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August 22, 2013

'Weekend Smash' set to benefit Outlaws

Staff Report
The Daily Star

---- — A casino night, family fun day and a concert by folk-rock band America are on tap for this weekend in what organizers are calling “Weekend Smash.”

Presented by the Oneonta Outlaws in conjunction with the Otsego County Chamber of Commerce and Five Star Subaru, the weekend of events is a fundraiser for the team, owner Gary Laing explained. 

“As we use the field, we’re finding out that there’s a lot of things that are not there that we need, which are very expensive,” Laing said. “We’re finding these things out so that, in the future, we can make improvements to the field and the area around it.” 

Besides that, Laing said, he hopes the event will give people in the community a chance to get together and have a good time. 

Otsego County Chamber Executive Director Barbara Ann Heegan called the event “what our community is all about — getting together enjoying the beauty and charm of our ball park, being good neighbors and enjoying the quality of life that surrounds us with some fun activities for the entire family all weekend long.” 

“This is going to be a great community event and an opportunity for people to see an incredible band that has stood the test of time up close. The fact that they are stopping in Oneonta is pretty special,” said Terry Potter, owner of Millennia Entertainment, who helped to line up the performers for the event. “We are expecting a great turnout; these guys are great!”

Weekend Smash will kick off Friday with a casino night under a tent on the baseball field. The $10 admission fee will include chips to play, with additional chips available. The top three chip collectors will have a choice of prizes. A Chinese auction will be included. 

Saturday will be Kids Day at the ballpark, with a variety of activities, music and games. More than half an acre of inflatables will be set up, as well as water activities, a mechanical bull and a mechanical surf board. The day will include a lunch buffet from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. with the Zooperstars, a group of sports mascot-style characters with names such as “Whale Gretzky” and “Donovan McCrabb.” 

Laing called an earlier Zooperstars performance at Damaschke — during Daily Star Night in July — “awesome.” 

Tthe event is meant for families to be able to bring children and spend the day, Laing said. 

“The weather looks like it will be pretty good, but I will have a tent set up as well,” he said. 

Space is limited for the lunch; reservations are requested. Admission at the gate will be $15 for all-day play, or $10 for five hours, with separate charges for lunch and some other activities. 

The America concert, also at the ballpark, will begin at 5 p.m., with gates opening at 3. Tickets are on sale for $25. 

According to a media release, Gerry Beckley, Dewey Bunnell and Dan Peek began playing together in London in 1970 and scored No. 1 hits with the songs “Ventura Highway” and “Horse With No Name” in the 1970s. The trio performed together through the early 1980s, when Peek left to try a solo career. Beckley and Bunnell continued recording together and, in 2007, released the album “Here & Now,” collaborating with artists such as Ryan Adams, Ben Kweller and Jim James. Bunnell and Beckley embarked on their 40th anniversary tour in 2010 and have continued touring under that moniker, according to a media release. Peek died in 2011.  

Concert tickets, at $25, are “going fast,” Potter said Wednesday, noting that an additional 1,000 seats had just been released. Tickets can be purchased online at brownpapertickets.com, or at The Eighth Note, The Green Toad, The Green Earth, and SFCU. 

Tickets for all the Weekend Smash events are available from the Outlaws ticket office between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m., or by calling 432-6326. 

“The whole thing is really set up to be family-friendly,” Laing said. “We want people to come down and have a good time.”