Friday December 15, 2017
News Topics

The North American International Livestock Expo (NAILE) still has nearly a week of agricultural showmanship left, but tonight marks the last night for the associated 2017 Great Lakes Circuit Finals of the Pro Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA).

From barrel racing and roping to the rough stock events of bronco and bull riding, the North American Championship Rodeo brings fast paced action to freedom hall as dozens of cowboys and cowgirls compete for a purse of tens of thousands of dollars in prize money.  The action kicks off at 7:30 PM in Freedom Hall.

The first two nights of go ’rounds are wrapped up and now the competitors seek to lock in the glory and prizes of finishing at the top of the list among the seven main events, which include bareback bronco riding, team roping, steer wrestling, saddle bronc riding, tie down roping, barrel racing, and the thrilling crowd pleaser – bull riding.

The event isn’t just roping and riding either.  Throughout the competition, the crowd is entertained with numerous acts such as the “The Most Recognized Cowboy in the World,” Whiplash the Cowboy Monkey, the illuminating equestrian riding show from the Red Rock Riders Drill Team, and the comedy routines of the PRCA rodeo clown.

Tonight’s event also features two special promotions.  To mark Veterans Day, in honor of those who have served our country, active military members, veterans and first responders will receive 50% off of their admission.  Tonight is also Kid’s Cowboy Hat Night – the first 500 children in the lobby of Freedom Hall after 6PM will receive a free straw cowboy hat.

You won’t want to miss this action packed evening at Freedom Hall!

Visit us on Facebook to see more photos of the action.

 

Photo: LouisvilleZoo.org

Pumpkin Spice Habitat

The bears, orangutans, elephants and many other animals at the Louisville Zoo will be celebrating the end of Halloween with a special pumpkin enrichment!

Saturday, November 4, marks the zoo’s annual Pumpkin Smash event.

The World’s Largest Halloween Party!” presented by Meijer wrapped up last weekend after nearly a month of fun and special events.  Now it is time for the hundreds of pumpkins that decorated the zoo’s grounds for the festivities will be given to the animals for Halloween enrichment.

Animal enrichment is an important part of animal husbandry at the Louisville Zoo and promotes the expression of natural behavior.

This is the perfect opportunity to visit the zoo and see how the animals react to their special seasonal treats.  Zoo hours are from 10 AM to 4 PM, visitors arriving by 4 can stay until 5 PM.

Schedule:
(animals participating and times are subject to change)

10:15 a.m. Orangutans (Islands Dayroom)

10:30 a.m. Sumatran Tiger outdoor (Islands outdoor habitat)

11:15 a.m. Bears (Glacier Run)

11:45 a.m. Gorillas (Gorilla Forest)

12:15 p.m. Amur Tigers (after training)

1:15 p.m. Elephants

Starbucks Unveils 2017 Holiday Cups

Starbucks unveiled their 2017 holiday cups yesterday and fans of the annually-changing designs may have noticed something missing:  color!

Since 1997, the Seattle based coffee giant has welcomed the holiday season with a cheerfully themed red cup.  Now, after 20 years, this season’s cup has arrived nearly colorless.

The 2017 Starbucks holiday cup still features a seasonally themed illustration complete with a Christmas tree, a stack of gifts, clasped hands, hearts, stars, peace doves, ornaments, snowflakes, hot cocoa, and more.  The design has some basic colors, a few red parts and the company’s signature green on their logo, but a Starbucks representative said that the line-art cup was intended to allow people to add their own color to their cup.

Perhaps meant to capitalize on the recent adult coloring craze, or to spark creativity among their caffeinated customers, or  maybe just to save money on ink, the design captures the spirit of the holiday season while, hopefully, avoiding some of the controversy that the chain has endured on social media in previous years for swinging too far into the politically correct camp with their cups.

Two years ago, the company faced backlash after trying to avoid the “Happy Holidays” vs “Merry Christmas” type of holiday havoc by releasing plain red cups to mark the season.  Last year, they went the opposite direction by releasing more than a dozen holiday themed designs inspired by customer creations.

Along with the DIY artwork cup this season comes the “Give Good” sleeve to protect hands from the hot contents.  This slogan encompases the theme for this year’s holiday campaign, which Starbucks executive creative director, Leanne Fremar, says “as small as someone opening the door for you, or recognizing the people that enrich your life – your child’s teacher, a caregiver, a family friend.”  Fremar continued, “the holidays are a time to celebrate all the good we give to each other and our community.”

The Give Good campaign site reads

Hold the door for someone,
connect over coffee,
say “hi” to a stranger,
give perfect gifts
to the ones you love.
And once good starts,
it keeps going and growing
from one person to the next –
simple acts of kindness
that touch the lives of many.
Because good is contagious,
and giving is too.

Thousands of volunteers will join together on Saturday, October 21 for the bi-annual Brightside & Passport Health Plan Community-Wide Cleanup to pick up litter and beautify sites across Louisville.

Volunteers across the city—Boy & Girl Scouts, neighborhood associations, business associations, elementary school classrooms, families and more—will be participating in this fall’s event.

“By working together with neighbors, classmates and co-workers, we can show pride in our neighborhoods by keeping them litter-free,” Mayor Greg Fischer said. “I encourage citizens from all corners of our city to work together and keep our streets and greenspaces clean and green.”

To participate, volunteers choose their own cleanup site and register with Brightside to receive gloves, bags, and for the first 5,000 volunteers, t-shirts. Trash pick-up will be coordinated with Louisville Metro Solid Waste Management Services. The cleanup is sponsored by Passport Health Plan. Registration can be found online at www.brightsideinc.org.

“We are thrilled to be the title sponsor of the 2017 Brightside & Passport Health Plan Fall Community-Wide Cleanup,” said Mark B. Carter, CEO of Passport Health Plan. “We come together with Mayor Fischer, Brightside and all Louisville residents in the knowledge that a cleaner city helps all residents improve their health and overall quality of life.”

Cleanups are an integral part of Brightside’s mission, and without the help of over 25,000 volunteers throughout the year, Brightside could not meet its goal of a making Louisville a cleaner and greener community. Neighborhoods can hold their own cleanups at any point throughout the year, and Brightside encourages neighborhood associations, block watches, businesses and faith groups to play an active role in keeping their neighborhoods litter-free.

Registration for the October 21 community-wide cleanup is still open. Visit the Brightside website at www.brightsideinc.org to complete the registration form or call (502) 574-2613 to register your team.

American Bus Association’s “Destinations” Magazine Honors Local Venues

The American Bus Association’s (ABA) Destinations magazine has chosen both the Belle of Louisville and the Muhammad Ali Center as a “Best of the Best Travel Supplier in 2017.” The Belle and the Ali Center are two of 42 winners that make up top hotels, theatres, museums, festivals, shopping experiences, and more across North America.

The Belle of Louisville was named a winner in the Travel: Poetry in Motion category. The Belle is the oldest operating Mississippi-style steamboat in the world. It celebrated its Centennial birthday in 2014, and welcomed nearly 4,000 motorcoach visitors in 2016. The Belle is one of the most popular group-friendly attractions in the city.

The Muhammad Ali Center celebrates the life and legacy of the world-class boxer and global humanitarian who was born and raised in Louisville. The Center took honors in the Museums: Not Your Everyday Gallery category. Since its opening in 2005, the Ali Center has proven to be a popular itinerary stop for all types of group travel.

Two Southern Indiana tourism partners were also recognized on this year’s list. Schimpff’s Confectionary in Jeffersonville, Ind., was named one of the best in the Shopping: Delicious Delectable category. The Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site in New Albany, Ind., was named in the Historic Landmarks: History is Fun category.

Derby Dinner Playhouse, located in Clarksville, Ind., was named to the list last year.

Destinations is the official publication of ABA, and its annual ‘Best of the Best List” Awards are determined based on evaluation of sites nominated by members of the 90-year-old organization, though the sites themselves do not have to be members. All the winners have been published in a special section of the magazine’s September/October issue, which will be available online for a full year.

ABA is a trade association for motorcoach operators and tour companies in the U.S. and Canada. Every year, the association provides more than 600 million passenger trips on charters, tours, and shuttles. Its members include motorcoach operators, tour operators, tourism organizations, as well as product and service suppliers.

Louisville hosted ABA’s Annual Marketplace in 2016. It will once again host ABA Marketplace in January 2019.

Fans of all genres of rock, from 80’s-style glam-rock to speed metal, packed Lousville’s Champions Park, as they have since the Louder Than Life started in 2014.

Across the two day event, three dozen bands played three stages to a mass of tens of thousands of fist-pumping, crowd-surfing, mosh-pitting concert goers.  While main stage acts like Ozzy Osbourne, Rob Zombie, Five Finger Death Punch, Incubus, Stone Sour, and supergroup Prophets of Rage drew the largest crowd, the performers kept the excitement going from the opening show just after noon each day well into the night until the final curtain.

The opening-day first chords were struck on one of the two main stages by New Jersey hardcore act, Palisades and, shortly after, the other end of the 200+ acre venue on the Zorn Stage by He Is Legend.  The shows continued throughout Saturday with more acts including DED, Of Mice and Men, Steel Panther, Five Finger Death Punch, Mastodon, Rob Zombie, and Eagles of Death Metal (EODM) – who gained unfortunate notoriety when, in 2015, terrorists attacked the Bataclan Theater in Paris while the band was on stage.

On moving on, EODM bassist Matt McJunkins told a CNN reporter shortly after the attack, “music is what we do, it’s our lives, and there’s no way we’re not going to keep doing it.”  And “keep doing it” they did, as they rocked a packed Loudmouth Stage crowd during their set.

The show continued Saturday through Ozzy Osbourne’s closing act, during which apologized to the crowd several times as his voice cracked and went off-pitch.  Voice issues are nothing new for The Godfather of Heavy Metal; in a 2007 interview, the Prince of Darkness told the News TribuneI get a lot of voice problems. You have to do a lot of shouting, you know. […] I had a little bit of voice trouble. But it seems to be getting better now, you know.

Last year, Ozzy opened up to Kerrang! magazine that the one thing he fears is losing his voice, saying that, unlike a guitar player who could simply get another instrument, singers only get one voice.  During face-melting guitar solos by Zakk Wylde and an unbelievable, extended drum solo by Tommy Clufetos, Ozzy sipped tea, chewed gum and popped lozenges, eventually gaining back his voice and putting on a fantastic show.

Despite being a massive music festival, heavy tunes and head-banging is not all that the event offers, as indicated by the other two-thirds of Louder Than Life’s of Music, Whiskey, and Grub.

Stretched between the Monster and Loudmouth Stages at one end and Zorn Stage at the opposite end, Champions Park was lined with a variety of vendors, displays, and attractions – everything from purveyors of booze and greasy fried festival food to swag merchants and USMC recruiting opportunities.  Everything looked and smelled good, although our editors can personally vouch for Rock n Roll BBQ as the perfect fuel for hungry festival goers.

Often accompanying what can easily turn into an all-day drinking contest in the hot sun are rowdy types.  However, out of control ne’er-do-wells have been absent from the Louder Than Life events that we have witnessed.  LMPD officers are on hand to help reign in unruly behavior, but they appeared to be able to spend the vast majority of their time handling access control and taking in the music and people watching rather than dealing with rowdy types.

EMTs are also on hand; thankfully they mainly work to keep people hydrated and patch up minor scrapes rather than dealing with any real injuries – which might come as a surprise to outsiders watching what might otherwise appear as a violent scene inside a mosh pit.  A number of festival attendees were making their way around the event in wheelchairs, but – as best as we could tell – they arrived thusly equipped… several of them even participating in the crowd surfing, chair and all.  The mosh pits, though few and far between given the heavy nature of the on-stage performances, were fast paced yet respectful for participants, who came away mostly unscathed.

One exception was Nick, who, during Stone Sour’s Sunday set, caught an inadvertent elbow to his sunglasses and got a cut over his eye.  Though winded, Nick was in good spirits and both he and his friend described the situation as “pretty metal!

The high-energy show continued Sunday, kicked off by Black Map and Louder Than Life alums, ’68.  The day continued with acts including Falling in Reverse, Greta Van Fleet, and Palaye Royale.

Sunday also featured a powerful lineup of metal bands with female leads, including Lzzy Hale’s Halestorm, former Cindy Lou Who Taylor Momsen’s The Pretty Reckless, Cristina Scabbia with gothic staple Lacuna Coil, and In This Moment, featuring two-time “Rock Goddess of the Year” and Revolver’s “Hottest Chick in Metal,” Maria Brink.

If the atmosphere during the rest of the event could be described as electric, Sunday night’s main stage performances ratcheted things up to another level of high voltage.

Chicago’s hardcore Rise Against ignited the crowed with a high-speed set that incited an ocean of crowd surfers that only swelled more once lead singer Tim McIlrath descended from the stage to mount the stage barrier and greet fans lucky enough to surf his way as he belted out lyrics.

Sunday’s energy continued as Corey Taylor, returning after his 2017 Louder Than Life headline performance with Slipknot, led Stone Sour through blistering vocals and heavy drum and guitar backing while dousing the front rows of the moshing crowd with bottled water.

Calabasas-based perennial favorite Incubus calmed the crowd a bit during their set under cool blue lighting, Brandon Boyd’s melodic vocals, and mellower tunes.

The slowdown did not last long, however, as the weekend-long festival wrapped up on a high note with rap-rock supergroup, Prophets of Rage – comprised of Rage Against the Machine and Audioslave‘s Tom Morello, Tim Commerford, and Brad Wilk; Public Enemy‘s Chuck D and DJ Lord; and Cypress Hill‘s B-Real.

Pumping fists in the sky, the crowd – who likely sang as much of the songs as those on stage – took the performers’ lyrical advice to get out their seats and jump around to heart and stayed mobile throughout the show.

During their set, the band performed a somber Like a Stone tribute to fellow Audioslave member and former Soundgarden frontman, Chris Cornell – who died earlier this year in May – amidst a sea of cell phone lights and lighter flames before continuing their high-energy set through their final performance, Killing in the Name.

Rock and metal fans were treated to an outstanding weekend of Louder Than Life’s trademark music, bourbon, and “gourmet man food,” and left the venue, as always, excited for the next iteration of the festival.  Fans are, no doubt, anxiously awaiting new of what the five-year anniversary of the event holds in store.

Check out more photos from Louder Than Life 2017 below and on our Facebook gallery.

Save the date and ready your appetite: after three successful years, LOUDER THAN LIFE returns to Champions Park in Louisville.

On Saturday, September 30 and Sunday, October 1, 2017, the rock and metal mega festival returns for its 4th year of rock ‘n’ roll, Gourmet Man Food, local craft beer, onsite experiences, and the mind-blowing Bourbon World.

Last year’s line-up featured huge world-wide acts including Avenged Sevenfold, Korn, Slayer, Slipknot, Disturbed, Anthrax, Clutch, The Cult, and many, many more.

More details will be announced in May with details about the musical lineup, vendors, experiences, and ticket information.

Produced by Danny Wimmer Presents, America’s premier production company for rock music festivals, Louisville’s LOUDER THAN LIFE features a selection of award-winning bourbons, whiskey, spirits, craft beer, and Gourmet Man Food curated personally by festival creator Danny Wimmer, along with a powerful music lineup of rock legends and breaking talent.

The LOUDER THAN LIFE festival celebrates the bourbon culture and culinary heritage of this unique American city, and you won’t want to miss out on experiencing it for yourself.

In 2016, LOUDER THAN LIFE topped 50,000 in attendance for the second year in a row, with Slipknot and Avenged Sevenfold headlining together for the first time ever.

For more information, be sure to visit louderthanlifefestival.com.

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