SIKESTON — After a two-year absence from in-person activities, the 42nd Annual Kenny Rogers Children’s Center Telethon returns this weekend for a one-day event at the Miner Convention Center.
“More than anything, we’re really excited to have an in-person event this year,” said Michelle Fayette, KRCC’s CEO. “We are working hard to get people to the Miner Convention Center on Saturday.”
This year’s telethon, which will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, includes a touch-a-truck event, a cornhole tournament, a food truck lunch and a silent auction at the Miner Convention Center.
“What we’ve learned over the past two years is that we can be a little more creative and we don’t have to do what we’ve always done,” Fayette said.
So the telethon organizers decided to change things up a bit this year by offering different activities, changing the usual two-day event to one day and also moving the main venue from Sikeston Field House to the Miner Convention Center.
“This year we’re trying to get back on our feet and get back to normal,” she said.
Southeastern Missouri children who attend the center receive physical, vocational, and speech therapy based on their needs. The nonprofit has never charged a family for the services they receive, and most of those charges are due to funds raised through the telethon.
“We have more therapists and provide more services than ever before,” Fayette said. “This telethon is so important because it’s literally what allows us to serve children during the summer.”
Children who use KRCC services will again be present at this year’s telethon, Fayette said.
Despite the challenges, the Center had a successful telethon last year, according to ot Fayette.
“Last year was really amazing,” Fayette said. “We did a virtual telethon at the Center. We stopped broadcasting with $250,000 and we were happy about it. Our goal this year is to raise $300,000, so all of our teams are working very hard to secure donations, and we are asking our teams to come to the telethon on Saturday.
All Silent Auction items will be available for in-person preview from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Miner Convention Center. The silent auction is also available online and open for auction on Monday.
“There are hundreds of items up for bidding,” Fayette said.
Individuals can register as a bidder using the following link: https://one.bidpal.net/telethon2022. They can bid from anywhere and anytime on their favorite item. They will receive a notification on their mobile phone when you have outbid.
“This week, take a look at our auction items and study them,” Fayette said. “We have a lot of items and really want you to join us at the Miner Convention Center on Saturday.”
The auction will end at 4 p.m. Saturday.
From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday will be the touch-a-truck event in the Convention Center parking lot where attendees can view vehicles used around Sikeston, such as fire engines, dump trucks, garbage trucks, Fayette said. A quiet hour from 10am to 11am will be observed for sensory people.
Registration for the cornhole tournament is at 10 a.m. and the tournament starts at 11 a.m. also in the parking lot of the Center des congrès. The cost is $40 per team with a 75% payout. Message Ashley Ervin to register: [email protected]
Southeast Missouri food trucks will be assembled beginning at 11 a.m. and serving crab legs, barbecue, donuts, funnel cakes, specialty sandwiches and more in the Convention Center parking lot.
“I’m really excited for the food trucks to be here,” Fayette said. “We will have delicious food.”
Slated to appear are Tasty Sno Crabz, Buzz Feed Market and Deli, Waves Mini Donuts, Mini Farm Mafia BBQ, and Tri-County Clowns.
“Saturday we will be inside the Miner Convention Center, and anyone can get food from the vendors. They can enter to eat and browse all the auction items. We will have groups coming in and doing check presentations,” Fayette said.
Fayette also noted the Tri-County Clowns’ fish fry-only drive-thru, which began earlier this month and will continue from 4-7 p.m. every Friday through April 8 at St. Paul, 1010 N. Main St., in Sikston. The three-piece catfish dinner includes coleslaw, fries, hush puppies, baked beans, and onion. All plates are $15.
“You don’t need to have tickets in advance,” Fayette said, recalling that dinner is drive-thru only.
A few Saturday events will take place off-site of the telethon: the annual 5k run/walk that begins and ends at the Kenny Rogers Children’s Center, 300 Floyd Drive, and black light bingo at VFW Hall, 709 Smith Ave., at Sikston.
Registration for the annual 5k run and walk begins at 9 a.m. Saturday at the KRCC. The race begins at 9 a.m. with trophies and medals awarded to the top finishers. A non-competitive 5 km walk and a 1 mile walk will also take place. Fees are $25 on race day and $20 for virtual runners (those who cannot attend but still want to support KRCC).
Blacklight Bingo will begin at 7 p.m. at VFW Hall with doors opening at 6 p.m.
“It’s not your grandmother’s bingo,” Fayette said. “Everything glows in the dark and there’s music playing in the background.”
Admission is $30 in advance by calling or stopping by the Center or $35 at the door. Over $1,000 in cash prizes will be awarded.
To donate, text “KRCC” to 91999 or visit www.kennyrogerscenter.org or call (573) 472-0397 for more information.