Tabata Gordillo / Mustang News

Shabang — San Luis Obispo’s local grown music festival — announced on its Instagram page Oct. 4 that Woods Humane Society had been named the beneficiary for Shabang IX.

Woods Humane Society is a volunteer-based center that cares for homeless cats and dogs in San Luis Obispo. The nonprofit’s mission is to contribute in the prevention of pet overpopulation and to find homes for the animals, according to its website.

The contestants to be the beneficiary were Eco SLO, Transitions-Mental Health Association, Family Care Network, Surfrider Foundation, Rising Immigrant Students for Education and Woods Humane Society.

Each nonprofit focused on a completely different issue. This was emphasized by Shabang co-founder Greg Golf.

“We want a wide variety local causes,” Golf said. “Overtime, we ask the winner what they’re going to do with the money so we can tell people exactly what this experience created for others.”

According to Steve Kragenbrink, director of marketing and community programs for Woods Humane Society, receiving donations like Shabang’s “directly supports the lifesaving work at Woods.”

“We are absolutely thrilled to be on the minds of so many great local folk,” Kragenbrink said.  “We cannot do what we do at Woods without broad based community support and the animals are wagging their tails for the Shabang Music Fest.”

Altruistic democracy

Shabang hosted an online poll on their Instagram and Facebook pages for users to vote for their favorite local nonprofit as the beneficiary of Shabang IX. One “like” equaled one vote for each post made about the different causes.

According to Golf, the idea of donating the proceeds to local nonprofits began during the fourth Shabang.

“We were trying to figure out where we wanted to go with it [Shabang] and somebody brought up the idea of donating to a nonprofit each time,” Golf said.

After taking some time to decide which nonprofit would receive the donation, Golf and co-founders Carson Stone and Alexander Schwend decided to let the fans choose.

“It’s their money and we want them to have a choice,” Golf said. “It makes the experience more fulfilling for some.”

Whether a fan specifically voted for this nonprofit or not, Golf emphasized the importance of letting them have a say in the matter and stressed the importance of giving young people a voice.

“In general, college students want to have control and they want to do good for the local community,” Golf said.

Shabang is Saturday, Oct. 7 from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Laguna Lake.

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