Current KBC thank you item: "Be Human Kind" long-sleeve shirts
LEXINGTON, Ky. – It all comes down to this.
Locked in a tight back-and-forth blood battle, Kentucky and Florida donors control their own destiny to win the 2024 Big Blue Slam crown. After Big Blue Nation’s Thursday surge – a 2024 competition-high 302 donors – Kentucky Blood Center has reclaimed a narrow 13-donation lead, 1,083-1,070, over LifeSouth Community Blood Center heading into Friday’s finale.
Whichever donor base can win the final day of donations will put itself in favorable position to win the five-day event.
“Wow, this really is going to come down to the wire,” said Mandy Brajuha, VP of external relations at KBC. “Our donors really responded to Florida’s one-day lead, but can we finish this off now? We have a lot of pride in our current three-year winning streak, but we would love to make it four in a row. We’ve said throughout this competition that every donor makes a difference, and that’s truly going to be the case. Let’s bring home the win, Big Blue Nation!”
All locations will be open and ready to welcome donors and push Kentucky over the top. KBC’s eight donor center locations (Lexington, Louisville, Corbin, Frankfort, Pikeville and Somerset) will be open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday, and public mobile drive options are available at the University of Kentucky Gatton Student Center in Lexington, UK’s Lewis Honors College in Lexington and Letcher County Community in Whitesburg.
Appointments can be made by clicking the above links, visiting bit.ly/KBC_BigBlueSlam24 or by calling 800.775.2522. Appointments are highly encouraged, but walk-ins will be accepted.
A chance to be a part of a meaningful victory isn’t the only reason for donors to make time to donate Friday; all donors will receive a limited-edition Big Blue Slam T-shirt and entry to win two tickets to the UK-Florida men’s basketball game on Jan. 31 in Rupp Arena.
But, the biggest benefit of all is saving local lives at a time of great need.
KBC lost more than 800 donations over the last week and a half from the aftermath of two winter storms that stymied much of Kentucky. More than 20 drives were canceled, depleting KBC’s blood supply for more than 70 hospitals.
That’s where Big Blue Slam comes in. The event was formed 16 years ago to boost the blood supply during the winter months when wintry conditions and illnesses can hinder collections.
One in four people will need a blood transfusion in their lifetime. KBC supplies local hospitals to ensure no matter what the need is and when the need is, blood is available for all local patients. Kentucky Blood Center is the exclusive blood provider for UK Healthcare, Baptist Health System, CHI Saint Joseph Health, Appalachian Regional Healthcare and many others.
Blood donors must be at least 17 years old (16 with parental consent), weigh at least 110 pounds, be in general good health, show a photo I.D. and meet additional requirements. Sixteen-year-old donors must have a signed parental permission slip, which can be found at kybloodcenter.org.
Eight donor centers in six cities
Serving more than 90 counties
Find a drive near you
Celebrating 55 years of saving lives in Kentucky, KBC is the largest independent, full-service, nonprofit blood center in Kentucky. Licensed by the FDA, KBC’s sole purpose is to collect, process and distribute blood for patients in Kentucky. KBC provides services in 90 Kentucky counties and has donor centers in Lexington, Louisville, Frankfort, Pikeville, Somerset and the Tri-County area.