Flatpicker's fundraiser 

On the Mo-Kan opry scene, there's hardly a more fabled figure than Mike O' Roark, a singer and virtuoso flatpicker who has devoted his life to entertaining folks in the good-natured spirit of the Grand Ole Opry. "When he gets going, I refer to him as the Smothers Brothers on crack," says Terry O'Brien, his agent of 26 years. O'Roark, also the host of the 23-years-running open mic at Dirk's Bar and Grill in the Northland, is fighting for his life after being diagnosed with melanoma and undergoing numerous cancer therapies. His family and friends have organized a benefit show at noon today at Finnigan's Hall (505 East 18th Avenue, 816-221-8844) featuring silent and traditional auctions and performances by songwriter Bob Reeder, Jim Eaton and the Whiskey Benders and O'Roark himself (health permitting). Tickets cost $20.
Sun., Aug. 17, noon, 2008

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