Bluegrass show to benefit Unity couple's quest to adopt

By Tanya Mitchell | Jun 26, 2012

Knox — A music show planned for Saturday, June 30, in Knox is aimed at helping a local family cover the costs of adopting a child.

Keith and Chrissy Hunter of Unity, who are also members of the local act known as the Backyard Bluegrass Band, will be performing with their teenage band mates, Daniel and Megan Muther as part of the event. The show will take place at the Harold Larrabee Family Fun Center on the Shibles Road in Knox, and will begin at 7 p.m.

The Hunters are undergoing the rigorous process of adopting an infant, something Chrissy said the couple has considered in the years since their two children, 11-year-old Amber and 13-year-old Christian, were born.

"We're going to play, sell refreshments and both of my children will be involved," said Chrissy Hunter of Saturday's show.

Chrissy Hunter said her son is learning to play the fiddle and plans to perform a few pieces for the crowd, and her daughter has agreed to lend her vocal talents.

The Hunters are reaching the end of the lengthy adoption process, which Chrissy Hunter said has included background checks, fingerprinting, home inspections and mountains of paperwork. The process is also quite costly, said Hunter, and one day the social worker who has helped guide the Hunters through the process suggested they have a fundraiser to help cover the expenses. In addition, Chrissy Hunter said, there are matching grants available for families who make creative efforts to raise the funds they need.

The adoption is a particularly big deal to the Hunter family because Chrissy Hunter has been living with diabetes since she was a young child. That condition can make carrying babies to full term difficult for the mothers, but in the Hunters' case, the couple was fortunate enough to have had their two biological children.

"After I had Amber, my [obstetrician] said she didn't think my kidneys would do well if I had another baby, so we decided then that Amber would be my last baby," said Chrissy Hunter in a telephone interview Tuesday, June 26. "But we always kept it in the back of our heads all these years that maybe we would adopt."

Now that the family has moved forward with those plans, Chrissy Hunter said it's been an exciting and busy time preparing to welcome their new family member.

When the social worker brought up the idea of having a fundraiser, Chrissy Hunter immediately thought of putting together the bluegrass show. The band, which has performed together for four years often at its local church, has played at benefits for food pantries as close as Unity and as far away as Strong.

"That's where the idea came from," she said.

The family must still complete one final home study before the adoption can become a reality, and even after that is completed, Chrissy Hunter said she has no way of knowing when their newest child will come home.

When the couple first started the process with Maine Adoption Placement Services, the social workers said the process could take up to two years, and they may have to go out of state to find their baby. But Chrissy Hunter said MAPS has recently had an influx of birth mothers seeking adoptive families for their unborn children, and because the Hunters aren't particular about things like gender and race, they may be welcoming their new baby sooner than later.

"We're hoping maybe by Christmas," said Chrissy Hunter.

Admission to Saturday's show is by donation only, and refreshments will be sold on site.



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