planned to benefit opening of Massena Boys & Girls Club

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MASSENA - Efforts to open the Massena Boys & Girls Club will get a boost this fall when Emmanuel Congregational Church hosts “Restoring the Pride,” a fundraising concert to benefit the future club.

Massena Mayor James F. Hidy is leading the effort to plan the event, which he’s hoping will raise $3,600 for the club.

Mr. Hidy said 250 tickets will be sold for the show, which will feature Jimmy Phillips, Bill “Tracer” Tracy and Kathleen Baker. The cost of the tickets will be $15.

“Two hundred fifty tickets at $15 a piece, that’s $3,600,” Mr. Hidy said. “Not bad for one night.”

Since he heard of the effort to bring a Boys and Girls Club to Massena, Mr. Hidy said he’s been trying to think of way he could help.

“I brought the idea to Chief Currier (Massena Village Police Chief Timmy J. Currier, who is leading the efforts to open the club), and once it was met with his approval I contacted Pastor Judy (Pastor Judy VanKennen), who in turn contacted Jimmy Phillips, who thought it was a great idea.”

Mr. Hidy said he can remember listening to Jimmy Phillips play when he was growing up in Massena and attending Holy Family.

“I remember hearing Jimmy play back in the ‘70s when I was at Holy Family,” he said. “He was fantastic then and he is every bit as good now.”

Mr. Hidy said he hasn’t heard Mr. Tracer or Ms. Baker yet, but he’s spoken with many people who have.

“I haven’t heard Kathleen or Tracer, but the word on the street is they’re phenomenal,” he said.

Mr. Tracy is coming off of a July 27 performance in Los Angeles, where he was one of 10 guitar players from around the nation selected to compete in Guitar Center’s Blues Master competition. He played in front of legendary guitarist Joe Bonamassa.

Following the concert, which Mr. Hidy said is sure to be a great evening of entertainment, a reception will be held for those in attendance.

While tickets for the event haven’t yet gone on sale, Mr. Hidy said once they do, in early October, they will be available at several businesses around the village.

“The great thing about this is these are all home-grown talents,” he said. “People from the community and those venturing in will see some great entertainment and get a taste of what the spirit of Massena is all about.”

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