Sunday, Dec 17, 2017
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Music-Theater-Dance

Acoustics for Autism draws large crowd

Organizers say fundraiser in Maumee has doubled attendance

  • CTY-ACOUSTIC06Acoustics

    Trey Connor plays to a packed house on the main stage during Acoustics for Autism, the annual music fundraiser to provide support and information, resources, and financial assistance to families affected by autism, at The Village Idiot on March 5, 2017.

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  • CTY-ACOUSTIC06Brodie

    Amie Brodie, left, and Bruce Brodie, right, with Wolf Creek Risin’ play in the tent during Acoustics for Autism.

    The Blade/Amy E. Voigt
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  • CTY-ACOUSTIC06Connor

    Trey Connor plays the main stage during Acoustics for Autism at The Village Idiot in Maumee.

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  • CTY-ACOUSTIC06Trey

    Trey Connor plays the main stage during Acoustics for Autism at The Village Idiot in Maumee.

    The Blade/Amy E. Voigt
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  • CTY-ACOUSTIC06sign

    An Acoustics for Autism road sign hangs on the wall during the annual music fundraiser to provide support and information, resources, and financial assistance to families affected by autism.

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Project iAM’s 10th annual Acoustics for Autism has drawn quite a crowd today.

Organizers believe there are at least twice as many people as previous years, easily 3,500 or more patrons standing elbow-to-elbow next to each other in the outdoor tents and inside downtown Maumee establishments serving as co-hosts.

CTY-ACOUSTIC06Trey

Trey Connor plays the main stage during Acoustics for Autism at The Village Idiot in Maumee.

The Blade/Amy E. Voigt
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“You can’t walk into any venue. It’s so insane,” the lead organizer, Nicole Khoury, told The Blade shortly before 4 p.m., stating that they were seeing crowds at 2 p.m. as large or larger as when the peak flow usually comes about 6 p.m.

“It’s at least twice as big as it normally is,” she said. “We’re overwhelmed and humbled. I never thought this would have become as big as it did. It’s an amazing feeling. I haven’t had the time to take it all in yet. Everything is awesome.”

PHOTO GALLERY: Acoustics for Autism

Ms. Khoury is an attorney and part-time public defender during the day, and performs regular gigs at night as the lead singer-guitarist for the pop-rock band, Arctic Clam, one of 55 bands that volunteered their time and talent for this year’s Acoustics for Autism event.  

Scott Hayes, Arctic Clam’s drummer and one of many volunteers involved with the event, echoed much of what Ms. Khoury said.

“It’s the biggest crowd I’ve seen in Toledo for any philanthropic event,” Mr. Hayes said. “Everyone is very, very excited about the turnout.”

CTY-ACOUSTIC06sign

An Acoustics for Autism road sign hangs on the wall during the annual music fundraiser to provide support and information, resources, and financial assistance to families affected by autism.

The Blade/Amy E. Voigt
Enlarge | Buy This Image

The dance stage was full of people dancing early in the afternoon, almost from the first note, Mr. Hayes said.

Calm, sunny weather apparently helped, as did coverage by local print and broadcast media, as well as social media buzz over the event reaching its 10-year milestone, he said.

“It is literally crazy and it’s a good-time crazy,” Mr. Hayes said. “It’s a very diverse crowd. People of all ages are here.”

The 14-hour event began at noon and continues until 2 a.m. Monday. There is no cover charge.

The second in a series of benefit CDs featuring the work of participating musicians was released at this year’s event.

Proceeds help families affected by autism. For more information, go to acousticsforautism.com.

Contact Tom Henry at: thenry@theblade.com, 419-724-6079, or via Twitter @ecowriterohio.

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