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Annual fundraiser for ALS set for Aug. 4 in Hastings

For the second year in a row, Always Lucy Strong is hosting its primary fundraiser in musical fashion. This year's A Little Summer Jam will welcome Minnesota-based band Porcupine and Kat Perkins of NBC's "The Voice" fame.

A Little Summer Jam returns 3-8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 4, at Rotary Pavilion in Hastings.

"We support families that have been newly diagnosed with ALS by sending them on family vacations together," said Carol Hoffman, executive director of Always Lucy Strong. "That way they have a chance to spend quality time together ... because being diagnosed with ALS is a very difficult and scary time."

Hoffman said that families of those newly diagnosed are told the cost of supporting one person is $250,000, that they have two to five years to live, and should travel if they want to do so.

Always Lucy Strong exists to cover the expenses of travel to help lighten the load put on these families.

The Hastings-based nonprofit hosts fundraisers throughout the year but none more high profile than A Little Summer Jam. While no family has been chosen yet to receive proceeds from the 2018 event, Hoffman said that she has multiple applications on hand.

Last year, Always Lucy Strong was able to send two families on vacation with each ranging in cost from $8,000 to $10,000. This year, the organization hopes to pull off a similar feat.

To do so, there is a bean bag tournament in addition to the concerts. Thirty-two teams are allowed entry at a cost of $60 per two-person team. The $60 covers not just the tournament entrance fee but also the tickets for the concerts. In addition, there are cash prizes for the winning team.

For those interested in only the concert, tickets can be prepurchased for $16 at http://alwayslucystrong.brownpapertickets.com or www.facebook.com/alwayslucystrong.

"Previously we did the ice bucket challenge, but we wanted to transition to something that would carry us through the years yet also be fun, and that's when we came up with the idea for the concert," Hoffman said. "Last year we had some great bands and this year we have even better bands so we are really excited."

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