By Corrine McCallum
The 13th annual Taylor Richmond Benefit Dance (TRBD) will benefit Saint Mary’s University senior Sabrina Bushlack on Saturday, March 23, from 8:30 p.m. to 12 a.m. in the SMU gymnasium.
Buchlack was chosen as the benfeciary of this year’s TRBD after being injured in a serious car accident in Indiana this summer. She was rushed to the hospital with a serious skull fracture and major brain swelling.
Through many tests and trials, today Bushlack is back at SMU where she attends classes and plays on the women’s volleyball team. The accident left Bushlack with speech setbacks and physical difficulties. With the amount of help Bushlack needed to get back to her normal ways, came a debt of hospital bills.
The Saint Mary’s community has been there for Bushlack through this whole experience, from checking up on her while she was in the hospital to raising money and participating in a 5k walk for her. Bushlack was unanimously selected to be the beneficiary of the TRBD, which is held every year at Saint Mary’s to help raise money for a person in need.
“There were four applications turned in this year for beneficiaries for the benefit dance, and all four were for Sabrina,” according to Connie Budin, the TRBD committee chair. “It is the 13th annual benefit dance which is kind of cool since Sabrina’s volleyball number is 13.”
Bushlack could not believe she was the only person nominated. “Well, I am just kind of astounded because I never in a million years would have seen it coming,” said Bushlack. “I am just incredibly grateful and I know my family appreciates it a ton.”
Not only will Bushlack receive the money from the dance, but also the proceeds from a silent auction before the dance. Budin said, “The one big thing to plan with the dance is the silent auction, which is a two-day auction on the Thursday and Friday before the dance. Donations from all around Minnesota have come in to help Sabrina as well.”
“Sabrina wanted a country theme, so between ‘Strong is the New Beautiful’ and the country theme, we came up with ‘Country Strong,’ ” said Budin. The gymnasium will be decorated in a country theme with checkered colored tablecloths and farm decorations, according to Budin.
“I am going with the flow, and they keep me informed. I did not realize how much planning went into it and now I do because I get all of these emails asking me, ‘Would you like this? Would you rather have this?’ I am just surprised,” said Bushlack. With the dance quickly arriving there is a lot to plan.
Bushlack said she is excited for the dance. “I will be going with all of my roommates and their significant others so I am going to be the eighth wheel.”
Students started the TRBD in 2001 in honor of Taylor Richmond, son of SMU staff member Nikki Richmond and Nick Richmond.
The TRBD and its silent auction will help Sabrina with both her college debt and hospital expenses. Tickets to the dance cost $18 per person or $30 per couple. Tickets can be purchased prior to the event by contacting Director of Student Activities Lance Thompson or at the door.