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Daisychain chips in to help women

Female-focused acts will unite to raise funds

It's always comforting to know that your entertainment dollar is working toward a positive goal. In the case of the Daisychain Music Fair, the money spent is helping out women seriously down on their luck.

This weekend marks the last three days of this year's Daisychain Music Fair, a five-day, female-focused music festival. The benefit concert is also the largest event of its kind Ñ with 55 female acts Ñ in Oregon.

This is only the second year for the fledgling Daisychain event, which offers great musical entertainment and also raises needed funds for the Old Town Clinic's Women's Safe Passage & Respite Fund.

All proceeds from Daisychain go to the clinic, which provides support for low-income women attempting to break from cycles of domestic violence and misfortune.

Daisychain was started by three women, one of whom, Mt. Tabor music booker Peggy Glickenhaus, received timely medical support from the Old Town Clinic. Struck by the level of care given by the clinic Ñ and its compassionate mission Ñ Glickenhaus felt moved to do something in return. She told friends Lisa Ford, a concert promoter, and Lisa Lepine, a publicist, about her experience at Old Town Clinic. The three women decided to pool their talents to start Daisychain.

Christine Fry, development director of the Old Town Clinic, describes the Women's Safe Passage and Respite Fund as a discretionary one that helps women in dire circumstances. Central City Concern started managing the Old Town Clinic last fall after taking over the reins from Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon.

'If the women need a night in a hotel, extra clothing, we provide that,' Fry says. 'The clinic treats about 3,000 unduplicated patients a year Ñ men and women both.'

Last year, Fry says, the concert raised about $6,500. The funds lasted the clinic about six months, providing nonmedical services ranging from giving out clothes that women can wear to job interviews to bus tickets away from dangerous domestic situations.

This year's concert roster, like last year, skews heavily toward the folk-country vein. Laurelthirst Pub regulars the Little Sue Trio opened the concert in midweek at the main room of the Mt. Tabor Theater. Other standouts were Lisa Miller and the Trailer Park Honeys and singer-songwriter Nicole Campbell.

Among the notable acts taking the stage this weekend, Portland's Flat Mountain Girls will perform their classic old-time music, and two of the festival's biggest names, Tracy Grammer and Dave Carter, bring their contemporary American folk music to the main room. Beth Kelly of Captain Rock and Doris Dodge also are headliners.