$250,000 in prize money, a Rolex watch, and pride aren't the only things at stake during the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event underway at the Kentucky Horse Park this weekend. Equestrians will also be trying to earn a spot on their country’s Olympic team. Thousands of spectators are at the horse park to take in some world-class dressage, cross-country, and show jumping at Rolex Kentucky.
Bardstown-based Heaven Hill Distilleries will create 14 full-time jobs and invest $9.5 million in Louisville’s historic district, opening a multi-million dollar artisanal distillery, tourism and retail attraction called The Evan Williams Bourbon Experience along what historically is known as “Whiskey Row” on West Main Street. Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson joined company and local officials Thursday to announce The Evan Williams Bourbon Experience, which is set to open in September 2013 at the Heaven Hill building, a 5-story facility that is more than a century old.
The Bluegrass Boardwalk group has been granted preliminary approval for state tax incentives this week, bringing the amusement park one step closer to opening. The group is owned by Indiana’s Koch family, which also operates Holiday World in Indiana. The Kentucky State Fair Board agreed to lease the former Kentucky Kingdom property to the Koch’s earlier this year.
Kentucky native Wendell Barry delivered a prestigious lecture in the nation's capital last evening. He used the address to rail against corporate greed and to call people back to the land. The government says the Jefferson lecture is the nation's most prestigious honor it bestows on academics. Berry - a farmer, conservationist and writer - now joins the ranks of John Updike and Toni Morrison who have delivered the annual address in the past. In the hour long talk Berry exhorted the more than two thousand people in attendance to resist greed by connecting themselves to the earth as he's attempted to do on his Kentucky farm.
Workers at the Louisville Slugger Factory are making special bats this week to mark the anniversary of Major League Baseball’s oldest ballpark. The bats being turned out at the company’s downtown factory will be used by some members of the Boston Red Sox this Friday. That’s when they’ll take on the New York Yankees and celebrate the 100th anniversary of Fenway Park, the home of the Red Sox.
Mammoth Cave is celebrating National Park Week April 21-29 by offering a week of free tours and activities. Mammoth Cave Public Information Officer Vickie Carson says Mammoth Cave wasn’t required to offer free tours during the week—unlike parks that charge admission fees. But officials decided to offer two of the park’s cave tours—the Discovery and Mammoth Passage tours—free of charge on certain days.
A new documentary on Kentucky farming will debut on the state’s public TV stations next weekend. Coming to Ground is a 90 minute production of a Kentucky-based media production and education organization called Media Working Group.
Gov. Steve Beshear and first lady Jane Beshear Wednesday announced that the 76th annual Governor’s Derby Celebration will be held in downtown Frankfort for the second year in a row. The celebration will be held on Kentucky Derby Day, Saturday, May 5 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. EDT and is free and open to the public. “Jane and I are thrilled to once again host visitors to our historic capitol city for this family-friendly Derby Celebration,” Beshear said in a press release from his office.
A new arts venue opens tomorrow in Lexington. The Central Library on Main Street has renovated its Farish Theater. In its first month, Library Director Ann Hammond said the 139-seat theater hosts free events on 28 straight days.
Louisville Orchestra management is meeting today to discuss the latest contract offer from the musicians union, but management officials already say the offer is too vague. The orchestra has not performed in over a year and the players and management have been unable to agree to terms of a new contract. A letter sent to orchestra management this week says musicians are willing to enter into binding arbitration with the management, under several conditions that orchestra CEO Robert Birman called vague.
Some 700 pieces of Coca-Cola memorabilia will be auctioned this weekend in Elizabethtown. The items are part of the Schmidt Museum of Coca-Cola Memorabilia, which closed last year. The Schmidt family was among the first in the country to bottle the soft drink, opening a plant in 1901. Coca-Cola memorabilia expert Gary Metz estimates the auction of signs, rare posters, antique serving trays and other items could fetch more than $2 million.
The Kentucky Headhunters and Exile are among the new class of Kentucky Music Hall of Fame and Museum inductees announced today in Lexington. Seven native Kentucky artists will be inducted next year. The Kentucky Headhunters (top right), with roots in the western Kentucky community of Edmonton, shot to fame in the 1980s with hits like “Dumas Walker” and are still recording and performing.
Joining the Kentucky Commission on Women, Gov. Steve Beshear honored three distinguished women on Tuesday for their illustrious careers and significant contributions to the commonwealth. The governor announced that Willa Beatrice Brown, Joan Riehm and Crit Luallen were inducted into the “Kentucky Women Remembered” exhibit to mark Women’s History Month. As part of the honor, their portraits will be displayed alongside past inductees in the state Capitol.
Teresa Garbulinska Saykaly, 79, a noted concert pianist and Lexington arts philanthropist, died early Monday after a long illness. Born in Poland, she won the Polish National Mozart Competition in 1956 and went on to perform throughout Europe and the United States, including at Carnegie Hall in New York. She was a student of piano virtuoso Henryk Sztompka, who was a well-known student of Ignace Paderewski. As a result, her husband of 44 years, Dr. Ronald Saykaly, said, she was sometimes referred to as "the musical granddaughter of Paderewski."
Ten regional oral history projects are that much closer to completion thanks to grants awarded by the Kentucky Oral History Commission. One of those projects explores the history of Lexington’s underground music scene. Sarah Milligan with the Kentucky Oral History Commission says narrowing down the grant requests is no easy task. "It is a really, really difficult job to try and choose which applications get funding," she says.
When Warren County Judge-Executive Mike Buchanon walked into the Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center for opening night Saturday, he felt the experience was surreal. “Am I really in Bowling Green, Ky.? We’re so fortunate to have it in Bowling Green,” he said. “I think it’s extraordinary. It’s elegant, bright and welcoming. When you walk into the theater, you’re awestruck.” Nearly 2,000 people were expected to attend the opening of SKyPAC, complete with a performance by a last-minute substitution, award-winning country music artist Vince Gill.
FRANKFORT, Ky. - James E. Carlton of Lawrenceburg was 24 years old when he enlisted in the 5th Kentucky Cavalry of the Confederate States Army. He suffered a gunshot wound to the left knee in 1863 at the Battle of Lebanon, but served until the end of the war.
The play that became a sitcom that’s now a “contemporary classic” is performed this weekend in Lexington. Besides “Hot’l Baltimore,” theater goers can also see a drama based on the scientist credited with making the 1st atomic bomb. Rich Copley of the Lexington Herald Leader previews both stage productions.
A community meeting is scheduled at Lexington’s Lyric Theatre Tuesday night to give residents a chance to speak out about the kind of events they would like to see at the venue. Some African-American community members have expressed frustration with what they see as a lack of access to the refurbished facility.
The Kentucky Historical Society will reopen its history campus to walk-in visitors on Saturday, March 10, with a new exhibition, “Women in Basketball,” in the Keeneland Changing Exhibits Gallery at the Thomas D. Clark Center for Kentucky History. The KHS history campus also includes the Old State Capitol and the Kentucky Military History Museum at the State Arsenal. The Clark Center is located on Broadway in downtown Frankfort.
Rich Copley describes “Falstaff” as “a funny opera, best known for tragedy and anguish.” In preparation for this weekend’s performance at the University of Kentucky, the arts and culture reporter explains how Giuseppe Verdi managed that. Also, he talks about central Kentucky’s “first family of string music.” The Herald Leader reporter also previews the second performance in Lexington, within five months, of “August, Osage County.”