March 2018 Writer // Neil Lucas Photography // JJ Kaplan and submitted Carmel Monthly is excited to announce it has entered into an agreement with Concerts for a Cause (CFAC) to become its media sponsor for 2018. Created in 2016 by local residents Bruce Kidd and Steve Neely, CFAC produces four live music events featuring outstanding local and nationally recognized talent each year at the opulent Lucas Estate. The proceeds of ticket sales are donated to a small local not-for-profit that provides needed support to local residents. Kidd and Neely are longtime friends that share a passion for music and giving back to their communities. A couple of years ago, the two got the idea of combining their shared passions, and CFAC was the result. Along the way, they got family and friends, like Zionsville resident Jillian Ashton, involved. Both Kidd and Neely have sat on the boards of large national not-for-profits like JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation). However, with CFAC, they wanted to do something different. One of the unique things about CFAC (and one of the reasons Carmel Monthly was so excited to get involved) is the fact that all the proceeds of ticket sales for each event goes to a different small local not-for-profit. This is made possible due to the generous donation of food by Sysco and contributions by local breweries, a local liquor distributor, The Ackerman Foundation, The Heritage Group and Key Bank. Kidd explained by designating a small organization as the benefactor, the amount of money an event like CFAC raises can have an immense effect on the persons that these local charities serve. For example, the most recent CFAC on January 27 had 250 people in attendance and donated almost $20,000 to Random Acts of Flowers, an organization that delivers 1,500 surprise floral arrangements and moments of kindness each month to elderly patients in local hospitals. Kidd further noted the idea of giving to a single small local charity is consistent with his life philosophy of “do all the good you can, for as many people as you can, in all the ways you can, for as long as you can.” What CFAC has accomplished to date is nothing less than remarkable. Attendance at events has grown each year and so too has the amount of money CFAC has been able to donate to each not-for-profit. In 2016, it averaged 120 people per event and donated a total of $25,000 to four organizations. In 2017, the four concerts were attended by over 700 people and resulted in almost $40,000 being donated to four worthy not-for-profits. While raising money for a local charity is the principal purpose of the events, make no mistake about the first-class quality of the events. CFAC events are designed to be a full evening of entertainment for the 200-250 guests that attend. All four events in 2018 will be hosted at the beautiful Lucas Estate in Carmel. The $75 ticket to attend includes: \tPre-concert reception featuring outstanding food prepared by Lucas Estate Chef Anthony Puma \tAn open bar featuring local craft beers, wine, bourbon tasting and soft drinks \tA fantastic local artist who opens the show \tAn outstanding national artist as the headliner \tA chance to meet both artists in person \tAn opportunity to learn about the organization supported that evening and meet their leadership team \tThe opportunity to impact fellow Hoosiers’ lives with all revenue from ticket sales being donated to a local not-for-profit organization It is with great pride that we at Carmel Monthly join forces with Concerts for a Cause to help those in need in our communities. Visit indyconcertsforacause.org for more information.