Blount County’s own Pistol Creek Catch of the Day band traveled to downtown Knoxville earlier this spring to perform and raise awareness for a Townsend organization that rehabilitates injured or orphaned bears.
On Feb. 6 and April 2, the band played concerts at Mast General Store Pistol Creek concert for Appalachian Bear Rescue. Edward Harper with Pistol Creek Catch of the Day said the band is proud of its partnership with Appalachian Bear Rescue.
“Lisa Stewart oversees Appalachian Bear Rescue and tells me they’ve admitted several orphan cubs from Arkansas, Georgia and Tennessee. The cubs are weaning now,” he said.
Harper said it is important to help the organization because not many know about the facility in Townsend. “They can’t make it public though because the bears need seclusion and a non-public facility,” he said.
Harper said often the public has a difficult time donating to an organization such as Appalachian Bear Rescue. “Because it’s not something you can see, it’s hard to donate to it,” he said. “It’s hard to donate to something you can’t see, but the bears need privacy. Even though people don’t visit the rescue center, they can see photos of the bears online.”
Jack Burgin, chair of the board of Appalachian Bear Rescue, was thankful for the support Pistol Creek and Mast General Store. The organization’s website is www.appalachianbearrescue.org. “We’re just delighted to be teaming with Edward Harpers group and Mast General Store,” he said. “Both have supported us strongly in the past. Both are quality individuals and outfits.”
Burgin didn’t have an estimate on how much money was raised at the Pistol Creek concerts but collection jars are out at Mast General Store on a regular basis. “The Mast General Store donation jars are some of the most profitable we have,” he said.
Burgin said there are other locations throughout the area where people can donate, including Blackberry Jamboree in Pigeon Forge, the fountain at the Village in Gatlinburg, the Townsend IGA grocery store and on the organization’s website.
Harper said the band simply enjoys helping out Appalachian Bear Rescue. “We like our bears,” he said.