I just had the most awesome afternoon. I went to the Paramount Theater in Bristol, Tenn., where Phil Vassar and High Valley will be performing later tonight. The reason for the afternoon trip was to visit with Phil and High Valley as they took a tour of the Marsh Regional Blood Bus, and of course took time out to visit with a few of their fans who were at the bus to donate blood. They also made time to pose for pictures, do a television interview, and sign autographs.
Marsh Regional was holding a Blood Drive at the Paramount Theater this afternoon, and while every Blood Drive is very important, this one was very special for me. A week ago, one of my neighbors, who has been a friend for nearly 30 years, was involved in a serious automobile accident. She remains in critical condition, and in need of blood. Our local community has joined together to not only go to the hospital and to Marsh Regional to donate, but also to organize Blood Drives right here in our town, to collect blood for Ruth.
I was thrilled today to see Bryan and Curtis, from High Valley, among those who were there to donate blood today. They were both first-time donors. What a wonderful thing to be able to give this precious gift of life. Whether their blood is the right type to help my friend, we don’t know yet. But it will definitely help someone in Northeast Tennessee or Southwest Virginia (the area serviced by Marsh Regional). Unfortunately, Brad (the third member of the trio) didn’t make it to the event today. But we will have pictures of Brad from the show to add later when we put up the concert review.
I hope those of you who have never given blood, because you just didn’t think about it, or you haven’t been asked – will give some serious thought to visiting your area blood bank and making a donation. It’s an easy thing to do. And as these kids will tell you, it doesn’t take long, and it doesn’t hurt.
The first donor at today’s event was Michael Smith from Bristol. His reward for being first in line was more than just knowing he was helping people who needed blood to survive. He was also rewarded with a pair of tickets to tonight’s show, and of course he had an opportunity to meet Phil and the guys from High Valley.
Here are a few more pictures, some with local TV stations during their interview with Phil; more of High Valley and Phil; and one or two with fans. I hope you are all following High Valley on Twitter @highvalley; and Phil Vassar @philvassar. Visit their facebook page, too. To check out High Valley’s facebook page, click here. To visit Phil’s facebook page, click here.
I first met Phil a little more than 13 years ago. That was the first time I met him. He’s still one of the friendliest country artists I have ever met. It was great seeing him again, and I really appreciate the time he takes with his fans. Someday I might share some of those older pictures with all of you. Phil’s appearance has changed a lot. Phil, however hasn’t. He’s a multi-talented performer, and real joy to be around.
There you go – I’ll be back with more later! By the way – Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone! I hope you are having as awesome a day as I am!