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RIP Bourbon: Other half of Barton 1792 rickhouse collapses


My friends, it is with great sadness that I bring you this next story. The other half of the rickhouse that partially collapsed at the Barton 1792 Distillery last month has come down. An estimated 9,000 barrels of bourbon were lost in the initial collapse. The building held 18,000 barrels, which means an additional 9,000 barrels came tumbling down this afternoon.

Photos via @WLKYJulie:




Tragic. Pour one out for our lost spirits tonight.


Photo: Janice Hill/Facebook

Rest In Peace: Hundreds of fish killed in bourbon spill

Photo: Chief Billy Mattingly/Bardstown Fire Department/AP Images

By now you’ve probably heard about the Barton 1792 distillery warehouse collapse that sent 9,000 barrels of bourbon crashing to the ground. The photos of the catastrophic event are heartbreaking. With 53 gallons of bourbon in each barrel, you don’t need me to tell you the magnitude of the tragedy. If you’re a Kentuckian you completely get it and probably shed a few tears over it. After hearing the news I went outside to pour some bourbon on the curb, but then realized that would only be in poor taste and insulting to the bourbon that perished in the fall. So I drank it instead — in memory, of course.

TRAGIC: Bardstown bourbon storage building collapses

But now we have more bourbon to drink — in memory, of course — for the lives lost in the surrounding Bardstown waterways. According to officials with the Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet, nearly 1,000 fish were found dead in the Withrow Creek and the Beach Fork River near the distillery. To make matters worse for Barton 1792, it will come with a fine of up to $25,000 per day for contaminating the bodies of water.

Photo: Janice Hill/Facebook

Rest in peace to those fish.

Or maybe they’re just passed out drunk and they’ll wake up soon with a throbbing hangover. Has anyone tried flooding the water with Pedialyte and fried food?

Clinton Co. man to be awarded Medal of Honor

Garlin M. Conner of Clinton County, Ky., will posthumously receive our nation’s highest and most prestigious personal military decoration today.

A First Lieutenant in the Army, Conner is one of the most decorated soldiers in U.S. history and he will be given the award for his service in World War II. His resume also includes the Distinguished Service Cross, the Silver Star with three Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters, the Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart with two Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the American Defense Service Medal, the American Campaign Medal, the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with Bronze Arrowhead and two Silver Service Stars, the World War II Victory Medal, the Presidential Unit Citation with one Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Expert Infantryman Badge, the French Croix de Guerre, the French Fourragere and the Honorable Service Lapel Button-WWII.

After his service, Conner ran a 36-acre farm in Clinton Co. and served as president of the local Kentucky Farm Bureau. He passed away in 1998 at the age of 79.

President Trump will present the Medal of Honor to Conner’s widow, Pauline, in a ceremony at the White House on Tuesday.

You can watch it via this live stream at 3:30 p.m.

Kentucky Lottery to try new game based on live horse racing

Gambling is bad, but the Kentucky Lottery unveiled a new lotto game on Tuesday anyway. Even though gambling is terrible and only for bad people, the state of Kentucky will try a new “Win Place Show” game based on the live results of horse racing.

Despite the fact you’ll go to hell and gambling will ruin everything in its path, the Kentucky Lottery Corporation’s board approved a test of the new game to begin next March. Gambling is illegal in Kentucky and we shouldn’t legalize it because it has a negative social impact and won’t help the economy, but this new game doesn’t count because it’s not actually gambling… or something like that.

Here’s how it will be played:

“Win Place Show” is a lottery game based on the results of an actual live horse race. Players will buy one or more $2 quick pick Lottery tickets at participating retailers through the same draw game system that produces games such as Powerball and Pick 3. The ticket will feature three horses along with their numbers based on their post position at the track, along with basic racetrack information and post time. With the “Win Place Show” mobile app, players can watch the featured races live or on replay and see if they’ve won.  [LEX 18]

Remember: You shouldn’t gamble, Kentucky. Drive to Ohio or Indiana or Illinois or Missouri or West Virginia if you want to do that.

Lexington church investigating allegations of sexual abuse by former youth pastor

A Lexington church is investigating allegations of sexual abuse by a former youth pastor. Brad Waller was the youth pastor at Tates Creek Presbyterian Church (TCPC) from 1995 to 2006, during which he allegedly sexually abused men and boys during private counseling and mentoring sessions. The stories came to light after Waller was relieved of his senior pastoral duties at Georgia’s Grace Church of the Islands in April after a confession detailing “foot-rubbing” of adult and youth male members of his church.

In a “Hey Kentucky” exclusive, Chris Tomlin spoke to one of Waller’s victims from Lexington, who asked to remain nameless.

After reflection, the victim has decided to share his story. “My immediate reaction was to reflect on my friendship with Brad,” he said. “But then I realized that he’s abusing people. He was taking advantage of people who were not compliant. He had that power, and it’s terrifying.”

TCPC pastor Robert Cunningham addressed the allegations in an open letter released today.

“It has come to our attention that Brad Waller sexually abused boys and men under his care as a pastor of TCPC,” wrote Cunningham in his address to his 1,250-member congregation and the media. ”While all of this misconduct took place over a decade ago, our church leadership is nevertheless committed to handling this horrific news with utmost sincerity, urgency and transparency.”

For more on this story, visit

[LEX18: Lexington Church Investigates Ex-Youth Pastor After Abuse Allegations]

Children’s Charity Classic raised $600K over the weekend

Children’s Charity Classic raised $600K over the weekend

Let me brag on a local organization for a moment, if you will.

This past weekend I was honored to participate in the Children’s Charity Classic, an amazing event that raises money for kids around Kentucky. It’s a week-long fundraiser for the Children’s Charity Fund of the Bluegrass, and it concluded with a two-day golf tournament here in Lexington.

Friday night’s bid party (in which teams bid on their celebrity golfers for Saturday’s round) raised $587,341 in a matter of hours, and helped push the grand total for the weekend to over $600K. The Children’s Charity Classic has now raised over $15 million in its 38 years, and every single dollar goes straight to the betterment of children around the Commonwealth.

I’ve played in many golf scrambles and participated in plenty of fundraisers around Kentucky, but I’ve never had as much fun and seen as much support for anything like the Children’s Charity Classic. I couldn’t believe the donations coming in at the bid party (some as high as $40,000) and all of the volunteers who gave up their time to make sure all who participated had a great time.

As for the actual golf, I played the final round with Team Keeneland and we walked away with a third place finish. Big thanks to Keeneland for picking me up and to my teammates — Matt Heissenbuttel, Jack Heissenbuttel, Chip McGaughey and Kyle Wilson — for carrying the team. I only added some putts and some fashion:

Another big thanks to this year’s hosts — Matthew Mitchell, Johnny Bench and Doug Flynn — and to all the other great people (and there are a lot) for putting together such an awesome event.

If you have any interest in participating in or contributing to next year’s Classic (and you should), click here to learn more about it. It’s a good time and a great cause.


TRAGIC: Bardstown bourbon storage building collapses


Ready for the saddest picture you’ll see all day? A rickhouse at Barton 1792 distillery in Bardstown collapsed this morning, causing 9,000 barrels of aging bourbon to tumble to a splintery demise:

A portion of a Barton Brands rickhouse has reportedly collapsed, along with hundreds of barrels of aging Bourbon. More information coming.

Posted by Nelson County Gazette on Friday, June 22, 2018

Thankfully, no people were hurt, but the bourbon! Oh, the bourbon.

UPDATE: According to the Herald-Leader, an estimated 9,000 of the 20,000 barrels in the building were effected and many of them rolled down the hill towards a creek off the Beech Fork River. The EPA is on its way to determine whether or not the water has been contaminated.


UPDATE x2: This picture of the damage from is truly remarkable.

Kentucky’s most popular liquor is…what?!

Kentucky’s most popular liquor is…what?!

There’s a new study out and I blame Louisville fans for the result.

Social drinking app BARTRENDr recently analyzed posts and pictures from its 700,000 users to determine the most popular liquor brand in each state and, surprisingly, Kentucky’s isn’t bourbon. Crown Royal and Jagermeister share the top spot, a shameful result I pin solely on the line bearded, flat billed fans of that school down I-64.

Maybe those two got the top spot because there are so many delicious bourbons in Kentucky it was impossible for one brand to win out? Or, maybe Louisville fans care more about sharing what they’re drinking on social media than we do? All of the above?

[Food and Wine]

When Finishing Last in Fantasy Football Causes Physical Pain

When Finishing Last in Fantasy Football Causes Physical Pain

The life of one Kentucky man has completely transformed thanks to his fantasy football ineptitude.

In many fantasy football leagues, the best players are rewarded with cash prizes.  In the best fantasy football leagues, the worst players are punished for being awful.  The latter is Justin Thomas’ fantasy football league.

Some punishments are funny, but easy.  Dressing up like a cheerleader and hosting a car wash is one afternoon of semi-humiliation.  The 2017 PGA Championship winner from Louisville plays in a league with some brutally creative geniuses.  The loser of their league had to create a “Fitstagram account” and post daily pictures of workout routines for two months.

Kentucky, meet Danny Dumbbells.

If you’re on the social media platform, it takes about 12 hours to realize it’s the most obnoxious form of social media.  It’s essentially a clique of White Goodmans bragging about how great they are for three paragraphs while showing off their chiseled physique.  Danny Dumbbells is all of that, and more.

When you have a world famous friend like Justin Thomas, it only takes one share to get more than 3,500 people to follow your account.  It’d be a real shame if that number got over 10,000.  A real shame.