MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - Phil's 550 store, run by Phil Pearce has been a staple of the Marquette community for decades. The larger than life character that is Phil has attracted a cult following that extends well beyond the bounds of the Upper Peninsula. That's part of what made the news of his diagnosis with brain cancer last fall so devastating for so many. The community that lives around Phil Pearce, or Philville as they call it, are doing their part to help with his costly medical bills. Saturday, at Phil's 550 store, they'll be holding Philstock, a celebration of all that is Phil.
“So we're going to be grilling out, we got Mike Walker from Dia de Los Tacos, and some neighbors,” said Kris Wierenga, a friend and neighbor of Phil’s. “They've been smoking some pork for a few days and we're going to have hot dogs, hamburgers, good old American grill out. We'll have some yard games going on."
Philstock runs from 1pm to 9pm Saturday, July 8. There will be live music from six bands starting at 2pm. As Phil's neighbors planned the party, they were pleasantly surprised with the response they've received.
"We got a real Wayne's World 2 situation on our hands, basically,” said Wierenga. “So, Phil's a popular guy it turns out, as much of a curmudgeon as he may be. We're expecting a good turnout of friends and family, and neighbors. All sorts."
There will be special t-shirts made just for this event available, and proceeds will go to Phil's treatment. This goes beyond just helping Phil with his medical bills though. They want to make this event the best it can be in case Phil doesn't make it to next year.
“We all love the guy, and we wanted to do something that would kind of pay homage to him, and at the same sense, kind of just celebrate him,” said Wierenga. “We're not mourning over here, we're trying to have a good time, and it's been a rough go, but we're hanging in there and doing the Yooper thing."
Parking and seating are limited, so make sure you carpool, and bring a lawn chair to sit in