Displaying items by tag: Hopkins County

West Kentucky Wild: Deer Hunter Support Sought for Charitable Food-Based Ministry

HOPKINS COUNTY, KY (8/5/13)—Wanted: West Kentucky deer hunters’ support for the 2013-2014 "Want Not Waste Not" charitable food campaign.

With the 2013-2014 deer season rapidly approaching (archery season kicks it off on September 7th), local deer hunters’ attentions will be turning to preparation for the upcoming season. The excitement begins to build as the days get shorter, nights get a little cooler, and the leaves begin their changing process. Thoughts of harvesting that trophy buck dominate our dreams. Though the 2013 Kentucky Statewide deer tag allows a hunter to take two deer—one antlered and one antlerless—seldom is that second tag ever used. However, the “Want Not Waste Not" ministry hopes to change that.

Having heard somewhat about the program, I wanted to find out more. So this past Saturday, August 3rd, between weeding flower gardens and the PBS 7pm showing of "Elvis from Hawaii,” my better half and I headed to the Ballard Convention Center in Madisonville, KY for a sportsman's bash.

We browsed the many different vendors displaying their wares and services. I enjoyed eating a bagged taco from the Hope2All concession stand. I have to say, those ladies are really good salespeople.

We eventually cornered Chad Browning, founder of "Want Not Waste Not.” Chad was more than happy to talk about this program.

He explained how he and his wife, Tonita, were driving down one of the Peabody coal roads during the opening weekend of the 2011 season and came upon three abandoned camp sites that contained a total of seven complete deer carcasses. As an ethical hunter, this was very disturbing to Chad. To make matters worse, Hope2All community food bank was asking for people to donate any processed deer at the time. This was the birth of the "Want Not Waste Not" ministry God called upon the Brownings to create.

During the 2012 season alone, a total of 61 deer were donated. However, Chad anticipates collecting 150 or more this year.


“By partnering with Hope2All to distribute the processed deer, we can concentrate on collection and raising funds as it takes $60 for each deer processed,” said Chad. “The final product is ground venison mixed with beef fat in two pound bags.”

Want to donate a deer to this worthwhile cause? If so, read up on the following guidelines:

1. Your deer must be field dressed. If the current temperature is 50+ degrees, add a couple of bags of ice to the chest cavity if possible.

2. You must use your tag. Call the tele-check line at 1-800-245-4263 and get your confirmation number before you call.

3. Call Chad Browning at (270) 635-0544. Be prepared to give your name, phone number, area/location, and your confirmation number. Leave a message if necessary.

4. The WNWN ministry also offers deer donation pick up services that cover both Hopkins and Muhlenberg County. They also accept deer from other counties when possible. Call them at the number listed above and they can direct you to where to take it.

“We are currently working with three processors: Livingston Meats in Hopkinsville, KY; Barnes Processing in Beaver Dam, KY; and Yoder’s Custom Meats in Sebree, KY,” says Chad. “They will accept the deer without any issue. Just tell them it’s a donation for the ‘Want Not Waste Not’ program.”

Not a hunter, but still want to show your support of this charitable minsitry? Tax deductible donations are also accepted. In fact, a gift of $60.00 takes the deer from the forest to the dinner table of a local family in need.

Make all checks payable to the following address:

Hope2All
200 North Main Street
Nortonville, KY 42442

If you would like to volunteer your time or donate a deer, please call (270) 635-0544.

To learn more about the WNWN ministry or Hope2ALL, please visit this link: http://www.hope2all.com/. You can also find the WNWN ministry on Facebook by clicking here: https://www.facebook.com/WantNotWasteNot.

Additional photos from the outdoors festival held at the Ballard Convention Center in Madisonville, KY this past weekend are attached below.

________________________________________

A former Kentucky State BASS Federation Champ and longtime outdoorsman, Nick Short has spent over five decades learning the ins and outs of the hunting and fishing world. From coon-hunting as a youth, to hanging with fishing pros as an adult, Nick knows a thing or two about how it’s done outdoors. Want to know his secrets? Check out his latest installment of “West Kentucky Wild.”

To read other “West Kentucky Wild” installments, visit Nick’s Sugg Street Post blog page by clicking here: http://www.suggstreetpost.com/index.php/outdoors-west-kentucky-wild

Sugg Street Post
Written by Nick Short
Photos by Nick Short/Want Not Waste Not

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  • Published in Music

Word on the Street: Basking in Waves of Progress

MADISONVILLE, KY (7/19/13)—Full-spectrum progress is rarely a measurable, down-to-the-speck concept. Oftentimes, authentic progress is evidenced by an anomalous, subjective feeling imparted upon an individual or a collective group through a set of direct or indirect experiences. And it’s the aforementioned sense of subjectivity that’s key, because, like beauty, the notions of development and growth are ultimately in the eye of the beholder. To put it bluntly, it’s up to the observers—the people of Hopkins County and west Kentucky in this case—to recognize and appreciate the encouraging changes around us rather than focusing on the negatives that can tarnish our perceptions.

So, why examine this concept here? And how does this perspective on progress connect with our community?

While I could recount a variety of past experiences that would answer these questions adequately, I’d rather point to something specific that took place a week ago.

It was the night of Friday, July 12th, and myself, as well as a couple of close friends, suddenly found ourselves completely immersed in this peculiar sense of progress as we stood on my back porch in Madisonville, listening to the sounds of positive change emanating from the downtown district.

Yet, it had taken a full day—or perhaps even years in retrospect—ripe with tedious, but rewarding, business-related efforts and enjoyable interaction with people in our community before we were once again led to what has become a fairly familiar realization as of late: our area is growing in the right direction.

Let’s start at the beginning.

Much like any other day, Jessica Dockrey and I completed our summer morning routine, which includes getting my daughter ready for the day, taking her to stay with a member of my family so we can focus on business, eating breakfast upon our return, taking showers, putting some fresh clothes on, and pounding away at a variety of Sugg Street Post-related tasks until the late afternoon. The difference with this particular day, however, was that we would be participating in the City of Madisonville’s second installment of the 2013 Friday Night Live summer concert and entertainment series.

As with the first FNL we attended back in June, we were excited to check out the event’s entertainment lineup and to talk with attendants about the Sugg Street Post. We were also eager to see our friends out at the event having a good time with their families.

So, as the mid-morning quickly turned to late-afternoon, we packed up our table, a banner, some blank note cards for an advertising giveaway, business cards, and a few fold-out chairs, and headed toward the city’s downtown district to set up our booth.

As before, we were lucky enough to have a spot on the corner of Court and Union Streets where we could see the performance stage while also meeting with a variety of FNL patrons.

Though attendance for the event underwent gradual growth throughout the evening, the turnout for the summer concert series, which was made possible via a partnership with Baptist Health Madisonville and the Hopkins County Tourist and Convention Commission, was perhaps the best I’ve seen in four years by the time 7:30pm rolled around.

Along with booths from a variety of businesses and organizations, a motorcycle show hosted by the Hopkins County Central Archery Team on East Center Street, and onsite food and refreshment services—which included the Madisonville-Hopkins County Chamber of Commerce’s beer garden—the event also boasted a three-part musical lineup that included Larry Grisham and The Beat Daddys, Elvis impersonator Brad McCrady, and the acclaimed Boscoe France Band.

Furthermore, we (Jessica, close friend and photographer Jeff Harp, and I) got to meet and talk with a lot of fresh faces that were excited about the Sugg Street Post and the support we try to offer up to the local arts and entertainment scene in western Kentucky. For our fans and supporters, we are truly grateful.

Yet, by the time 8:15pm rolled around, we were physically and mentally exhausted. It was the culmination of a work week that seemed to stretch much farther than five days and we were ready for some down time at home. While we didn’t want to miss what was surely going to be one of the biggest and most anticipated shows of the season—a live performance by Guitar Center’s national 2012 Battle of the Blues winner and Hopkins County native, Boscoe France—we succumbed to our human frailties and packed it up, ready to relax in the comforts of our own home.

With most everything unloaded, we took off our shoes, popped open a couple of brews, and headed out toward the back porch of our home on the south end of town to take in the relaxing sights of the night sky. And as we walked past the threshold some six to seven blocks away from downtown Madisonville and FNL, we were greeted by the soulful howls and bluesy wailing of The Boscoe France Band cutting a smooth grove into the evening air.

We weren’t going to miss the show after all.

I was born here, and I’ve lived in or nearby Madisonville for the majority of my life, but I can honestly say that I’ve never been able to hear music from an event this clearly. Not only could I hear the performance, but it was truly phenomenal music. We all looked at each other and seemed to exclaim the same sentiments in unison, “This is awesome!”

And it truly was awe-inspiring in that moment. To us, it was a sign of where our small town is headed.

Throughout the hour-and-a-half set, we all felt as though we were witness to something special. It was pure. It was evolution. It was a triumph for our local scene wrapped up in a seemingly simple package of sound waves, nice weather, and cool night air. It was about friendship and a shared vision. Sure, there may have been a handful of local folks trying to get some sleep that night, but, on the whole, our town was truly alive. It was electric, loud, and stunning.

We were at home, relaxing in a chair with our feet kicked up, and we could hear the sounds of progress, the rumble of bikes roaring down the streets, the clickety-clack and groan of a train passing through the darkness, reminding us of what a great place we have to call home.

____________________________________________

Want to learn more about Madisonville’s 2013 Friday Night Live summer concert series? If so, click the following link: 

http://www.madisonvillegov.com/Madisonville_Kentucky/index.asp?Page=Friday%20Night%20Live

To learn more about Boscoe France and The Boscie France Band, click here or click the YouTube player attached below this article.

Sugg Street Post
Written by Luke Short
Photo provided by Boscoe France

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Word on the Street: Basking in Waves of Progress

MADISONVILLE, KY (7/19/13)—Full-spectrum progress is rarely a measurable, down-to-the-speck concept. Oftentimes, authentic progress is evidenced by an anomalous, subjective feeling imparted upon an individual or a collective group through a set of direct or indirect experiences. And it’s the aforementioned sense of subjectivity that’s key, because, like beauty, the notions of development and growth are ultimately in the eye of the beholder. To put it bluntly, it’s up to the observers—the people of Hopkins County and west Kentucky in this case—to recognize and appreciate the encouraging changes around us rather than focusing on the negatives that can tarnish our perceptions.

So, why examine this concept here? And how does this perspective on progress connect with our community?

While I could recount a variety of past experiences that would answer these questions adequately, I’d rather point to something specific that took place a week ago.

It was the night of Friday, July 12th, and myself, as well as a couple of close friends, suddenly found ourselves completely immersed in this peculiar sense of progress as we stood on my back porch in Madisonville, listening to the sounds of positive change emanating from the downtown district.

Yet, it had taken a full day—or perhaps even years in retrospect—ripe with tedious, but rewarding, business-related efforts and enjoyable interaction with people in our community before we were once again led to what has become a fairly familiar realization as of late: our area is growing in the right direction.

Let’s start at the beginning.

Much like any other day, Jessica Dockrey and I completed our summer morning routine, which includes getting my daughter ready for the day, taking her to stay with a member of my family so we can focus on business, eating breakfast upon our return, taking showers, putting some fresh clothes on, and pounding away at a variety of Sugg Street Post-related tasks until the late afternoon. The difference with this particular day, however, was that we would be participating in the City of Madisonville’s second installment of the 2013 Friday Night Live summer concert and entertainment series.

As with the first FNL we attended back in June, we were excited to check out the event’s entertainment lineup and to talk with attendants about the Sugg Street Post. We were also eager to see our friends out at the event having a good time with their families.

So, as the mid-morning quickly turned to late-afternoon, we packed up our table, a banner, some blank note cards for an advertising giveaway, business cards, and a few fold-out chairs, and headed toward the city’s downtown district to set up our booth.

As before, we were lucky enough to have a spot on the corner of Court and Union Streets where we could see the performance stage while also meeting with a variety of FNL patrons.

Though attendance for the event underwent gradual growth throughout the evening, the turnout for the summer concert series, which was made possible via a partnership with Baptist Health Madisonville and the Hopkins County Tourist and Convention Commission, was perhaps the best I’ve seen in four years by the time 7:30pm rolled around.

Along with booths from a variety of businesses and organizations, a motorcycle show hosted by the Hopkins County Central Archery Team on East Center Street, and onsite food and refreshment services—which included the Madisonville-Hopkins County Chamber of Commerce’s beer garden—the event also boasted a three-part musical lineup that included Larry Grisham and The Beat Daddys, Elvis impersonator Brad McCrady, and the acclaimed Boscoe France Band.

Furthermore, we (Jessica, close friend and photographer Jeff Harp, and I) got to meet and talk with a lot of fresh faces that were excited about the Sugg Street Post and the support we try to offer up to the local arts and entertainment scene in western Kentucky. For our fans and supporters, we are truly grateful.

Yet, by the time 8:15pm rolled around, we were physically and mentally exhausted. It was the culmination of a work week that seemed to stretch much farther than five days and we were ready for some down time at home. While we didn’t want to miss what was surely going to be one of the biggest and most anticipated shows of the season—a live performance by Guitar Center’s national 2012 Battle of the Blues winner and Hopkins County native, Boscoe France—we succumbed to our human frailties and packed it up, ready to relax in the comforts of our own home.

With most everything unloaded, we took off our shoes, popped open a couple of brews, and headed out toward the back porch of our home on the south end of town to take in the relaxing sights of the night sky. And as we walked past the threshold some six to seven blocks away from downtown Madisonville and FNL, we were greeted by the soulful howls and bluesy wailing of The Boscoe France Band cutting a smooth grove into the evening air.

We weren’t going to miss the show after all.

I was born here, and I’ve lived in or nearby Madisonville for the majority of my life, but I can honestly say that I’ve never been able to hear music from an event this clearly. Not only could I hear the performance, but it was truly phenomenal music. We all looked at each other and seemed to exclaim the same sentiments in unison, “This is awesome!”

And it truly was awe-inspiring in that moment. To us, it was a sign of where our small town is headed.

Throughout the hour-and-a-half set, we all felt as though we were witness to something special. It was pure. It was evolution. It was a triumph for our local scene wrapped up in a seemingly simple package of sound waves, nice weather, and cool night air. It was about friendship and a shared vision. Sure, there may have been a handful of local folks trying to get some sleep that night, but, on the whole, our town was truly alive. It was electric, loud, and stunning.

We were at home, relaxing in a chair with our feet kicked up, and we could hear the sounds of progress, the rumble of bikes roaring down the streets, the clickety-clack and groan of a train passing through the darkness, reminding us of what a great place we have to call home.

____________________________________________

Want to learn more about Madisonville’s 2013 Friday Night Live summer concert series? If so, click the following link:

http://www.madisonvillegov.com/Madisonville_Kentucky/index.asp?Page=Friday%20Night%20Live

To learn more about Boscoe France and The Boscie France Band, click here or click the YouTube player attached below this article.

Sugg Street Post
Written by Luke Short
Photo provided by Boscoe France

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Reinecke Smokestack - A Full Week of Work

MADISONVILLE, KY (7/8/13) - Eureka Mine is seen in this undated postcard. The mine was operated by the Reinecke Coal Mining Company, which started operations in 1886 and closed in 1939. The brick building in the foreground is the power plant. The smokestack is all that is left standing at the site on West Noel Avenue in Madisonville today. 

The message on the undated postcard offers up what may have been a jab at the lack of stability in employment during the time period (or perhaps the lack of stable employment for the message's author):

Wednesday
I have worked three days and they have not fired me yet so I guess I will stay the rest of the week anyway
Marion.

The included photo/postcard and historical information is courtesy of the Historical Society of Hopkins County (HSHC) and community member, Mike Winstead. 

Additional historic photos and postcards, as well as county-wide historical information, can be found in Arcardia Publishing’s book, Postcard History Series: Hopkins County, which was compiled by the HSHC, local author Lisa D. Piper, and several area contributors.

To learn more about the HSHC, click here.

Sugg Street Post
Information/photo provided by the Historical Society of Hopkins County

 

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Semi-Homesteading with Mama Cass: Homemade Vanilla Extract

HOPKINS COUNTY, KY (6/11/13)—The best part about working at a library, besides having an unlimited number of books at your disposal, is you get to play Sherlock Holmes. Every day I would receive phone calls from people who had questions and needed an answer. Most were students who needed homework help, some wanted a third party perspective to settle a dispute, and a few were just curious, but each person gave me a chance to play detective and find answers to questions I may have never thought to ask. Thanks to random callers, I know the fines associated with harassing red-tailed hawks, how starfish reproduce, and the supernatural beings associated with Western Kentucky. While I have always considered myself to be a rather inquisitive individual, being immersed in a sea of questions for the better part of six years has undoubtedly helped to nourish my curiosity. I find myself spending a great deal of my time wondering, and more than once I’ve been accused of being “random” when after a long silence I’ll pose a question. I just want to know things and I don’t consider curiosity a vice, even if it is rumored to kill a lot of cats.

My “need to know” is exactly how I came across my first vanilla bean. I am a member of the Pennyroyal Herb Club and, at the time, the club had vanilla beans to purchase for their annual Christmas at Munn’s Open House. I had never seen a vanilla bean in my life and, while I had no clue how to use them, I purchased a few out of curiosity and took them home. With the exception of the pod, vanilla beans aren’t exactly very “bean-like.” I sliced open the pod and expected to find little black beans inside. Not quite. If you’ve ever had real-deal vanilla ice cream, I’m sure you noticed those tiny dark specks. That’s what is inside. It smells like heaven and it’s those fragrant morsels that are responsible for the flavor.

Besides being delicious and aromatic, vanilla beans are also a very high-needs crop. Vanilla beans primarily come from flat-leafed vanilla orchids, which must be pollinated by hand, harvested by hand and then cured for several months before they are ready to be sold. The entire process takes around ten months and this work is reflected in their price tag. Unless you have access to wholesale prices—and a need for thirty plus beans—expect to pay $4-$6 a bean. Due to this expense, recipes that call for one to two beans aren’t made very often. So what’s a vanilla lover with a budget supposed to do? The most price effective way of using vanilla is in the form of extract—PURE vanilla extract, not that imitation nonsense. Yes, it is much cheaper than the real deal, and I admit I am guilty of purchasing imitation vanilla in desperate times, but you aren’t doing your baked goods any favors. The difference between imitation and pure vanilla extract is like the difference between a chicken and a Velociraptor. You’re not fooling anyone.

Most “pure” extracts in stores don’t quite live up to their name when you glance at the ingredients label. They are either watered down or contain a sugar-syrup solution and artificial colors. These extra ingredients, in my opinion, distract from the real flavor of the vanilla bean. Plus, an itsy-bitsy bottle will set you back nearly $10. By investing in a few beans and a bottle of alcohol, you can have a never ending supply of real vanilla at your disposal. I’ll show you how.

1) You’ll need to acquire some vanilla beans and some alcohol. There are many different places to buy vanilla beans online. Here is one. Here is another. Just do a search for “where to buy vanilla beans” and you’ll be swamped with selection. As for alcohol, vodka, rum, and bourbon will all work nicely as long as it’s something high proof. I used Captain Morgan’s Spiced Rum because it is what I had on hand. I’m just going to go ahead and say it is not really okay to use super cheap alcohol at this point. Your vanilla won’t blow up or anything, but it won’t be as nice as it can be. So c’mon, splurge a little and get some mid-priced booze. Or top shelf booze if you are feeling fancy. This is your extract. Feel free to mix it up. Go crazy. Just not too crazy, we are trying to make extract here, guys.
2) Here comes the fun part. If you have never seen the inside of a vanilla bean and are easily entertained, oh man, are you in luck. Holding the vanilla bean on a cutting board, take a paring knife (or a pair of scissors) and slice it down the middle. Now isn’t that cool? Prepare to be completely covered in those little delicious flecks. They will hide in your nails for the rest of your life—or until your next manicure.

3) Shove the split bean pods into your clean glass jar. The math is three beans to one cup of alcohol. Put a lid on your extract, store it in a dark spot (like the back of your cabinet) and wait at least two months. This is the hardest part, but the end results are amazing. Plus, when your bottle starts to run out, you can simply top off the bottle with more alcohol, wait another few months, and voila! More vanilla. It’s everlasting. It’s easy. It’s still stuck under my nails.

If you would like your own vanilla extract, but don’t want to mess with the hassle of making it, I will have extract for sale at the Mad Flavor Arts & Music Fest in Madisonville, KY this Saturday. I will be at the Learn’d Housewife’s booth. Hope to see you there!

Sugg Street Post
Written by Cassie Pendergraff
Photos courtesy of Cassie Pendergraff

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The Shed

freedigitalphotos.net

HOPKINS COUNTY, KY (5/9/13) - For some, writing is a way of life. For Madisonville resident Mike Barton, it’s also a part-time job and a leisurely love affair. Along with authoring five insightfully written business books, which includes Recognition at WorkBuilding a Fundamentally Sound Corporate Compliance Program, and Incentive Pay: Creating a Competitive Advantage, as well as numerous published articles and short pieces, Mike holds both a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Evansville. And while Mike’s in-depth sense of business know-how has led him to employment as a teacher/professor, an HR Administrator with Baptist Health Madisonville, and a talented lecturer, he says that he simply loves to write. Period. In turn, the Sugg Street Post recently got in touch with Mike and found that he was interested in submitting some of his works to our website. Of course, we were happy to oblige.

So, without further ado, we would like to present the reader with Mike Barton’s second perceptive contribution: “The Shed”. 

The tiny shed was tucked away between two gigantic sycamore trees. It was adorned with tan siding and a well-cured roof. The doors on the structure needed to be replaced. In fact, on a sunny day, the holes in the door converted the shed into a toaster oven. Inside, there were four electrical outlets, an ancient refrigerator, and a fluorescent light that dangled from the ceiling. The shed had been used to store garden equipment and various discarded items. However, it was never meant to be a garden shed. It would be the site of many wonderful memories for the family who occupied the adjoining house.

The family included a husband, wife, and two sons who were three years apart. The oldest son was the first to realize the value of the shed. He thought his destiny was to be a “major” rock star. He convinced his father to convert the shed into a makeshift studio for his rock band. He invested money in insulation that was placed strategically in the gaping holes inside structure. A few particle boards were placed on the walls to give the shed some degree of sophistication. On the particle boards, abstract drawings were made by the band and other visitors. Some of the artwork was a bit over-the-top. For example, “We Are the Best Rock Band in the World” was placed tactically on the three particle boards that were nailed to the walls. The band was named 2 Weak to Notice, which was also prominently displayed throughout the shed.

The first concert “rocked” the neighborhood. The band members invited friends and acquaintances to hear their songs. The parents and youngest son attended this concert and cheered along with the teenage audience. Near the end of the concert, the father was brought to tears with a rocking rendition of “Sweet Home Alabama”. The band announced that this song was for the father who allowed them to convert the shed into their personal “Abbey Road” studio. The concerts became a regular Friday occurrence over the next two years until the oldest son went off to college.

The youngest son was now ready to convert the shed into a “rocking” clubhouse. The shed would now become home to the “KORE”. The KORE was the official name for the friendship group comprised of five individuals including the youngest son. The KORE spent hours in the shed playing video games and practicing on their musical instruments. A window air-conditioner had now been installed so the summer heat radiated by the tattered doors of the shed would be bearable. The KORE would spend the night on old mattresses strewn in the shed. In fact, one of the group’s members stayed in the shed almost two weeks during the summer. He would come into the adjoining house to eat, shower, and use the bathroom. Other members of the KORE also stayed in the shed overnight because of the inviting atmosphere.

The youngest son soon formed his own band. This band, which was called Holden’s Rye, was soon practicing in the shed. The band’s name came from Salinger’s classic novel, The Catcher in the Rye. Maybe the band should have been called Lord of the Flies, because the shed was often plagued with bugs and an occasional nocturnal creature. The band’s practices permeated loud noises throughout the neighborhood. However, it seems the neighborhood welcomed those voices that sometimes sang off-key along with their loud guitars that often needed tuning. Like the band before, Friday concerts were a common happening. Neighbors would sometimes attend these concerts along with the youngest son’s parents. During this time, the oldest son would often return and jam with his younger sibling. The band played concerts in the area and even did one concert at Western Kentucky University.

The shed has now been converted back to a storage area for garden tools and unwanted items. However, the memories remain. The parents often visit the shed and recall the joy it brought to the family. The shed has weathered an ice storm and high winds. It has had a new roof installed as a result. The youngest son now works as a classic rock disc jockey in Bowling Green, Kentucky. He is now in a new band called The Fair-Weather Kings. The oldest son still enjoys listening and jamming with his brother. They have a love of music because of this little shed’s influence.

One only has to close their eyes and think of the eerie sounds that use to be emitted from this “rocking shack”. Some of those sounds included laughter, loud singing, and an occasional heated debate. The shed stands as a reminder of how one small outbuilding became the focal point for a family.

Sugg Street Post
Written by Mike Barton

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2013 Bowl For Kids’ Sake Fundraiser—Little Hands Give Big

HOPKINS COUNTY, KY (4/29/13)—While the definition of “community” refers to a group of people living in or near the same area, most would agree that a genuine sense of the word is defined by how well that same group of people can collaborate and what they can achieve when they pull together toward a common, benevolent goal.

This past Saturday, April 27th, this sense of regional unity was on display in Madisonville’s Melody Lanes bowling alley as approximately 80 teams composed of over 400 local business owners, industry employees, regional officials, law enforcement agencies, and a host of other compassionate area residents raised over $100,000 for our local Big Brothers Big Sisters’ (BBBS) annual “Bowl For Kids’ Sake” fundraiser.

Held for over 25 years, the organization’s yearly event has become a cherished staple of our community—and for good reason. Not only do area residents get to show their support for a nationally recognized cause, but they also get to have a great time doing it.

Whereas companies and organizations such as Carhartt, Warrior Coal, Armstrong Coal, and G.E. were among the top donators this year, contributing a very generous combined total of well over $40,000, the fundraiser’s still-growing sum was made possible by many quite literally “smaller” hands as well.

In particular, my daughter, Lucy Short, 6 (see main photo), chose to support BBBS of her own accord this year—a fact that I’m very proud of.

While she could have easily chose to spend money she’d been saving from her last birthday and from the holidays on a new toy or game, she asked me if it was okay to give it to a charity. As you can imagine, I was more than willing to tell her about the organizations she could support. In the end, though, she really liked what BBBS is all about: working with children and teens.

As we were already in the process of forming a Sugg Street Post team for the 2013 fundraiser, we asked if Lucy could be a member. After BBBS gave us the green light, telling us that her age was not a factor, the “Sugg Street Strikers” were born.

Though three of our team members couldn’t make it to this past weekend’s bowling event due to time constraints, we had some much appreciated assistance from another “small” helper: Jessica Dockrey’s daughter, Veda Cook, 3, whose unique “technique” was captured by photographer Jim Pearson on the front page of The Messenger newspaper’s Sunday edition.

And while the “Strikers” all bowled right at (or under) 100, it wasn’t all about the points for us—or for anyone else it seemed. It was about the cause the fundraiser supported and the pleasant sense of community we were able to share.

“This year’s Bowl For Kids’ Sake fundraiser was very exciting and it was organized very well thanks to the army of volunteers who helped out,” said 14-year BBBS member and local director, Sandra Aiken. “It takes a lot of people to make the event a success year after year, and this time was no exception. I’m very thankful for all the support we have received.”

Other than the top four donators listed above, other participants that received awards and prizes at the event included G.E. member and BBBS board member, Gary Wheat (individual who raised the most); Wayne Fuller (iPad winner); Pam Wheat (television winner); Eugene Summers (winner of a black diamond necklace donated by Rogers Jewelers); Teresa Lambdin (Gutter Ball winner); and Ray Baumeister (Strike Winner). Other awards will be announced by BBBS in the very near future.

To learn more about our local Big Brothers Big Sisters organization, which serves both Hopkins and Muhlenberg Counties, check out two past Sugg Street Post articles listed below:

You’ve Got a Friend in Me
Bowl for Kids’ Sake 2013—Sign Up Today!

You may also visit our area’s BBBS website for additional donation info by clicking here.

Additional photos by Sugg Street photographer Jessi Smith taken during the 2013 Bowl for Kids’ Sake fundraiser can be found below.

Sugg Street Post
Written by Luke Short
Photos by Jessi Smith

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The Green Dragon Tavern: Meeting Place of the Revolution

MADISONVILLE, KY (3/18/13)—Back in 2011, area business owner, minister, and family man, Cliff Nance, 33, sought to connect with the community in a new, uniquely personal way—and he soon latched on to a seemingly novel means of making it happen. While several of his own peers criticized his vision, saying that the idea would never “hold water” in a relatively smaller community like Madisonville, Nance pushed forward with his plan to establish a metropolitan-style gastropub in the heart of the city’s historic downtown district. Furthermore, Nance chose what some would coin as an audacious, yet simultaneously ambitious, name for his new eatery: The Crowded House.

“I’ve been in ministry for about 12 years. I was preaching from the pulpit during most of that time, but I began to feel like God was leading me in a different direction. I felt like he wanted me to be more relational,” says Nance of his initial inspiration for founding the restaurant. “It’s not that preaching isn’t relational, but it is detached in a sense. I’m reading a book right now called, A Meal with Jesus, and if you look at Jesus’ life—especially in the gospel of Luke—food always seems to be involved in some way. Whether he’s performing a miracle around food at someone’s home or bringing food to the masses, it’s present a lot of the time. In fact, on the back of our menus it says, ‘The son of man came eating and drinking.’ Jesus was called a drunkard and a sinner because he hung out with those kinds of people, you know? That’s who he surrounded himself with. So, the meal is something that’s important to me and it’s important in our family’s home. With that in mind, and with a goal of doing something community-oriented, my family and I prayed for an idea. We wanted to meet the needs of the community first. Well, if you polled people, asking them what they would like to see in Madisonville, a ‘cool restaurant’ would probably be in their top three answers, so that’s what we decided to do.”

Concerning the minimally modern, yet artistically-inspired, industrial aesthetic he had in mind—which would soon become a reality—Nance explains that he simply wanted to offer something “cool” and “outside of the box” to regional residents.

“There was this perspective that if you did something here, it had to fit into this certain ‘Madisonville criteria.’ Well, we wanted to break the mold, so to speak. We wanted to do something that someone might not normally do in Madisonville and show everyone that it could be successful,” says Nance.

Opened on October 31st, 2011, at 26 West Center St., it was no time before The Crowded House was living up to its name and Nance’s expectations. In fact, within mere weeks the brick-walled gastropub became a premiere downtown destination for a wide variety of patrons seeking a contemporary atmosphere, hospitable service, and distinctive—yet affordable—sandwiches, salads, soups, brews, and desserts. Additionally, the introduction of the business marked a substantial investment in the city’s historic downtown district, bringing new jobs and added on-foot traffic, which, in turn, brought new commerce to other nearby businesses.

And while the restaurant undoubtedly flourished in reputation throughout the following year-plus, Nance began to notice that more and more of the restaurant’s fans were only coming in for lunch. Though weeks where the numbers of dinner or evening customers were higher brought the biggest returns, Nance says it seemed liked the location had become primarily known as a midday hotspot.

“When we opened The Crowded House up for dinner, we saw a notable increase in profits during good weeks; we’d be in the black when we’d have a lot of people coming for dinner,” says Nance. “The problem was that we became the ‘best lunch place.’ So, when people thought about going to dinner somewhere that was nice, they had two or three other restaurants in town that they thought about. I go to those places, too, and they’re really great places to go, but we weren’t even being considered in the running.”

His solution: serious expansion and rebranding efforts via the addition of an adjoining bar and music venue.

“I said, number one, ‘If we shut down for a while, people will forget us enough to wonder what we were going to do when we reopen.’ So, being shut down for a while allowed us to ‘rebrand’ ourselves and the business,” says Nance. “Now, with the reopening and reinvention of the restaurant, we’re focusing more on dinner. We’re not a steakhouse; we’re a high-end, gourmet gastropub just like before, but now we have a seriously amazing lineup for dinner.”

Coined as the Green Dragon Tavern—a name which was inspired by the original Boston, MA tavern where several of our nation’s forefathers helped to ferment the American Revolution—the fresh, neighboring addition and numerous on-site renovations to the original location have been ongoing since the beginning of the new year. Although recent “soft openings” accessible to Madisonville-Hopkins County Chamber of Commerce members have given several area residents a sneak peek at the roomier eatery, new bar, and expanded menu—images of which have been “leaked” onto social media sites like Facebook—the restaurant will be opening its doors to the public at-large on Tuesday, March 19th, from 10am-10:30pm.

So, what are some of the changes the public can look forward to checking out?

Food-wise, several new dishes, including a variety of certified Angus steaks, baby back ribs, grilled pork “rib-eyes,” chicken, and grilled salmon, as well as appetizers like calamari, “Yukon Gold,” and lettuce wraps, lend themselves to The Crowded House’s original lineup of entrees and desserts.

Aesthetically, the raw, partially unfinished brick walls remain a fixture in the original portion of the restaurant, while lower-sitting, leather-bound booths have replaced the wide high-topped tables; the glass-paned façade of the location has been extended to the sidewalk (making way for a comfortable waiting area); and the open kitchen area—along with doubling in size—has been relocated to very rear of the site. In turn, the seating capacity has risen to an estimated 80 people within the pre-established side of the restaurant. Additionally, artwork created by acclaimed local artist, Barbie Hunt, will adorn portions the original location’s walls.

As the Green Dragon Tavern is a completely new area of the gastropub, both return customers and those new to the locale will be pleased to note a bar area that is fully-stocked with high-end brews, wines, and spirits. What’s more, the approximately 50-person pub-style area is host to a raised stage for live music, both booths and tables, a premium sound system, roadside scenery windows, and an architecturally unique recessed ceiling, as well as an eye-catching paint scheme. Those who enjoy the history-inspired tag of the new addition should also make sure to check out the fitting quotation painted above the tavern’s bar area: “The Meeting Place of the Revolution…”

In keeping with the new stage area and bar, Nance says that regional acts will be performing at The Green Dragon on Friday and Saturday nights. Keeping it open to up-and-coming artists, Nance also notes that a public “open mic night” will be held in the tavern area at least once a month.

“I think music is definitely important if you’re looking at the community aspect of things,” says Nance, who is himself a longtime drummer and guitarist. “I think that it’s important for a community to reach out to all aspects of their local culture. Historically, things that are easy and convenient are things that are catered to locally, and, as a result, you’ve got places like Wal-Mart making it. I’m headstrong enough, and I’ve put enough capital into what I have here, that people who are into the music scene will come and it will be successful. I feel the same way about art and the potential for a full-on arts district downtown, too.”

But beyond reinventing the business and expanding upon the visual appeal, as well as the menu and the drink selection, seating capacity, and live music capabilities, Nance’s recent overhaul of the business has created over 20 new jobs and weighs in at a total downtown investment of approximately $500,000 overall.

And, in the opinion of this editor, what Nance is doing for our community, and how he’s doing it, is a real revolution: bringing new life to historic downtown Madisonville in a bold, but mutually beneficial way.

So, if you’re looking to grab some great dinner or lunch in a modern, yet affordable and hospitable setting, check out The Crowded House/Green Dragon Tavern in downtown Madisonville, KY on, or any day after, their grand reopening on March 19th (26 West Center St.).

To learn more about The Crowded House/Green Dragon Tavern, take a moment to visit their official Facebook page by clicking here.

Sugg Street Post
Written by Luke Short
Photos by Jeff Harp

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  • Published in Art

The Anchor Holds

HOPKINS COUNTY, KY (12/27/12) –“Sailor” Jerry Swallow’s 53-year mark on the international world of tattooing, with especial regard to his work in the realm of American traditional style, is undeniable, timeless, and—quite literally—indelible.

Guided and taught by old-school tattooing legends like Huck Spaulding, Paul Rogers, Cap Coleman, and childhood mentor Charlie Snow, as well as Japanese master Kazua Ogori (Hori Hide) via overseas correspondence, Swallow’s knowledge and understanding of classic tattoo design is enviably vast—a fact evidenced by his astounding, decades-long collection of work. And while he’s aware of his following and the impact he’s had on artists the world over, fame is his last concern. In fact, he remains humble about his craft and has done what he can to catalogue and honor those who have helped to shape America’s historic tattooing landscape.

But what does this legendary artist have to do with Hopkins County, KY?

An inspiration to many, and a true friend to most who meet him, the Nova Scotia native has spent the last two weeks in Madisonville, KY with close friend and nationally recognized tattoo artist, Jack Hinton, inking new tattoos and meeting new people.

A member of Mainstream Body Art on South Kentucky Avenue, Hinton carries the enduring flame of traditional American design into the modern age. And, in paying homage to one of his biggest influences, Hinton recently featured his work alongside some of the nation’s most recognized tattooers in a high-quality art publication, Homeward Bound at Last, which celebrates Jerry Swallow’s 50-year impact on the world of traditional American tattoo art.

With this in mind, it’s really no surprise that the renowned 67-year-old took the time to visit Hinton in Kentucky for the holiday season. What’s more, it seems that time spent in Kentucky has made a positive impression on the staple artist.

So who is Sailor Jerry Swallow and what is his fabled story? To find out the answer to these questions and more, Sugg Street Post contributor, Landon Miller, was able to talk with the venerated and personable artist within the confines of Mainstream Body Art’s smoky, art-filled VIP room. The result of their conversation is as follows.

Landon Miller: Alright Jerry, first things first. What brought you to Madisonville, KY?

Sailor Jerry Swallow: Eh, more than anything, just to hang out with Jack [Hinton] for a while.

LM: How did you get to know Jack?

SJS: I met him on the internet first, and then I met him in person in St. Louis while we were at a tattoo convention. He invited me to come down after the holidays to come hang out and do some tattooing, so I made an early trip instead.

LM: What do you think about Kentucky so far?

SJS: I like it. It reminds me of home.

LM: And your home is?

SJS: Nova Scotia

LM: You have been working in tattoo shops since the age of 12 or 13. Is that correct?

SJS: Yeah.

LM: At age 16, you started tattooing. What attracted you to the art at such a young age, and what has kept you going for 53 years?

SJS: I used to go to downtown Halifax, and my dad was a bus driver, so I would take a ride downtown with him after school, and one of the stops was in front of one of the old tattoo shops down there. I'd get out there and look at the flash in the window. It was different. There was just something different about the place. In those days, anything to do with tattooing was magical. So, I just used to go down there and hang around, and if the old man [Charlie Snow] was sitting out in front, he would get me to run errands for him. You know, get him a newspaper or something like that. He didn’t let me inside the shop for a long time. Then, one day, he just started letting me inside to sweep the floor, run errands, and stuff like that. After a while, he started getting old and was looking for someone to tattoo. He told me to come down and he'd teach me how to do it. I went down on the day he told me to go in and was tattooing the same day.

LM: For our readers who aren't familiar with your story, explain how you received the title “Sailor” Jerry Swallow?

SJS: They used to call me “sailor” when I was a kid because I used to wear little a sailor hat all the time, and it just stuck. Everybody tattooing back then had a nickname, so the old man [Charlie Snow] just called me the same name. He said “There's another Sailor Jerry, but f**k 'em.”

LM: Throughout your 53 year career as a tattooer, what is the one time in your career you would like to revisit, or what is your biggest accomplishment?

SJS: I think it would be changing the style of the tattoo design a little bit. Everybody, at one time, did almost the same thing. [Cap] Coleman, [Paul] Rogers, and Huck Spaulding, they were doing something different. I used to see everybody's tattoos where I was at. I was lucky, because I was young, and I gave Huck a call, and he was really f***ing good to me, and he said, “If you ever get down here [Albany, New York], just come down to the tattoo shop.” A week later, I was there. If you want to learn somebody's style, you’ve got to be with them. That was probably about the best time in my career—hanging around Huck and [Paul] Rogers.

LM: I also read that in 1971 you started communicating through post mail with Japanese master Kazua Ogori (Hori Hide). As I understand it, he tutored you in the form of Japanese art through these correspondences. Could you give me a little insight on that?

SJS: Yeah, I got a hold of him first. I wrote him a couple of letters and he wrote right back. For me, being interested in what he was doing, it was, well, it was different. I would ask him things and he would tell me right away. When I started drawing Japanese style art, I would send it over to him. It would be just like a teacher marking your grades. There would be red “X”s all over everything. That went on until about 1980 before he gave me one of the “Hori” names.

LM: So you finally received a title from him?

SJS: Yeah.

LM: Could you tell us what that title is?

SJS: Hori Ryu.

LM: And what does that name translate to?

SJS: That means “master tattoo artist dragon.” He titled me this name with a number behind it, which is pretty common for them to do, like number one, or number two. I can remember in some of his letters he would be like, “I'm going to show you how to do this, but you’ve got to promise me that this is the way you will always do it.” In fact, all these years later, we still write back and forth.

LM: Does he still tattoo?

SJS: Yeah. He's about 85-years-old now and he still does 'em.

LM: In the past few years, there has been a resurgence of traditional tattooing. It has received a lot of pop culture attention. Tell me your opinions on this, both good and bad.

SJS: Well, I think it's good. It's made me feel like less of a dinosaur in the business.

LM: More relevant, right?

SJS: Yeah. It's nice to see people taking an interest in it and doing it the right way. A lot of people that are doing it, though, it's really nice artwork, but it's just not done right.

LM: Are there any negatives that you have seen come out of the resurgence of traditional tattooing?

SJS: Well, you've got too many people doing it that shouldn't be doing it. That's pretty much it. In my opinion, anybody that doesn’t know a little bit of history about tattooing shouldn't even be in the business as far as I'm concerned. There's quite a few of them who don't even care, and they don’t even want to learn.

LM: Why do you think there has been such a big resurgence?

SJS: Jesus, you know, it's really hard to say. For so many years now, everything’s been “realistic” this, “realistic” that. Everybody you see has got it on them. Now, you see a game that’s 40-years-old coming back again, and how bold it is. It looks different. And, in my opinion, it [traditional style] looks better, and it stays. To me, you can't beat that old, simple, traditional style of tattooing. I can see what it is from 20 feet away.

LM: Who were some of your major influences during your formative years as a tattooer?

SJS: I've still got to say Huck Spaulding and Paul Rogers. Same goes back to that [Cap] Coleman style. They had it, and that's what I wanted to do. They showed me how to do it, and I stuck right to it. I tried to change into the realistic style a little bit in the late ‘80s, but I couldn't do it, so I just went back to what I always did.

LM: In the past few years, I guess you have seen people gain a whole new respect for what you do, because for a while there was all the Guy Aitchison stuff. Was there a lull in your career during the “hay day” of biomechanical style, bioorganic style, etcetera?

SJS: Yeah, that was a real downer for quite a few years.

LM: Could you name some of the up-and-coming traditional tattooers out now that you think have something to say?

SJS: I'm not saying this because Jack [Hinton] is here, but he's one of 'em. You've got Clifton Boggs in Canton Ohio, and he's a Kentucky boy, too. Actually, there's quite a few, but not a lot really stand out. Jack's got a really unique style on it. Clifton has a different style totally, but it's all the same kind of traditional stuff. It's really beautiful work. As far as I'm concerned, if there’s anyone who can do realistic and traditional, Jack does it. I've seen the stuff he does. It's amazing. I couldn’t do it; there’s just no way. I'm just stuck in that old stuff, and that's it.

LM: And it has served you well. Here are some random questions. Tell me some of the music you have been listening to lately.

SJS: I like the blues. That's pretty much all I really listen to. Old Mississippi delta blues, John Lee Hooker, and rock and roll from the ‘50s and ‘60s. I throw a little bit of that in once in a while. My kids were all brought up on that music and that’s all they listen to.

LM: By the way, how many kids do you have?

SJS: I have nine.

LM: Do they have a respect for tattooing?

SJS: They do. In fact, two of my boys can tattoo pretty good, but they don't want anything to do with it. One of them likes to do security stuff. The other one likes to cook.

LM: What is your favorite food?

SJS: I was brought up to eat anything, as long as it was dead. Whatever you put down, I can pretty much eat it. When I was growing up, I remember a bowl of peas would be our main meal, or porridge for dinner. Stuff like that. I was 12 or 13-years-old before I ate a piece of chicken. The first real milk I drank, I remember I was 13. Before that, everything was powdered milk, you know, powdered potatoes. We never had a lot of money, so whatever they put on the table, we ate it.

LM: Any art form demands a lot of blood, sweat, and tears. Can you give any advice on sustaining longevity?

SJS: Well, you’ve got to keep drawing. You’ve got to be drawing all the time. That's what I've found. Everything you do, when you look at it, you’ve got to say to yourself, “The next one's going to be better.” You’ve got to keep that in mind, because if you do something that's perfect, then you kind of get a big head and you don't try anymore. Jack [Hinton] and Clifton [Boggs] are great people, but you’ve got to go talk to them. If they like you, they're going to tell you anything you ask them. That's the way to do it. All these guys that “know everything” really don't. I can sit down and watch Jack [Hinton] tattoo and walk away learning three or four new things, and I've been tattooing my whole f***ing life.

LM: So keep learning....

SJS: Keep learning, yeah.

LM: What would you tell a young person that doesn't tattoo, but wants to start?

SJS: Well, there are way too many people tattooing now. So don't do it. It ain't as easy as it looks, and it's the hardest life you will ever get into. It'll wear you down. Tattoo is a mean f***ing boss; it'll kick your ass one day, and then give you a hug the next. If you get somebody that's really dedicated, you know, they'll hang in. I went through some of the toughest times; you wouldn't even believe it. If it wasn’t for guys like me…You know, a lot of them guys are dead now, and they should get a lot of respect for keeping tattooing alive. It [tattooing] would have f***ing collapsed. When I first started, you couldn't make enough money to eat sometimes, but we kept going. By the way, I hope you don't mind me cursing on here. I don't even realize I'm swearing sometimes.

LM: F**k it, we'll keep going. Your work with watercolor is prolific, to say the least. If you had to give an estimate of how many watercolor pieces you’ve done, what would you say?

SJS: We were talking about that about two weeks ago. We came up with an estimate of at least 10,000.

LM: Wow!

SJS: The first 25 or 30 years in this business, I would change my flash in the shop every year. I would rip it all down and do it all over again. Not at once, but I would be doing four, five, or six sheets a day, and I’d pull down six. Then I’d put up six new ones. My walls always had like 300 sheets up. Then I would do sheets for other tattooers. I've done sheets for tattoo supply companies at a rate of 500 to 600 sheets a time.

LM: Did you ever see any money out of that?

SJS: No. I never took money from them because these guys were always good to me. I can't remember the last time I had to buy ink or anything. It just goes around.

LM: The bartering system, basically?

SJS: Yeah, but there's not a whole lot of that around anymore. It ain't like it used to be. I wouldn't take any money from Huck Spaulding. I worked for three months down there [Albany, NY] doing his catalog up for him. He was determined to give me money, but there was no way I was going to take it. He was just too good to me, you know? So his deal was like, “You can have anything on my property except my old lady,” but I never felt right about doing it. Same thing goes for asking for stuff, too.

LM: What does the term “flash” mean and from where did it originate?

SJS: A sheet of tattoo designs that you have on your wall where your customer can come in and pick one of them is flash. They were always so bright, and it makes the shop look—as they used to call it—flashy. So that's where the word came from.

LM: Do you think you will ever come back to Kentucky?

SJS: Yeah. I would like to come back again. I've been here before. I was here about 18-years ago visiting a buddy of mine in southern Illinois, and he's pretty close to Paducah. So we were down that way quite a bit. At that time, there weren’t a lot of shops down here, but I’ve drove around [Kentucky] and it looks so much like back home. You really feel comfortable here right away. The people are nice here, too.

LM: Well, from a tattoo enthusiast to a tattoo legend, I want to say it has been an honor to interview you.

SJS: I appreciate you talking to me. I've been all over the world. I can walk into a shop in Holland and be recognized—not that I'm looking for someone to bow down to me, because I find that embarrassing—but I've walked into shops that I’ve never been in and they knew me. The States are even better. Here, I can go into any shop and they know who I am. They treat me really nice, but in my own country, I can go into a shop there, stand around all day, and they act like they don't even want to say “Hi” to you. Back home, it's like, “Who gives a f**k?”

And while the biblical adage of Luke seems to fit quite well here - "No prophet is accepted in his own country" - Sailor Jerry Swallow's deeply rooted anchor holds firm, it endures, and it will continue to inspire traditional tattoo artists the world over for generations to come. Thank you, Jerry. 

Sugg Street Post
Written and edited by Luke Short
Interview by Landon Miller
Photos by Jeff Harp

 

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Guided by Light – ‘Return to Bethlehem’ in Photos

HOPKINS COUNTY, KY (12/13/12) – This past weekend, and into the early half of the week, thousands of tri-state residents used the pale glow cast by the Star of Bethlehem to navigate First Baptist Church’s 18th annual “Return to Bethlehem” walk-through drama. 

Created to teach participants about daily life in Bethlehem near the time that Jesus Christ is believed to have been born, “Return to Bethlehem” has reached a massive audience over the years and has become a popular, seasonal mainstay of our region.

Alongside live animals, including sheep, goats, and a camel, reenactors in the drama portray a variety of archetypal members of Bethlehem’s old-world society, including shepherds, merchants, beggars, inn-keepers, Roman soldiers, prisoners, and more. Keeping in character, each member acting in the historical event speaks as though they have lived in Bethlehem their whole life and even try to barter with passersby. Supplementing the theme, those walking through the narrow, dimly lit “streets” and “alleyways” are encouraged to follow a bright star that remains visible throughout much of the walk-through. As one may imagine, the pathway and star leads participants to the birthplace of Jesus Christ himself—an unkempt stable.

In addition, those waiting to make their trek through the drama this year were treated to live music and were offered tasty refreshments after finishing.

All in all, the large, four-day turnout for First Baptist Church’s “Return to Bethlehem”—which was accomplished regardless of low temperatures and frigid winds—evidenced the yearly affair’s continued popularity.

In honor of this year’s success, we offer the reader a variety of photos from the event, all of which are attached below.

                                

Sugg Street Post
Written by Luke Short
Photos by Jeff Harp

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