Kevin Farmer knows the importance of holding a steady beat. As the drummer for Mountain Head and Grale, he’s used to keeping the groove and holding songs together.
Now, for the second year, he’s picking up the sticks and keeping time to help fight Parkinsons.
“Last year I came up with an idea to play drums for 12 hours straight to raise funds for Parkinson Canada. I thought I’d raise a couple hundred dollars, but ended up with $10,700 in the first year. This year I’m looking to double that and raise $20,000!”
This is a personal fight for him: His father, Alan, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease 16 years ago.
“Every year we walk to raise funds that go towards research, education and support for people living with Parkinson’s. When the COVID-19 pandemic was in full swing in 2020, I started thinking outside the box and came up with a crazy idea of how to combine my love of playing drums with a cause that I am truly passionate about,” he says.
This year’s event is slated for Sunday, August 29, starting at 9 a.m. and going strong for 12 hours, until 9 p.m. He’ll be livestreaming the whole thing on Facebook, YouTube and Twitch and would love for a virtual audience to tune in and support his efforts. He’ll be playing solo, with bands and some special guests while also interacting with those who tune in on social media to check on his progress.
The event is timed to coincide with the start of this year’s 31st annual Parkinson Canada SuperWalk, in which people across the country will take a walk to support people living with Parkinson’s disease and their families. There will be a virtual opening ceremony on Saturday, Sept. 11, for the walk.
“This year, more than ever, the need to stand up to Parkinson’s together is clear. Parkinson Canada is almost exclusively funded by private donations and SuperWalk plays a major role in the ability to deliver support, service and hope to Canadians with Parkinson’s,” the organization says. More information on SuperWalk is available here.
By the way, Kevin doesn’t want people who tune in to watch him play think this is a passive experience. He’ll be giving away more than 25 raffle prizes to people who make a donation of $25 or more — there’s $3,000 worth of prizes in total up for grabs! More information on donating and the great prizes can be found here.
Don’t forget to tune in on August 29, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. to help the Farmers beat Parkinson’s.