Boots, bourbon & beyond: Weekend proves profitable for local nonprofits

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A tray of bourbon await guests at the Boots & Bourbon event, which raised an estimated $37,000 on Saturday, Oct. 22 for Meals on Wheels of Hancock County.

HANCOCK COUNTY — From Diamonds and Denim to Boots & Bourbon, it was a busy time for local nonprofits last weekend.

The weekend kicked off Friday night with Dancing with the Local Stars hosted by the Women’s Resource Center of Hancock County. The local nonprofit raised $5,700 from the dinner, dance contest and silent auction.

On Saturday, the popular Boots & Bourbon raised a record $37,000 for Meals on Wheels of Hancock County.

Hancock County Arts also hosted a fundraiser that day — an online auction called Diamonds and Denim — which has raised $3,500 so far, with donations still coming in.

All three events were focused on raising money for the nonprofits that hosted them.

“Dancing With the Local Stars was really great,” said Beth Ingle, executive director for the Hancock County Women’s Resource Center.

The event brought five “local stars” together at Adaggios Banquet Hall in Greenfield for night of competitive dancing to benefit the Women’s Resource Center, which provides mentoring, guidance and connections to help women and their families be financially self-sufficient.

This year’s contestants each performed three line dances before a panel of judges. The dancers included: Tammy Settergren, executive director for Hancock County CASA; Mary Schuck, owner of The Gilded Nest in Greenfield; Sherry Haines of Miller’s Jewelry; Jennifer Johnston, Greenfield-Central High School’s varsity dance coach; and Lacie Edon, a daughter, mother and volunteer for several non-profit organizations that focuses on women’s needs.

While Johnston won based on judges’ votes, Edon won the People’s Choice award after garnering the most $1 votes from attendees.

“It really was a fun night and the dancers brought the entertainment,” said Ingle. “They had three costume changes and they were amazing. The guests seemed to have a really great time.”

Local auctioneer Wayne Addison emceed the event, which drew nearly 75 people.

Addison also emceed the live auction at the Boots & Bourbon event at the Hancock County Fairgrounds on Saturday, which set a record for the most money raised for Meals on Wheels of Hancock County.

“Our 2022 Boots & Bourbon fundraiser was a smash hit,” said Lynda Kosh, the nonprofit’s executive director.

“We are thankful to our sponsors and attendees for their gracious participation and generosity. The senior citizens of Hancock County are the real benefactors of this event,” she said.

The bourbon-based event featured live music, silent and live auctions, and the chance to buy leather-stamped branded hats made on-site by Organic Robot Designs.

More than 25 vendors participated, giving guests the chance to sample bourbon from both large and small distilleries and more than 100 different labels of wine. Greenfield Chocolates provided bourbon chocolates while Hancock Health Catering Services provided bourbon-paired appetizers.

Special VIP tickets gave early attendees the chance to enjoy specialty hors d’oeuvres, small batch bourbons and cigar pairings courtesy of the Maduro on Main cyber shop in Fortville.

“We had a really great night of local fundraising, and enjoyed hosting the bourbon community with an awesome turnout,” said April E. Allford, public relations and marketing for Meals on Wheels.

“Hancock County truly proved there’s unity in community with the support residents and small businesses provided.”

Allford said one of the most special moments of the night was when a local veteran stopped by with a special item for the live auction — a limited batch bottle of Horse Soldier Bourbon Reserve, embellished with metal from the World Trade Center.

A variety of items were also up for auction through the Diamonds and Denim event hosted by the Hancock County Arts organization, which was scaled back to a backyard party in McCordsville after a larger event was canceled due to a lack of registrants.

Hancock County Arts president Alice Hedden was still thrilled with the amount raised, which will go towards promoting and supporting the arts throughout Hancock County.