Monday August 19, 2019

News Sections

Looking for something to do this weekend? Check out the new KY Exposition Center website for events that are happening right here in Louisville. Be sure to check the specifics for the event that catches your eye since not all events are free!

Right now, the National Street Rod Association Nationals is ending Day 2 of 4 at the Expo Center. Doors open tomorrow morning at 7 AM and admission is $19 for adults, $6 for children under 12 (free for children five and younger).

Starting August 6, the 2019 KY State Fair Quarter Horse Show will be taking place as it always does before the actual Fair. The event is held in Broadbent arena as well as Freedom Hall, and it is free to the public. Following the Quarter Horse Show, is the 2019 KY State Fair Presented by Gencanna. The Fair takes place August 15 – 25 this year and will feature the 2019 World’s Championship Horse Show at the same time (August 17-24). Tickets to the Horse Show are separate from the admission price of the Fair.

Ending the month will be the KY Flea Market Labor Day Spectacular, which will run August 30-September 2. Admission is free to the public. On the last day on the month, the KY Expo Center will also host the Yugioh! Regional Qualifier. The event is free for spectators, but will cost competitors $20 Competitors will be competing for a chance to be invited the 2020 National Championship. More information about the tournament can be found on the Bluegrass Magic Gameshop website.

If you have not yet visited the brand new KY Exposition Center website, you should head over there and check it out. It looks much nicer and is easier to navigate.

On August 23 and August 24, 2019, Joe McGill of the Slave Dwelling Project will be in residence at Locust Grove for a campfire discussion and overnight and a public presentation about his work on changing the narrative of slavery and address its legacy in American history and culture.

Joe McGill is an educator, Civil War reenactor, and descendant of enslaved people. The Slave Dwelling Project began in 2010 at Magnolia Plantation in South Carolina and has since spread to 23 states on one-hundred-fifty historic sites. McGill’s work focused on changing the narrative, one slave dwelling at a time, as he attempts to spend the night in every former slave dwelling still standing in the United States. The Slave Dwelling Project has attracted national attention, and McGill has been interviewed for The New York Times, Smithsonian Magazine, Curbed, and HistoryNet.

According to Program Director Brian Cushing, “This visit by Joe McGill and the Slave Dwelling Project is a way for Locust Grove to further explore how to discuss the history of slavery at our site and in the region. We want to help everyone in our city and surrounding communities talk openly about this history.”

On Friday, August 23 at 6:30 pm, guests will gather for an outdoor meal and campfire discussion guided by McGill about the lives of enslaved people across the United States, including those at Locust Grove, and consider what can be learned from sleeping where they slept and standing where they stood. Guests who wish to sleep outdoors on the property will have the opportunity to do so, either under the stars or in modern tents.

On Saturday, August 24 at 1:30 pm, McGill will speak on his experiences in telling the stories of the enslaved and sleeping at former sites of enslaved people. Farms and plantations like Locust Grove are a familiar setting for stories of slave life, and William Croghan, like other slaveowners, was first and foremost a businessman. McGill’s presentation will focus on the economy of slavery in agricultural and non-agricultural settings, as well as the insights he has gained through his years of sleeping in slave residences.

The Slave Dwelling Project: Joe McGill at Locust Grove will take place August 23 & 24 at Historic Locust Grove. Tickets for all events will go on sale July 17 and may be purchased by calling Locust Grove at 502-897-9845. Advanced reservations are required for both events.

More information about the Slave Dwelling Project may be found here:

The line-up for Louder than Life has been set and will feature such acts as Slipknot, Motionless In White, GWAR, Guns N’ Roses, Godsmack, Dropkick Murphys, Rob Zombie, and many many more.

The three day event starts Friday, September 27 with the doors opening at 11 AM. With the event at the Kentucky Exposition Center this year, parking should be easier to find and rain won’t force the event to cancel.

Tickets are still available and can be purchased online at Attendees that are interested in attending all three of the festivals at the Exposition Center this year will be sad to hear that the Trifecta Pass is sold out.

If you have not had the pleasure of attending Louder Than Life in the past, here is an idea of what you can expect. /

Three years after opening an expanded headquarters downtown, El Toro Internet Marketing LLC plans to move to larger offices in the NuLu neighborhood, adding 400 new jobs and investing $10.5 million.

“The explosive growth of El Toro is proof that tech companies don’t need to be located on the coast to be successful and that Louisville has the talent to fill the demands of new and growing tech companies,” said Mayor Greg Fischer. “Through new tech programs and partnerships with major companies like Microsoft and IBM, Louisville is doing the roadwork to expand its tech talent pipeline and meet future workforce demands.”

El Toro plans to lease 36,700 square feet on the third and fourth floors of the Gateway to NuLu building at 552 E. Market Street. The project comes in response to increased customer demand and is expected to provide a substantial boost in staffing. The 400 additional jobs will include software engineers, programmers, data scientists and sales positions. Company leadership anticipates the headquarters relocation will be complete by February 2020.

The announcement comes on the heels of steady growth in recent years. In 2016, El Toro announced over $2 million in investment to renovate office space on First Street for an upgraded headquarters operation. Today, it employs more than 100 people.

“Louisville is a great home for El Toro,” said El Toro CEO Stacy Griggs. “The commonwealth of Kentucky and the city of Louisville have been fantastic partners in helping us build one of the fastest growing technology companies in the U.S.”

Opened in Louisville in 2013, El Toro provides a range of online marketing services, including advanced analytics, mobile location marketing and IP targeting. El Toro’s patented tools provide a unique series of technologies that allow customers to direct marketing efforts toward their target audience via numerous methods of omnichannel delivery, which includes digital advertising, connected TV and direct mail. The company also provides ad tech for political advertising both in the US and internationally.

Sen. Gerald Neal, of Louisville, said the company’s decision to remain in Louisville is a reflection on the local business environment.

“We are thrilled El Toro has decided to relocate and expand here in Louisville,” Sen. Neal said. “This decision exhibits the confidence El Toro has in our well-equipped workforce and community. We look forward to the continued success of El Toro.”

Rep. Charles Booker, of Louisville, expects El Toro’s growth to continue for years to come.

“What El Toro has done in a relatively short amount of time is phenomenal and speaks to the innovative spirit in our commonwealth,” Rep. Booker said. “These new jobs will have a major impact on our local economy and create real opportunity for many families. I’m also proud that the company is settling into the East Market District, where it will undoubtedly thrive even more. Something tells me this latest expansion won’t be its last.”

To encourage the investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) on Thursday approved the company for a modification to previously approved tax incentives up to $7.5 million through the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based incentive allows a company to keep a portion of the new tax revenue it generates over the agreement term through corporate income tax credits and wage assessments by meeting job and investment targets.

Today marks the 29th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act signed by President George H.W. Bush on July 26, 1990. 

The bi-partisan supported Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA) give civil rights protections to individuals with disabilities like those provided to individuals on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, age, and religion. The ADA and ADAAA also assure equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities for access to businesses, employment, transportation, state and local government programs and services, and telecommunications.

About 57 million people in our country have a disability and over 33% of Kentucky’s adult population have some type of disability. It is estimated that 25% of our nation’s current 20-year-olds will experience a disability in their lifetime.

Louisville Metro Councilman Brandon Coan (District 8) has been working with advocates to create a formal Commission for Persons with Disabilities. In recognition of this great effort, Councilman Coan stated, “I am proud that Metro Council unanimously passed an ordinance on July 25, 2019 —  the anniversary eve of the Americans with Disabilities Act being signed into law — creating a Louisville Metro Commission for Persons with Disabilities.  All people should be able to live freely and move safely through our community and I hope the Commission will improve equitable access to every opportunity our city has to offer.”

In celebration of the anniversary of the ADA’s anniversary and in recognition of this newly created Commission, a press conference will be held today a 10 a.m. at TARC’s Union Station, 1000 W. Broadway with officials from TARC, Louisville Metro Government and other disability advocates.  There will be a reception immediately following.

Also in honor of the 29th anniversary of this historic civil rights legislation, Louisville Metro Office for Aging & Disabled Citizens (OADC) and partner agencies challenge residents, organizations, government entities, and faith communities to recommit to the full implementation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by signing the PLEDGE ON! to ADA. Currently, there are 102 signatures for the state of Kentucky. By signing this pledge, Louisvillians can celebrate and recognize the progress that has been made and reaffirm the principles of equality and inclusion by recommitting to the efforts of reaching full ADA compliance.

In preparation of the ADA’s 30th anniversary next year, Metro departments such the Office of Resilience and Community Services, Parks and Recreation, Public Works and Special Events are working alongside agencies including TARC, the Center for Accessible Living, KIPDA and Superior Van & Mobility in planning opportunities for advocacy, awareness and action to make Louisville a place for all individuals, regardless of ability, to live work and play.

The ADA National Network is the “go to” resource for free, confidential information, guidance and training on the ADA and its implementation. Call toll-free 1-800-949-4232 or visit the website at  Callers using the toll-free 800 number are connected to the regional ADA Center serving their state. Through the outreach, training and technical assistance the ADA National Network has done to promote voluntary compliance with the ADA, people with disabilities have better access to businesses, buildings, employment, state and local government programs and services, and increasing opportunities for equal and full participation in civic and community life.

Mayor Greg Fischer announced today that Doug Hamilton, Chief of Public Services, is retiring from Louisville Metro Government after serving the community for nearly 50 years.

Hamilton began his career in 1971 as a city of Louisville police officer, working up the ranks to chief and then serving as a U.S. Marshal. Hamilton later returned to Louisville Metro to lead cross-functional, cross-agency teams and built the city’s unified emergency communication system.

He served as the Emergency Manager for Louisville/Jefferson County from March 2004 until January 2013, when he was appointed by Mayor Fischer to be Chief of Public Services.

That same year, Hamilton was recognized for his outstanding impact on emergency services and was inducted into the Emergency Management Hall of Fame. He has served on many boards and commissions, including the Kentucky Derby Festival and the Red Cross.

“Doug has been the consummate public servant, serving with compassion, pride and a commitment to keeping the people of Louisville safe. Doug has brought a forward-thinking approach and incorporation of new technologies into all public services,” said the Mayor. “I’m honored that he devoted his career to serving our community. We will miss his institutional knowledge and his wonderful wit.”

Hamilton said the decision to leave was bittersweet, but after becoming a grandfather this summer, with another grandchild on the way, “I decided that I want to help my daughters and those babies with as much of my time as they need.”

“Working in public safety is like having a front row seat to the greatest show on earth,” he added. “The opportunities in public service have led me to meet and work with some very talented people over the years. I couldn’t begin to thank them all, but each made an impression that helped me throughout my career. And I’m so proud of the commitment, courage and compassion evident in public safety and services personnel in meeting the challenges the complexity of humanity presents.”

Hamilton’s last day will be Aug. 31, 2019. The Mayor will work with him on a smooth transition.

Come be a part of the neighborhood project that cleans dense heat & pollution that hurt our health! The Living Green Wall, Park Duvalle, is a major resident-led effort directed by Valarie Franklin in collaboration with artist/organizer Brianna Harlan and the Parkville Neighborhood Association. In 2013, people in the zip codes near Rubbertown were nearly 31- 35% more likely to develop lung and colorectal cancers than those in other Louisville zip codes with similar median incomes because of pollutants. The 7 x 30 ft wall of beautiful succulent plants and moss, to be installed on the west wall of the Southwick Community Center, has the potential benefit of planting 275 trees. Its purpose is to clean and cool pollution and dangerous heat that negatively affect general health. The World Health Organization reports that one third of deaths from strokes, lung cancer, and heart disease are due to air pollution. Dense, extreme heat intensifies the conditions. It will also serve as an educational site for the community on environmental issues, offer a beautiful backdrop for community events, and spell out “UNITY” to foster pride.

Valarie Franklin, after completing the Neighborhood Institute at the Center For Neighborhoods, decided to do something about it. She advocates, “now that we know the importance of green areas for quality of life and health, many cities are trying to make sure that things like green walls, green roofs, gardens, etc. are an essential part of urban planning. I would like to bring these ideas here to Park Duvalle to help improve the air quality.

The cause cannot only be pollution. It could also be other factors, such as genetics and lifestyle. But, if we can help to decrease just one of the contributing factors, we can improve quality of life for those who live within our community.”

At the event on Saturday, the community is invited to come and learn about the Living Green Wall and help assemble it. There will be family activities by Play Cousins Collective, Books & Breakfast, Toni Lynette, Athiri, and the Center For Neighborhoods. All are invited to bring a picnic and celebrate!

The Living Green Wall is sponsored by American Synthetic Rubber Company, The Plant Kingdom, Structorial, and Zeon, in partnership with Louisville Metro Parks and Recreation.