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April 23, 2004
Vol. 45 No. 21

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WQSU hosts annual Bluegrass Festival

The 7th Annual Bluegrass Festival will be held at Susquehanna on Sunday.

The festival is a fundraising event for WQSU-FM, the campus radio station, to raise the funds to operate during the summer.

"The station uses the money it raises through the festival to pay for a summer operations manager, office supplies, telephone costs, maintenance, engineer, etc.," Larry Augustine, professor of communications and theater arts and general manager of WQSU, said. "We hope to raise about half of the summer costs through the Festival.

"The concert begins at 2 p.m. and the doors to Weber Chapel Auditorium open at 1 p.m.. A $10 donation is encouraged.

"The Annual Bluegrass Festivals have been quite successful in the past. Each one has had very good bands and the audience has always been pleased to attend," Augustine said.

This year's festival includes bluegrass groups Stained Grass Window, The Lykens Valley Bluegrass Boys and Chester Johnson and The Walls of Time.

Stained Grass Window is in its 11th year of performing in the area. They played at last year's festival. The band is composed of Mark Doncheski, banjo and mandolin; Lou Eberlin, rhythm guitar and vocals; Rick Marcera on a wide variety of instruments; Bob Meehan, harmonica; and Ken Shafranko, resophonic guitar and vocals.

The Lykens Valley Bluegrass Boys is another local band that has just completed the taping of a record to be distributed by Green Valley Recording. The band played at a festival a few years ago.

Chester Johnson and The Walls of Time are new to the Bluegrass Festival.

According to Augustine, the bands for this year's concert were arranged through WQSU's DJ, Tracy Waite, whose on-air name is "Big Trace." Waite hosts the Saturday evening Bluegrass Show from 9 p.m. to midnight.

"Derek the Dude" and "Big Trace" are the masters of ceremony for the event. Sound will be provided by Cobra Sound.

"The Bluegrass Festivals have always been a big thing at Susquehanna," WQSU Promotions Manager Gerard DeLorenzo, said. "We have radio meetings once a week where we discuss issues about the radio station and lately a hot topic has been the bluegrass concert."

Augustine said, "Each year, the festival seems to draw more audience members as word spreads about the festival."

Radio staff run most of the festivities and organizes many of the important details around the event.

According to DeLorenzo, "Everyone who is part of the radio station crew is around to help and we all have a good time together."

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