The Kentucky Distillers’ Association has announced that its upcoming Kentucky Bourbon Affair™ showcase will benefit three groups involving retired racehorses, forestry research and a support fund for employees of a recent distillery accident.
“Our legendary distilleries have a long history and strong track record of giving back to their communities,” Kentucky Distillers’ Association President Eric Gregory said. “We’re proud to help these worthwhile causes that, like Bourbon, are uniquely Kentucky.”
The organizations are:
Old Friends, a non-profit thoroughbred retirement center in Georgetown, Ky. Founded in 2003 by former Boston Globe film critic Michael Blowen, Old Friends cares for more than 150 horses, many of them stallions whose racing and breeding careers have ended, and attracts nearly 20,000 visitors annually.
“Old Friends has had a long and wonderful relationship with the KDA and we’re grateful and proud to be affiliated with this year’s Kentucky Bourbon Affair, which is just a fantastic event.” Blowen said. “This is such a terrific union of Kentucky’s signature industries: Bourbon and horses.”
Its White Oak Initiative is designed to increase knowledge of fatal insects and diseases that could ultimately affect cooperages and barrel-making. The FHREC partnership is designed to advance conservation and improvement of forest ecosystems through research and education.
“Our forests have historically been a rich source of white oak used in barrel production,” said Jeff Stringer, Professor of Hardwood Silviculture and Forest Operations at UK. “But our forests are faced with significant threats, including our oaks.
“The Forest Health Research and Education Center is focused on providing solutions to improve the resilience of our native forests so we can continue to enjoy their resources. We thank the KDA for recognizing the importance of our forests and selecting the Center as a beneficiary.”
Lifting Spirits support fund for Jay and Kyle Rogers, who were injured in an April 24 fire at the Silver Trail Distillery in Marshall County. Kyle Rogers passed away Monday, May 11. Jay Rogers remains in critical but stable condition at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville with severe burns. The Kentucky Bourbon Affair also will make a donation to the Kyle D. Rogers Scholarship Fund.
Tickets are still available for this year’s event, a five-day Bourbon fantasy camp that will be held June 3-7, featuring exclusive behind-the-scenes tours and events at the most famous Bourbon distilleries in the world.
Nightcap events throughout Louisville will highlight the city’s burgeoning culinary scene. It’s the only whiskey event created and executed by the distilleries themselves.
“The Kentucky Bourbon Affair is full of intimate experiences that take insider’s access to a whole new level,” Gregory said. “With today’s announcement, your ticket helps benefit three great causes that strengthen our rich heritage. We promise it will be an unforgettable adventure.”