Taylor Cole

Arts and Culture Editor

This Friday at the Lizard Lounge inside of the Chameleon Club in downtown Lancaster, a service group originating out of Millersville University will be hosting a benefit concert for United Way of Lancaster. United Way helps to fix the social problems in Lancaster County and has developed four goals for Lancaster to reach by 2025. These goals include: 1) 100% of our children enter kindergarten ready to learn. 2) 100% of students and adults will have post-secondary credentials. 3) Decrease individuals and families living in poverty by 50%. 4) 100% of individuals, children, and families will have a medical home. All proceeds made from this concert will go directly to United Way. And who are the masterminds behind this benefit concert? H.I. Jackson 5.

H.I. Jackson 5 consists of sophomores Brianna White and Kaitlyn Mackey, Juniors Owen Sechrist and Matt Sperow, and Senior Matt Liggeons-Jones. The group met in Dr. Schreiber’s Small Group Communication Class this semester and formed H.I. Jackson 5. Students in this class work together by planning and executing a community service project throughout the semester. Thus, H.I. Jackson was formed, named after Hazel I. Jackson, the first African-American teacher in the School District of Lancaster and the first African-American professor at Millersville University.

H.I. Jackson 5 picked United Way to be their beneficiary due to the fact that the organization “supports a broad range of initiatives”, according to Sechrist. “As a group, we wanted to choose an organization that reflects our various interests and values.” Another member, Matt Sperow wanted to incorporate music in some way with their project. The group agreed, thinking a concert was a great to provide entertainment to Lancaster as well as promote a good cause.

Concertgoers can plan to see two Lancaster-based bands, Seasonal and LORE. Brother of Sperow is a band member of Seasonal. Their sound is a blend of emo and indie influences. LORE has more of a dream rock, psychedelic sound that music lovers can enjoy as well.

Can’t make it out to the benefit concert? H.I. Jackson 5’s presence is all over Lancaster County. Last Saturday, the group held an event at the store Charming Charlie’s in Park City Mall where a portion of purchases were donated to the United Way of Lancaster. Canned goods have also been collected and given to United Way, where they are then delivered to the United Council of Churches. The day after the concert, Saturday April 22, expect to see H.I. Jackson 5 at Darrenkamp’s on Willow Street from 9a.m. to 1p.m. to collect canned goods and monetary donations.

The members of H.I. Jackson 5 are doing great things to support Lancaster County and they’re loving it. According to the group members, the best part about it is working together. “[My favorite part about H.I. Jackson 5] is getting to know the other group members. [It’s] a great way to build camaraderie with fellow students,” says Sechrist. “I’ve learned so much from all of [them] about group work and about myself,” says Mackey.

Catch H.I. Jackson 5 this Friday at 7p.m. at the Lizard Lounge in the Chameleon Club to support United Way of Lancaster.