Tickets are still available for the annual Rock the Farm fund-raiser, which happens on Saturday from 6 to 10 p.m. at Ocean View Farm, 551 Montauk Highway in Amagansett. The English Beat, which the Web site allmusic.com called “one of the most important ska revivalist groups,” will headline the show, and special guest artists will also perform. Fifty-five American and seven British veterans who suffered traumatic injuries in combat will attend the concert.
Along with the English Beat and other artists, the $130 ticket price includes an open bar and an “all-American barbecue.” Tickets are available at thestephentalkhouse.musictoday.com/StephenTalkhouse/calendar.aspx.
Also on Saturday, Soldier Ride The Hamptons, in honor of Lance Corporal Jordan C. Haerter, who was killed in Iraq in 2008, leaves Ocean View Farm at 9 a.m. For a $50 entry fee, donors can bike a 30 or 60-mile route with soldiers who sustained injuries in Iraq or Afghanistan. Also, a 5k walk will begin upon the cyclists’ departure. A community picnic will be held at Ocean View Farm from noon to 4 p.m., and the Rock the Farm concert will follow.
Soldier Ride was born at the Stephen Talkhouse in Amagansett when Chris Carney, now a former employee, conceived of a way to raise funds for and awareness of veterans returning from post-9/11 conflicts with life-altering physical injuries and post-traumatic stress disorder. All proceeds from Rock the Farm and the Soldier Ride benefit the Wounded Warrior Project.
Dave Wakeling of the English Beat, which will also perform at the Stephen Talkhouse on Sunday evening, is a strong supporter of the cause, he told The Star. “We talked about Wounded Warrior before he had designed it and gone public,” Mr. Wakeling, who was born in England and lives in California, said of Mr. Carney. “I’ve watched it from its inception and had some very interesting talks with him about it.”
“I feel terribly sorry for veterans,” Mr. Wakeling said. “I feel how their courage, their bravery, either to the country or community or their fellow solders, is often squandered.”
“I don’t know what it’s like to sustain a lifelong injury,” said Peter Honerkamp, an owner of the Stephen Talkhouse and a key figure in the founding of the Soldier Ride and Rock the Farm events. “I don’t know what it’s like to absorb the enormous shock of conflict, but there’s a bunch of young men and women out there who went to war. I have a firm belief that we owe an indelible debt of gratitude to the American soldier, because they put their lives on the line for our country, our freedom, and our way of life. If we can make some gesture back to them,” he said, “I’ll do anything I can to help those soldiers in their recovery. When they get to have a good time, and embrace the American public, and see who they sacrificed things for, and see that people appreciated it, it’s a major part of their rehabilitation.”
“I still think we have far more in common with one another than our differences,” Mr. Wakeling said. “I wish there was the political will to pull that together, that the same courage and bravery of the solders that put themselves in such danger could also be inspired in everyone else to work for each other to create a more positive effect on the world. Maybe one day we will.”
But, he added of Rock the Farm, “The main idea is, let time stand still and enjoy the moment. That’s very soothing and healing. It also reminds us that we are all one. That’s going to be the main part of the evening. I look forward to it. Come on down, everybody!”
As Mr. Honerkamp summarized, “It’s a really fun night.”