The Michelle Taylor Band plays at the Strutz Party in the Park at Arlington's Legion Park on Aug. 24. From left, Robert Morrill on drums, Michelle Taylor singing and Rob Baker on bass.


Strutz Party in the Park raises money for Arlington Arts Council and the Mike Turner Memorial Foundation

 Popular local rock and roll bands performed in downtown Arlington to help raise funds for public art and children's organizations at the Strutz Party in the Park on Aug. 24.

The event was organized to benefit the Arlington Arts Council and the Mike Turner Memorial Foundation.

Toby Strotz runs the foundation and is part of the Strutz Band which had done StrutzFest for a number of years in Darrington.

"They haven't done the StrutzFest for a few years so we thought people would want to come see the band," said Sarah Lopez, community revitalization project manager.

"It's a good opportunity to bring him [Strotz] downtown," she said.

Strotz said he was happy to participate in the local project.

"I wasn't doing StrutzFest this year and she asked if I would come in and play and I said 'sure,'" he said.

"It would be a great opportunity to have some local people see a couple good bands and raise some money for the Arts Council and my foundation also," he said.

The local Mike Turner Memorial Foundation has been active for about a decade and provides donations to various groups to help local children.

"Yearly we sponsor north county Special Olympics, youth sports and also Children's Hospital," said Strotz.

"For five years we did StrutzFest to raise money for those," but without that income he thought they would participate in something new this year.

The Arlington Arts Council also hoped to raise funds for public art around town.

"We were looking at other fundraisers besides the auction to raise money," said Sarah Arney, president of the Arlington Arts Council.

Volunteers helped to run a beer and wine garden at the event.

"We had a beer garden in Art in the Park one year but this is the first time we've had one with a rock and roll concert. And Toby is a pretty well-known local musician. We thought he would draw a crowd and that he should have the opportunity to play on the stage," she said.

Supporting a concert is also in-line with supporting art in Arlington as well, said Arney.

"We believe in all kinds of art, and music is art also," she said. "We want to support the musicians in the community as well as fundraise."

The money raised is meant specifically for public art that the Arlington Arts Council helps fund.

"It's made Arlington a much more interesting place, in my opinion, with sculptures along the trail and murals around town," said Arney.

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