Last fall, United Way of the Bluegrass CEO Bill Farmer paid a visit to WLEX’s President and General Manager Pat Dalbey to introduce him to the Big Bold Goal, a strategic initiative aimed at improving the lives of Bluegrass families in a significant way: Moving 10,000 more families to self-sufficiency by 2020.
Dalby is well known for his community engagement and his commitment to public service. He has served on numerous boards, including Meals on Wheels, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, the Heart Association and more. And he is generous in committing public service time on the TV station as well.
He was intrigued by UWBG’s proactive approach to community problem-solving — and by the goal. He suggested a plan — and volunteered to make it happen.
Dalbey’s own bold goal comes to fruition Saturday in an unprecedented show of unity by Lexington’s four television stations — which are joined in their own “Night to Unite,” a 30-minute program to be aired on all stations at the same time — 7 p.m. — telling the stories of United Way and its Big Bold Goal.
All the news anchors, all the stations — united in making a difference in their community.
Over the months since his meeting with Farmer, Dalbey unified his counterparts from WKYT, Fox 56, and ABC36 around this effort.
“We have a great group of leaders representing the local television markets. It was no surprise to me that all of the stations jumped at the chance to work together on production of Night to Unite,” Dalbey said. “We are hopeful that the program will help create some positive attention around the many agencies and programs supported through United Way, and may inspire people to get involved by giving or volunteering.”
News anchors — those familiar faces on the evening news — have been collaborating in telling compelling stories about United Way, joined in a greater-good effort and good-natured camaraderie that meant they put their competitive instincts aside. They have joined in a concerted social media message effort as well, in advocating for getting involved and making a difference.
As part of the effort, UWBG is holding a Night to Unite Preview Party on Friday at 8 p.m. at the Signature Club at Lansdowne. The fundraiser will offer a chance to preview the television program and will feature dancing to the Jimmy Church Band, food prepared by celebrity Chefs Jeremy Ashby and Miquel Rivas of Azur Restaurant & Patio, Duprees Catering and Brasabana Cub Cuisine, and a silent auction.
Be a part of the effort by joining Chefs Jeremy Ashby and Miguel Rivas as they bring you a world of flavors at the United Way Night to Unite Preview Party, August 21, 7 pm, at Lexington’s Signature Club Lansdowne.
Tickets are still available and can be purchased online.
Among the special “Flavors of the World” foods Chef Jeremy has prepared for the occasion are: Asian Shrimp and Pork Dumpling with Truffle Plum Sauce, Italian Caprese stuffed Gnocchi with Amatriciana Sauce, French Smoked Salmon with Waffle Chips, Crème Fraiche and Chives. Chef Miguel weighs in with Latin and the Caribbean foods — Island Chips with Baja Guacamole and Cucumber Tomato Pico, and Jamaican Mango-Chicken Hand Pies with Papaya Jerk Aioli. And they both do some good Kentucky favorites, including Kentucky Hot Browns and Country Ham Biscuits with Bourbon Mustard.
The Jimmy Church Band entertains for an evening of dance.
And the silent auction? Look for opportunities like these: Three Day Rolex Package; UK Athletics Coach Cal Package; UK basketball and football tickets, two tickets to Vince Gill in EKU President’s Box, Sheila Bayes jewelry, a Reds Pavilion package, food, wine and entertainment.
Besides the four television stations, sponsors include the Signature Club, Azur, Brasabana and Dupree Catering, the University of Kentucky, Kentucky Utilities, GRW Engineering, KyForward, Keeneland, Sullivan University, and Field & Main Bank.