Riot Fest stands with the people of Ukraine, and against the unjust war and suffering that Russia has brought upon the country. In light of the escalating situation overseas, the festival is starting an urgent fundraiser with 100% of the proceeds donated to two organizations supporting life-saving measures in Ukraine.
Two new shirt designs are now available at RiotBrand.org, benefiting Razom for Ukraine and Revived Soldiers Ukraine.
Riot Fest will donate all proceeds from sales to Ukrainian organizations; “Riot Mike” Petryshyn will match all proceeds up to $15,000.00 to support a population under siege.
You can read about the organizations Riot Fest is supporting below.
Please read the following statement from festival founder Michael Petryshyn (AKA Riot Mike)—who, among some of our other staff, is Ukrainian-American:
“Eighty years ago, all four of my grandparents left their beloved homeland of Ukraine to escape decades-long atrocities under the dictatorships of Vladimir Lenin, Joseph Stalin and their Bolshevik and Soviet counterparts. Just like millions of other Ukrainians, they left behind their parents, siblings and family knowing they would likely never be able to embrace them again.
What they saw and witnessed is something no person should ever experience. Under Soviet and Bolshevik rule, Ukrainian dissidents, insurgents, thinkers, writers—and whoever they deemed as a threat to the authoritarian regime—were either killed or shipped off to Siberian penal colonies. From 1932 to 1933, upwards of 6 million Ukrainians were intentionally starved to death by Stalin in just two years, all because of their resistance to collectivism. All the while, centuries-old Tsarist Russification was rebranded as Soviet conformity to wipe out all Ukrainian identity: language, culture, religion and history. Obey or we will silence you.
Make no mistake, the Soviet and KGB hierarchy alongside their pseudo-intellectual Leninist, Stalinist and Marxist ideologies never left the Kremlin halls. All of them, including Vladimir Putin, are just donning new uniforms and they will never view Ukrainians as Ukrainians. Once KGB, always KGB.
Eighty years ago, Ukrainians like my grandparents left everything they knew and loved to escape Stalinism. It appears history may be repeating itself. With mortars exploding behind them, Ukrainians are beginning to flee their homeland as their sovereignty and independence begin to crumble.
And as the world watches innocent lives being lost, I humbly ask—as a proud Ukrainian-American—to not sit idly.”
Michael Anthony Petryshyn