Rusty Satellite 204 – Amy Attaway and Stephen Reily

Rusty visits two of the most interesting people in the Louisville arts scene as summer gets into full swing with plenty of things to do in Louisville.

First, I went to ArtSpace to catch up with Amy Attaway, who is busy getting ready for the premiere of another season of Shakespeare in Central Park. I learned that the ‘Ville has been doing a production of this type longer than anyone in the nation, and almost stumped Amy by asking for a relevant quote from Bill S.

Amy, a native Louisvillian, never thought she’d be able to ply her craft in her hometown, but she’s thriving in her job at Kentucky Shakespeare and helping operate Theatre 502, which is also premiering a new play. And, Amy fills in as a news reader on WFPL.

There’s no double duty for Stephen Reily, the entrepreneur who has taken over as interim director of the Speed Art Museum. We last spoke to Reily when he was running for Metro Council, not knowing that ultimately he’d be asked to take over one of the city’s thriving arts organizations.

Listen in as Stephen discussed the latest exhibit, the collection of photographs he’s collected over the years that focus on life in the South. He’s giving a talk June 1 — get tickets at www.speedmuseum.org.

In between interviews, I’ll fill you in on events like the Denim & Diamonds event for Parkinson’s on Friday, and Saturday it’s the Fest of Ale in New Albany. Plus, there’s a few rants about local news. Tune in to the Rusty Satellite Show, and please tell your friends.

Rusty Satellite 203 – Scott and Jennifer Benningfield, Todd Antz and Eric Morris

Rusty roars into the Memorial Day weekend with a superb show highlighting some of the city’s most interesting people. First, get to know Scott and Jennifer Benningfield, the married couple who saw an article in a magazine about these strange bikes made in Amsterdam. It took a year for Jennifer to talk her husband into getting one and starting the business you know as The Thirsty Pedaler. Now, they’ve opened a storefront on Fourth Street Live.
The granddaddy of all local beer event in New Albany’s Fest of Ale, organized by Keg Liquors owner Todd Antz. For the first time, the official after party for the June 3 event will be held at the Gospel Bird, where hundreds of fest-ers flocked last year when a storm hit the event. Eric Morris has big plans for the party, even while working on a new seafood spot, Hull and High Water, right down the street.
I’ve had about enough of Donald Trump and Matt Bevin and their attitude in trying to control what various media report. This week Bevin took to Facebook Live to record a video explaining how he has no intention of answering questions from the Courier-Journal and Herald-Leader. That’s because he doesn’t want to answer questions about the bargain he got on a house he bought at a discount. And don’t get me started on Trump. It’s time to pay attention, people, and speak up before these loudmouths get their way with the media.
This weekend is full of great events — Abbey Road on the River, the Kentucky Reggae Festival and Monday’s Hike and Bike with the Mayor. I hop you can get out there and enjoy. them And thanks for listening to the Rusty Satellite Show.

Rusty Satellite 202 – Ashley Parker and Jennifer Washle, with Lauren Hendricks

Lauren Hendricks is back to co-host the show with me, as she’s gearing up for the big Buy Local Festival at the Water Tower on Sunday.

My first guest is the force behind that event — Louisville Independent Business Alliance president Ashley Parker. She’s a real estate agent and a master of the sport of stand-up paddleboarding. Listen in as she explains why it’s so important to buy goods and services from locally-owned businesses.

Jennifer Washle’s story is one of courage and compassion. I’ve known her for years as the organizer of the Bisig Impact Group’s concert series, including the Kentucky Reggae Festival coming Memorial Day weekend. But Jennifer is a cancer survivor who has the rare courage to want to talk about her journey in hopes that it will help someone else.

Lauren and I both like to eat – so we end up talking about some favorite local restaurants and my experience going to an event to promote the Blended Burger Project, a national campaign that will involve up to 500 restaurants, all of whom will offer a mushroom and meat patty with their own twists. And we’ll both be attending the Highlands Beer Fest, another of the city’s big weekend events. Join us, and tell your friends about the Rusty Satellite Show.

Rusty Satellite 202 – Rolf Eisinger and Keith Lerme

The Rusty Satellite Show once again offers up some of the most interesting people in the ‘Ville this week. First, I went on location at Oak and Garvin, where Rolf Eisinger was supervising the installation of a new bike-sharing station, one of 27 being installed around town. Rolf is the city’s bicycle and pedestrian coordinator, which means he’s really busy during National Bike Month and preparing for a big Bike to Work event culminating at Fourth Street Live! next week.

I was fascinated by the story of Keith Lerme, who came to his position as VP and Regional Director of the Make-A-Wish Foundation after a high-profile career in hospitality — with Yum!, Barnes & Noble, GiGi’s Cupcakes and at Sullivan University. Listen as he explains how his life changed instantly when he learned his high school-aged daughter would have to endure brain surgery. He’s gearing up for Make-A-Wish’s big fundraiser on May 20 at Kentucky Kingdom.

Of course, we’re all in recovery mode after a big Derby Week, one in which I enjoyed the high-profile Culinary Kickoff at the Ali Center and won a few bucks on Always Dreaming. One of this month’s highlights is the Highlands Beer Fest on May 20. I talked with John Bizzell at the Highlands ValuMarket about that event’s history and what’s new this year. There’s plenty more interesting topics on the 201st episode of the Rusty Satellte Show.

Rusty Satellite 200 – Mayor Greg Fischer and Cyndy Tandy

Mayor Greg Fischer drops by — actually I dropped by his place — to appear on the 200th episode of the Rusty Satellite Show. Fischer says he loves the job, and the opportunity to make a difference, as he’s set to begin campaigning for a third term. We talk about crime, economic development, bourbon and the West End, as well as his own assessment of how the city’s doing.

On the very first show, about four years ago, Cyndy Tandy was a featured guest on what was then a new and unknown media venture. So I asked her back to reminisce a bit about the show and talk, of course, about the Derby. Listen in as we talk about some major moments in the show’s history.

Of course, it is Derby Week, so we talk about some local traditions – Dawn at the Downs, a trip to Wagner’s, and how to play your hunches to win money at Churchill Downs. And I took a trip over to the newly-remodeled Second Floor Clubhouse to sample some of the new menu items from Executive Chef Dave Danielson.

It’s all here in an especially interesting Rusty Satellite Show — with a big thank you to Passport Health Plan and the Eye Care Institute for sponsoring the show. We’ll see you for Show #201 next week.

Rusty Satellite 199 – Mark Carter and Mark Maxwell

This 199th episode of the city’s most interesting podcast feature two guys named Mark — one who is making a historic business move by bringing his 500 employees to 18th and Broadway, and the other is the energetic leader of the Louisville Crashers.

Mark Carter’s surprise announcement two weeks ago that Passport is purchasing land at 18th and Broadway for a new headquarters was met with joyous reactions from Mayor Fischer and West End leaders who have seen disappointment in the past. When the prominent spot was rejected by Walmart last year, it was a blow not only to  the city’s economy, but to its psyche as well. Thanks to Passport’s planned move, however, the talk is about the expected new businesses that will be created there. Carter was praised by politicians and clergy alike, and you’ll want to hear his reaction.

At Maxwell’s Music in Jeffersonville, tucked into a strip shopping center, the first thing you notice are the colorful pianos lining the outdoor courtyard. Inside, it’s a musician’s dream, with private teaching areas, a full stage and themed rooms for instruments. But Mark Maxwell’s claim to fame is the success of the Louisville Crashers, considered the city’s top party band. The Crashers will be playing at Central Park in Old Louisville Friday, and have a full Derby Week itinerary, including backing up marquee stars at Unbridled Eve, the swankiest Derby Eve party of them all.

There’s plenty more great talk in this episode, including news about restaurant openings from EatDrinkTalk.net, and a look at what some Rusty Satellite Show alumni are doing to make news. And next week, to celebrate our 200th show, I’ll have Mayor Greg Fischer on as my guest. So thanks for listening to this most interesting episode of the Rusty Satellite Show.

Rusty Satellite 198 – Jerry Abramson and Damaris Phillips

Both our guests this week have spent the last few years making their mark on the world, but are happy to be celebrating Derby season in their hometown. Jerry Abramson, known around here at “Mayor for Life”, spent the last few years in President Obama’s West Wing, working long days and missing his family. Now he’s back as Executive-in-Residence at Bellarmine, and makes it clear he has no aspirations left for elected office. He’ll also be the featured speaker at our upcoming Breakfast of Champions on the Tuesday after Derby.

Damaris Phillips is one of the show’s most fun and enthusiastic guests, and talks about her days growing up here and working in local restaurants, in the days before she won a contest on the Food Network and became a TV personality. She’s participating in a big event at the Ali Center Derby Week, so tune in to hear all the tasty details.

Our friends at Passport made a game-changing decision this week, announcing plans to move to the West End, where at least 500 employees will work. The move is part of a series of positive messages in the city, including the announcement that a new $28 million YMCA will be built next door to the site that seemed slated for a Walmart at 18th and Broadway. More positivity comes in the form of a new bike sharing program starting up in May, and we learned this week some of the big names coming to town for September’s Bourbon and Beyond festival. All in all, a lot of good coming soon, but this week’s it’s the start of the Derby Festival and a potentially rainy Thunder on Saturday. Join me to discuss all this on the 198th episode of the Rusty Satellite Show.

Rusty Satellite 197 – Mustafa Gouverneur and Jim Sheehy/Bart Conley

It’s a really compassionate episode of the Rusty Satellite Show, where this week’s most interesting people in the ‘Ville are busy doing good work. Mustafa Gouverneur is the director of communications at the Center for Interfaith Relations. Next week he’s helping host the Festival of Faiths, an event that brings people from all religions to Louisville for a series of informative and entertaining sessions. Gouverneur himself has an interesting tie to our city, though he has spent most of his life in Europe.

The Jill’s Wish charity is inspiring, because it showcases the short life of Jill Conley, who fought a brave fight with great spirit against cancer. Her husband Bart and local ad executive Jim Sheehy are on the board of the charity, which holds is biggest bash of the year, April 29, the week before the Derby. You’ll want to hear about it, and you’ll want to go to it at Bowman Field.

In the news, we are glad to finally find out that the Louisville City FC soccer stadium site is. . . in Butchertown, where it’s likely to help boost business for a lot of new hotels and restaurants when it opens in 2020. I chat with Jim and Bart about the oddest story of the week — the Elizabethtown doctor dragged off a United Airlines plane on its way here from Chicago. We also mention my EatDrinkTalk interview with Stephen Bowles, a master of the barbecue pit.

Join me for a great Rusty Satellite Show, where you’ll always meet the most interesting people in the ‘Ville.

Rusty Satellite 196 – Jessica Hines and Steve Wiser

The city’s most interesting podcast features more of the most interesting people in the ‘Ville. This week I went to Kosair Charities’ offices on Eastern Parkway to learn about Hat For Hope, one of the organization’s most successful fund-raisers. And Igot to talk with a millennial – Jessica Hines – who is a member of the Hats for Hope committee and has a very millennial-like day job, handling social media for Yum! Brands. In her first year on this project, she’s learning a lot about Derby hats.

Steve Wiser is perhaps the city’s best-known architect, and he was recognized recently for his lifetime of work. The author of more than a dozen books about Louisville architecture is releasing a new presentation for a group at U of L this week on the city’s “Missing Opportunities”, a collection of ideas about how Louisville’s trajectory might have been different with the addition or subtraction of major projects, like the Museum Plaza.

On Wednesday, the city endured yet another “threat” of severe weather, causing some school systems and churches to alter their schedules. Note, I didn’t say that it was severe weather, but the “threat” of severe weather. At least one Indiana school system started letting kids go home early before a cloud appeared. That basketball official who called the UK-North Carolina game, it turns out, lives in Omaha and has a roofing business and is one of the most respected officials in the country. None of which mattered to a portion of the UK fan base, which made thousands of calls and social media comments in an attempt to damage the poor guy’s business and life. Yes, death threats.

I had the opportunity to visit a new restaurant at the foot of the Big Four Bridge in Indiana, and decided it’s certainly worth the trip to eat at Parlour. And I stopped in and learned something new about Copper and Kings. It’s all in a great episode of EatDrinkTalk.

Rusty Satellite 195 – Tom Nielsen and Jim Blanton

The city’s most interesting podcast once again features some of the colorful individuals that are making things happen here. We start with Tom Nielsen, also known as the Sodfather. He’s the head groundskeeper at Slugger Field and one of the best in the business. If you don’t believe it, check out all the industry awards in his crowded office. He’s also mentored dozens of individuals who have gone on from Louisville to work in the profession in other cities.

My second guest is Jim Blanton, the Library Director for the city. He’s excited to be hosting GonzoFest this year, our annual tribute to all things Hunter S. Thompson. The event will take place for the first time at the downtown library, and will include music outdoors, plus plenty of talks and exhibits about the Gonzo creator, whose mother spent her career as a librarian there. Blanton also tells me about the new regional library program and about some great online tools the library provides for its patrons.

The worst story of the week in the news, as far as I’m concerned, is that a referee received death threats from hostile UK fans. John Higgins experienced harassment at his home and business too, all because some whiny UK fans didn’t like some of his calls in UK’s NCAA Tourney loss to North Carolina. Gov. Matt Bevin is making another attempt to effectively outlaw abortion in the Commonwealth, using his official powers to try to shut down the only abortion provider in the state. I’ve got news of some restaurant openings and closings from EatDrinkTalk.net. At least there’s the new Fake News edition of LEO Weekly for us all to chuckle a bit.

Thanks to our sponsors — Passport Health Plans, the Eye Care Institute and Moore Smiles, for making the Rusty Satellite Show possible.