This year, WJCU 88.7 FM, Auburn Records, the Exchange and Iron Ingo Stührenberg, who will fly to Cleveland from his home to Germany to host the event, will present the eighth annual event.
It takes place at 5 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 3, at the Beachland Ballroom and Tavern
. Organizers encourage fans to bring non-perishable food items and/or cash donations to help those in need.
“Our donation totals have increased every year,” says event organizer Bill Peters in a press release. “Last year we collected 4.5 tons of food and over $6,000 in cash. It’s a total team effort from all those involved. Heavy metal fans are the most generous when it comes to supporting good causes. We are making a positive difference for those less fortunate in our community. It feels good to give something back to help.”
“Friends of the Cleveland Kennel is so grateful for the annual Cleveland Metal Holiday Food Drive,” adds the animal shelter's director Becca Britton. “Each year, we have come to rely on these donations to help us. Thank you for your continued support of our work, it means so much to us. You are truly making a difference for the animals in need by having this event each year. Thank you!”
WJCU general manager Mark Krieger says the terms “benefit” and “food drive” don’t adequately describe the event.
“An army of dedicated artists and volunteers come together in a way that feels like a huge family reunion, and the outcome just gets bigger every year in what’s becoming a great-hearted Cleveland tradition,” he says.
This year’s event includes performances by the local death metal outfit Terror, which has just issued a remastered anthology of its demos, and a reunion of the underground ’80s act Chemkill, who’ll perform their first show in 25 years. Formerly of Manimals, Larry the Wolf will play Manimals tunes as well as his new single, “Countdown to Venus.”
“We have quite a diverse musical line-up this year spanning five decades of Northeast Ohio hard rock and heavy metal,” says Peters. “Poobah, for example, released their debut album, Let Me In
, all the way back in 1972. The album has become a highly sought after, collectible piece of heavy rock history over the years. It’s going to be fun seeing them share the stage with these younger bands!”
Other acts on the bill include Destructor, Ego, Hell and Back, Lotus Pedal, Lower 13, Olathia, Threefold Law and Wretch. The Metallica tribute band the Four Horsemen will make a special appearance along with the outlaw burlesque troupe the Red Hot Heathens and Playboy model Daniella Dior.
Admission is free.
An annual tradition in these parts, the Cleveland Metal Holiday Food Drive generates some serious cash and donations for the Greater Cleveland Food Bank and Friends of the Cleveland Kennel.