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Fire sparks support: Band, brewery help family who lost home in blaze

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A fire that broke out early Tuesday morning at the home of a local landscaper has quickly ignited a generous spirit within the Lockhart community.
City officials said no one was injured during a fire that caused extensive damage to the home of Mike Natal, a landscaper whose family makes its home at 1100 Monte Vista in Lockhart.
Local musician AJ Mac, frontman for Thunderosa Atx and drummer for country musician Alvin Crow, said he lives just a few houses down from Natal and is planning to hold a benefit concert to help the man and his family get back on their feet.
Mac confirmed Tuesday that several musicians would play at Caracara Brewing Company beginning at 6 p.m. March 1 and that proceeds from admission and beer sales would go into the Natal’s family’s pockets to help them rebuild their home.
“They lost everything and did not have insurance. The house is a shell,” Mac posted on his Facebook page. “I’ve talked to the folks, but only briefly. They’ve given me permission to help out, so I’m going to.”
Mac said he had just moved to Lockhart and didn’t know the Natal family well, but knew he wanted to get involved when he saw the smoldering remains of their one-story ranch-style home on Tuesday.
“This has literally begun coming together in the last 30 minutes,” Mac said between calls to fellow musicians. “This is just what I do. I help people.”
In addition to making plans for the concert, Mac set up a Facebook fundraiser to help the Natal family.
Listed are needs such as men’s and women’s clothing, mid-sized dog food bags and landscaping equipment, although he expects to update the list in a few days when he’s had a chance to visit more with Natal.
To find the donation page, search for “Benefit for the Natal family. House fire. Everything lost.” on Facebook. Through Tuesday evening, 12 people had already contributed $270 to the $5,000 goal.
Committed to playing the March 1 concert at Caracara are local country musician Chrissy Bolon, blues musician Jamie Krueger, Robert Wagner of “Suede,” Nathan Olivares of “Dancyer” and, of course, Thunderosa Atx.
A price for admission has not yet been set, but Mac said he expected it would be in the $10 range, with all proceeds going to the family.
Caracara Brewing Company owner Mike Mann confirmed that a portion of beer and other sales that night would help the Natals.
“We’re looking at something like $2 for every house beer and $1 for everything else we sell,” Mann said. “We’re hoping to have a huge turnout and hopefully, we can raise some money for them.”

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