In the coda of my last post, I touched on the tragedy of last week’s tornados and the immense destruction they caused in Western Kentucky. The devastation weighed heavily on my mind, as I’m certain it did for you. But out of the darkness, there was light – and hope. Countless individuals, organizations, corporations, and crowd-funded initiatives united to help get Kentuckians affected by the storms back on their feet again. And while it won’t surprise you or me, bourbon is leading the charge.
It’s remarkable what can be done when pride and bullshit are put aside. Pardon my language, but it’s the truth. Too often there’s critical work to be done – people in dire need – yet those with the power to enact change dance around the details. Bureaucracy. We see it every day. But there are rare exceptions (arguable miracles of modern society), and the Kentucky Bourbon Benefit is a shining example.
In three days – three days – the Kentucky Distillers’ Association, Fred Minnick, and the Bourbon Crusaders worked together to establish the Kentucky Bourbon Benefit. It’s a fundraising effort like none I’ve seen before. One-of-a-kind bottles, chance-of-a-lifetime experiences, vintage whiskey tastings, priceless collectibles, and so much more are being auctioned to help rebuild Western Kentucky. The event kicked off December 16th. Going into today, over $700,000 had been raised. As I’m typing now, over $1,000,000. One million dollars … from bourbon.
If you haven’t already, I encourage you to visit KYBourbonBenefit.com. You’ll be stunned at the impressiveness of the lots. And for the diehard Wild Turkey fans reading, Campari has donated two signed Master’s Keep bottles (the 17-year Bottled in Bond and the latest, One) as well as a Longbranch Experience Kit bundled with two bottles of Longbranch, a Yeti Series V cooler, Matthew McConaughey’s Greenlights, and everything you’d need to fashion an “alright, alright, alright” cocktail. There’s also various Russell’s Reserve Single Barrel private selections, including one chosen by Fred Noe (Jim Beam), Chris Morris (Woodford Reserve), and Jimmy and Eddie Russell. Talk about a rarity!
The Kentucky Bourbon Benefit ends Tuesday, December 21st. Please take a few minutes to browse the lots, bid on those you can, and share any items of interest with friends and family. At the very least, share them with the world on social media. You never know – you might just catch a pair of eyes with a pair of deep pockets.
All proceeds raised by the Kentucky Bourbon Benefit go directly to the state’s official Team Western Kentucky Tornado Relief Fund, so rest easy knowing your contributions will truly make a difference.