Students and CSU community members gathered for the first-ever annual Cans Around the Oval concert at Hodi’s Half Note Sunday evening to celebrate the hard work of the volunteers and donors of the food drive for the Larimer County Food Bank.
Universities Fighting Hunger, a CSU branch of the national organization, developed the idea to not only celebrate students and community member’s hard work, but also to donate all proceeds back to the food bank.
The Cans Around the Oval concert concept was brainstormed by UFH Vice President Miranda Fisher, a junior journalism and technical communication major, and President Allison Lundeby, a junior economics major, as a class project.
“The concert idea started as a service learning project for my World Interdependence: Food and Populations class,” said Fisher. “When (Lundeby) and I decided to start this club, we decided to turn our project into a real idea and team up with Cans Around the Oval.”
UFH enlisted three local bands to play for the benefit: Leif Sunde, FlightRisk and 303 Movement.
“Cans Around the Oval has always been a huge thing for Fort Collins and I always heard about it growing up,” said Dylan Schmer, a FlightRisk band member and Fort Collins resident. “Helping the hungry and homeless is something everyone should do. It’s cool we can use our music to help people who need it.”
Sunde and 303 Movement agreed, saying they feel that it is important to show support for this type of issue.
“Music has helped me through a lot of issues in my life, and if I feel like my music can help other people, then that means the world to me.” Sunde said.
Sam Bowersox-Daly, a member of FlighRisk also helped to coordinate Cans Around the Oval.
“UFH worked really hard on this concert. It’s great that we can combine local music and student organizations to raise awareness about hunger issues,” Bowersox-Daly said.
According to Bowersox-Daly, Cans Around the Oval collected approximately 105,000 pounds of food, or nearly as much as nine male African elephants, during this year’s drive, making it the biggest in Northern Colorado.
UFH’s mission is to raise awareness about domestic and international hunger issues. CSU’s branch currently focuses on issues at CSU and in the Fort Collins area.
The organization plans on continuing this event each year as a conclusion to Cans Around the Oval.
“Hopefully this will be the first concert of something huge. We needed to get our feet wet and work our problems for next year, but we hope to have this event close Cans [Around the Oval] every year.” said Fisher.
UFH hosts it’s next meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 29 at 5 p.m. in Clark 217C. The organization is also helping out with the Oxfam Hunger Banquet on Oct. 23 at 5:30 p.m. in the Parmelee Dining Hall.
Staff writer Chelsea Cushing can be reached at email@example.com.