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Betsy Webb Stables Barn Buddies Raise Money and Hope for St. Jude’s

It was an idea generated and organized by young minds. On May 9, 2003, the BWS Barn Buddies 4-H Club saddled up for the first annual Ride-A-Thon. The gist was to ride as a barn for ten consecutive hours and receive sponsorship by the hour. With their 4-H leader, Kathryn Rodosky and outstanding volunteers Mary Davidson, Debbie Eisenbach, Dawn Smithwick, Barbara Schutte and Judy Nichols, along with many others, the event was a day, night and dawn to remember.

The traditional St. Jude fund-raiser involving horses is the Saddle-Up trail ride. Since there are no trails, the 4-H club decided on a spin-off to the trail ride. The BWS Barn Buddies developed a horse and rider schedule that allowed up to ten riders to mount-up at a time. St. Jude’s provided donation forms that underwent small changes to allow sponsorship by the hour and not distance. Any donation was greatly appreciated, however a $50 minimum donation was required to ride. local businesses, such as Best Buy and Wal-Mart donated prizes for the individual which raised the most prizes.

Thirty-four riders saddled-up for the event. With music, friends and lots of free food donated by Papa John’s, Winn-Dixie and Entenmann’s, the hours flew by fast. The final tally of $4,020 was announced as the last riders dismounted shortly after midnight. Nine-year-old Macenzie Morlan received a television for raising $600.

The BWS Barn Buddies wanted to contribute to the community. Seventy-five children in the Louisville area are currently receiving treatment at St. Jude’s. Ashley Davidson, an active member of BWS Barn Buddies, is a cancer survivor and received treatment at St. Jude’s.

Danny Thomas, the late entertainer, founded the biomedical research hospital. The goal of the children’s hospital is to help the children of world who have been stricken with disease. Families without insurance are never turned away. Money raised from fund-raisers covers those costs.

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