'Big Blue Crush': Kentucky Blood Center's annual blood drive event underway

Posted at 9:02 AM, Nov 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-17 11:25:55-05

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Donate blood to beat the Vols!

Kentucky Blood Center's 34th annual Big Blue Crush blood drive event has begun. Kentuckians are encouraged to roll up their sleeves and donate blood to beat Tennessee fans and Medic Regional Blood Center in Knoxville.

Big Blue Crush began Monday and runs through Friday, November 19.

The competition is underway, but this year's low donor turnout so far is not what KBC wants to see.

Kentucky has won the blood battle the past two years, but this year KBC says Kentucky is trailing way behind the Vols.

Kentucky saw 355 donors give blood Tuesday while 453 Tennessee fans rolled up their sleeves. That leaves Kentucky trailing 707 to 933 in total.

Tuesday also marked the fewest donors KBC has seen in the competition on a single day in more than a decade.

The low donor turnout is impacting hospital blood supply for the upcoming holiday amidst an ongoing national blood shortage.

Officials are urging Kentucky fans to do their part by visiting any KBC donor center this week to donate blood.

All six KBC donor centers are open from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. for Big Blue Crush (Nov. 15-19).

  • Andover Donor Center
    3130 Maple Leaf Drive, Lexington
  • Beaumont Donor Center
    3121 Beaumont Centre Circle, Lexington
  • Hillview Donor Center
    5406 Antle Drive, Louisville
  • Middletown Donor Center
    12905 Shelbyville Road, Louisville
  • Pikeville Donor Center
    472 S. Mayo Trail, Pikeville
  • Somerset Donor Center
    10 Stonegate Centre (Stoplight 16A), Somerset

Appointments are preferred and can be made here or by calling (800) 775-2522. Walk-ins are accepted as space and social distancing permit. You can also donate at a mobile blood drive through Friday.

And if the sweet victory over Tennessee fans wasn't enough of a reward, KBC is thanking donors who donate blood this week with a ringer-style Crush T-shirt and a coupon for a free appetizer from Texas Roadhouse.

KBC says donating blood is important because than 2,000 lives are saved in the state each year because of blood donation.

Officials at KBC tell us that they transfuse an average of 270 pints each day at local hospitals. To keep up with that demand, they need at least 400 donors a day to give blood. They see an average of 61,000 donors each year.