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Family, fans throw party for 'X Factor' contestant

by on December 24, 2013 10:54 AM

When Indiana’s newest celebrity went to The Coney in Indiana on Monday night, he thought he was just going to get dinner with his family.

What Zach Beeken, who just came back to town after being a contestant on “The X Factor,” found was more than 150 people waiting to welcome him home.

“I was really surprised for this party,” Beeken said. “I didn’t expect any of these people to be here. … I thought I was coming to dinner with my family.”

The surprise was a welcome one, though.

“It’s really great to see all the people I’ve been missing and to see all the new faces who have been here in town watching and supporting and voting.”

The party was filled with familiar faces, Beeken said, as well as plenty of new ones that became Restless Road fans after the band found fame on the singing-competition show on Fox.

“Being on the show and the whole music thing just kind of brings people together and just seeing all of these people who I didn’t really get the chance to meet or connect with in high school or just around town — we get a chance now to meet.”

The party was thrown at The Coney with the help of Buggy’s Dry Cleaning in Indiana, where Beeken worked prior to the start of the live show.

“I wanted to show our support and how much we love him and how proud we are of him that he’s gone so far,” said Janet Buggy who owns the dry cleaners. “He’s going to continue going further.”

And as for the fans, they were excited to be there. A standing ovation was waiting to greet Beeken after he walked up the steps to second floor of The Coney. A line of people formed to meet Beeken, get his autograph and have their photo taken with him.

“It’s crazy that someone we went to high school with is famous now,” said Carly Snyder, a current student at Indiana Area High School, where Beeken graduated in June. She and her friends, Jill Bender, Liz King and Ashley Garonzi, who all attended the party, said in unison that they’d “definitely” be loyal Restlesss Road fans now.

The band was put together by show creator and judge Simon Cowell after Beeken had been voted off the show in September. It included Colton Pack and Andrew Scholz, two other country singers.

The group was voted off in the semi-final round of the show on Dec. 12.

Following the band’s final competition performance on the show, an online movement started for Simon Cowell to sign Restless Road to his own label, SYCO Entertainment. Other artists that have been signed to SYCO include One Direction, Susan Boyle, Leona Lewis and Emblem 3.

The worldwide movement, which started when Simon Cowell said that he’d “let the fans decide” if he would sign Restless Road, “if they show a lot of support.”

The hashtag movement #SimonSignRestlessRoad began, and thousands, possibly millions of tweets later, it’s still running strong on the social network — in countries all over the world.

For now, though, Beeken can’t say exactly what’s in the future for the band.

“I honestly don’t know for sure anything, but there’s certain things that are going to be happening and talked about in the next month with label people and Simon — I mean … in that direction.”

Previously, Beeken had said that it was not the end of the road for Restless Road, who will stay together as a country group despite not making the final round on the show.


Ellen Matis is the digital media coordinator and a staff writer at The Indiana Gazette. She is the person behind the Gazette's social media. A 2012 graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Ellen has a degree in journalism and public relations. Follow her on Twitter, @EllenMatis, or email her at
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