Kickin’ Most cancers fundraiser raises cash for Ocala man battling stage four colon most cancers

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OCALA, Fla. (WCJB) – On June 24, 39-year-old Ben Fritz received the diagnosis no one wants to hear.

“Ben went to the emergency room, his back hurt and after several tests and blood tests he found that he had stage four colon cancer that spread to his lungs and liver,” said his sister Liza Fritz.

Now the Ocala community has come together and run several fundraising drives, including this one at Charlie Horse. Where there was live music, cornhole and raffles.

Charlie Horse co-owner Chris Welch said it was great to have the community come together.

“To be honest, it’s really inspiring that we have so many donations and so many good things to give away that it is really good for you when a community supports a bad event.”

And everyone is hoping for the best.

“By and large, we all try to take it day after day and pray and wish the best and hope that it gets stronger and hits this thing,” Liza Fritz said.

Ben has already started chemotherapy, and the family says they will run more fundraisers in the future to help pay some of his medical bills.

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A glance forward on Ocala, Marion County leisure scene

Combined driving event: A combo horse-and-carriage driving event approved by the United States Equestrian Federation and Federation Equestre International will take place January 28-31 at 8:00 a.m. at Grand Oaks Resort, 3000 Marion County Road, Weirsdale. Free for viewers. Visit home.thegrandoaks.com or call 750-5500.

Appleton Museum of Art: “Memories and Inspiration: The Kerry and C. Betty Davis Collection of African American Art” will be on display from January 30th to April 25th.

Art walk on the first Friday: Join the community and friends for the Downtown Ocala Art Walk on the first Friday, February 5th, from 6pm to 9pm. Various artists and performers sell arts and crafts with stalls in the downtown square. Discounts are available at retailers and restaurants. Call 620-8383 or visit ocalafl.org.

Gospel concert: The 2021 gospel concert series at College Road Baptist Church, 5010 SW College Road, Ocala will continue on February 19 at 7:00 p.m. with the Triumphant Quartet. The doors open at 5:30 p.m. They were voted Male Group of 2020 in the Absolutely Gospel Music Awards. A donation of $ 10 will be accepted at the door. Masks required. Call 237-5741.

Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn: The “King and Queen of the Banjo,” Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn, will play on February 12th at 7:30 pm at the Reilly Arts Center, 500 NE Ninth St., Ocala. Tickets and details at reillyartscenter.com or 351-1606.

Homage to the Bee Gees: “Stayin ‘Alive: The World’s Greatest Homage to the Bee Gees” will be performed on February 18th at 7pm at the Circle Square Cultural Center, 8395 SW 80th St., Ocala. Sing blockbusters like “How deep is your love?” “You should dance” and more. Tickets and information are available at 854-3670 or csculturalcenter.com.

Art out of bounds: Celebrate Ocala’s public art with a live musical performance, food trucks, and activities on February 20 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. as part of the Tuscawilla Art Park Series at Tuscawilla Art Park, 223 NE Fifth St., Ocala. General admission is free; A curator’s pass for USD 15 includes two guided public art tours, art-themed games and prizes, and a complementary drink. Tickets and details at ocalafl.org/artpark or 629-8447.

“Talley’s Folly”: From February 25 to March 21, the Ocala Civic Theater will present Talley’s Folly, a play filmed on a Missouri farm in 1944 that brings together two kindred spirits with very different histories and love letters. Tickets are available at ocalacivictheatre.com or by calling 236-2274. The theater is located at 4337 E. Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala.

Rainbow Springs Art Festival: The nonprofit Rainbow Springs Art Gallery has scheduled a one-day, socially distant arts festival in downtown Dunnellon on March 20, featuring music and stands of handcrafted art created exclusively by exhibited artists. Call (724) 550-8047 or email margokwilson@yahoo.com for details.

‘Frida’ After Dark: The Tuscawilla Art Park series at Tuscawilla Art Park, 223 NE Fifth St., Ocala, shows the film “Frida”, a film about the Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, March 26th from 6 to 9:30 pm Live music, food Truck, bar, artisan and film concessions. Free admission. Details at ocalafl.org/artpark or 629-8447.