Partys on for Jeff Young - but where?
- Matt Sherman, Nicole Decosta And Lee Van Der Voo
- Lake Oswego Review - News
If you got an invitation to the party, you don't even know where it is yet.
But when two members of the '70s rock band KISS play an acoustic set at a Lake Oswego home next Thursday, exactly where will be a closely guarded secret.
Only those who RSVP and buy a ticket will know the address. And they won't find out until Friday, when the secret location is sent via e-mail less than a week before the show.
Organizers want to the avoid any security problems that might come with two world-famous rock stars. But when show-goers turn out to see Gene Simmons and Tommy Thayer wielding guitars in the 97034 zip code, they'll be doing more than just partying.
They will also be donating thousands of dollars to a local friend who suffers from ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also called Lou Gehrig's Disease). Since 1983, Jeff Young has suffered from the disease, which shuts down the body's nervous system, crippling the physical abilities of its victims.
Young's battle with the disorder has been featured previously in articles in the Lake Oswego Review. He is nationally known for his long-time battle with the disease, which often claims its victims in three to five years.
Young's story received national attention in 2007 when ESPN documented his role as assistant coach of Lake Oswego High School's football team, patrolling the sidelines from his wheelchair.
'Jeff needs the help and I'm someone who can orchestrate an event like this,' Thayer said. 'There are many great people that are friends of Jeff and want to help. Hence the 'Friends of Jeff' organization, that is competely dedicated to putting on a fantastic fundraiser with the help of many, many caring people. We want to help Jeff because he's such a unique and special person. He is a fighter, an inspirer and a gifted man.'
Since 2000, Young's inspirational Web site at www.friendsofjeff.com has funneled motivating quotes to readers who sign up for updates.
Previously, Young had been a college football player, then a musician and screen writer. While a guitar-player, Young collaborated with the band Black 'N Blue, through which he and Thayer became friends.
Now, Thayer and others are doing what they can to support Young and the financial expense of his illness.
Friend Debi Hayes said Young is facing pressure from the state to move into a nursing home to curb medical expenses.
'We're eliminating that from happening because he's not there. He's too active to go to a nursing home,' Hayes said.
'It's not really a gig,' Thayer said. 'It's a fundraiser to raise lots of money to go 100 percent directly to Jeff to help him with his day-to-day needs. But we will have lots of friends, great food, auctions and entertainment as well.'
The event promises to raise thousands in door sales and through an auction of donated items. Spectators will pay $100 a ticket or $250 to have a private reception with the band. The show has already reached capacity at 300 attendees, who were first to respond to 1,500 invites sent via e-mail.
Concert-goers will dine on a salmon buffet, enjoy cocktails from one of three bars and bid on a range of auction items, including a week in Mexico. They'll also enjoy a rare acoustic performance by two world-famous guitarists, one that comes with a view of …
Well, we're not telling.