A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

UK grad’s design, ‘Pegasus in Bloom,’ selected for 2020 Kentucky Derby Festival poster

By Gabriela Antenore University of Kentucky A design by University of Kentucky alumnus Casey McKinney was unveiled as the 2020 Kentucky Derby Festival poster. McKinney’s artwork, named “Pegasus in Bloom,” was chosen to represent the Kentucky Derby Festival because of its colorful design. The poster features a pegasus racing through a field of colorful flowers and shapes, with fireworks and...

Kentucky by Heart: Unique book offers personal accounts of life in Ky. during Great Flood of 1937

Editor’s Note: This is the first of a two-part series. By Steve Flairty KyForward Columnist A friend of mine, knowing my love for old Kentucky books, recently gifted me with one that drew immediate fascination. It’s called Flood Stories, and it’s a collection of personal accounts of The Great Flood of 1937, a tumultuous natural catastrophe resulting from heavy rainfall causing the Ohio River...

Lexington Arts organizations awarded more than $172,000 as part of Arts Day in Kentucky

Representatives of Lexington arts organizations gathered last week in Frankfort for Arts Day in Kentucky, an annual meeting that fosters discussions in the Commonwealth’s arts community about the state of the arts industry in Kentucky. The day is also an opportunity for arts leaders to thank members of the Kentucky General Assembly for their continued support of arts funding through the Kentucky...

Local chef credits team of University of Kentucky doctors for saving his life after heart failure diagnosis

By Mallory Olson University of Kentucky Matthew Varga lives his life in the kitchen – it is his passion. “I cannot imagine doing anything else,” he said. “And it’s not just cooking that I love, it’s the people, too. They are my family.” Working as a chef at Honeywood, one of Ouita Michel’s newest restaurants at The Summit at Fritz Farm, it is not unusual for Varga to log a more than...

Feb. 20 summit to feature workshops, networking promoting Kentucky’s local food systems

The University of Kentucky hosted its first Kentucky Local Food Systems Summit in 2019. (Photo by Sarah Caton). By Danielle Donham University of Kentucky The Food Connection at the University of Kentucky, in collaboration with Bluegrass Farm to Table and Kentucky Proud, is holding its second annual Kentucky Local Food Systems Summit beginning at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 26, in the Gatton Student Center. This...

Kentucky by Heart: George Wright grew up poor but he listened when his mother said ‘no excuses’

By Steve Flairty KyForward Columnist When George Wright was growing up in poverty in Lexington over 50 years ago, he felt like he was living in shame and didn’t want others to know about it. It got worse when his parents divorced. His grades were bad, even though he had a good mind. “I always acted real out-going and was a show-off,” said George. “I didn’t let people know of the hurt in my...

Keeping up with those pesky pests around your home — spiders, mosquitos, mice and more

By Carrie Nichols Special to KyForward Having a house of your own all to yourself can be great; after all, most of us are fans of having more space for our stuff, and a big expansive yard. However, all of that does come at a price; maintaining a house is not only more costly than when you’re living in an apartment, but it also takes more time. For instance, keeping up with pests around your home...

Kentucky’s Muhammed Ali Center, SEEK Museum become newest additions to U.S. Civil Rights Trail

In recognition of Black History Month, Governor Andy Beshear and Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet Secretary Mike Berry announced today that Kentucky will now be home to the newest sites on the historic the U.S. Civil Rights Trail. The Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville and the SEEK Museum in Russellville mark the latest additions to the U.S. Civil Rights Trail making Kentucky home to 5 sites on the...

How do I love thee, let’s count the ways; why don’t we just spend time together for Valentine’s Day?

Tomorrow is Valentine’s day — a day for lovers and friends — and ripe with pressure to get it right. Whether you’re making a first impression on your crush or are celebrating the holiday with your longtime sweetheart, you may be stuck on how to show your affection (and at what cost). Thanks to a recent survey of a cross-section of 1,403 adults (18 and over) conducted by TopCashback.com,...

Derek Warfield and the Young Wolfe Tones headline Alltech Lexington St. Patrick’s Parade and Festival

An internationally known Irish music group returns to the Bluegrass to headline the city’s St. Patrick’s festivities on March 14 as part of the 41st annual Alltech Lexington St. Patrick’s Parade and Festival. Derek Warfield and the Young Wolfe Tones will play a free performance at 3:30 p.m. at Robert F. Stephens Courthouse Plaza. They’re one of nine acts participating in the annual festival...

Show the birds some love during 23rd annual Great Backyard Bird Count this Valentine’s Day weekend

A Caspian Tern spotted in Mississippi during the 2019 GBBC. (Photo by Sharon Milligan) The Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) returns for its 23rd year Valentine’s Day weekend, Feb. 14-17. This year’s count begins Friday and continues through Monday. Volunteers from around the world count the birds they see for at least 15 minutes on one or more days of the count, and then enter their checklists...

Kentucky by Heart: Return to Harrodsburg brings back childhood memories of visit to Ft. Harrod

By Steve Flairty KyForward Columnist Last week, I spoke at the Mercer County Public Library in Harrodsburg about my Kentucky’s Everyday Heroes book series. In my talks, I always like to add some “local color” to the opening remarks for my audience. It didn’t take much thought to come up with some personal observations drawn from my past to use for the Harrodsburg audience. Mercer County Library...

Jamie’s Bookshelf: Politics, power and corruption: A review of some recently-released nonfiction books

• “LBJ’s 1968: Power, Politics, and the Presidency in America’s Year of Upheaval” by Kyle Longley (Cambridge University Press, $15.95) is a new 361-page paperback which tells a fascinating story about President Lyndon B. Johnson and the significant events of 1968. The author leads his readers on a behind-the-scenes tour of what Johnson characterized as the “year of a continuous nightmare.”...

Lt. Governor Jacqueline Coleman, husband Chris O’Bryan announce birth of daughter, Evelynne

Kentucky Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman shared on social media that she gave birth to a daughter Saturday morning. Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman shared this photo of her new daughter and husband on her official Facebook page Saturday afternoon. (Photo from Kentucky Today) “Chris, Emma, Will, Nate and I are blessed to welcome the newest member of #TeamKentucky, Evelynne Jeanette Coleman-O’Bryan, who...

Lexington looks to raise awareness of water quality, beautify community with storm drain design contest

The City of Lexington is launching a storm drain design contest. Participants of all ages are encouraged to design and paint a storm drain to help bring attention to local waterways and how residents can protect them. Proposed designs will be accepted on a rolling basis through Tuesday, March 31 at 5 p.m. After the design is approved, artwork must be completed by Sunday, April 26. Materials will be...

NKU history students partnering with five Kentucky counties to research history of bourbon journey

Northern Kentucky University history students are working with five Kentucky counties to research the history of the Commonwealth’s original bourbon journey.  In his book, Bourbon: The Rise, Fall, and Rebirth of an American Whiskey, acclaimed author Fred Minnick noted that given “all the facts we have, Jacob Spears is bourbon’s most probable creator.” Spears, whose distillery was located...

Second chances, rediscovered faith and addiction treatment center help save Kentucky man’s life

By Zac Oakes Special to KyForward Frank Knapp is a thankful man. He’s thankful for second chances and opportunity. A recovering alcoholic with 18 months of sobriety under his belt, Knapp, 57, credits a rediscovered relationship with Christianity, his family, and an addiction treatment center in Central Kentucky for saving his life and providing him with an opportunity to live a life that he never...

Kentucky by Heart: Author and storyteller Ben Woodard ‘lets himself go’ in his books for children

By Steve Flairty KyForward columnist Ben Woodard developed good literary skills and a strong work ethic early in his young days growing up in Lexington, where he told neighborhood kids stories. Those attributes pretty much set a firm foundation for the success he has today as a successful children’s author and storyteller, with ten published books, many others in process, and occasionally is a speaker...

End of an era, as Supreme Court Clerk Susan Clary has spent last day serving the high court 40 years

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today It’s the end of an era, as Supreme Court Clerk Susan Clary retired Friday after nearly 40 years of service to the High Court. She began her career shortly after graduating from the University of Kentucky College of Law in 1981, serving as law clerk for then-Supreme Court Justice James B. Stevenson. Susan Clary (Photo by Tom Latek, Kentucky Today) The following year, she...

Anybody want a bison? Big Bone Lick State Historic Site has three up for auction; deadline is Feb. 10

The Kentucky Department of Parks is auctioning three bison at Big Bone Lick State Historic Site. The cow, heifer and bull are being sold in one lot. The deadline for sealed bids is Feb. 10. This heifer is one of the three up for auction Bids should include your name, address and daytime telephone number. A $100 deposit is required with all bids (check or money order); deposit check returned to all...