disability awareness game

BALLIN' — During a previous Disability Awareness Basketball Game, celebrity team member Shelly Wyman drives to the basket. This year’s event has been canceled, but the organization is still looking for much-needed funds to make up for the loss.

The last time we updated you about our special events in April we broke the devastating news that Soupley’s Greatest Spectacle in Tasting would not take place this year. It still seems unreal.

Now, I get to be the bearer of bad news again. However, this time I’m going to leave you with some positive news… so make sure you read all the way to the end.

For the past 20 years, Bona Vista has hosted a Disability Awareness Basketball Game during the month of March – Disability Awareness Month. As you all know, this March took a turn. Not just for us but the entire world. The event was postponed until June 23.

We remained hopeful that this pandemic situation would vanish quickly, and we would phase back in to “normal life” in time for us to take over Memorial Gymnasium. Unfortunately, that is not the situation in which we find ourselves. The event is too big for the crowd regulations, and the schools are still not able to host functions per the governor. What a sad day.

The number of people that has been involved with this event over the years is staggering. Whether they have played as a celebrity or All-Star, performed during one of the breaks, coached either team, volunteered in the concession stand or at the door, refereed the actual game, run the score board, gave the play-by-play, helped set up or tear down or any number of other positions vital to the evening, there are so many lives that have been impacted by this event. And, people do it because somehow in some way Bona Vista has been a part of their story, and they want to help us by giving back of their time, talents, and treasures.

Everyone has a story. And, that’s what this game is really all about. Even though we won’t be playing basketball in front of a large crowd this year, we want to share some of those stories with you in the coming days via our Facebook page. Not only do we want these videos to encourage you to still give to your favorite celebrity player (which is a tax-deductible donation to Bona Vista Programs), but we want you to know the why behind why we do what we do. It’s definitely not for the glory. It’s for those we serve.

The lack of this event is also a loss of $20,000 for the organization. Add that to the $65,000 we are missing from the cancelation of Soupley’s Greatest Spectacle in Tasting, and we are sitting at around $85,000 in lost revenue. Ouch.

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If you aren’t on social media to see those videos, you still can donate to support those we serve. You can mail or drop off a donation to 1220 E. Laguna St., Kokomo, IN 46902. Every dollar counts and is greatly appreciated.

Now, with all of that being said I promised you some exciting news if you stayed with me until the end. I don’t want to disappoint you, and it wasn’t just a hook to get you to keep reading.

We are excited to announce that we will be hosting a nine-hole, half-day golf outing at Wildcat Creek on Aug. 28! Yes, an outdoor event with limited people in the same space. Woohoo!

We will be looking for teams, sponsors, silent auction donation items, and all of the support in the coming weeks as we continue to plan and prepare for this new event. We are thankful for our friends at Wildcat Creek who have been working with us on the much-needed precautions and what this event will look like in order to have a good time while remaining safe.

But, we wanted to give you a chance to save the date, get your team together, and request the time off work (or find a babysitter)! We are hopeful that our friends at Soupley’s will join us for this event, too! So if you’re one who missed not having the Greatest Spectacle in Tasting and you like to golf, this event is a win-win for you (and us)!

If you’re interested in forming a team, sponsoring the event, or getting more information about the upcoming golf outing, email me at abrantley@bonavista.org. I will write an article totally dedicated to the golf outing in the coming weeks, though, so don’t worry about missing out!

We appreciate each and every one of you who has stood by us and supported us during this pandemic. We truly can’t wait to see you all and hope that you’ll join us in August! If you don’t golf, but you’d like to make a donation in support – you can visit bonavista.org and click “Donate” or send a check in to the address I mentioned above. Again, no amount is too small, and no amount is ever too large!