A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Kentucky by Heart: Family of Louisville doctor David Yandell made mark on Kentucky, and the world

By Steve Flairty KyFoward columnist I recently came across Nancy Baird’s biography of a noted Louisville medical doctor from the 1800s. The book is called David Wendel Yandell: Physician of Old Louisville, and besides providing a fascinating look at Yandell’s life (1826-1898), the author’s account also reveals an interesting look at the political and cultural times in Kentucky, including events...

Personalize Your Plate for National Nutrition Month to develop a heathful eating pattern

By Tracey True The Diary Alliance March is National Nutrition Month® and this year the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is encouraging you to “Personalize Your Plate!” Developing a healthful eating pattern is not a one-size-fits-all endeavor. We are all different, and our choices are shaped by many factors – not only taste preference – but more complex factors too, such as access to food,...

Lexington Philharmonic announces new online series to virtually connect community, musicians

The Lexington Philharmonic has announced a new virtual “Connect with Us” series, which will bring LexPhil musicians and community members together online for conversation and performances. Every Friday at 10:00 a.m. during March and April, LexPhil will premiere new virtual content virtual content that will include two series. “Connect: Coffee Hour” will feature live conversations...

Highway fatalities increased in Kentucky last year by 5%, adding to year of ‘devastating loss’

Highway fatalities in Kentucky increased last year according to preliminary numbers from the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet’s (KYTC) Office of Highway Safety (KOHS). Initial data indicates there were 778 fatalities in 2020, compared to 732 in 2019 – a five percent increase. “2020 was a year of devastating loss for Kentuckians, but what makes deaths even harder to accept is when they could have...

Documentary on Covington Catholic student’s viral encounter at U.S. Capitol streams starting Friday

Special to KyForward Rush to Judgment, the documentary about then-Covington Catholic High School student Nick Sandmann’s viral 2019 encounter at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C., will be released via the streaming service Vimeo this Friday. Greater Cincinnati filmmakers Steve Oldfield and Ryan Anderson spent more than a year investigating the story and scored exclusives with Sandmann, his...

Public invited to submit artwork for Team Kentucky Gallery to be displayed in state Capitol’s main hall

Gov. Andy Beshear and First Lady Britainy Beshear on Monday invited Kentuckians to lend their artistic talents to a new Team Kentucky Gallery, which will be located in a main hall of the state Capitol in Frankfort. The Beshears said the Capitol is the people’s house and there is no better place to highlight Kentuckians’ voices as represented through art. “Once we defeat COVID-19 and more Kentuckians...

Kentucky by Heart: Despite intrusion of virus, we’ve made positive changes and learned valuable lessons

By Steve Flairty KyForward Columnist The pandemic experience has been a bummer for most of us. I passed through my own bout with COVID-19 early in January and fortunately had minor symptoms: a dry cough, no fever, and some lower back issues temporarily. Almost surprisingly, my wife, Suzanne, tested negative on two separate occasions, certainly a blessing. I figured there must be something good to come...

Captain Don Sanders: Once it was ‘Throw it in the River,’ but times have changed for the better

The riverboat captain is a storyteller, and Captain Don Sanders will be sharing the stories of his long association with the river — from discovery to a way of love and life. This a part of a long and continuing story. By Captain Don Sanders Special to KyForward “Throw it in the river…” That was a command I eagerly obeyed many times early in the course of sixty-some years on the river. “Throw...

Kentucky Folklife Program at WKU announces first virtual Folklife Network Gathering March 5-6

The Kentucky Folklife Program, part of the Department of Folk Studies and Anthropology at Western Kentucky University, will host the first virtual Kentucky Folklife Network Gathering on March 5-6. The two-day event is dedicated to creating more robust avenues of communication among folklorists, academics, community scholars and cultural documentarians across the state. The gathering will feature...

Agricultural communications degree leads to life of global service, adventure for UK Agriculture alumna

By Aimee Nielson University of Kentucky Sarah Marshall knew from a young age that her path would lead to the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, but she didn’t realize that would be the springboard for a life of global agriculture service and adventure. Growing up on a farm in Eastern Kentucky’s Fleming County, Marshall was involved in 4-H and later in FFA. She first visited the UK campus...

Kentucky by Heart: Former slave, Ky. native Wheeling Gaunt defied the odds with an unrelenting work ethic

By Steve Flairty KyForward columnist Though making no claims of being a bona fide Kentucky historian, I enjoy researching and discovering people from the state’s past that aren’t particularly well-known, yet have inspirational stories that cry out to be shared. (Photo from Wheeling Gaunt Facebook page) I recently came across an account of Wheeling Gaunt, a man born in 1813 into abject poverty in...

Black History Month: An early look at sociologist William H. Turner’s memoir, The Harlan Renaissance

William H. Turner’s The Harlan Renaissance: A Memoir of Black Life in Appalachian Coal Towns is coming from West Virginia University Press in fall 2021. In this preview, from the manuscript, Turner — a sociologist and recipient of the lifetime of service award from the Appalachian Studies Association — reflects on Black life in his hometown of Lynch, Kentucky. This excerpt is republished...

Capt. Don Sanders: Sure it’s cold and might get colder, but have you been on a riverboat on ice?

By Captain Don Sanders Special to KyForward As a much younger man, I delighted in blustery winter weather like the Ohio Valley’s been enduring this week. The colder, the rawer, the nastier — the better. We had our share of wintry temps, ice, and blustery winds at Walt’s Boat Harbor, in West Covington, back in my high school days. One frigid afternoon, I stepped off the school bus in time...

Pandemic, social justice the focus of Ky. Legislative Black Caucus 2021 Black History Celebration Feb. 16

The struggles and challenges that dominated news headlines over the past year now serve as the inspiration for this year’s Black History Celebration. Hosted by the Kentucky Legislative Black Caucus, the 2021 Black History Celebration will be streamed online on Feb. 16. The celebration can be viewed online starting at 11:30 a.m. Georgia State Rep. Billy Mitchell (Photo from Georgia House of Representatives) The...

Kentuckians of all ages invited to submit photos for first UK Ag Equine Programs photography contest

University of Kentucky Ag Equine Programs has announced the launch of its first equine-oriented digital photography contest. Submissions will be accepted through Feb. 28. Students, as well as the general public, are encouraged to participate. There are three age divisions for submissions: youth (17 and under), UK students and open (18 and over). (Photo by Sydney Carter, UK Ag Equine Programs intern) UK...

Historical Society television series to explore questions surrounding genealogy in Kentucky

Every family has at least one mystery — an intriguing person, a possible connection to someone famous, or maybe even someone infamous. The Kentucky Historical Society (KHS) is excited to launch a new show, Kentucky Ancestors Town Hall, set to premiere on the state’s major television markets featuring host Renee Shaw. The premiere episode airs in February and will tell Kentucky’s story, one...

It’s never too late: Elaine Fletcher deferred her dream for a college degree for 45 years

Before starting college, Elaine Fletcher participated in Murray State University’s Upward Bound program for high school students during the summer of 1965. Upward Bound is a program for high school students to gain instructional help, management skills and fundamental support from students on a higher educational level.  Fletcher originally started college at Paducah Junior College back in 1972. Elaine...

Kentucky by Heart: In these tumultuous times for our country, there is much good happening in Kentucky

By Steve Flairty KyForward Columnist There are many good things happening around our state these days that might not receive the coverage they deserve, whether it’s because they carry only a “local” tag, maybe they are drowned out by so many reports of bad news, or perhaps those involved in the good things are limited in ways to publicize them. Good things untold is a perfect reason to bring...

Pets are our best friends in many ways — and more important than ever during pandemic

Humans’ best friends were more important than ever in 2020, according to a recent poll of MetLife policyholders. An amazing 54 percent of pet owners responding to the poll said their pets “gave them a reason to get up every morning” as they struggled to deal with isolation in a time of social distancing. In addition, 47 percent said their pet meant they “always had someone to talk to” and...

Longtime Kentucky editor, ‘Humble Reporter’ Bill Mardis, dies at 89; worked until his death Feb. 2

Few people have been identified with a rural daily newspaper as Bill Mardis, editor emeritus of the Commonwealth Journal in Somerset who died this week at 89, not long after writing his last stories for the paper. Mardis was working at Somerset’s WTLO when CJ Publisher George “Jop” Joplin III invited Mardis to join him in 1964 as The Somerset Commonwealth and The Somerset Journal,...