Donations accepted, concessions available

Piper Leigh and the Smokin' Section will perform at a concert Friday evening for the benefit of the Albert McFall Fund, which provides assistance for cancer patients in Pratt County. The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. at Lemon Park.

The fund was established in McFall's memory through the First United Methodist Church, and is administered by the Pratt Health Foundation. All the money stays local, and none is used for overhead or administrative costs, Sheryl White, director of lay ministries at the church, said. The fund helps patients pay for non-typical expenses such as gasoline for travel, special foods required, or other costs that are not covered by insurance or through other means of support.

"It works very much like the American Cancer Society does, but it's entirely local," White explained.

The church had a team at the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life earlier this month, but decided to put more of its emphasis on raising funds for the McFall Fund, White said. They think the fund is often overlooked as a potential resource, and the concert will help bring attention to its important mission.

A donation will be accepted at Friday's concert and concessions, including walking tacos, homemade ice cream and cookies and drinks, will be available for purchase. Concert-goers are encouraged to bring their lawn chairs for a relaxing evening. In the event of inclement weather, an alternate location will be selected and noted on signs at the park.

The First United Methodist Church Praise Band will open the concert, and Jack Ewing will serve as master of ceremonies. His niece, Piper Leigh, is the headline act.

She has performed in Pratt at a couple of fund-raisers for the American Red Cross, was at Relay for Life several years ago, and her band performs regularly in the Wichita and Hutchinson areas. Ewing described her style as eclectic.

She started in Christian music with a group from Arkansas City, and has several solo recordings to her credit. She sings rock, blues, pop, bluegrass and gospel — a little bit of everything, according to Ewing.