Annual Kentucky Bash celebrates Easter Seals Cardinal Hill

Traditionally, it is held every year the night before the UK home opener.
Published: Sep. 2, 2022 at 4:02 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - The 49th Bash benefiting Easter Seals Cardinal Hill is the unofficial kickoff to football season in the Bluegrass. The annual event was paused the last couple of years because of the pandemic.

Traditionally, it is held every year the night before the UK home opener. This year is extra special because it is the first in-person bash held since 2019.

This party not only gets fans fired up, but it helps raise money for an organization that for countless years has been helping Kentuckians with disabilities live a normal life no matter their limitations.

Started by a group of dedicated volunteers, The Bash has become synonymous with the kickoff of the UK football season. It’s a party with a lot of history.

“This will be the 49th year for The Bash, which as far as we know is the longest running charitable event in the whole bluegrass region,” said Jenny Wurzback, Executive. Dir. at Easter Seals Cardinal Hill.

The Bash brings together fans, the UK wildcat, cheerleaders and head coach Mark Stoops to raise money for Easter Seals Cardinal Hill and the programs it provides.

“The vision from the very beginning has been to not only continue serving children and adults with special needs, but to do even more in the community and in the region,” said Wurzback.

And that vision, and now the footprint of Easter Seals Cardinal Hill, is growing. The organization is renovating the old Shriners Hospital building on Richmond Road into a top-notch facility to serve more children and adults with disabilities.

“In some ways, a one-stop-shop for a child that may be born in need of therapy or in need of special medical day programming, but it’s a full circle effect in that our adult day program will be located in this building as well as on campus,” said Wurzback.

Every day Easter Seals in Lexington serves about 120 people through a variety of programs.

Jamie Ellis, the soon-to-be new executive director said the larger facility will allow them to develop more programming, serving the people of central and eastern Kentucky.

“So we are going to be offering a medical day program for children so that will allow children who need nursing services, it will allow them to have a place to go during the day so their families can continue to work,” said Jamie Ellis, Pediatric Therapy Director.

From the renovation to the services provided, it’s made possible through donations and that’s where this year’s Bash comes in and another year for a big blue party with a purpose.

“This is a place that gives people hope and it allows us to let the children and the adults, it gives them an opportunity to participate in everything with the community,” said Ellis.

Easter Seals Cardinal Hill serves patients across Kentucky and Wurzback said their hearts are with the folks of eastern Kentucky as they deal with the aftermath of flooding.

The proceeds from the live auction at The Bash will go to the ARH Foundation to continue the work of helping so many rebuild their lives.

This party with a purpose will do its part to not only serve its clients, but also extend its kindness to a region that need its most right now.