Musician Steve Fotter will perform with the Al Corey Orchestra and others Saturday as part of a concert at Lawrence High School benefiting the Waterville Police Department’s Operation HOPE, which helps those addicted to opioids receive treatment. Photo courtesy of Steve Fotter

A concert to benefit the Waterville Police Department’s Operation HOPE program, which helps those addicted to opioids receive treatment, will kick off Saturday at the Williamson Center at Lawrence High School in Fairfield.

The concert, titled Warming up for Christmas, will be hosted by guitarist, singer and music instructor Steve Fotter. The Al Corey Orchestra under the direction of Brian Nadeau will open the concert, with Fotter singing Frank Sinatra songs with the orchestra. The event is scheduled to begin at 5 p.m.

Fotter will sing some songs and bring on his stage band, comprised mostly of his ex-guitar students, and the Christmas Kids, a group of mostly young guitar students.

Fotter and his wife, Linda, for years hosted a concert before the holidays but took a break during the coronavirus pandemic. Their son, Jason Fotter, and his son, Marco, will perform as well as the Fotters’ grandson Isaiah, as part of their group Three Generations.

The concert is being dedicated to Gerry Wright, longtime friend of Steve Fotter and fellow musician who died Oct. 1 at age 89. Wright, of Winslow, was known for his musical talent and 71-year career as a teacher and pianist.

General admission tickets for Saturday’s concert are $25 each, or $30 at the door, and are available online at by searching for Steve Fotter. Tickets also are available by calling his studio at 649-0722.


Operation HOPE, which stands for Heroin Opiate Prevention Effort, was launched in Waterville in 2017 and focuses on enforcement, education and treatment, with the primary focus on treatment. Those who come to the Police Department sick, scared, addicted and seeking help are screened and placed in a residential treatment program. Trained volunteers check with rehabilitation facilities around the country to find an open spot. The person is given airfare, if necessary, and sent there. The program survives on donations and fundraising efforts by the police department, including golf tournaments, concerts and other events. No taxpayer dollars are used.

Fotter said Monday that Operation HOPE helps a lot of people and it was important to him to contribute through his fundraiser.

“We really have a drug problem all around us and I’ve known people personally that have had drug problems and did not receive help,” he said. “But this organization definitely helps those with drug addiction, as I have heard it firsthand from the people themselves that have been helped.”

Waterville police Chief William Bonney was the deputy chief when Operation HOPE launched in 2017 and played a leading role in getting it off the ground. Bonney did not respond Monday to an email and phone message seeking an update on the program.

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