Boots on the Sand benefit concert raises over $1M for Ian’s victims

Published: December 1, 2022 9:56 PM EST
Updated: December 2, 2022 1:31 PM EST

Some big-name celebrities played for a sold-out crowd Thursday night at Hertz Arena, and it was all to help victims of Hurricane Ian.

People showed up in force to support their neighbors who are still hurting after the hurricane.

“We thought about our friends down here. We thought about our fellow Americans down here,” said one of the performers.

Boots on the Sand benefit concert. (Credit: WINK News)

“It just tore our hearts out to watch everything get washed away,” said Miles, from Punta Gorda.

“We have some people that are living with some other friends right now because their home is devastated,” said Sue Stang, from Port Charlotte.

Musician and writer Ira Dean organized the Boots on the Sand benefit concert. Southwest Florida is his home away from home.

“I just started calling friends. First person I called was Ted Nugent, and he was like, ‘what do you need? What time do you need me there? I’m there.’ Then I was like, ‘well, that was easy.’ So I just started calling people,” said Dean.

The money raised from this concert goes directly to the community through charitable organizations.

“Everybody came out and helped everybody. It’s the way it should be,” said Howard Bartels, from Punta Gorda.

“There’s all of us brave people that are sticking around. Can’t get rid of us,” said Betty Kai,  from Fort Myers.

It was a night of healing through music and love that raised over $1 million.