Editorial: Pints on Paint: Enjoy responsibly and support something new
The Mountains of Music/Pints on Paint that has been organized by the Paintsville/Johnson County Trail Town Committee to take place this Saturday, Oct. 20, seeks to offer something new to the citizens of Paintsville and Johnson County – it is imperative that those looking for something new and progressive in our area not overlook this event. It will need all of the support Johnson County and the surrounding areas can muster to succeed.
The festival will make use of many local breweries and artists of all walks with the express goal of providing something unique to the area, while fundraising for planned community projects that will bolster the burgeoning adventure tourism industry that several community members hope Johnson County can cash in on. This is an opportunity to support progress in our area, as a beer garden is something that has never been seen at a festival in Paintsville – and may never be seen again, if there is a lack of support, or worse, irresponsible consumption. The event is not a drinking party – it is a craft beer sampling event, and prospective samplers can get a wristband for $30 – a value that will include souvenir glasses, and a ticket for five 6-ounce beers, and have the opportunity to purchase a second ticket for $15. Designated drivers can enter for $10 and will receive free soft drinks.
The festival will feature several breweries, including Jarfly Brewing Company from Somerset, U.S. 23 Brewing Company from Prestonsburg, Goodwood Beer from Louisville, Kentucky Ale, West Sixth and Country Boy Brewing from Lexington and Rhinegeist, a brewer from Cincinatti.
In addition to the breweries and beer garden, there will be live music, arts and crafts for free, and busking is encouraged, so get involved. Get out in town, show off your own arts and crafts, listen to live music and support a new and exciting event in our little town, but remember to stay safe and act responsibly.
Darts & Laurels
Laurel: This weekend,40,000 – 50,000 people turned out for the two-day 2017 Kentucky Apple Festival in downtown Paintsville. Everyone who attended had a chance to enjoy our community and will hopefully be back again next year.
Laurel: The Paintsville/Johnson County Chamber of Commerce announced Bobby McCool has taken the role of executive director, replacing Fran Jarrell who died on Sept. 27. McCool, as a long-time economic development advocate appears to be a good fit for the position and hope he will continue to move the Chamber forward.
Laurel: The Johnson County Extension Office with help from the 2017 Brushy Fork Flex-E Grant through Berea College held classes dedicated to developing local art created by local artists to be used for welcome gifts for incoming tourists. This is a great way to create new jobs in the county as well as create unique items to go home with visitors.
Laurel: Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear visited the University of Pikeville’s Kentucky College of Optometry Oct. 4 to discuss his office’s opposition to the Kentucky Power rate increase request. It is good to see multiple county and state agencies take a stand for the benefit of the people of Eastern Kentucky.
Welcome to the 55th Annual Kentucky Apple Festival
Over the past year, Paintsville has undergone quite a few changes. Buildings have been repainted, planters spruced up and refilled with living greenery, streets repaved and sleek with new blacktop. We, as a city, are looking sharp for Apple Days.
However, most of the success of the festival can be attributed to one thing that never changes - our hospitality. We, as a city, come together and set aside our differences to celebrate our shared history.
This weekend is the 55th Annual Kentucky Apple Festival, known far and wide as one of the biggest and best festivals in Eastern Kentucky. We are known for our crafts produced by skilled artisans, our home-cooked treats good enough to bring a smile to the grumpiest face, and most of all, our open hearts and minds to welcome visitors and locals alike to our city.
Even as the world starts to feel like a darker place with everything going on around us, Paintsville can be a safe place to bring children, friends, loved ones and family to enjoy a community gathering and make lifelong memories of a happier time.
This year marks a step forward as we build our tourism industry in the area. While the Kentucky Apple Festival is a fantastic annual event, we should work to keep this spirit of cooperation throughout the year. It means that organizations should come together as a community with one goal – to support and encourage each other, and lending a helping hand as necessary and a pat on the back when a job is well done. It is only when we work together that we can reach our goal to make Paintsville a world-class tourism destination.
So, as Apple Festival is a time to enjoy being with your family, to stroll through the streets enjoying the day and each other’s company, it is also a day to reach out to new people and share what makes us unique.
It is a chance to show the world-at-large the beauty of our town and our people to encourage them to return again and again.
Darts and Laurels
Laurel: The Kentucky Department of Education released their K-PREP and other assessments on Thursday, and once again both Paintsville Independent School District and Johnson County School District showed that they are ahead of the state averages. We hope that school officials maintain their vigilance and dedication going forward for the betterment of our county’s students.
Dart: Paintsville has lost another prominent public servant with the passing of Paintsville City Councilman Jim Meek on Tuesday. While we as a community will move forward, the community will also recognize his absence.
Laurel: Trail Town held their first event, the Chatterwha River Trace River Run, in conjunction with the Lawrence County’s Trail Town Certification Committee on Sept. 24. This event marks the first of what we hope to be a series of events with our neighbors in the north, and is a great step forward for area tourism.
Dart: The Johnson County School District’s decision, possibly unavoidable, to borrow funding toward the purchase of three new buses to replace older models highlights district financial struggles in the face of possible budget cuts from the governor’s office for the upcoming school year. If the purchase must be made, that’s acceptable, but debt, especially now, must not be taken on lightly.
Laurel: Paintsville Main Street Association decorated flower boxes up and down Main Street and Court Street to brighten the appearance of downtown Paintsville ahead of the Kentucky Apple Festival this weekend. This welcome accent should help guest and locals feel more at home during the celebration.
Working together to improve Johnson County tourism
We, as a county, have been very busy this summer developing our tourism industry.
Over the past two weeks alone, Paintsville Main Street has been decorating flower boxes with the help of downtown businesses; Paintsville/Johnson County Tourism has announced a flurry of upcoming events and recently held its Appalachian Craft Fest at the Mountain HomePlace at Paintsville Lake; the Johnson County Extension Office is offering weekend travel packages to visitors interested in arts and crafts and Paintsville/Johnson County Trail Town Certification Committee just hosted its first event, the Chatterwha Trace River Run last weekend.
Upcoming events like the Kentucky Apple Festival are showing how each of these organizations is starting to work together on projects to best utilize resources for a maximum tourism impact. Each organization holds a piece of the puzzle to making Johnson County one of the best tourism destinations in the eastern United States, a place where people will want to return again and again to explore a new facet of what makes us special.
Each of these organizations has passionate volunteers and a drive to make our county a better place by sharing it with the world and each organization is taking steps to improve the overall appearance of our home and how it is perceived by visitors and new businesses alike.
It is exciting to see how everyone is pulling together, how we are setting aside our differences to make things better for our future. As more and more people are lured into volunteering and taking part in each of these activities, we are coming together more as a community.
Projects like the development of Trail Town’s boat launch and fundraising for a mural on the back of the former First National Bank facing the river helps bring travelers into downtown where the Paintsville Main Street Association can charm them into visiting businesses and restaurants, learn more about the area from Extension Office travel packages and to visit the Historic SIPP Theater or Mountain HomePlace for exciting events and activities.
The more we practice this cooperation, the better things are and the more opportunities could present themselves. It is just a matter of keeping the long-term goal in mind.