You should be there. But if you're not, KET has the next best thing: live coverage.
The unofficial kick-off of every election season in Kentucky is the annual Fancy Farm picnic, and KET is the only station in the state broadcasting the entire event live on television. KET will be there with a special Comment on Kentucky, live coverage of the event, and the 2011 edition of the highlight show “Fancy Farm: Pork, Pie and Politics.”
Then, on Saturday, August 6, Bill Goodman and Renee Shaw will broadcast live from Fancy Farm. The afternoon’s political stump speeches will be broadcast in their entirety.
Joining them with analysis of this year’s races will be John David Dyche, a Louisville attorney and author of Republican Leader: A Political Biography of Senator Mitch McConnell, and Jennifer Moore, former Kentucky Democratic Party chair. In addition, there will be taped commentary from Bob Babbage, former secretary of state, and Lowell Reece, former editor and publisher of the Kentucky Gazette, as well as other political heavyweights past and present.
This live coverage begins at 2:30/1:30 p.m. on KET and KET Live Webcast. On Monday, August 8, Goodman and Shaw will present highlights from the Fancy Farm picnic and introduce excerpts from the speeches in a special one-hour edition of “Fancy Farm 2011: Pork, Pie and Politics.” This program airs at 8/7 p.m. CT on KET in place of Kentucky Tonight.
“Fancy Farm is so unique to politics, not only in Kentucky but across the entire United States,” Goodman says. “I always look forward to Fancy Farm, in particular this year because of the gubernatorial contest. This is a great assignment for a journalist: it’s fun, it can make or break a candidate, and I can’t think of a better place to spend a hot August day than in Graves County.”
Goodman predicts that everyone will be watching the performances of the gubernatorial candidates: incumbent Governor Steve Beshear, Senator David Williams and Gatewood Galbraith.
“Although Governor Beshear has the lead at this moment, we have a long way to go before the elections in November, and developments at Fancy Farm could tighten the race,” Goodman says.
About Fancy Farm: Every year since the early 1880’s, St. Jerome Catholic Church in the small town of Fancy Farm in Western Kentucky has hosted an annual community picnic. It was a local affair at first, but at some point, political candidates began to see the Fancy Farm Picnic as a good chance to meet, greet and stump for votes. Soon a platform for speaking was added, and by the middle of the 20th century, Fancy Farm had become the unofficial kickoff event for the fall campaigns in Kentucky.
And the inimitable Media Czech will of course be there with his unique perspective. As he wrote last night:
I’m headed down to Fancy Farm in Western Kentucky right now to witness all of the statewide candidates hootin’ and hollerin’ at each other in the scorching heat.
I’ll be covering Democratic and Republican events tonight (around 6 p.m.) and tomorrow morning (too early), and the Big Show tomorrow around 2:00. Wi-fi Gods willing, you can follow my comments on the Twitter Machine here, and you should also follow the #FancyFarm hashtag to get a wider perspective of the craziness this weekend.
And if you’re going, I’ll see you down there. And drink plenty of fluids. And don’t throw beer at Rand Paul, no matter how much you’re tempted to.