MS fundraiser at the Ship and Anchor brings Calgary’s music community together

If you live in Calgary, or Canada for that matter, you’ve likely been affected by Multiple Sclerosis.

You, a family member, relative, friend — this nation has one of the highest rates of the disease in the world, with an estimated one in every 385 Canadians living with it, according to the MS Society of Canada.

So naturally, when it’s personal, you want to do what you can to support those afflicted with the autoimmune disease of the central nervous system.

For Jared Andres, it was a good friend of his who was diagnosed two years ago with it that provided the “impetus for doing” something. That something, is the Mixed Bag MS Fundraiser.

It initially began as a smaller gathering, a night featuring DJs and such incentives as two of his other shaggy-haired friends shearing their long locks if they reached their goal of $5000 raised. (They did.)

Now in its third year, he and his fellow organizers are stepping things up with an all-day event at the Ship and Anchor Sunday, June 16 from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. calling on the talents of amazing local bands and artists Mark Mills, Dark Time, Paradise and Mademoiselle to spread the message, raise some money.

“We’ve learned, over the three years doing it, that people in Calgary and the music community specifically are very open to helping out and donating their time and (talents) to causes like this,” Andres says.

There will also be a raffle and silent auction, with prizes such as recording time at a pair of studios, Public Lunch Studios and The Sound Priory Recording Studio, a photo shoot with noted local photog Sebastian Buzzalino, tasting menus at Posto and Fonterra, and Last Best has donated a keg, with all the sales of that at the Ship going to the cause.

As for that cause, funds raised from the day, which is also supported by Sled Island, CJSW and ProHAB, will go to the Branch Out Neurological Foundation.

“They’re locally based, and our friend who is going through MS right now, he just found that they were really aligned with his values and our values, in terms of that their mandate is to employ tech and non-pharmaceutical solutions to neurological disorders. 

“So they don’t only work with MS, but the money that we raise we ask them to put towards the MS work.”

He notes that they “fill the funding gaps for research” and “and in helping people with support” for those who are already dealing with the disease “to help them have a bit of an easier time.”

“We just felt that they really aligned with our values more so than other organizations,” Andres says. 

The event, itself, is free, with kids allowed in until 6 p.m., and members of Branch Out in attendance to take donations and raise awareness and answer questions.

The Mixed Bag Fundraiser for MS takes place Sunday, June 16 at the Ship and Anchor. For more information please head to the Facebook page at