A&W outlets across the nation are coming together to raise funds for MS Canada on Thursday. However, a unique touch of musical accompaniment is gracing a specific A&W burger joint in Winnipeg.
For the second consecutive year, Clint Chaboyer, a musician and videographer from Manitoba who himself was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2021, has orchestrated the transformation of the A&W opposite CF Polo Park mall into an impromptu music festival for the occasion of Burgers to Beat MS Day.
Chaboyer was drawn to this ongoing charitable event last year, and he assisted the 1520 Portage Ave. location in raising nearly $4,000 by promoting the sale of teen burgers and soliciting donations. Having received valuable support from MS Canada throughout his personal journey with the disease, he felt a strong desire to give back.
Chaboyer recounted, “I stumbled upon an advertisement last year seeking someone to curate musicians and entertainment for their MS Day. That’s when I joined the initiative. With my involvement in live-streaming projects featuring local bands through Red Tie Productions, and my extensive background in the music scene, I was able to reach out to numerous musicians who were eager to volunteer their time and contribute.”
He emphasized that the musicians’ motivation extends beyond supporting him; it encompasses aiding a noble cause. The array of musicians performing throughout the day is impressive, commencing in the morning with blues artist Curtis Newton and culminating with a 6:30 p.m. performance by the hip-hop-infused rock group Pure Entry. The lineup showcases diverse styles, ranging from the guitar virtuosity of Ronnie Ladobruk to the folk-rock sounds of The Gerry Hatricks and the heartfelt melodies of singer-songwriter Deidra Borus.
Chaboyer’s aspiration is to attract substantial audiences with the allure of music and delicious burgers, all with the goal of surpassing the fundraising achievements of the previous year. “This time around, we’re aiming for a sum exceeding $5,000,” he shared. “While $10,000 would be remarkable, achieving $20,000 would be an absolute dream.”
The owner and operator of the restaurant, Brett Falconer, disclosed to Global News that he has been actively participating in A&W’s annual MS fundraising campaign for the past 14 years. While this marks the second year featuring live bands, the event holds immense significance for him and his team, eagerly anticipated each summer.
Falconer expressed, “Supporting this cause is deeply meaningful. Multiple sclerosis is a neurological condition affecting a substantial number of Canadians. This day holds great importance for everyone, particularly at our establishment. We take tremendous pride in our community involvement and devote the entire year to planning for this event. We eagerly await its arrival months in advance.”
He humorously added, “One thing’s for certain – we’ll be selling a lot of teen burgers!”