Rockers help fight against breast cancer | TahoeDailyTribune.com
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Rockers help fight against breast cancer

Greg Risling

Good weather, heightened awareness about a deadly disease and a bus painted with flames make for good company – That and some of the nation’s top alternative music acts.

Sierra-at-Tahoe will host the third annual Boarding for Breast Cancer benefit on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The all-day event will feature pro and amateur snowboarders shredding on a halfpipe complimented by the sounds of the Supersuckers, Royal Crown Revue, Moby and headliners, the Foo Fighters.

Crews were busy setting up the 35-foot stage and vendor booths on Thursday under a blinding sun. Brett Smith of Fuse Sports Marketing was trying to coordinate all of the efforts. The Burlington, Vt., company is responsible for the annual fund-raiser. “Boarding” was inspired by Monica Steward, who was a clothing designer in the snowboard industry. She was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 28. Steward is remembered and praised by her peers for her courageous fight.

“This event rallies her friends and others in the industry,” Smith said. “We have gained a lot of momentum since we started the fund-raiser.”

Smith started to put out his feelers the day after last year’s event. He had to find sponsors and musicians who were free in April.

With a diverse lineup this year, Smith doesn’t believe the message about breast cancer will be overshadowed. There will be six booths for visitors to pick up information. They will be able to get a passport stamped from four of the booths, which will enter them in a raffle.

“We want to promote the cause,” Smith added. “We want to alert young people, women and men alike, about breast cancer. It can happen at an early age.”

While the message is the most important part of the afternoon, the entertainment attracts the crowds.

Attendees to this year’s concert might recognize a prop that was popular on the Vans Warped Tour, a national summer music show: a colorful school bus.

The black bus with hot flames blazoned on the sides is owned by a Truckee business. The bus has caught a few eyes because it is equipped with skis on the front tires and has a protective canopy. The vehicle carries the stage equipment and also is used as the “backstage.”

“We’ve noticed the need for all-weather staging,” said Mike “Okie” Okalwaski, referring to last year’s soggy conditions. “We’re honored to be involved and help out the cause.”

Tahoe Daily Tribune E-mail: tribune@tahoe.com

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