More details were confirmed Friday about a pair of free outdoor screenings of a Tragically Hip concert next month.
Kamloops is one of a host of communities across the country that host the fundraising screenings Saturday, Aug. 20.
The Tragically Hip: A National Celebration, will be shown at two outdoor venues. Riverside Park Bandshell will be host to a main stage presentation with McDonald Park offering a family-friendly option as part of this year’s North Shore Business Association’s Overlanders Day family fun festival.
Fans who attend will be encouraged to donate to the newly established Brain Cancer Research Fund in honour of front man and lead vocalist Gord Downie, who has been diagnosed with an incurable form of brain cancer.
Digging deep and reaching out on what will almost certainly be their final tour, Downie and The Hip have formed a tag team with the CBC and the Canadian Cancer Society.
Smaller markets that weren’t on The Hip’s concert tour now have a way to commemorate the band’s 30-year track record on the Canadian rock scene and acknowledge Downie, who revealed in May that he is fighting incurable brain cancer. The band surprised fans by organizing the tour as a farewell gesture.
“We were approached by the CBC and The Tragically Hip to work on this initiative,” said Jennifer Harbaruk, annual giving co-ordinator with the cancer society in Kamloops.
“Gord Downie wanted a way for communities to be involved, so they’re allowing the CBC to issue rights to partners in communities. It’s for the communities, but it supports the society nationally.”
The only condition: That all proceeds from the televised screenings support brain cancer research.
The events will feature a concert in Downie’s home town of Kingston, Ont., the last performance on the current Man Machine Poem tour.
In May of this year, Downie – the lead singer for the band – revealed he had been diagnosed with glioblastoma, a currently incurable brain cancer. He is one of 3,000 Canadians who will be told this year that they have brain cancer.
It is expected that nearly 2,000 Canadians will die from the disease this year. Brain cancer is the most common cause of cancer death in children up to age 14 and the second most common cause of cancer death among older adolescents and young adults aged 15-29. Glioblastoma is the most common type of brain cancer in adults and one with an average survival of less than 15 months after diagnosis.
Despite the Canadian Cancer Society investing $10 million in the last five years in brain cancer research projects across the country, there is still a long way to go. Survival rates are low and brain cancer research can’t be effectively funded without help from generous donors.
To donate to the brain cancer research fund
Text the word FIGHT to 20222, visit cancer.ca/brainresearch or call 1-800-268-8874.