A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Kentucky by Heart: Kentucky is full of interesting topics to write about; sharing 33 of the best

By Steve Flairty KyForward columnist Finding fresh material to write a weekly column about Kentucky is always a bit of a challenge, but the fuel that makes it work for me is the unabashed passion I feel for such a place as this. Hopefully, the passion connects closely to the adoration my readers have for the Bluegrass State. But alas, I must understand that not all who happen to read Kentucky by Heart...

Kentucky Artisan Center opens quilt exhibit, ‘The Great Kentucky Cover Up,’ through May 6

Showcasing quilts from artists across the Commonwealth, the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea announced its latest exhibit, The Great Kentucky Cover Up, on display now through May 6 at the Center. The exhibit features work from artists Glenna Blakely of Harlan, Brenda Plaster of Lawrenceburg, Janet Serrenho of Lexington, and Karen Witt of Lexington. The creation of quilts is the result of mankind’s...

Intrepid Urban Farmer: Excitement building as a new gardening season looms. Look! Seeds are starting

By Ginger Dawson Special to KyForward Here we go again! It’s the beginning of another year of gardening, and I am excited!  I am so excited, one would think that I was at the beginning of an electrifying world tour that promises adventure with exotic, wild people; glorious food served in ten-course meals (French, naturally); buckets of champagne, fine wines and bourbon (I do live in Kentucky);...

Beth Underwood: The death of The Monkees’ Peter Tork revives many mixed childhood memories

I was having lunch with Mom and one of my brothers a couple of weeks ago when Mom kicked off the conversation on a rather low note. “Did you hear that Peter Tork from The Monkees died?” I hadn’t heard. The Monkees provided an undeniable and lasting influence on my musical tastes and education and played no small part in my lifetime love of music. Needless to say, the news brought to mind...

Kentucky by Heart: As state is abuzz with basketball, some new hoops books to highlight ‘annointed time’

By Steve Flairty KyForward columnist Basketball is buzzing in Kentucky these days, with both high school and college basketball tournaments in full throttle. Some might call this annual sports season focus as a state birthright… our “anointed time.” Being in the spirit of such mania, I’ve recently read a couple of good hoops books, one a biography on Adolph Rupp, the iconic University of...

Carey, House, McCartt-Jackson named winners of Weatherford Appalachian book awards

The Weatherford Awards honor books that “best illuminate the challenges, personalities, and unique qualities of the Appalachian South.” Granted by Berea College and the Appalachian Studies Association, the awards commemorate the life and achievements of W.D. Weatherford, Sr., a pioneer and leading figure in Appalachian development, youth work, and race relations, and of his son, Willis D. Weatherford,...

Beth Underwood: It’s easy to see, the best part about an eye exam is that pair of stylish paper sunglasses

“Take a look at these lines,” the optometric assistant said, holding out a small sheet of paper on a clipboard. “Stare at the dot in the center, cover your left eye and tell me if the lines look straight, crooked, or wavy.” Such was the first directives at my recent eye check-up. “They look straight,” I replied. “Are they supposed to look straight?” And so it began. For the next...

Central Bank Thursday Night Live at Keeneland highlights Spring Meet opening day on April 4

Keeneland kicks off its 2019 Spring Meet on April 4 with a community-wide celebration headlined by an afternoon of racing starting at 3 p.m., followed by the popular Central Bank Thursday Night Live, to be held in the track’s scenic Paddock area. “Keeneland is an iconic gathering place for the community – it’s a rite of spring,” Keeneland President and CEO Bill Thomason said. “Hosting Central...

Actors Theatre of Louisville names theatre veteran Robert Barry Fleming as newest artistic director

Robert Barry Fleming has been named Actors Theatre of Louisville’s Artistic Director. The appointment was announced Monday by Mac Thompson, President of the Board of Directors, and Managing Director Kevin E. Moore. Fleming comes to Louisville by way of Cleveland where he served as Associate Artistic Director of Cleveland Play House. Previously, he was the Director of Artistic Programming at...

Kentucky by Heart: Brothers appearance in Sweet Sixteen would have made their grandfather proud

By Steve Flairty KyForward columnist Uncle Donnie would have been “bustin’ his buttons” proud this past week watching his two grandsons play basketball for the Campbell County Camels in the 2019 Whitaker Bank/KHSAA Boys’ Sweet Sixteen. He’d love the fact that his alma mater’s team had “gone to state” and his daughter Tracey’s twins, Grant and Reid Jolly, were important cogs in its...

Dervish to perform Irish music at Berea College’s Stephenson Memorial concert on March 14

Dervish, acclaimed as one of the biggest names in Irish music internationally, will perform at Berea College’s Stephenson Memorial concert on March 14 at 8 p.m. in Phelps Stokes Chapel. Described as “an icon of Irish music” by the BBC and “the most soulful Irish traditional folk band playing today” by Irish journalist and broadcaster Stuart Bailie, Dervish has played at festivals from Rio...

Kentucky Arts Council recognizes 13 Kentuckians for completion of Community Scholars training program

Karen Lanier is digital project manager for the International Museum of the Horse and its education initiative the Chronicle of African Americans in the Horse Industry, a position she credits in part to her participation in the Kentucky Arts Council’s Community Scholars program. Lanier was one of 13 trainees of the Community Scholars program in Lexington. The Community Scholars program trains members...

Elizabethtown High School makes it two straight championships in Poetry Out Loud State competition

Elizabethtown High School senior Mary Kate Godfrey emerged as the state champion March 5 in Kentucky’s Poetry Out Loud State Finals at Frankfort’s Grand Theatre. Fourteen Kentucky high school students represented their respective schools at the poetry recitation contest, which is sponsored by the Kentucky Arts Council, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation. Each student...

Beth Underwood: When it comes to return policies, I’m taken aback by what some people… take back

There’s a WalMart bag in the back seat of my SUV. Inside the bag, there’s a brand new pair of warm and fuzzy slipper socks, reminding me of what happens when I prematurely toss a receipt. At this point, the socks have been rendered useless. I couldn’t exchange them because apparently, they didn’t have my size, to begin with. And now that they’ve been marked clearance for the season, the value...

Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill releases new spring program; lineup dives deeper into Shaker history

Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill has announced a new lineup of programming for spring. Beginning March 1 and running through the end of May guests of the Village will be able to enjoy new seasonal programs in addition to year-round Daily Adventures like Shaker music, historic tours and farm experiences. The new programs include: A History of Hospitality – Shaker Village is known today for its friendly...

Kentucky by Heart: James Duane Bolin pens first in-depth, critical biography of ‘Baron of the Bluegrass’

By Steve Flairty KyForward columnist There was a day when collegiate basketball in America was “just a sport,” when college gyms were marginal — often smaller and less attractive than those of today’s high schools — and most followers did so from sources via radio, newspapers, and information from friends. No cable TV, no ESPN, no 24-hour coverage… and March Madness as we know...

Inaugural NorthSide Festival comes to Loudoun House on April 27 to honor folk artist LaVon Williams

The Lexington Art League has announced the NorthSide Festival, a new community arts festival, will be held on April 27 in honor of long-time northside resident and prominent folk artist LaVon Williams. The festival will take place from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. at 209 Castlewood Dr. in Lexington, home of the Loudoun House and the Lexington Art League. The NorthSide Festival welcomes its neighbors and...

March is Severe Storms Preparedness Month in Lexington, get ready with these tips to remain safe

The one thing Kentucky residents can be sure of is that the weather is ever-changing and unpredictable. That’s particularly true in the spring when the seasons change and severe storms can be at their worst. It’s why Lexington Emergency Management designates the entire month of March as Severe Storms Preparedness Month. “As we’ve experienced over the past several weeks, Kentucky weather can...

Beth Underwood: Even Mardi Gras has rules, but at grandma’s house the King Cake carries septuplets

I recently made an interesting observation about our family. On the whole, we’re sticklers for the rules. We hold fast to long-established traditions, routines, and other forms of convention. Except for when we don’t. There are times when we can be real rabble-rousers and rule breakers — real outliers intent on paving our own way forward. I bring this up because Tuesday, March 5, is no ordinary...

City of Lexington seeking neighborhood volunteers to coordinate Great American Cleanup event

Know of an area in your neighborhood that could use some TLC and want to help improve Lexington’s environment? If so, consider coordinating a Great American Cleanup event. Through the Great American Cleanup, Keep Lexington Beautiful encourages organizations, churches, schools, businesses, clubs, and individuals to pick up litter in a neighborhood, park, roadway, greenway or stream. Last year, Lexington...