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We Care Presents a Check to The Bridge House And an Immediate Need is Funded

A successful and well attended We Care concert was held on October 23 raising $24,000 for The Bridge House of Plymouth.  Members of Temple B’nai Israel, Karen Lukeman, Barbara Katz, and Suzanne Appleton, presented a check in the amount of $8,435.00 to Cathy Bentwood, Executive Director of The Bridge House.  The check represents the net proceeds from ticket sales and donations from major event sponsors Audi Nashua and Miracle Farms Landscaping.  Additional funds for the Bridge House came from these event sponsors – The Bank of New Hampshire, Pemi River Fuels, Hannaford, Brand Elevation Co., Chicken Shack, Yamas Greek Eatery, Dragon Financial Services, Gold Pizza House, Dunkin’ and Walmart.  The We Care concert series gives local nonprofits and businesses the opportunity to come together to form mutually beneficial partnerships as well as bringing awareness to the public of their individual mission, services, and products.  

Left to right:

Karen Lukeman, Brian F. holding check in front (Veteran, USAF), David D., behind Brian (Veteran, US Navy), Cathy Bentwood, Barbara Katz, Suzanne Appleton

Fundraising events such as this allow The Bridge House to provide financial assistance to those who may find themselves suddenly caught short, such as Veteran Joe K. (US ARMY – Vietnam) who called the Bridge House with a dire request, “I just found out I have to replace the engine in my pickup – it’s going to cost $4760! I don’t have that.  Will you cosign a loan?”  Cathy Bentwood was eager to help, especially since she knew that Joe had just spent quite a bit of money treating one of his two dogs.  Cathy realized Joe was the perfect candidate to receive a loan from the Bridge House’s dedicated Veterans’ fund, especially since the recent We Care fundraiser had helped to replenish the fund.   An arrangement was made at the local branch of The Bank of New Hampshire for Joe to receive the money needed to repair his truck.  But Joe was adamant about repaying the loan, so at the same time a direct deposit of $500 monthly repayment was created from Joe’s account to The Bridge House’s account until the loan is paid.  What Joe didn’t know is that the repayment was readjusted to $3700.  This is the kind of help that Bridge House provides on a regular basis, and it seemed “the least Bridge House could do for a Veteran” according to Cathy Bentwood. 

Ken with his dogs Athena & Blue

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A Night To Remember!

October 23, 2021, Laconia, NH – Oh what a night!  Five O’clock Shadow did not disappoint the sold-out audience that came to The Colonial Theatre to experience “a cappella that rocks!”   The six-member vocal band sang a varied assortment of popular music from “Hip to Be Square” to their own “pandemic version” of “Stuck in the Middle with You” retitled “Stuck Quarantining with You,” and ending with a stirring encore of “Bohemian Rhapsody.”  Their signature sound was performed with perfection – every note, every vocal intonation, each carefully rehearsed instrumental sound, rang out through the theatre to thunderous applause.  This was just the second live performance for FOCS since the beginning of the pandemic.  It was clear they were thrilled to be back on stage performing their music, sharing their stories, and engaging with the audience. 

The show was opened by Plymouth State University a cappella ensembles, Mixed Emotions, an all-female group, and Vocal Order, an all-male group.  Both ensembles had the unique opportunity to study with members of Five O’clock Shadow earlier that day, learning new techniques and preparing for the evening’s performance.  After the groups’ impressive appearances on stage, FOCS member Dan Lennon congratulated the students and he explained to the audience that FOCS is dedicated to continuing education and outreach to young performing groups.

The We Care concert series allows local nonprofits and businesses the opportunity to come together to form mutually beneficial partnerships as well as bringing awareness to the public of their individual mission, services, and products.   This event was a record fundraiser for the 18th We Care concert since its inception in 2013.  100% of the net proceeds from ticket sales, contributions from the main event sponsors, Audi Nashua, Miracle Farms Landscaping, The Bank of New Hampshire, Pemi River Fuels, and Hannaford, as well as many local businesses and individual contributions amounted to a donation of $24,000 to The Bridge House in Plymouth, NH.

Cathy Bentwood, executive director of The Bridge House, offered her thanks via email: “I love the ‘Little Temple that Could.’ Thank you all for exemplifying the best team effort I’ve ever experienced.”

Marybeth Bentwood, owner of Brand Elevation Communications and marketing coordinator for The Bridge House also offered her thanks: “this event raised my appreciation for how individuals, who are committed to supporting and uplifting their community, can move mountains.”

And the beat goes on … get ready to rock and roll with We Care again on Memorial Day Weekend, Saturday, May 28, 2022.  Stay tuned for more details to be announced soon,