Project: Rock for Autism
By Barbara Melendez
TAMPA, Fla. (May 19, 2010) – High school student and rock musician Steve Toth is a mover and shaker in high school and when he comes to USF in the fall, he will bring experience as a concert promoter.
The driving force behind Project: Rock for Autism, Toth began this annual fundraiser three years ago. His efforts raised $2,300 for the USF Center for Autism and Related Disabilities last year and over $5,500 this year, so far.
The benefit concert takes place Saturday, May 22 from 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Gulf High School’s Des Little Stadium, 5355 School Road, New Port Richey. Admission is only $5 and is good for the whole day. (View TBO.com blog on event.)
Fourteen bands fill the bill including Toth’s band, Worst Case Scenario, along with Set it Off, Misunderstood Superheroes, Look Right Penny, Trace of Day, Rose Connelly, Solia Tera, Late Night Glory, Fear of Flying, Cyrenia, Expiry, A View From the East Coast, Variance and WD-Han. Toth writes songs and music, plays guitar, sings and plays drums “sometimes.”
"This year's show is much more like an extravagant all-day music festival, with 14 bands on multiple stages,” Toth said. “We hope to raise even more money for autism than all previous years combined, and make a great impact on the community, spreading more autism awareness, and gaining enough publicity to turn what was a simple community service project into a widely recognized annual event in the Bay area."
The future College of Engineering student’s coordination of the concert is part of his IB (International Baccalaureate) project in partnership with fellow students Britt Smith and Crystal Rosado. They have garnered support from a long list of local sponsors including Wachovia Bank.
"The idea stemmed from wanting to combine musical talent with a benefit to families with autism, and when we started, no one would have predicted that we would develop the concert idea into something as large as it is becoming now," Toth said.
The CARD-USF staff welcomes the support.
“We are very impressed with Steve’s hard work and dedication,” said Karen Berkman, executive director of CARD-USF. “His determination to double the size, scope and amount of money raised resulted in his surpassing his goal. I believe he’ll accomplish whatever he sets out to do in life if this is any indication of what he’s capable of doing.”