Bruce Pavitt to host dance-a-thon to benefit OPAL

Get your dancing feet ready for an eight-hour journey through musical history.

With tracks that range from Frank Sinatra to Billie Eilish, DJ Bruce Pavitt is hosting an all ages dance-a-thon to benefit OPAL Community Land Trust.

“This is something I have wanted to do for years, and I’ve been looking for the appropriate opportunity,” Pavitt said. “As a music fan, I am omnivorous. I appreciate music from every era and genre. This is also a way to get different generations together to enjoy music and learn more about the OPAL project.”

The dance party is on Sunday, July 7, from 4 p.m. to midnight at the Odd Fellows Hall. The event will be emceed by Didier Gincig.

Each hour will be a new decade of music, starting with the 1940s and culminating with the hits of today. Entry is $10; free entry with the purchase of an April’s Grove festival raffle ticket. For a $5 suggested donation, there are smoked pulled pork sandwiches and vegetarian chili from Jim Helminski. For $3 per cup, enjoy beer from Island Hoppin’ Brewery.

“I’m an unusual DJ in that I meticulously notate what year all of my songs come out,” Pavitt said. “So I think about music historically when I share music with people. You can expect to hear a lot of popular classics by brilliant artists … plus some interesting alternative tracks thrown in there as well. There will be something for everybody.”

Funds raised will go to April’s Grove, a neighborhood of 45 new rental residences on North Beach Road. Located across from Children’s House and The Funhouse Commons, it will consist of studio, one-bedroom, two-bedroom and three-bedroom townhomes. Each dwelling will be home for individuals and families who live or work on Orcas Island and need stable, affordable rental housing. Site preparation began this fall; construction started in May. The total project cost is $15 million, and $250,000 is left to raise. Funding has come from private donations (including $250,000 from the Orcas Community Foundation), federal grants, tax credits and county grants.

Pavitt founded the Sub Pop record label in 1988. By the early 1990s, it had released recordings of Nirvana, Soundgarden and Mudhoney. Pavitt is often credited with popularizing grunge music and initiating international interest in Seattle-area music. He left Sub Pop in 1996.

Pavitt currently works as creative director at 8Stem Interactive Media, an interactive audio format that allows any listener to remix music like a professional DJ or sound engineer. Paired with the first multi-channel playback and remixing app, 8Stem signals a new era of music that is participatory, immediate and social.

Pavitt has also authored two books, “Experiencing Nirvana” and “SUB POP USA.”

“I think low-income rental options are crucial, and I have a lot of respect for what OPAL has done,” Pavitt said. “I feel in alignment with what they are doing, and I am trying to help.”

Other OPAL events

The community foundation will be hosting a special online GiveOrcas campaign to benefit April’s Grove, starting with a field day on June 29 on the Orcas Center north lawn from noon to 4 p.m. Festivities include food, games for both kids and adults, and live music. Entry is by donation. The day will finish with the Gala OPAL Evening in the Madrona Room. Tickets are $125 per person. Visit and for more information.