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Light of Day Winterfest ready to rock Asbury Park for a good cause this weekend

Light of Day Winterfest ready to rock Asbury Park
Light of Day Winterfest ready to rock Asbury Park 03:12

ASBURY PARK, N.J. -- When you think of New Jersey musicians, you think of Bruce Springsteen. But did you know legends like  Frank Sinatra, Dionne Warwick and Whitney Houston are also from the Garden State? 

One organization in Asbury Park is using music to fight a debilitating disease. 

Singer-songwriter Willie Nile completed a sound check for a show built around connection. 

"It's a shared experience when we lift each other's spirits. For me, it's all about the song, and sharing some joy and trying to inspire," Nile said. 

The Light of Day Winterfest, first and foremost, is a party. It's in its 23rd year

"Our north star and our quest is to end Parkinson's, and ALS, and PSP in our lifetime," said Light of Day Executive Director Tony Pallagrosi. 

Over the years, it has grown from a one night show to a month-long festival with 125 artists across 14 locations, raising more than $6 million to research Parkinson's. 

"It grew very organically," Pallagrosi said. "We all figure that if it keeps growing and there's a need, we'll keep doing it. We'll keep following the star." 

Performers are mostly from New Jersey, including a legend who's never listed, but sometimes likes to make a surprise appearance. 

"You've spent all this time becoming a master. There comes a time when we want to leave a legacy. This is becoming your legacy," said CBS2's Steve Overmyer. 

"I don't know how much of a master I am.  Its really about the hair," Nile said. 

"Well, if you have good hair, nothing can go wrong," Overmyer joked. 

"Hair and footwork and you're good to go," Nile said. 

The inspiration is music industry veteran Bob Benjamin, who's been battling Parkinson's for 25 years. In good years and in bad, Bob always shows up. 

"He's a dynamic person. He's a doer, and he has a great spirit... and he perseveres. And he deals, and he accepts, but he never gives up," Pallagrosi said. 

And so they rock. 

"Music touches people. Music moves people. Music teaches people. Music entertains people. Music sooths people. Music heals people... on many many levels," Pallagrosi said. 

"It's a meaningful experience. While we're here, alive, let's do something meaningful. This is one of those things," Nile said. 

"Someday we'll throw a huge party when finally the hammer comes down and the door opens and the secret to those illnesses are discovered and they're no more," Pallagrosi said. 

"And when that happens?" Overmyer asked. 

"Well, then we find another cause," Pallagrosi said. 

The Light of Day Winterfest's big celebration is Friday and Saturday night in Asbury Park, and many of the event still have availability, so everyone is welcome to come and participate. 

Fore more information about the Light of Day Winterfest, CLICK HERE

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