Fayette notes: Big Blue Crush blood battle begins

Eric Sanders
Eric Sanders Photo provided

If you bleed blue, now is the time to prove it. The annual Big Blue Crush, the blood battle between Kentucky Wildcat and Tennessee Volunteer fans, continues through Friday .

“Big Blue Crush is a fun week for donors and our staff, but it’s mostly about Kentucky patients. It’s our biggest blood donation week of the year and supports the health care of Kentucky during the holidays, a time when blood donations typically take a dip nationally,” said Martha Osborne, the blood center’s vice president of marketing. “Of course, we also like to beat Tennessee.”

Anyone who registers to give blood with Kentucky Blood Center during Big Blue Crush week will receive a long-sleeve black T-shirt and a chance to win tickets to the Kentucky-Louisville football game on Nov. 25. In addition, Tuesday donors will be automatically entered to win one of 30 $30 Amazon gift cards.

KBC donor centers are listed below. All locations are open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. through Friday .

▪ Beaumont Donor Center, 3121 Beaumont Centre Circle

▪ Andover Donor Center, 3130 Maple Leaf Drive

▪ Middletown Donor Center, 12905 Shelbyville Road, Louisville

▪ Somerset Donor Center, 10 Stonegate Centre at Stoplight 16A

▪ Pikeville Donor Center, 472 South Mayo Trail

To find Big Blue Crush mobile blood drives or for donation information, go to or call 1-800-775-2522, Ext. 3758.

Fire department alarmingly low on supply of smoke detectors

Lexington Fire Department needs donations to keep its smoke alarm program operating. The department has installed nearly 8,000 smoke alarms in Lexington homes since 2013, but the work may have to be put on hold until funding catches up.

“We really have a need for this in Lexington,” said Lexington Fire Department Battalion Chief Joe Best. “We’ve had three fatal fires resulting in six deaths in Fayette County this year. Unfortunately, there weren’t working smoke alarms in those homes.”

For the first time since the program began in 2013, demand has exceeded the Fire Department’s ability to supply the alarms. Best said the department estimates it will need $14,000 to cover the homes it has scheduled between now and the end of the year.

To donate to the program through PayPal, go to Or mail donations to the Fraternal Order of Firefighters, 1405 Old Frankfort Pike, Lexington, KY 40504. Donors should write “smoke alarms” in the memo section of the check.

Author speaks about dementia care at Morning Pointe on Wednesday

Virginia Bell, co-author of “The Best Friends Approach to Dementia Care” will speak at a luncheon at Morning Pointe of Lexington-East, 150 Shoreside Drive, at noon Wednesday . Each guest will receive a copy of her book.

Bell received her master’s in social work from the University of Kentucky in 1982 and her bachelor’s degree from Transylvania University in 1944. She developed one of the first dementia-specific day centers in the country, which opened in 1984, using the Best Friends approach.

Bell has lectured widely on the Best Friends approach to dementia care at national and international conferences, speaking at 12 National Education Conferences of the Alzheimer’s Association and lecturing at the last 27 conferences of Alzheimer’s Disease International.

For more information or to register, call 859-721-0350.

Lexington’s Sanders wins bass fishing tournament

Boater Eric Sanders, of Lexington, caught a three-day cumulative total of 12 bass weighing 33 pounds, 10 ounces, to win the T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League Regional event on the Barren River. Sanders earned $65,000 for his efforts, including a new Ranger Z518C boat with a 200-horsepower Evinrude outboard and automatic entry into the 2018 BFL All-American Championship.

Complete tournament results can be found at

Public asked to help select Lexington’s official tree

Lexington will soon have its own official tree, and the public is being asked to help decide which one of three oak trees gets the honor.

The finalists, selected by the Lexington Tree Board, are bur oak, Shumard Oak, and chinkapin oak. All three are native to the Bluegrass region and thrive here. The board decided that Lexington’s official tree should be an oak since the official National Tree is one. The board hopes that by identifying an official city tree, the public will plant more of that variety and preserve and protect others as well.

“Designating an official tree allows the public to learn more about the importance of trees in our urban environment,” says Bridget Abernathy, Tree Board chairperson. “Each of these iconic oak trees is worthy of this honor.”

The public can vote through Dec. 9 at

Local author to release new novel, appear at Kentucky Book Fair on Saturday

Christina Kaye, a Lexington-based, award-winning author of the Flesh & Blood trilogy and “Confessions of an Old Lady” will be appearing at the Kentucky Book Fair from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday Nov. 18 at Alltech Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park. She will be signing and selling copies of her first book, “Like Father, Like Daughter,” which was named Suspense Finalist for the 2017 Indie Excellence Awards.

Kaye is scheduled to release her fifth book, “A Necessary Evil,” on Dec. 19. The suspense novel is set in Lexington — like all of Kaye’s books — and features many local landmarks that may be familiar to readers. Kaye will be signing “A Necessary Evil” at Joseph Beth Booksellers on Jan. 11 and at Wild Fig Books on Jan. 13.

For more information about Kaye and her books, go to

$50,000 awarded to grass roots projects in north/east Lexington

Blue Grass Community Foundation, in cooperation with North Limestone Community Development Corporation and Community Ventures, has awarded 15 mini-grants totaling $50,000 to nonprofits and individuals with project ideas benefiting Lexington’s North/East neighborhoods. This is the third cycle of mini-grants offered with grant funds from The Kresge Foundation.

Successful applicants offered innovative and inclusive approaches to infusing art, culture, food and health into the community. Funded projects include a Latino celebration for kids and families; a health initiative that trains community residents to respond and give medical assistance to victims suffering from a excessive blood loss; community garden training for refugee urban farmers; free music, art and writing classes for at-risk youth and their parents; and an educational community biking event beginning at Isaac Murphy Memorial Art Garden and continuing the length of Legacy Trail.

Library wins top innovator award

The Urban Libraries Council has recognized the Lexington Public Library as a Top Innovator in the area of civic and community engagement as a key partner in a project, called On the Table, which sought to increase the breadth and diversity of input into the city’s new Comprehensive Plan, called Imagine Lexington. The library was instrumental in the planning of the project, which provided safe, non-partisan spaces for some 11,000 community members to share a meal while discussing their issues and concerns for the community.

“On the Table was a one-day series of community conversations held in small groups throughout the city. Conversations focused on Lexington’s future, and information gathered is now being used to inform the city’s long-range comprehensive plan and other community initiatives. We made civic engagement fun by creating a social setting for dialogue and an easy mechanism to share ideas with city leaders,” said Ann Hammond, Lexington Public Library executive director.