Arts & Culture

Emil Moffatt

The Library of Congress has unveiled the list of this year’s 25 additions to the National Recording Registry.

Among the recordings – the Everly Brothers 1960 hit “Cathy’s Clown”, which was recorded at the RCA “Studio B” in Nashville.

Earlier this year, Muhlenberg County held a celebration of life for Phil Everly, who died January 3rd.  Everly and his brother Don held a series of charity concerts in their family’s hometown in Western Kentucky in the 1980s and 1990s.    


A recent assignment for WKU alumnus Jonathan Woods took him to the very top of the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere.  Woods is a Senior Editor for Photo and Interactive for Time Magazine.  He graduated from Western Kentucky’s award-winning photojournalism department in 2007.

Woods says his interest in photographing the new One World Trade Center building began when he was working for NBC News’ website during the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11th attacks in 2011. Then, he ventured on an eight-month process of negotiating with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to allow access to the 405-foot spire on top of the 1,776 foot tall building known as the Freedom Tower.  

He and a staff member from the GigaPan company climbed the ladder to take a series of photos that eventually make up a sweeping panoramic look at the Manhattan skyline.

“We were putting a camera in a place that we couldn’t go scout.  It was on top of a 405-foot tall spire, which had a 405-foot tall ladder that we were not allowed to climb until the day we went up there,” said Woods.  “So we had to work off of blueprints to create something to put a camera in a place that didn’t exist.”

Neverland Publishing

A novel called "The Killing Jar", by author Gloria Nixon-John, is based on a true story from rural eastern Kentucky in which an incredibly gifted, but mentally disturbed 15-year-old named T0dd Ice is convicted of murdering his neighbor’s 7-year-old daughter and assaulting the neighbor in 1978.

The main character – named Ted Lynch in the book – spends several years as the nation’s youngest person on death row until his murder conviction was thrown out on appeal. During a re-trial he is convicted of manslaughter and winds up serving 15 years in prison before being released to a mental institution and then a halfway house.

Before his initial trial, Todd (Ted) was diagnosed as paranoid schizophrenic.  He would die in 2010 at age 47 after a dramatic weight gain, partially blamed on the medications he was prescribed.

The book is a novel,  but the author says she started the project as a non-fiction presentation of events. She says 95 percent of book is based on factual documentation.

She will speak at Barnes and Noble in Bowling Green tonight at 7 p.m. as part of the Kentucky Live! Series, presented by WKU Libraries.

From its earliest days as America's homegrown whiskey elixir, Kentucky bourbon has been traveling on boats.

In fact, boats were a key reason why Kentucky became the king of bourbon. In the late 1700s, trade depended on waterways, and distillers in the state had a big advantage: the Ohio River. They'd load their barrels onto flatboats on the Ohio, which flowed into the Mississippi, taking their golden liquor as far down as New Orleans.


When Jan Allan Zarr takes the reins of the Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center later this month, it will be a homecoming. 

Zarr has been hired as the new executive director of SKyPAC, a facility he helped open.  He’s been away for a year, but he told WKU Public Radio it won’t take long to get up to speed.

"The staff knows me, I know the staff," he said.  "That takes off a lot of pressure and time.  Normally, you come into a situation and you spend the next six months of the staff getting to know you, you getting to  know the staff and how everybody works."

Zarr currently directs the Topeka Performing Arts Center in Kansas.  His first day on the job in Bowling Green is March 24. 

SKyPAC, now in its third season, has seen a drop off in attendance, but Zarr says that’s normal. 

“You’re going to see that," replied Zarr.  "We started above the bar there and outpaced ourselves starting out.  What you’re seeing now is Skypac coming in where it should be.”

Emil Moffatt

A new executive director has been hired for the Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center.  Jan Allan Zarr comes from the Topeka Performing Arts Center where he served as director. 

Zarr is actually returning to Skypac, having helped open the Bowling Green facility from 2011-2012.

Zarr replaces Tom Tomlinson, who resigned last month.

Poet Laureate Giving Workshop in Bowling Green

Feb 26, 2014

Budding poets will have a chance to work with Kentucky Poet Laureate Frank X Walker at a workshop in Bowling Green this weekend. The Warren County Public Library is hosting the event from 9:30 am to 12:30 pm Central time at its main branch on State Street.

Assistant Library Director Ashley Fowlkes says Walker has been popular during previous events at the library, saying he's very talented and a great teacher.

Walker is a founding member of the Affrilachian Poets and a writer in residence and lecturer of English at Northern Kentucky University. He's lectured, conducted workshops and read poetry at more than 300 national conferences and universities.

Admission to the workshop is free but registration is needed due to limited space. To register, call 270-781-4882 or email

Emil Moffatt

Three days after the resignation of SKyPAC’s executive director and CEO, the Bowling Green-based performing arts center has confirmed that it is laying off five employees. 

The vice chairwoman of the SKyPAC Foundation board tells the Daily News that SKyPAC may have been “overstaffed in some areas”.  Names of those who lost their jobs have not been made public.  No other layoffs are expected. 

CEO and Executive Director Tom Tomlinson departed last week for a job with another performing arts center outside of Kentucky.

Emil Moffatt

The Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center is searching for a new leader.

SKyPAC executive director and CEO Tom Tomlinson is leaving the Bowling Green-based organization to lead a new performing arts center outside the state.

Tomlinson was hired in early 2012 to lead SKyPAC following the $35 million dollar center’s opening.

A news release from SKyPAC says a search committee has been formed to find a new executive director.

Details on Tomlinson’s new job aren’t being released until next week, as the new employer requested confidentiality until then.

Pokey LaFarge

Among the things that make Pokey LaFarge stand out: his unique moniker, his throwback sound, the formal attire he often sports on stage and one of the songs from his latest album, which celebrates….a time zone.

I don’t mind the West Coast, and I don’t mind the East Coast, Oh, baby, but I ain’t gonna live on no coast. I’m just a plain ol’ Midwestern boy, gettin’ by on central time.

LaFarge says the song, called "Central Time", took him only five minutes to write

“Some songwriters would say that’s proof that it’s a good song,” said LaFarge. “Some of the best songs come out that way If it came out in five minutes, I wasn't even consciously thinking about it. It just came out.”

The 30-year-old St. Louis native along with his five-piece band will keep it within the Central time zone tonight as he performs in Bowling Green. The Pokey LaFarge sound can be described in a variety of different ways. He says it changes every time he’s asked.

“If I had to describe it today, I would say that it’s acoustic-rooted, horn-accentuated, lyric- and melody-driven Midwestern swing. How’s that?”