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A concert for a cure

Rock out for a cure at an upcoming music festival hosted by two local high school graduates.

The All For One Cure Benefit Festival will be Thursday at Cedar Lane Regional Park from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Tickets are $10. Science and Mathematics Academy graduates Molleshree Karna and Kalliopi Drakos founded the event, which started as a small concert in the Bel Air Assembly of God Church.

As juniors, the girls were part of Relay for Life, a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, and decided to hold a concert last May to raise money for their team. With only three local bands and $5 tickets, they still managed to raise close to $500, Molleshree said.

This time around, the duo tried to hold another concert with ticket sales going directly to the American Cancer Society, not through Relay for Life.

"We wanted to do just an evening concert with a few bands," Molleshree said. "But then a lot of bands were interested."

The small evening concert quickly turned into a festival complete with more than 25 bands from Harford County, Baltimore and Washington, D.C. The increasing interest led them to check elsewhere for venues, settling on Cedar Lane, which in the past has only held sporting events.

"He was actually pretty excited about the idea," Molleshree said of the owner.

In addition to the large space, Molleshree also said they were interested in an outdoor venue, making Cedar Lane a perfect choice. They want people to be able to bring balls and Frisbees to enjoy the all-day festival.

The ticket price also gives visitors a pass to come and go throughout the day, as well as access to merchandise stands for the bands and food vendors.

Bands will play throughout the whole day and include Chasing Morgan, Sons of the Radio, Blowing the Lead, Monteclair and more.

"It's to showcase the local musicians of Harford County," Molleshree added. "We just wanted to give them an opportunity to play."

Molleshree said she, too, is in a band, Pieces of Mercury, but they will be unable to perform because their guitarist is getting his teeth pulled the day before. Molleshree is their violinist.

Both Molleshree and Kalliopi will be heading to college in the fall, with Molleshree studying biomedical engineering at Columbia University and Kalliopi going Johns Hopkins University for statistics and applied mathematics.

Because Kalliopi will still remain in the area, she can continue to help plan the festival, which the girls plan on continuing in the future. Molleshree, however, will be in New York and less able to contribute.

Their plan, however, is to pass the fundraiser down to their younger friends in the area to continue the festival. They "definitely want to continue doing some sort of benefit for the American Cancer Society," she said, because everyone has connections to the group through relatives.

For now, however, they are more than pleased with the amount of interest in the upcoming concert.

"We'll be happy with whatever we make," Molleshree said. "This is mostly just so we can raise any money at all."

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
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