Destinations take the stage for Kampaign
By DIANE GASPER-O'BRIEN
What started out as the marketing of a DVD of a popular local band has turned into a fundraiser for a child in need.
Jimmy Dee and the Fabulous Destinations, a local rock 'n' roll band made up of Ellis County natives, will give a benefit dance to help a grandchild of one of their former schoolmates at Victoria High School.
And the ticket to get in is one of the band's DVDs.
Another former part-time band member, Leon Frank, has put together a documentary of the Destinations band through its 35-plus-year history. It traces the history of the band from its beginning in 1975 all the way to the present.
Frank didn't want any income from the project, and neither did the band members, who are just anxious for people to see their 46-minute biography.
So they came up with the idea of exchanging it for a donation for a charitable cause.
Hays resident Kayden Tiernan, 2-year-old grandson of Mitch and Julie (Brungardt) Weber from Hays, was diagnosed with a rare liver cancer in September, just a few weeks after his second birthday. He is undergoing treatment at Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Mo., and is awaiting a liver transplant.
Kayden's Kampaign was established by friends of the family soon after learning of the news, with an ongoing fund at Golden Plains Credit Union helping the family with expenses.
Kayden is the youngest son of Kerry and April Tiernan. Both April's parents are graduates of VHS, as are all five members of the Jimmy Dee band, which has played for benefit dances in the past.
"We weren't sure how to market (the DVD)," said Jim Schmidtberger of Russell, lead singer of Jimmy Dee. "And we were talking that if we did sell it, we wanted to make some money for someone we know."
Someone brought up Kayden Tiernan, and everyone jumped on board. Other members of the band are Bill Gasper and Red Schmidtberger of Ellis; Joe Dreiling, Victoria; and brothers Anthony and Tim Pfeifer, both of Hays.
In addition, several sponsors have donated gifts, including a Traeger grill, for raffling off the night of the dance. Proceeds from the raffle also will go to Kayden and his family.
For a $15 donation, people can pick up a DVD with the documentary at several locations in Hays. Those DVD cases contain a ticket to the March 2 dance at the Fanchon Ballroom, where Jimmy Dee and Destinations will play from 8:30 to 11:30 p.m.
Other Victoria alums also are helping out. Mark Linenberger, who owns the Fanchon, is donating the use of his facility for the dance. Terry Pfeifer and Tom Schmidtberger, members of the Helping Hands of God, are planning to sell chances for a Traeger grill as the large prize on the raffle.
Anyone wanting a second ticket for their partner can get those at the door by showing their original ticket. A freewill donation will be available at the door for the additional tickets.
"Julie and I and all our family are so grateful," Mitch Weber said. "This is a lot of our classmates and people we went to school with, and it's great to have so much local support."
His wife agreed.
"Through the generous hearts and prayers of so many, Kayden's miracle has begun," Julie Weber said. "Words can never express how thankful we are. We strongly believe in the power of prayer, and we ask for your continued prayers as we face this challenging battle."
Frank, an avid videographer, spent several months compiling and editing photographs and video footage of the band's nearly 38 years together.
"It's a true history," Frank said of the documentary. "But it's also entertaining."
DVDs can be picked up at all three Cerv's convenience store locations in Hays; at Sunflower Bank, Gorham State Bank and Victoria Food & Variety in Victoria; and at Woelk's House of Diamond's, the Jagged Edge and D. Palma and Co. in Russell.