A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Constance Alexander: Forgoing the miracle of Fancy Farm by staying close to home for some reflection

Along with the 19,500 pounds of barbecue served up at the annual Fancy Farm picnic, there is enough hot air to lift the tiny town of 500 aloft. In just one day, the local population balloons to 10,000, and St. Jerome Catholic Church raises enough money to support church projects and finance local improvements. The raucous proceedings are not exactly the kind of thing one might associate with a saint....

Matt Bevin, Andy Beshear fire off familiar jabs in front of rowdy crowd at annual Fancy Farm Picnic

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Both gubernatorial candidates, Republican Matt Bevin and Democrat Andy Beshear, used familiar themes during their remarks Saturday at the annual Fancy Farm Picnic and political speaking event in this small western Kentucky community. Partisans on both sides did some cheering and jeering in a typically rowdy atmosphere as the political rivals faced off. It won’t be...

Fancy Farm this Saturday kicks off political season, focus on gubernatorial candidates; election Nov. 5

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Expect some fancy talking at the Fancy Farm picnic Saturday in western Kentucky as the fall political campaign season gets off to a rousing start.

 Much of the spotlight will be on the gubernatorial race with incumbent Republican Matt Bevin and Democratic Attorney General Andy Beshear. They will have eight minutes apiece to bend the ears of an audience that knows how...

Governor Matt Bevin among first confirmed to speak at August 3 Fancy Farm Picnic in Western Kentucky

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today The first list of confirmed speakers at this summer’s Fancy Farm political stump speaking has been released and Gov. Matt Bevin is among those confirmed to attend. The Fancy Farm Picnic takes place on Saturday, Aug. 3, at St. Jerome’s Church in far western Kentucky, as it has since 1880, serving lots of barbeque as a church fundraiser. It did not begin serving as the...

Jonathan Shell: Republicans in Frankfort have enacted policies to make Kentucky more prosperous

The Fancy Farm Picnic, perhaps the greatest political tradition in the country, is the unofficial kickoff to the fall campaigns. As we all look forward to West Kentucky barbeque and old-fashioned stump speeches, it is important to remember all that Republicans in Frankfort have accomplished over the last two years, including the following: 1. Right-to-Work and Prevailing Wage Repeal: Right-to-work...

Quarles says being master of ceremonies at annual Fancy Farm picnic is a ‘dream come true’

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Kentucky’s annual premier political event happens this weekend in a small western Kentucky community and the man who has the job of master of ceremonies is busy preparing. 
The Fancy Farm Picnic takes place on Saturday at St. Jerome’s Church, as it has since 1880, although it did not begin serving as the fall kickoff to Kentucky’s political season until 1931, when...

Bluegrass & Backroads: Fancy Farm Picnic draws big crowds for barbecue, political speeches

The annual Fancy Farm Picnic, sponsored by St. Jerome Catholic Church in the far western part of the state, quickly transformed into Kentucky’s inaugural event for the statewide fall political season. Some of the nation’s most prominent politicians have addressed crowds of up to 15,000 from the speakers’ stand. This year’s event will be held Aug. 5. Kentucky is a state defined...

Fancy Farm ritual coming up next week — even without major elections, lots of hot air and barbecue

By Ryland Barton Kentucky Public Radio The annual Fancy Farm picnic and political speaking event takes place next week in far-west Kentucky’s Graves County. Though no major elections are scheduled to take place this year, state political leaders will still roll up their shirt sleeves and hurl insults at each other during the 137th iteration of the charity event. Gov. Matt Bevin has declined an invitation...

New this year at Fancy Farm: Pitting native Kentuckian against transplanted Kentuckian

  By John Gregory Special to KyForward   Partisan politics took on a new facet at Saturday’s Fancy Farm political picnic. In addition to a simple Democratic and Republican split among the candidates for statewide office, many of the speeches pitted native Kentuckian against transplanted Kentuckian.   More than 20 politicians spoke at the annual picnic that serves as a fundraiser for...

David Hawpe: A few thoughts on Fancy Farm, Mitch McConnell and debilitating blackdamp

Editor’s note: The annual Fancy Farm picnic and political gathering in Graves County is Saturday, Aug. 2.   Alison Grimes ought to remind the Crowd of Fancy Farm that Mitch McConnell is choking the U.S. Senate with blackdamp.   Given what McConnell knows about coal mining, aides may have to explain to him that blackdamp is a mixture of debilitating gases – as one dictionary puts it,...

Fancy Farm in Photos: Transforming a tiny town and a picnic into a raucous yearly event

On the first Saturday in August, the tiny town of Fancy Farm in Western Kentucky is transformed into a political hotspot. This year was no exception.   Story and photos by Michael Monks Special to KyForward   The tiny town of Fancy Farm in Western Kentucky looks like one of the quietest places on Earth for 364 days of the year. But on the first Saturday in August it is a raucous and must-attend...