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Marcia Ball B irthday Bash Dear Friends,

Announcing a once in my lifetime event!! This is it! I'm not doing it again. I'm turning 60! Yikes! And you can help me celebrate in style.

On Valentine's weekend, 2009, I'm throwing a Great Big Birthday Bash to remember and inviting a bunch of my best musical friends.

On Friday, February 13 we're having a Rocking Voodoo Party with Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys, Geno Delafose and French Rockin' Boogie, and Sonny Landreth, three of Louisiana's finest Grammy nominated bands.

On Saturday, February 14, it's a Valentine's Sweetheart Ball with Angela Strehli, Maria Muldaur, Tracy Nelson, Lavelle White, Lou Ann Barton, Sarah Brown and me, singing songs we've recorded together and separately and some new stuff, too. There will be two shows on Saturday night, at 7:30 PM and 10:30 PM

On Sunday, February 15, from 11:30 AM to 3 PM, we're having a Pianorama Brunch. This amazing show is a piano throwdown featuring Floyd Domino, Johnny Nicholas, Nick Connolly, Riley Osborne and me on five keyboards all at the same time plus an array of other piano players joining in. There's also a special unadvertised guest appearance by a singer friend of ours from Fort Worth.

These are all fabulous shows. They all take place at Antone's, Austin's Home Of The Blues, 213 West 5th Street in downtown Austin.

It's a Great, Big festival in a small space. There are a limited number of tickets available. If you are receiving this email it's because you're on our list of special friends and we want you to be the first to know about the party.

Tickets are on sale through the Marcia Ball Mall on our website: marciaball.com.

For more instructions, see the fine print below.

And, did I mention, it's a fundraiser?

There are two types of tickets:

$100 per show for Friday or Saturday reserves your chair at a table for four and includes some party favors, and a "meet and greet" with the artists before the show.

$35 per show for Friday or Saturday reserves your very own chair.

$40 for the Sunday Brunch Pianorama reserves your chair and a terrific brunch buffet.

Our goal is to raise a big old pile of money for two wonderful organizations:

the Health Alliance for Austin Musicians (HAAM) and Sweet Home New Orleans.

If you would like to make any additional donations to these two special organizations, and I hope you do, you can do so using this link, which is also on our website: www.austincommunityfoundation.org/?nd=donate .

At this site you can scroll down to the Marcia Ball Birthday Fund or select from the Category menu at the top of the page and donate. The link, and your donation, goes to Health Alliance for Austin Musicians and Sweet Home New Orleans through the Austin Community Foundation, which is a qualified 501(c)(3) organization, so your additional donations are tax deductible.

Plus, we have an extremely generous music fan who has offered to match all additional donations of over $100 up to a total of $20,000.

Our entire event is being sponsored by Dell and Enfatico.

There will also be an silent, or maybe not so silent, auction so you can take home a "birthday" present of your own.

My birthday present will be your presence and your donations to these wonderful organizations plus a chance to play and sing with my friends and heroes, so come on down to my Great Big Birthday Bash in Austin at Antone's on Valentine's weekend, 2009. We'll have a real good time for a real good reason so please join in for the whole weekend. We're having a party! Thank you for helping us get the Ball rolling.


The fine print:

1) Go to www.marciaball.com. Go to the Marcia Ball Mall. In the fine print in a box on the left side of the page is a list of items and one of those is Birthday Bash Tickets. When you click on that, you get your choice of tickets to individual shows. Read carefully because there are two show on Saturday night and two ticket prices for each show.

The Web Gator adds: "If you click the "Buy" button, it will add one ticket to your shopping basket. If you want four tickets, you can either click the "Buy" button 4 times or click the "More" button and enter the number of tickets you wish to purchase in the "Quantity" box at the bottom of the page. Don't blame me... that's just the way this sales program works. "

2) If you want to leave on Sunday after the Pianorama, there are flights out of Austin to most regions of the country after 4:30 PM. We will have a luggage check at the club on Sunday so you can check out of your hotel and go to the club and then straight to the airport from there. It's 20 minutes to the airport and getting there an hour in advance of your flight is usually plenty. We don't want you to miss anything.

3) Our host hotel is the Wyndham Garden Hotel, Woodward Conference Center at 3401 South IH-35, exit 231. The phone number there is 512 448-2444. The special Marcia Ball Birthday Bash rate there is $109 plus tax. This hotel is not downtown but pretty close so there will be car, shuttle or cab travel involved. The downtown hotels are significantly more expensive and there are quite a few to choose from including the Driskill, which is an old classic right on Congress Avenue; the Stephen F. Austin, another classic; and all of the major chains.

4) The Austin Marathon is on February 15 and it's big, so book your hotel soon.

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