Small Talk: CDC benefit concert a success
by Annette Maddox
Special to The Star
Oct 28, 2012 | 1322 views |  0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Pascal, Lauren, Alex, Bryan and Ray — members of a small town band based in New York City and called Balthrop, Alabama — played a benefit show for the Calhoun County Community Development Corporation (CDC) on Friday, Oct. 19, at a special “smoke-free” night at the Peerless Saloon. Katy Cairo of the Gypsy Begonias opened the show for close to 100 people who came out for a fun night involving two great live performances supporting a local non-profit organization.

Joe Jankoski, executive director of the CDC, had seen Balthrop perform in Huntsville and New York City. When he found out they were coming to Alabama to play three shows, he was able to convince them to add Anniston to the list. Kristy Farmer, proprietor of the Peerless Grille, and Van Heibel, from the Peerless Saloon, stepped up to provide the venue, and offered any after-expenses proceeds from the door to the CDC.

Post-performance reviews of both Katy and Balthrop were extremely positive, and in addition to being able to hear some great music, attendees enjoyed kicking back and catching up with friends in the casual venue.

The Calhoun County CDC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to providing affordable housing, business development and youth leadership to the residents of Calhoun County, with a specific emphasis on West Anniston. It seeks to engage area residents in the revitalization and refurbishment of their neighborhoods. The CDC currently owns three properties available for rental in West Anniston, with plans to construct another in the near future. The organization is working diligently to transform the abandoned Auto Pride Car Wash on West 10th Street into an above-ground, container-box garden utilizing fresh topsoil.

In the past year, CDC has established two programs to introduce area children to the sports of long-distance running (We ALL Run!) and mountain biking (We ALL Ride!). We ALL Run! is an incentive-based running program to train kids to run the Woodstock 5K or the Kidstock 1-mile race. This year, 14 children participated in We ALL Run! (generously supported by the Junior League, Anniston Runners Club and the Kiwanis Club of Anniston), training four days a week for eight weeks to prepare for the races and, in exchange, receiving a new pair of running shoes, a technical running shirt and a pair of running shorts for their efforts.

We ALL Ride! uses mountain bikes donated by the Southern Off Road Biking Association (SORBA) and helmets purchased through a grant from the Community Foundation of Northeast Alabama to teach kids about mountain biking and allow them to use the Coldwater Mountain Bike Trail.

To share your news with Small Talk, contact Annette Maddox at

Save the Date

Head up to the Little River Canyon Center Saturday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. for Canyon Fest 2012, where you can enjoy art, music, exhibits, demonstrations, activities for children (and for dogs!), great food and more. Call 256-782-8010 or visit for more information.
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Small Talk: CDC benefit concert a success by Annette Maddox
Special to The Star

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