Hundreds showed their support in the fight against domestic abuse Saturday night during The Sunshine Center's Blues and River Festival at the Ward Oates Amphitheater. 

Performing were blues singers Robbie Bartlett and Tullie Brae. Barbecue was provided by Wendell Thomas of the Fall City Smokers, who donated 100% of proceeds to the center.

Beverages were available from Sig Luscher Brewery. There was a silent auction, table decorating contest and door prizes. WesBanco was the primary sponsor with a broad range of other businesses pitching in.

"People are here for live music and food, and they have their hearts in the right place,” said Mary Cook, executive director of The Sunshine Center. "A lot of people in the community care. I’m really happy to be a part of it."

Cook said the center sold 300-350 tickets for the event, which allowed it to reach its fundraising goal, and maybe even surpass it. 

"There are lot of people here," Cook said. "We may have even exceeded our goal."

The festival is the biggest fundraiser of the year for the center, which offers a variety of services to victims of domestic violence. The center also incorporates services once offered by Family Abuse Services Inc., including a safe house for women and children and a location for supervised visits for children with the non-custodial parent.

For more information about the work of The Sunshine Center, visit

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