The Kentucky Fair Board will vote on a new lease Thursday for the Kentucky Kingdom theme park. The Bluegrass Boardwalk company was formed this month by members of the Koch family, which owns Holiday World in Indiana. The Kochs will now propose its lease agreement to the fair board, which may include changing the Kentucky Kingdom name and Bluegrass Boardwalk hasn’t been ruled out as a new title.
For a work of drama, a play opening tonight at Berea College was practically ripped from today’s headlines. Titled “This is My Heart for You,” it was written within just a few months by Kentucky author Silas House. Moved by real acts of violence and bigotry, House explores equality and morality in a small, fictional Appalachian town. The author explained his motives to WEKU’s Roger Duvall.
The childhood home of former First Lady, Mary Todd Lincoln, is normally closed all winter long, but the historic house on Main Street in Lexington is making an exception for this Monday; Presidents Day. Executive Director Gwen Thompson says the staff always put together a youth-oriented program for the holiday. "It's really catered more to the children. It's different from our regular tours which really are more adult-friendly, so this is an experience for the kids and to make museums fun for them."
A composer who’s created two unique pieces for Lexington audiences returns tomorrow to the Singletary Center. Last summer, Daniel Kellogg’s “Look up at the Sky” was performed for the first time during theChamber Music Festival of Lexington. Friday evening, Kellogg’s composition, How Radiant the Dawn, is performed by the Lexington Philharmonic Orchestra.
Kentucky Opera conductor Joe Mechavich is stepping down amid the controversial decision to seat non-union musicians for the upcoming opera performance of The Merry Widow. “Given these circumstances, I am unable to continue my role as conductor for this production,” wrote Mechavich in an email to the Kentucky Opera board and opera patrons.
Dozens of union members rallied this morning in front of the Fund for the Arts offices in support of the Louisville Orchestra musicians. Orchestra players and management have been embroiled in a contract dispute for more than a year, and musicians have been idle since their last contract expired in May.
The new book “Bigger Than They Appear” is the latest offering from a woman who’s quickly becoming a force in the world of Kentucky writers. Katerina Stoykova Klemer edited “Bigger Than They Appear,” which is an anthology of very short poems. She also published it through her own press…Accents Publishing. Klemer founded Accents two years ago. She’s published 21 titles, mostly poetry, working with authors from Kentucky as well as her native Bulgaria. Klemer spoke with Kentucky Public Radio’s Graham Shelby and said she has always been a writer.
Danville was designated a Kentucky Cultural District Certification recipient by First Lady Jane Beshear and Madeline Abramson, wife of Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson, Thursday. Danville joins four other cities as a recipient of the designation: Horse Cave, Berea, Covington and Paducah. Twenty-six applications were received, and the five chosen are the first in the state to earn the certification.
Carl Brashear’s legacy is on display today at the Pentagon as part of Black History Month. Phillip Brashear, Carl Brashear’s son and a U.S. Army helicopter pilot, has been invited to discuss his father’s life during a screening of the movie “Men of Honor” in the Pentagon auditorium, an event being held by the Department of the Navy.
The Kentucky Opera has hired a group of community musicians to play for next weekend’s performances. The ongoing Louisville Orchestra labor dispute has left the opera without musicians. The company seated a group of union orchestra players for November’s run of Carmen. The players were given a shorter-term version of their collective bargaining agreement with the orchestra for those performances.
Most of the awards shows that grab our attention involve big-name celebrities. On Oscar night, the focus is on the red carpet parade of stars—and their couture. But tune in for the Grammys, and you’ll more likely find someone dressed “down” for the occasion. And then there’s the Country Music Awards, which aren’t usually held in Nashville, home of the Grand Ole Opry, but in Los Angeles, home of smog and traffic. One awards show that remains distinctly under the radar is the National Book Awards.
Actors Guild of Lexington this weekend opens a play by Sarah Ruhl called “The Clean House.” Ruhl’s a hot contemporary playwright who wrote “Dead Man’s Cell Phone,” which was staged last year by the Actors’ Guild. Also, Actors Theatre of Louisville has a production of her “In the Next Room or The Vibrator Play” on stage right now. “Here Come the Mummies,” who built a central Kentucky following during the World Equestrian Games, return Friday evening to Lexington. Plus, there’s a bunch of string music this weekend in Lexington, Clay City and elsewhere. With a preview is Rich Copley who’s an arts and culture reporter with the Lexington Herald Leader.
The Kentucky Historical Society will host a free Family History Workshop, “Tracing Slavery and Slaveholding on the Kentucky Frontier,” at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 11, at the Thomas D. Clark Center for Kentucky History in downtown Frankfort. What happens when a black woman researching her roots comes face to face with descendants of the people who enslaved her ancestors? Pam Smith, a Kentucky Humanities Council speaker, will describe the facts and feelings that surfaced when research led her to a university professor whose ancestors owned Smith’s enslaved great-great grandfather.
Fort Boonesborough opens an 18th century-style tavern this weekend. The opening coincides with the state park’s long-running “Fireside Chats” on Kentucky history. This February, the Saturday evening chats feature actors portraying pioneers like Daniel Boone, Simon Kenton, and Jenny Wiley. Park Manager Todd Melton says audiences also ask questions.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, "Life's most persistent and urgent question is: What are you doing for others?" On the day the nation paused to remember the civil rights leader's life, thousands of people in Kentucky and millions across the country spent Monday answering King's question.
The Lexington Philharmonic puts out the ‘red carpet’ for a special 50th anniversary weekend concert Saturday night at the Opera House. On Sunday night, a one man show about abolitionist Frederick Douglass comes to the Lyric Theater. The annual Martin Luther King observance in downtown Lexington Monday will include a tribute to Mahalia Jackson. The Lexington Herald’s Rich Copley runs down weekend activities on this holiday weekend.
As the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I approaches, historians and genealogists will soon be able to use a rare series of books at the Kenton County Public Library system’s Covington branch. Compiled by Charles F. Horne in 1923, the hard-bound books with the Legion emblem embossed on the cover are known as a definitive collection providing details of the causes and various armed conflicts of World War I, said Dave Schroeder, executive director of the Kenton County Public Library system.
Kentucky’s Division of Unemployement Insurance has ruled that Louisville Orchestra musicians have been on strike and not locked out. The musicians are considered to have been on strike since the end of June, according to a release from Louisville Orchestra management. With this ruling they are voluntarily withholding their labor and therefore not entitled to unemployment income, said Robert Birman, CEO of the Louisville Orchestra.
Hidden behind the death of political icon Gatewood Galbraith was the passing of a woman who tried just about everything during her long life, including a stint inside the Kentucky Theater box office. Rich Copley of the Lexington Herald Leader remembers Lee Overstreet and previews a performance this evening by Lexington singer Coralee of "Coralee and the Townies" is doing a Loretta Lynn tribute show at Cosmic Charlies. Rich also talks about a sneak peak of PBS' newest “Downton Abbey” series at the Kentucky Theatre on Saturday morning.
Last week, the city of Bowling Green gave the go-ahead for the demolition of the People's Hardware and Supply Building. On Monday, Kenway Contracting brought the brick buildings down. First, Raybold and Sons had to remove asbestos from the buildings at 631 and 633 College St., Kenway President Kenneth Allen said. "But they got all that done and gave me the go-ahead," Allen said. "We wanted to wait and do it when there wasn't anyone in the trailers next to (Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center). Since the building is two stories, you don't know what is going to happen."
It’s safe to say Kentucky journalist Al Smith has led a full life. During his teenage years, he was an award-winning writer and speaker. But, then, Smith nearly sank in the sea of alcoholism. He recovered to become a successful newspaper owner, the head of the Appalachian Regional Commission, and for 33 years, Smith hosted “Comment on Kentucky” on Kentucky Educational Television. The soon-to-be 85 year-old has collected his memories in a new book, “WORDSMITH, My Life in Journalism.” WEKU’S Ron Smith spoke with him…
Ever dreamed of owning the governor's mansion? Thanks to a Campbellsville company, that's now possible, albeit in the form of a five-inch wood-carved ornament. Campbellsville-based K&M Crafts of Kentucky was selected to produce this year's limited edition official state Christmas ornament.
Louisville’s Filson Historical Society has opened a new exhibit focusing on the Civil War as it played out in Kentucky and the Ohio Valley region. It’s called “United We Stand—Divided We Fall.” Filson Curator of Special Collections Jim Holmberg says interest is running high as the country marks the Civil War’s 150th anniversary.
The new director of the Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft will start work next month, but he’s already been meeting with fundraisers in Louisville. Aldy Milliken previously ran a gallery in Sweden where he connected with contemporary artists. He says he wants to raise money to bring their exhibits to Louisville.