BALLINGER - Get ready to kick up your heels for a good cause during the Inaugural Boots and Bling Gala Saturday, Feb. 24 at St. Joseph's Catholic Church Hall in Rowena. All proceeds from the gala, which includes dinner, dancing, entertainment and an auction, will go to the Ballinger Memorial Hospital District Health Foundation to help fund current and future projects for Ballinger Memorial Hospital.

BALLINGER - Get ready to kick up your heels for a good cause during the Inaugural Boots and Bling Gala Saturday, Feb. 24 at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church Hall in Rowena. All proceeds from the gala, which includes dinner, dancing, entertainment and an auction, will go to the Ballinger Memorial Hospital District Health Foundation to help fund current and future projects for Ballinger Memorial Hospital.

“We are really excited about this event,” said Rhett Fricke, administrator for Ballinger Memorial Hospital.

The co-headliners for the event will be country music artists Case Hardin and Randall KIng who are much sought after country performers. Hardin, a San Angelo native, is a traditional country music artist who has played with the legends like Cory Morrow, Radney Foster, Casey Donahew, Jason Boland and Asleep at the Wheel. KIng, a native of Hereford, has honed his country style and skills in Lubbock, where his song writing style reflects that of his heroes like Merle Haggard, Keith Whitley and Alan Jackson.

The evening begins at 7:30 p.m. and folks can kick up their heels until 11 p.m. The tickets for the event are $50 each and include a meal and a drink ticket. The meal will be catered by Lowake Steak House and a cash bar will be available throughout the evening.

Sponsorship letters have been sent to supporters and members of the Ballinger Memorial Hospital District. There are sponsorships available including $5,000, $2,500, $1,000 and $500. Plus, donations of auction items are being accepted. The BMHD Health Foundation is a non profit organization and all donations are tax deductible.

The BMHD Health Foundation was created to help fund capital projects for the the hospital district and allows the district to apply for grant funding where needed. Mike Dankworth serves as the chairman of the foundation, which was created to help raise funds for capital projects for the hospital district.

Funds raised from the Boots and Bling Gala will be earmarked to pay for the foundation’s match of a 50/50 matching grant from the Meadows Foundation, which helped fund the purchase of two new ambulances last year.

The foundation had until Feb. 28 to raise the matching funds. The goal is to raise $50,000 in matching funds.

“This will go directly to pay down the note taken out at First National Bank and amounts to a year’s worth of payments,” Fricke explained.

The total cost of both new ambulances was about $200,000. EMS Director Mike Goetz, said the ambulances have been doing about 75 runs a month covering about 100 square miles which is from Ballinger to Paint Rock, to four miles outside of Bronte, Ballinger to Hatchel and from Ballinger to the Tom Green County Line. They also assist North Runnels Hospital EMS when needed.

“We have the best and newest equipment,” Goetz said.

The BMHD Health Foundation is currently raising funds through the raffle of a Gator, valued at $11,500 currently on display at Keel Drug. Tickets are still available at $20 each. The drawing for the Gator will be held in April.

All proceeds from the Gator raffle go to the BMHD Health Foundation and will be used to pay down current expenses or will be saved for future projects.