For many years, we’ve been able to bring top contra dance bands and callers from all over the country, even when dance admissions sometimes didn’t cover the costs.
To some of us, she’s a vivid memory. But newer members may never have heard of Kathy Blago – joyfully enthusiastic contra dancer, part of EFS from its beginning to her death in August, 2003.
Kathy’s interests ranged widely. Besides contra dancing, she taught swimming anywhere there was deep enough water and someone who wanted to learn. She had a degree from Oregon Technical Institute and worked as a technical writer. She was an original member of a round-singing group that spun off a friendship quilting group. That group organized projects where each person would contribute a block to a quilt that might become a gift for a new baby, for someone who was moving away, or for a birthday. Girl Scouting held a place in her heart. She participated in international folk dancing back before contra came to Eugene.
She was an enthusiastic, sometimes wild and muscular contra dancer. But in 1998, already debilitated by vasculitis, she suffered a stroke. She used a wheelchair after that, and among her caregivers and visitors were EFS friends. After her death, EFS was surprised and touched to learn of her gift.
After Kathy’s death, EFS was surprised and touched to learn of her very generous legacy gift. The EFS Board has carefully managed and invested this gift as a sustainable endowment so that it will continue to support and underpin EFS projects for years to come. We are very grateful that Kathy gave us this opportunity to keep her memory alive for all of us in the EFS community.