Associated Press

A western Kentucky tourism official says fundraising is continuing toward the construction of a proposed museum dedicated to bluegrass music legend Bill Monroe.

Ohio County Tourism Commission executive director Jody Flener told the Messenger-Inquirer  that the project's goal is to raise $1 million and conduct a groundbreaking next spring.

Although an architect has yet to be hired, Flener says the museum will focus on Monroe, his family and his band, the Bluegrass Boys.

Flener says Ohio County has received $300,000 in state funding for the project.

Monroe died in 1996. Three years later the county spent $250,000 for several Monroe memorabilia items that have been kept in storage.

A museum website was started in April. The website is selling customized bricks for $75 and $250, depending on size.

Benefind Homepage-screenshot

The launch of a state public benefit system has drawn criticism from a bipartisan group of Kentucky lawmakers.

The Courier-Journal reports that one lawmaker, Republican Sen. Danny Carroll of Paducah, is suggesting a state attorney general's review of the contract with the consulting company that built the $100 million system known as benefind.

Carroll said at a hearing Thursday that it appears the state's most vulnerable citizens are the ones paying for the system's shortcomings.

Ellis Park

Ellis Park in Henderson opens Saturday with daily purses expected to average $210,000 during a summer meet featuring five stakes races worth $325,000.

The growth of Ellis Park's Instant Racing game and a $1.35 million contribution from Kentucky Downs will increase the track's daily purse average from $155,000 last year.

flickr/creative common/Jim Worthington

Pat Summitt, the winningest coach in Division I college basketball history who helped boost the women's game to the big time in a 38-year career at Tennessee, has died at 64.

With an icy glare on the sidelines, Summitt led the Lady Vols to eight national championships and prominence on a campus steeped in the traditions of the football-rich south until she retired in 2012.

Her son, Tyler Summitt, issued a statement Tuesday morning saying his mother died peacefully at Sherrill Hill Senior Living in Knoxville surrounded by those who loved her most.

Tyler's statement said "since 2011, my mother has battled her toughest opponent, early onset dementia, 'Alzheimer's Type' ... and we can all find peace in knowing she no longer carries the heavy burden of this disease. "

GM

Kentucky officials say General Motors Corp. plans to invest $290 million at the automaker's Corvette plant in Bowling Green.

The company's North American manufacturing manager, Arvin Jones, said Friday the investment includes technology upgrades to improve the plant's manufacturing process. It could also create as many as 270 new jobs.

The investment announcement was made by Gov. Matt Bevin's office in Frankfort.

Bevin's office says the investment includes a $153 million project aimed at improving vehicle assembly line processes. The latest investment follows a series of upgrades and expansions in recent years at the Corvette assembly plant in Bowling Green.

To encourage the investment, Kentucky officials recently gave preliminary approval for GM to qualify for up to $3 million in tax incentives, based on the level of investment and job creation.

flickr/creative common/Rand Snyderman

Appalachian music patriarch Ralph Stanley, who helped expand and popularize the bluegrass sound, has died. He was 89.

His publicist, Kirt Webster, says Stanley died Thursday.

Stanley was born and raised in southwest Virginia. He and brother Carter formed the Stanley Brothers and their Clinch Mountain Boys in 1946. The brothers fused Grand Ole Opry star Bill Monroe's rapid rhythms with the mountain folk of groups such as the Carter Family, and added a distinctive three-part harmony. Carter Stanley died of liver disease in 1966.

Ralph Stanley's a cappella dirge "O Death" from the "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" movie soundtrack introduced him to a new generation of fans in 2000.

He became a member of the Grand Ole Opry in 2000 and won a Grammy for best male country vocal performance in 2002.

International Bluegrass Music Center

The International Bluegrass Music Museum and Hall of Fame is about to break ground on a new $15 million facility in Owensboro next week.

City leaders including Owensboro Mayor Ron Payne and Daviess County Judge executive Al Mattingly are attending the June 23 event at 311 West 2nd Street.

The property takes up an entire block in a revitalized section of downtown. It will have a 450-seat concert hall, recording studio, an outdoor concert area, gift shop and a rooftop restaurant. Museum officials say it will house "the world's foremost collection" of bluegrass artifacts, memorabilia and music recordings.

Peyronnin Construction of Evansville, Indiana, is building the museum. It is expected to be finished in 2018.

U.S. Army

Army ROTC is celebrating its 100th anniversary this week with a ceremony at Fort Knox.

The post said senior leaders from across the nation, members of the U.S. Army Cadet Command and people from the community will take part.

The former commander of Africa Command, retired Gen. Carter F. Ham, will be the keynote speaker during the event Friday. The post said in a news release that the Golden Knights Parachute Team will conduct a demonstration, and the command will induct over 300 people into the Army ROTC Hall of Fame.

Ethan Miller/Getty Images for Keep Memory Alive

The president of Turkey and king of Jordan joined the long line of world leaders, religious figures and superstars set to speak at Muhammad Ali's funeral Friday.

Ali family spokesman Bob Gunnell announced funeral details at a news conference Monday.

California imam and scholar Zaid Shakir will preside over the service at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville.

Speaking at the funeral will be representatives of multiple faiths, including Islam, Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, Mormonism and Catholicism. They will be followed by Ali's wife, Lonnie Ali; daughter Maryum Ali; actor Billy Crystal; sportscaster Bryant Gumbel; Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and King Abdullah II of Jordan.

President Bill Clinton will deliver a eulogy.

Flickr/Creative Commons/Douglas McCoy

About 60 animals have been rescued from a western Kentucky animal shelter where authorities say they were being underfed and not given enough water.

Kim Carroll, 50, of Bee Springs in Edmonson County, was charged Friday with second-degree animal cruelty following the discovery of dozens of malnourished animals, as well as one dead dog and three dead cats. Several other animals have since been euthanized.

Owensboro Humane Society member Cheryl Bartlett says she alerted deputies after one of her children discovered a dead dog in an outdoor kennel.

The Edmonson shelter had taken in animals via contracts with governments of Edmonson, Hart, Grayson and Metcalfe counties.

It's unclear whether Carroll has an attorney.

Relatives say a Blue Angels pilot who died when his jet crashed near Nashville had wanted to fly since he was a child.

A U.S. official identified the pilot killed Thursday as Marine Capt. Jeff Kuss. The official wasn't authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Dolph Kuss says his grandson dreamed of being an aviator since a young age. And Kuss' mother, Janet Kuss, said in a 2014 newspaper interview that her son had "wanted to be a Blue Angel since forever."

It was the second fighter jet crash of the day for the military's elite fighter jet performance teams. A member of the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds crashed in Colorado after a flyover for the Air Force Academy graduation where President Barack Obama spoke. That pilot ejected safely.

Democratic Attorney General Andy Beshear has appointed a special prosecutor to handle the case against his former deputy.

Former Deputy Attorney General Tim Longmeyer pleaded guilty to a federal bribery charge last month. Last week, Beshear announced he would file state charges against Longmeyer. At first, Beshear said he would prosecute the case himself. But Thursday he said he would hand the case to Franklin County Commonwealth's Attorney Larry Cleveland.

Cleveland said the attorney general's office asked him to take the case on Wednesday, citing a conflict of interest.

Longmeyer pleaded guilty to using his influence as the state Personnel Cabinet secretary to steer contracts to a public relations firm in exchange for kickbacks. He also directed some of that money to Beshear's 2015 campaign for attorney general.

Two billboard companies have refused to display an advertisement by an atheist group to protest the Ark Encounter amusement park in northern Kentucky.

Tri-State Freethinkers president Jim Helton says the group recently raised $10,000 for a billboard. The proposed design depicts Noah's Ark with people drowning around it and the words, "Genocide and Incest Park: Celebrating 2,000 years of myths."

The advertisement has been turned down by billboard companies Lamar and Event Advertising and Promotions LLC.

Helton says the group is considering erecting the billboard outside of Kentucky, if it can find a taker.

The Ark Encounter, a 510-foot wooden ship as described in the Old Testament, is under construction. It's a product of Answers in Genesis, which also owns the Creation Museum.

In March, Answers in Genesis President Ken Ham called the billboard campaign an attack on Christianity.

Funtown Mountain Facebook

A south-central Kentucky country music radio station owner has bought a closed recreational park in Cave City.

The Courier-Journal said David Froggett Jr. purchased the two tracts of land and buildings for $295,000 at auction Wednesday.

Froggett, of Edmonton, owns WHSX-FM. He told the Daily News of Bowling Green last week that he plans to turn the attraction into a "resort park-nature park combination."

The park started as the Western-themed Guntown Mountain in 1969. It was purchased in May by a Louisville businessman who planned to turn it into a Kentucky-themed park, but he was unable to follow through due to health issues.

Dana Corp. employees in Glasgow have learned the plant will close by mid-2017.

The Glasgow Daily Times reports the company plans to reduce employment by half by the end of the year. The plant employs 203 people and produces gear sets, shafts and secondary gearing components for commercial vehicles.

Dana Holding Corp. spokesman Mark Burd said the reason for the closure is deterioration of the commercial vehicle market.

A notice filed with the state on Tuesday said Dana will let 191 employees go as a result of the plant closure. Burd said the facility employs 186 hourly workers and 17 salaried workers, though some are currently laid off.

Burd said employees will be eligible for severance pay, and some may relocate to other Dana facilities.

The plant was built in 1972. Dana acquired it in 1998.

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