"Uptown, Downtown, Lowdown, Hoedown"

By Karen Le Van

"Uptown, Downtown, Lowdown, Hoedown" was everything the name implied. The October 12 event was lowdown in the basement loading lock level of the Commonwealth Convention Center in downtown Louisville, attended by many uptown people who wanted to get down at a hoedown.

Mayor Jerry Abramson was on hand to welcome everyone who came to help the Heart to Heart organization raise funds for Aids Support Services and the Council for Retarded Citizens.

Entertainment was provided by the Country Cutie Cloggers, Gary Brewer and the Kentucky Ramblers, Kentuckiana Square Dance Association clubs, Ange Humphrey, Mark Atcher and Sharon Beavers and The Buddy Steele Band.

Sharon Beavers is a little gal with a big country voice. She recently went into the studio with some members of Exile and cut a three-song demo which is being shopped around Nashville and is also receiving airplay on WKMO. Sharon will be performing at La Bo's in Lebanon Junction November 18-20. (Note to songwriters: She is looking for original material, too.)

The highlight of the evening was the "High Hat Auction." Designer cowboy hats had been sent to eighteen of the world's most notable designers such as Bill Blass, Bob Mackie, Eleanor Brenner and Koos Van Den Akker, to be trimmed to perfection and sold to the highest bidder. Some hats went for over $900 due to the auctioneering ability and enthusiasm of auctioneers Joe Gribbins, Bill Lively and Jeff Cave.

Gribbins really kept the audience going with his almost dance-like routine and on- bended-knee begging ability, which thoroughly entertained all.

The hats were covered with sequins, pearls, rhinestones, or lace and some needed only a silk scarf or ribbons and photographs to show the unique abilities of the world-famous designers.

Some designers sent dresses and an area designer, Kate Fisher, donated a beautiful hand-painted leather cloak. Kate Fisher of Westport, Ky., does a lot of special designs for entertainers who want something really unique.

Heart to Heart raised over $8,000 with the auction and took in a total of close to $30,000 for the event.

There were 40 Kentuckiana square dance clubs adding color and fun to the Hoedown. Big Enos and Little Enos a.k.a. Wes Dyer and Kenny Jarvis, put on a great exhibition of clogging and tap dancing.

What would a hoedown be without hayrides, ropin', chicken and buffalo chips. Well, none of the above were left out – you could learn to lasso a steer, toss a chip and play "chicken bingo." What's that, you say? Chicken bingo is probably the most unique game of bingo this writer has ever seen. It is played with a giant bingo card placed inside a chicken-wire cage. When a chicken is dropped to leave his calling card (you get the picture).

Kate Clarke, one of the Heart to Heart volunteers, told me the organization raised over $100,000 this year for charity.

Their next big event is November 10. It's an Industrial Strength Auction to be held at St. Patrick's Church, Thirteenth and Market Street, from 10 a.m. till l2:30ish. Jo Ross is the chairperson.

Anyone wishing to make a donation to the auction or get more information can call Kate at (502) 454-0623, or send a note to Heart to Heart, P.O. Box 2987, Louisville, KY 40201.

Our hats are raised with a big "Ya-hoo" to Nana Lampton, chairperson of the Hoedown and to the fourteen volunteers of Heart to Heart who give so generously of their time and energy to create these unique events in order to help those in Louisville suffering with AIDS and the Council for Retarded Citizens.