IDefine Blog
Uncategorized  - June 1, 2024
Matt Lockwood - AUTHOR

Big Fundraiser for IDefine

The third annual Southern Roots: A BBQ Reunion in April was a resounding success raising close to $100,000 for IDefine – more than the first two years combined.

Approximately 1,500 fans of great food, music and fellowship – including more than a dozen Kleefstra syndrome families – gathered at Trailblazer Park in Travelers Rest, South Carolina for the fundraiser.

More than 35 of the top chefs and pitmasters from around the country served up delicious dishes and barbecue while a rocking lineup of performers – including the Abbey Elmore Band and Trey Francis and Baby Freak – entertained attendees to raise money for the battle against Kleefstra syndrome.

“In addition to raising a record amount of money, the growing engagement of the local community and our KS families was a blessing to witness,” said Geoff Rhyne, IDefine CEO and creator of Southern Roots. “Our chefs took things to another level this year, and I can’t thank them enough. They voluntarily take time away from their restaurants and families on a Saturday to make Southern Roots what it is. And it is always so fulfilling for our Kleefstra syndrome families to gather and support each other. It’s a reminder that we’re not alone, we are a community.”

Darrick and Tiffany Reed traveled to the event from Kansas with their family, including 11-year-old Brianna, who has KS.

“Brianna – and our whole family – look forward to Southern Roots all year long,” said Darrick. “Brianna’s connection with her Kleefstra friends is wonderful, and Tiffany and I enjoy catching up and sharing notes with the other families.”

Allie Knight of CB Events, which co-organizes Southern Roots, says the combination of the families and chefs is a great recipe.

“Very quickly Southern Roots has become an annual event that chefs want to be a part of,” said Knight. “They have huge hearts and they love meeting the KS families and seeing firsthand what we’re raising money for.”

Southern Roots is already locked in for April in 2025 and 2026.