ARCATA – Friday, May 16, Passion Presents and Humboldt Brews host "Waiting For A Miracle: A Benefit for Steve Watts," featuring a silent auction, live music and more. The event will be held at Humboldt Brews, 856 10th St., Arcata, beginning at 6 p.m. Families are welcome until 9:30 p.m., at which point the venue becomes 21+, with valid ID. Admission is a suggested donation of $10 per person.
Steve Watts is a Humboldt local. His company Passion Presents has been bringing musical acts ranging from Reggae legend Jimmy Cliff to Phish frontman Trey Anastastio, guitar virtuoso Al DiMeola to Americana favorites Greensky Bluegrass, and countless other events to Humboldt County since 2004. Watts is a talented musician and an avid practitioner of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu with an active history in local civic organizations.
On April 26, Watts was participating in a mixed martial arts tournament at Cher-Ae Heights Casino when things went tragically wrong. He suffered major spinal cord damage during the fight and was emergency airlifted to Redding’s Mercy Hospital where he underwent a lengthy surgery. The results of the surgery have left the family and close friends hopeful for Watts' future; however he faces a long hard battle to recovery. Close friend Bryan Raskin says, “Steve has given so much to this community and now it is our turn to give back to him when he needs us the most, the community needs to rally for Steve.”
Watts' many friends and family have gathered together to create a fundraising event to help support his quality of life as he faces the battle of a lifetime. Humboldt Brews has graciously donated the space for the event as well as a portion of the sales from the bar for the evening. Local Beatles tribute band Silver Hammer will start off the evening accompanied by an electric light show by Fred Huff of Marmalade Sky, followed by an All-Star Late Night Jam featuring several local talents that have collaborated with and been inspired by Watts over the years.
Donations toward the silent auction are still being accepted at Mirador Glass. To date, items include a catered party for 50 by Humboldt Smoke House, two VIP passes and two general admission tickets to the sold out Outside Lands Music Festival, four box seats to the San Francisco Giants game of your choice, a autographed, limited edition poster from the rock band Phish, a $500 gift certificate from North Coast Horticulture Supply, a pallet of soil from Royal Gold, gift certificates from Robert Goodman Wines, a mug club membership from Six Rivers Brewery, as well as donations from Mirador Glass, Synergy Clothing, Fatbol, Healthsport , and many more.
Watts' sister, Sandra Watts, says, “On behalf of the family, we can't express how grateful we are for all the love, prayers, and support you are sending Steve's way. We are also very moved by the all those who want to help raise funds to ensure the best possible outcome for Steve.” Former neighbor Jean Goblet, whose own husband suffered a similar injury two years ago, explains the importance of fundraising for Steve’s outcome: “For anyone suffering a spinal cord injury, a BIG difference in quality of life is often contingent upon the amount of therapy/services that one is able to access, especially with his level of injury. Unfortunately, this can often be a huge burden on families. The costs outside of what insurance will cover are just astronomical. From house modification to daily needs, it is going to make a huge difference to have money raised. Every extra day of therapy Steve is able to get will make a significant improvement in the quality of his life and recovery possibilities. For those of you who want to help, but don’t know what to do, any financial donation you can make will really go a long way to helping Steve. Please keep the family in your thoughts and prayers and I assure you that the family will be eternally thankful for your generosity!”
Those who cannot attend the fundraiser can donate via the giveforward.com website at /bit.ly/SteveWatts. Donations are also being accepted at Mirador Glass, 1590 Nursery Rd., McKinleyville. For more information about Steve Watts and how to help, e-mail Bryan Raskin at [email protected], call (707) 839-0909, or e-mail Matthew Beck at [email protected].