Sunday June 24, 2018
News Topics

Meet Letterman — a new 3-year-old male southern white rhinoceros comes to the Louisville Zoo from The Wilds in southeast Ohio. The rhino was named by Jack Hanna after the late night television host and comedian David Letterman. Letterman was born on November 12, 2014 at The Wilds.

Letterman has completed his standard 30-day quarantine and will soon join 34-year-old female Sindi in the exhibit. As with any new animal introductions, the rhinos will be monitored. Introductions of unfamiliar rhinos can often result in sparring from both males and females, which is normal behavior. These normal interactions and dynamics in a rhino group can occasionally result in a superficial injury. The rhinos are regularly evaluated by the Zoo’s veterinary staff and any observed injuries are treated under their expert care. Once the rhinos are familiar with each other and their roles are established, they will usually engage in calmer interactions.

White rhinoceros are the largest land mammal after the elephant and the largest species of rhinoceros. Their range is southern Africa. The typical weight of a white rhinoceros is between 4,000 and 6,000 pounds. Adult white rhinos have no natural predators, other than humans, due to their size. White rhinoceros are listed as near threatened on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species due to the continued poaching threat and increasing illegal demand for horns.

The Kentucky Derby Festival is underway and the Kentucky Exposition Center plays host to four popular events.

Kentucky Derby Festival Race Expo & Packet Pick Up: Thursday, April 26 – Friday, April 27 4 p.m. – 8 p.m. – Thursday 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. – Friday More than 15,000 Kentucky Derby Festival Marathon and miniMarathon participants and their families stop by this annual event to pick up required information for the two races. During this time, attendees can visit exhibitors featuring fitness resources, tools and apparel. Located in the West Wing and Pavilion.

U.S. Bank Great Balloon Glow: Friday, April 27 6 p.m. Gates open 9 p.m. Glow begins Spectators watch as pilots fill hot-air balloons that glow against the evening sky, set to a special musical score. Visitors are invited to meet the pilots and ask questions. The balloons are parked in Lots C and D.

Thorntons Great Bed Races: Monday, April 30 4 p.m. Official tailgate party 6 p.m. Parade of the beds 7 p.m. Races begin Crowds cheer as teams dressed in costumes push decorated beds in a 600-yard dash to the finish line. Awards are presented for fastest course times, best decorated, most entertaining and more. The races take place in Broadbent Arena.

Republic Bank Pegasus Parade Preview Party Presented by Mega Caverns: Tuesday, May 1 5 – 9 p.m. Open to the public Visitors get a sneak peek at inflatables and floats, complete with dancing costumed characters. Children can also get an autograph or photo of the Derby Festival Queen and Royal Court. The preview party is held in South Wing C.

Admission to all events is free with a 2018 Kentucky Derby Festival Pegasus Pin. Parking at the Kentucky Exposition Center is $8 per vehicle and $20 per bus.

For more information about the Kentucky Derby Festival, visit

Photo: Louisville Metro Council

Councilman Bill Hollander invites the community to attend a D9 Community Conversation on Louisville’s budget.

The meeting is Monday, April 30, beginning at 6:30 p.m., at the Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana, 2115 Lexington Road.

“Mayor Fischer will be presenting his proposed budget on April 26 and the Council’s Budget Committee, which I chair, will spend the next two months working on it,” says Hollander. “As that process begins, I’ll have some comments on the proposal at our D9 meeting but mainly I want to hear from Louisville residents about their views on how we should be spending their money.”

As with all D9 Community Conversations, discussion of any other subject is also welcome and Councilman Hollander will be available to talk with constituents about any questions, comments or concerns.

For more information about the meeting, contact Councilman Hollander’s office at 574-1109.

Members of the Louisville Metro Council will host a formal reception to congratulate and welcome Dr. Marty Pollio as the new Superintendent of the Jefferson County Public Schools on Monday, April 23rd.

“This is an opportunity for Council members to meet with Dr. Pollio as we look forward to working with him and assisting anyway we can in educating the children of Jefferson County,” says President David James (D-6). “I support Dr. Pollio and the dynamic changes he is making for JCPS to improve education in Jefferson County.”

The formal reception will be held in the First Floor Conference Room of Historic City Hall, 601 West Jefferson Street beginning at 5:30pm.

Scarlet’s Bakery, an organization which works with victims of human trafficking and domestic abuse, will provide the appetizers for the reception.

Historical interpreter and culinary historian Michael Twitty will be in residence at Locust Grove May 22 through May 25, 2018  for Africa In Our Kitchens, a series of workshops, presentations, and tastings. Michael Twitty is a dedicated researcher who is committed to preserving and promoting African-American foodways and culture, and linking this influence on Southern food heritage. His research brings an understanding of the cultural heritage of enslaved communities and its relationship to the American South. His book, The Cooking Gene, was released by HarperCollins in 2017.

Twitty’s week-long residency at Locust Grove will explore the influence that African culture had on what has become American food through the enslaved African American experience. “Kentucky has an impressive and important role in the history and heritage of Southern and African American foodways and I hope my visit amplifies that story,” says Twitty of his visit.

Twitty’s residency will involve three formal public events, and focus on the enslaved community at Locust Grove. According to Brian Cushing, Locust Grove’s Program Director, “Michael Twitty’s visit is one of the best opportunities we have had yet to bring the experiences of the enslaved African Americans who worked the Locust Grove farm two centuries ago to life for our visitors. At any given time between 1792-1856, they comprised the majority population on the property that is now our museum and through exploring the food that they brought with them and created here, we are hoping that visitors come closer to understanding them as real, individual human beings.”

On Tuesday, May 22 at 6:00 pm, Twitty will offer a hearth meal tasting, allowing guests to taste traditional recipes cooked in Locust Grove’s hearth kitchen while hearing how the lived experiences of enslaved African Americans inform our national story and taste buds. Tickets are $18, or $15 for Locust Grove members.

On Thursday, May 24 at 6:00 pm, the public is invited to an open-air barbecue sampler that recreates the practices of enslaved African Americans living in early America. During the day, Twitty will roast a whole sheep over an open pit and prepare other 18th and 19th century recipes for sampling by evening guests. Tickets are $23, or $20 for Locust Grove members.

On both Tuesday, May 22 and Thursday, May 24, the Locust Grove hearth kitchen and grounds will be open for “Cooking Days with Michael Twitty.” Guests are welcome to stop by the hearth kitchen to view preparations, ask questions about recipes and techniques, and gain insight into how daily meals were prepared in the 18th and 19th centuries. Admission to the grounds for Cooking Days will be free. On Thursday, much of the preparations will take place on the grounds as Twitty roasts a whole sheep over an open pit.

Finally, on Friday, May 25 at 6:30 pm, Michael Twitty will present “Africa In Our Kitchens: How Enslaved African American Cooks Shaped American Cuisine.” This lecture will discuss Twitty’s research into the foodways of the enslaved and how their culture and experience shaped the American palate. Tickets for this presentation at $12, or $10 for Locust Grove members.

Africa In Our Kitchens: Michael Twitty at Locust Grove will take place May 22-25, 2018 at Historic Locust Grove. Tickets for all events will be on sale starting April 21 and may be purchased by calling Locust Grove at 502-897-9845.

Africa In Our Kitchens: Hearth Meal Tasting
Tuesday, May 22, 6:00pm – 8:00pm

Learn about 18th and 19th-century hearth cooking practices and the African influence on American cooking through enslaved cooks with historical interpreter and culinary historian Michael Twitty. During this tasting event, guests will taste traditional recipes cooked by Michael Twitty in Locust Grove’s hearth kitchen and hear how the lived experiences of enslaved African Americans inform our national story and national taste buds, as African culture and food practices became associated with American cooking. Tickets: $18/$15 for Locust Grove members. Tickets on sale April 21, 2018; call (502) 897-9845.

Cooking Tuesday with Michael Twitty
Tuesday, May 22, 10:00 am – 4:30 pm

Free admission to grounds and hearth kitchen to view preparations for the evening event.

Africa In Our Kitchens: Open Air Barbecue Sampler
Thursday, May 24, 6:00pm – 8:00pm

Experience an 18th century barbecue that recreates the practices of enslaved African Americans living in early America as Michael Twitty roasts a whole sheep over an open pit. The foodways of the enslaved have had a profound influence on the flavors that persist in American recipes, intrinsically linking African culture with our present understanding of traditional food. Michael Twitty’s food will give you a taste of the past while offering an understanding of the unique stories and experiences of enslaved African Americans. Tickets: $23/$20 for Locust Grove members. Tickets on sale April 21, 2018; call (502) 897-9845.

Cooking Thursday with Michael Twitty
Thursday, May 24, 10:00 am – 4:30 pm

Free admission to grounds and hearth kitchen to view preparations for the evening event.

Africa In Our Kitchens: How Enslaved African American Cooks Shaped American Cuisine
Friday, May 25 6:30pm – 8:00pm

In this presentation, historical interpreter and culinary historian Michael Twitty will discuss his research into the foodways of the enslaved and how their culture and experience shaped the American palate. Tickets: $12/$10 for Locust Grove members. Tickets on sale April 21, 2018; call (502) 897-9845.

Kentucky State Fair Premium Books are now available online. Competitors can choose from 31 departments — including antiques, field seed, livestock, photography and textiles — which are divided into 7,000 total classes of competition. All ages are welcome to compete for cash prizes and the more than 5,000 blue ribbons to be awarded.

The 2018 Kentucky State Fair is Aug. 16-26 at the Kentucky Exposition Center.

Entry deadlines are:

  • General July 2
  • General (late fee) July 10
  • Open and 4-H/FFA Youth Livestock July 10
  • Pigeon and Poultry July 18
  • Rabbit July 18
  • Open Livestock (late fee) July 25
  • Extra Late Open Livestock (late fee) August 3

The Premium Book and entry form are available online at A print version is also available; to request a copy, contact the entry department at or call (502) 367-5190.

As fans plan for another Derby Season, Louisville Metro Emergency Services is offering a text message alert system for residents and visitors. LENSAlert, the Louisville Emergency Notification System, offers a text message sign up which will provide event goers real time notifications in the instance of an emergency. To sign up for notifications for any event throughout the Derby Season, just text “Derby” to 67283.

Should an incident occur, text message notifications are sent from MetroSafe, Louisville’s 911 Communications Center. MetroSafe stays in constant communication with the Incident Command System, the Emergency Operations Center, first responders, and LMPD’s Real Time Crime Center and maintains a high level of situational awareness during all events.

Attendees are encouraged to text “Derby” to 67283 prior to attending events, but you can sign up for the service at any point in time. If you are already signed up for LENSAlert, you can elect to receive event specific notifications through your safety profile, which can be accessed anytime at

Emergency Services Director Jody Meiman states, “We expect a safe and secure Derby Season and are doing everything we can to be prepared, including offering text alerts for the public. LENSAlert is meant to communicate emergency information only and will be the trusted source of information should a major incident occur.