Concert helps Fourmile fire relief fund

Sold-out Broomfield event raises $300,000 -- and rocks the house

| Oct 10, 2010

GRATITUDE: Fire chiefs from four volunteer fire districts received a $100,000 check from Community Foundation board chair Helen Gemmill. Photos of signs thanking the fire fighters were projected above stage. (Photo: Bob Morehouse)
The Fourmile Canyon Revival fundraising concert rocked Broomfield Saturday night, Oct. 9, with a sold-out-in-two-minutes crowd roaring their appreciation of the firefighters in attendance. The benefit featured numerous popular musicians, including String Cheese Incident, Yonder Mountain String Band, Big Head Todd and the Monsters, and Leftover Salmon. Guest appearances by several members of the band Phish highlighted the evening.

The event was a gargantuan success, pulling in more than $300,000 for the Boulder Mountain Fire Relief Fund of The Community Foundation, in no small part due to the efforts of Scott Arbough at KBCO, the event sponsor, who pulled together the star-studded lineup. “We started with a fairly small event at the Boulder Theater with two bands, and then word got out and everyone wanted in,” Arbough commented.

An army of Community Foundation volunteers, staff and board members, wearing bright blue Fire Relief Fund t-shirts, manned tables, held out firemen’s boots, and solicited donations throughout the evening. Foundation president Josie Heath cheered as the text-to-pledge numbers were flashed on the enormous lighted screen, breaking $10,000 almost immediately.

Congressman Jared Polis gave a rousing acknowledgement of the courage of the fire fighters. Amy Hardy, mayor of Gold Hill and a volunteer firefighter herself, described her harrowing days on the mountain. Four Mile fire protection district chief Bret Gibson accepted a $100,000 check from Community Foundation board chair Helen Gemmill, part of the funds that will flow to the affected fire departments devastated by the fire. To date, over $600,000 has been raised for the fund. Approximately half the funds will be distributed to individuals and families affected by the fire, and half will be used to help the fire departments rebuild.

While the firefighters were heroes of the evening, the crowd came for the music. And the bands delivered. From the first licks of Leftover Salmon (many of whose members lived in Gold Hill at one time or another) to the final everyone-on-deck closing Bob Marley’s anthem “One Love” more than six hours later, the fans danced, sang, waved, inhaled, and cheered a night to remember. Indeed it was.

Donations to the Boulder Mountain Fire Relief Fund can be made at the Community Foundation website: Text-to-pledge donations can be made by sending a pledge amount in the text message to 303-720-7292.

Bob Morehouse, a past board chair of the Community Foundation Boulder County, is CEO of Vermilion design + interactive, and is an occasional contributor to The Boulder Reporter.