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Mission Statement



      *To help the needy in the Harrisburg area through the presentation of quality events, featuring performing artists, which are affordable to the general public. 

      *To support the Harrisburg area and help with causes which are deemed worthy, mostly those involving children’s organizations.

      *To promote good fellowship among the guests and the community

Proceeds from the events are largely intended to stay in our “backyard”-- the immediate Harrisburg area.      


     The BackYard Bash was first held in July, 1987.  It became a charity benefit in 1992.  The organization became a registered Pennsylvania Non-profit Charitable Organization in May, 1994, under the name “BackYard Benefits, Inc.”, and a registered Federal 501(C)(3) Non-profit Charitable Organization in July, 1994.

     BackYard Benefits was a presenter of the first Red Hot Strawberry Ball, in October, 1996.  The BackYard Bash and Red Hot Strawberry Ball are presented annually by BackYard Benefits.

     Since 1993, the BackYard Bash was the subject of a Nancy Eshelman article in The Patriot-News entitled “This Party Takes It’s Mission Seriously”, and was the site of WGAL’S “LIVE” show with Lori Burkholder.  The eleven o’clock weather was broadcast live by C. S. Keys of Cannel 8.  WHTM and WHP television stations have also filmed at the BackYard Bash and the Red Hot Strawberry Ball.  BackYard Benefits, Inc. received a proclamation from Harrisburg City Council in 1997.  The Harrisburg Magazine Reader’s Poll selected the BackYard Bash as the Best Block Party and as the 2nd Best Fundraiser.  The Red Hot Strawberry Ball was voted the Best Black Tie event.

     BackYard Benefits, Inc., with help from Harrisburg area businesses & volunteers, has made grants of more than $260,000 since its inception in 1994 to the following needy children’s organizations:


UCP          Easter Seals          Paula Rushinsky Cancer Fund         

Rape Crisis and Domestic Violence Services (YWCA)

National Multiple Sclerosis Society          Leukemia Society

Jake Nesbit Cancer Fund (eight-year old boy)

Harrisburg Parks and Recreation (Electronic scoreboard for little league field)

East Shore Royals Midget Football Team          Special Olympics          I. O. Silver Games

Keystone State Games          Bethesda Mission          DELTA Housing

Cleary-Myers Fund (Leukemia victim)

Children’s Play Room          American Lung Association          CONTACT Helpline         

Tyler Heckendorn Cancer Fund

Neighbor’s Who Care—sponsored prayer breakfasts

Neighbor’s Who Care (Kids Christmas Program)

Harrisburg Parks Partnership—Norwood Playground renovation

Harrisburg Parks Partnership—RiverFront Park Improvements

Harrisburg Parks Partnership—Sponsored Youth Soccer League

Harrisburg Girls Track & Field State Champions—presented medals

Harrisburg Boys Basketball State Champions—sponsored banquet

Camp Curtain YMCA Youth Basketball Team—sponsor of trip to national tournament

Samantha Liddick Trust Fund (Leukemia victim)          Second Chance Ministries

Cure For Caity Cancer Fund            Caitlin’s Smiles               Mark Evans Cancer Fund

Central Pennsylvania Food Bank            Rejoice! Inc. (Minority adoption agency)

Shining Light Thrift Shop (Fire & Violence victims)                 Escape Center

Central Allison Hill Community Center (After School Program)

South Allison Hill Community Center

Boys & Girls Club (Education Program)

National Civil War Museum (Youth Education Program)

Camp Kydnie                           Historic Harrisburg Association          Capital Area Greenbelt

Secret Safe Place For Newborns

Neighborhood Center                      ParentWorks                       NY Children’s Aid Society

Jump Street          Her Heart’s Wish          Mental Health Association Children’s Program         

Salvations Army (Kid’s Café)            Community Check Up Center          Whitaker Center

Big Brothers Big Sisters           The Ecumenical Food Pantry        

                 Pine Street Presbyterian Church Children’s Camp Program         

    Interfaith Shelter for Homeless Famlies              DaLite Solidarity Ministry      

Kidney Foundation Jammin For Jess                                      Our Daily Bread Food Pantry         

Art Association Youth Programs                                 Alzheimer’s Family Support Program   

Harrisburg Shakespeare Festival                                                        Gamut Theatre Group

Mortimer Levitt Foundation of Harrisburg     GuideRight (scholarships for needy youths)

The Caring Place                                               HOBY (Hugh O’Brian Leadership Foundation)

The American Red Cross                The Delta Community             Open Stage of Harrisburg

The Children’s Center                                             Cancer Recovery Foundation of America

NGOZI, Inc.               CAC/Multicultural Festival              CACC, Inc./The Children’s Center

Allied Arts Fund      The Joshua Group       Allied Arts         Feel Your Boobies Foundation 

Randi’s House of Angels