NELSONVILLE — Organizer’s behind this year’s Buckeye Bash hope to bring in about $50,000 for capital improvements to the Nelsonville-York School District’s Athletic Department.

“We’ll shoot for $50,000, but if we get $5,000, that’s $5,000 we didn’t have before,” said Mike Bishop, treasurer to the Athletic Booster, which organizes the event.

The Athletic Boosters have hosted the bash for the past several years. Participants buy tickets (this year they’re $25) for a chance to win some top-of-the-line prizes, like a 2012 Dodge Challenger, Nikon camera, four wheeler and generators during a drawing on Oct. 13 hosted at the high school gym. Over $100,000 in cash and prizes will be given away.

A few of the items are donated, but most of the prizes are purchased by the boosters through the ticket sales. That’s caused some issues in the past when enough tickets weren’t sold, resulting in postponing of the bash. This year, they’ve placed a disclaimer on the tickets, indicating the cash prizes are dependent on ticket sales.

Last year, tickets sold for $50. But because of the economy, they’ve drooped the price.

“We decided this time to make the tickets a little cheaper,” said Annette Talbert, booster president. “We’re hoping that’ll result in more people buying them.”

So far, 800 tickets have been sold to locals and to individuals in places like Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Lancaster, Oak Hill and Pomeroy. The boosters hope to sell at least 5,000.

“I suspect those people are previous bash ticket buyers or they have relatives in the area,” Bishop said, in reference to the far-flung ticket buyers.

On a good year, the fundraiser can raise as much as $60,000. The least they’ve ever raised was $25,000. All of the money has been used for upgrades to the school’s athletic facilities.

Together with donations from Rocky Brands and many local businesses and individuals, the funds have been used to install an eight-lane polyurethane track, a new concession stand, turf football field, new seating on both sides of the football stadium, baseball and softball field renovations and other athletic program needs and wants, said Dave Boston, the district’s athletic director.

These are improvements for the school and the community, stressed Bishop.

The ticket also serves as admission to the event, which highlights food, drinks, games and other prizes.

“We’ll have the Indiana vs. Ohio State game on the TV, as well,” said Bishop.

Tickets can be purchased in person at Athens Sport Cycle, Taylor Motors, C&J Tax Service, the Pit Stop and Nelsonville Home and Savings. They can also be purchased online at http://www.nelsonvilleyorkathleticboosters.com.

“Our boosters work tirelessly in generating the needed funds to do all of the great things that we do here at Nelsonville-York,” Boston said via email. “Funds generated by the Buckeye Bash are definitely a big part of all athletic programs at N-Y. Without the Buckeye Bash, we would definitely not be able to provide the young people with the top-of-the-line equipment and facilities that we have now.”

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