Emil's feature on the Owensboro Dragon Boat Festival
As early-morning fog gave way to a clear blue August sky, 30 teams dressed in bright-colored t-shirts climbed into narrow wooden boats, adorned with a dragon head in the front. The teams paddled out to the starting line in the middle of the Ohio River.
Todd Petzold expressed cautious optimism as his team prepared to participate in the Owensboro Dragon Boat Festival for a second straight year.
“We’re team MPD, and we’re not going to sink this year. And we’re going to have fun,” said Petzold.
The teams were made up of between 15-20 people, including men and women. Their experience level ranged from veteran to novice.
They’re taking part in an athletic event and tradition whose origins date back to the year 278 B. C. in China and a man considered the father of Chinese poetry, Qu Yuan.
The long-term transit needs in Owensboro will be the subject of a final report issued next week at City Hall.
The Corradino Group will present its final report on the study which makes proposals to improve Owensboro’s transit options. The Messenger-Inquirer reports a public hearing will be held Thursday, August 1, where Owensboro residents can comment on the study’s findings.
Owensboro transit manager Michael Hughes has said the study will recommend that the city’s transit system expand to eight routes from six, with all routes taking no longer than half-an-hour to complete. The study is also expected to call for the city’s bus system to expand its coverage area and include new transfer points that would allow riders to reach their destinations more efficiently.
The public hearing on the transit plan is August 1 at 11 a.m. in Owensboro’s City Hall.
A one-room schoolhouse in Owensboro has been added to a national database of schools built for black children in the early 20th century.
The schoolhouse is in Pioneer Village at Yellow Creek Park. It was one of 5,357 public schools, manual training shops and teacher cottages built in the South with grants from the Rosenwald Fund between 1912 and 1932.
A total of 158 of them were built in 41 Kentucky counties.
Fisk University in Nashville maintains a database of Rosenwald Schools around the country.
Friends of Pioneer Village Executive Director Sean Dysinger told the Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer the head of the project at Fisk thought the Owensboro school had been torn down, which is why it wasn't included on the list until now.
Owensboro's Independence Day fireworks show will be held in November.
The event was canceled last week due to the rainy weather. Owensboro Mayor Ron Payne announced Thursday morning that the show will be held Nov. 9, in conjuction with Veteran's Day. Special recognition will be given to Korean War veterans on the 60th anniversary of that war.
City leaders also considered having the fireworks show during New Year's Eve, or during the grand opening of the new downtown convention center.
A Spencer County, Indiana, man hopes a replica version of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall will bring healing to those in the region who served in that war.
Frank Richey was in the Army for twenty years, including tours in Vietnam in 1969 and 1970. Richey has led the effort to bring to the southern Indiana region a traveling replica of the Vietnam Wall known as "The Wall That Heals."
Richey and a small committee of family members and supporters have raised over $10,000 to pay for the costs associated with bringing the replica wall to the town of Grandview, Indiana.
Richey hopes Vietnam veterans and their family members from southern Indiana and northwestern Kentucky will come to Grandview this fall to see the exhibit.
“That’s what this traveling wall is for. It’s for people who can’t actually make it to Washington D.C. to see the real wall,” said Richey.
You can learn more about The Wall That Heals by clicking here.
Payne says the city is leaning toward holding the fireworks show as part of the grand opening of the convention center. The official completion date of the convention center is Jan. 27, although an earlier opening date has not been ruled out.
If the fireworks are held on New Year's Eve, it will be a revival of the First Night celebrations in the city.
Payne said he wasn't sure if the Owensboro Symphony Orchestra will be involved with the fireworks show.
A former chairman of the International Bluegrass Music Museum’s board believes attendance to last week’s River of Music Party will approach 25,000. That would be up from last year’s ROMP attendance of 21,000.
Terry Woodward told the Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer that he didn’t hear a single negative comment about the bluegrass music festival at Yellow Creek Park, adding that he couldn’t “imagine it being any better than this.”
ROMP was named the event of the year for 2012 by the International Bluegrass Music Association.