WARREN - A dozen cans of vegetables is a small price to pay for several hours of live music, said Tina Leverknight.
"It really is about helping people," the Washingtonville woman said. "You can enjoy the night, enjoy the music and know you're doing something good all at the same time."
Leverknight likes Elvis music. Her friend, Kenny Rogers, likes the Beatles. On Saturday they each got to hear some of their favorite tunes during Foodstock 2011.
Boy scouts help load the vans with food items for the area hungry
"I came for the Elvis impersonators," she said. "He likes the Beatles tribute. We're both happy.''
The event, sponsored by local community service group Trumbull 100, featured 10 area acts donating their time and talent for the eight-hour concert at Packard Music Hall to help Second Harvest Food Bank.
Michael Iberis, executive director of the food bank, said although he wasn't sure as of Saturday evening how much money the event had raised for Second Harvest, close to 3,000 food items were collected.
Tribune Chronicle / Virginia Shank
Matthew Brown, 14, of Leavittsburg, left, stamps the hands of Leslie Long, far right, and her 3-year-old daughter Ella Saturday at the entrance of the Foodstock 2011 concert event. Long, whose husband, Pepper, is a member of the band Shotgun Willie, brought a case of food for Second Harvest Food Bank. Shotgun Willie was one of several bands to perform at the event held at Packard Music Hall.
"It's heartwarming to see this," he said. "To see people come out and help this way. It really says a lot about this community. So many people in this area don't really have a lot themselves, and yet they're willing to help their neighbors, their communities."
According to a 2010 study commissioned by the Food Research and Action Center, a national organization focusing on eradicating hunger and undernutrition, the Warren-Youngstown-Boardman area ranks third, tying with the Lakeland-Winter Haven area in Florida, on the chart listing metropolitan areas with the highest rate of food hardship - the struggle of residents to acquire adequate food to feed themselves and their families.
The ranking has caught attention nationally, even bringing a crew from the national news agency Fox News to the area Saturday to cover the Foodstock 2011 event.
"This is a major concern," said Ned Gold, president of Trumbull 100.
Gold said the idea for Foodstock came a couple months ago when newspapers began reporting the results of the data collected by the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. Gold's law partner, John Falgiani Jr., suggested getting some local bands together to perform. The two men originally considered doing something next spring.
"But Michael (Iberis) told us people are in need right now, especially with the holidays coming," Gold said.
Trumbull 100 member Marty Cohen, co-promoter of the River Rock at the Amp concert series, helped put together the musical lineup, which included the Warren G. Harding Madrigal Choir, Madame Weez, the bluegrass band the Red Dust Mountain Boys, rock band Shotgun Willy, Mark Lee Pringle's 1950s Elvis Tribute Show with the Blue Moon Band, Danny G and his late-era Presley tribute, blues musician Damian Knapp with Larry Long Jr., the Beatles tribute band The Revolution, John Dante & the Inferno and classic rock act Sideshow.
Admission to the show was $10, or a donation of 10 non-perishable food items per person.
Gold said he's hoping to make the concern an annual event.
"Those are the plans right now," he said. "We put this together in a very short time, just a few months. But we're hoping to make it bigger and better and do what we can to help as many people as possible."