Beech Bend Park in Bowling Green will be a regional site for the Make-A-Wish Foundation’s annual Kentucky Walk for Wishes for the first time in the event’s history.

Every year, Make-A-Wish families and supporters gather for the family friendly Walk For Wishes, which is a chance to celebrate the wishes from the past year and raise money to make more life-changing wishes come true.

The 2021 event will take place May 15 at three sites across the state, including Beech Bend Park.

Lisa Reeves, Make-A-Wish senior development officer for western Kentucky, said all money raised at Walk For Wishes will stay in the state and help grant more wishes for children and their families.

“The walk is one of our largest fundraisers across Kentucky,” Reeves said. “We recently have had a new focus on western Kentucky as another area which can help raise funds so we can continue to grant wishes for children across the state.”

Reeves said the event is undergoing changes this year amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The walk normally takes place in one location, which is usually Kentucky Kingdom in Louisville.

To help decrease crowds and prevent any spread of the virus, three regional sites were chosen: Beech Bend Park, Kentucky Kingdom and Hurricane Bay in Louisville and Evans Orchard in Lexington.

The formal ceremony at the event will also be replaced, and groups will be appropriately separated as many children within the foundation have compromised immune systems and are considered at-risk.

The walk is free, and anyone can register online at Make-A-Wish’s website. However, donations are encouraged, and interested parties must register beforehand so groups can be accurately separated.

“A lot of wishes are having to be reimagined this year due to COVID-19, and a lot of kids are currently waiting to have their wishes granted,” Reeves said.

Once registered, participants will receive a walk reservation time between 8 and 10 a.m. via email.

Start times for each walk group will be at least every five minutes to allow for social distancing. The foundation is also asking that those who attend this year’s walk to do a symptom check at home and wear a mask.

– Follow reporter John Reecer on Twitter @JReecerBGDN or visit bgdailynews.com.

– Follow reporter John Reecer on Twitter @JReecerBGDN or visit bgdailynews.com.