Smile Buffalo frontman leads ‘Toon’ charity run in Pattaya

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Worachet “Chet” Empia (center) led the team along Pattaya Beach Road, collecting donations for “Toon Bodyslam’s” nationwide charity campaign.
Worachet “Chet” Empia (center) led the team along Pattaya Beach Road, collecting donations for “Toon Bodyslam’s” nationwide charity campaign.

The leader of 90s alternative rock band Smile Buffalo led a run through Pattaya, Jomtien Beach and Koh Larn to support fellow musician “Toon Bodyslam’s” nationwide charity campaign.

Worachet “Chet” Empia opened his Dec. 15 event with an exhibit of sketches and paintings by Toon, whose real name is Athiwara Kongmalai.  All the artwork was available for purchase with proceeds going to the rock star’s cross-country run to raise funds to improve facilities at 11 public hospitals.

The campaign, which has captured the hearts and of Thais across the kingdom, has already surpassed its goal of raising 700 million baht. As of Dec. 14, more than 800 million baht had been donated to the celebrity’s cause.

At 4 p.m., runners took off from Central Road and ran down Beach Road to Walking Street and then back to the heart of the city. A similar run had taken place earlier in the day on Koh Larn.

Along the way, Worachet collected cash from the residents and tourists who lined the roads.  A total in excess of 20,000 baht was collected on the day.