Ice Bucket Challenge boosts Gleasonfest turnout - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Ice Bucket Challenge boosts Gleasonfest turnout

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SPOKANE, Wash. -

You've been watching the ALS ice bucket challenges all week, but on Saturday, August 23rd, the mother of all ALS events took place Gleasonfest 2014. Named for Spokane native and former New Orleans Saint Steve Gleason, the event was held in downtown Spokane at Division and Main.

"My brother goes through more courage in a day than most of us use in our entire life," said Kyle Gleason, Steve's brother. "And he's still here, and he's still with us."

Kyle tells KHQ they expected twice as many people to attend the festival, partially because of the awareness raised by the ice bucket challenge.

"We've certainly raised more funds than last year," Kyle said. "It's single-handedly done more for ALS awareness than anything since the disease has had a name."

Aside from raising money and awareness for ALS, the event featured eight indie bands playing from 2pm to 11pm. It cost $20 to get in, but all the proceeds went to ALS research and support for those who need financial help to get equipment, treatment, or service to help in their fight against ALS. 

In all, the ice bucket challenges have raised more than $62 million for ALS awareness and research since July 29th. People donated more than $8 million in one day alone. Last year, during this same time period, only about a million dollars was raised.

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