Fancy Farm

Brian Clardy

As political theater, the Fancy Farm picnic never fails to disappoint.

Political junkies, journalists, and office holders come from all over the Commonwealth (and sometimes the nation) to enjoy great barbeque and barnstorming speeches in the sweltering heat of an August sun.

Democratic and Republican activists group on their respective “Left” and “Right” sides of the pavilion to trade barbs, raise signs, and engage in the political process. It is a tradition as old as the modern political process. It is messy democracy at its finest.

Matt Markgraf / WKMS

There was no shortage of barbecue, bingo and political potshots at the 138th Fancy Farm Picnic on Saturday. The annual fundraiser for St. Jerome Catholic Church brings people from across the commonwealth to rural Graves County. Teachers made their voices heard at this year's event and some even took the stage as candidates. 

Ryland Barton / Kentucky Public Radio

Update 5:50 p.m.: 

Teachers got a lot of love from speakers during the Fancy Farm political speaking event.

Rob Canning / WKMS

The Fancy Farm Picnic on Saturday brings a spirited political atmosphere and plenty of barbecue. KET will be broadcasting live from the event in Graves County, beginning at 1:30 p.m. Central Time. 

Here's a link to the stream:

Ryland Barton / Kentucky Public Radio

Kentucky Democrats expressed optimism about their political future at the annual Marshall County Bean Dinner Friday, despite hitting a historic low point in elected Democrats and voters in the state.

Matt Markgraf / WKMS

Thousands of people traveling to Kentucky's Fancy Farm picnic this weekend hope to win prizes in bingo and other games. But the biggest winner could be the Kentucky state government, which is poised to collect $13,000 from the church that hosts the picnic because of changes to the state's tax code.

Family and Tradition at Fancy Farm

Aug 2, 2018
Austin Carter

If you’ve paid attention to Kentucky politics in the last century, you’ll know that the annual Fancy Farm Picnic at St. Jerome’s Catholic Church in Graves County marks the unofficial kick-off of the fall campaign season and Saturday marks 138 years of the picnic.  It boasts 19,000 pounds of barbecue and visitors from across the state and around the country. It's a day of food, fun and politicking, and it’s all made possible through the commitment of the families who call Fancy Farm home.

According to Steven Elder when the 137th picnic was over, planning started for the 138th.

Matt Markgraf / WKMS

The Fancy Farm Picnic is three days away and Senator Mitch McConnell and Governor Matt Bevin have not yet confirmed whether they will attend. 

Nicole Erwin / WKMS

The group planning to protest the appearance of the National Rifle Association President at a Republican rally on Friday at Murray State University will hold a silent vigil for shooting victims. 

Matt Markgraf / WKMS

Murray State University is closing early on Friday to accommodate an increased number of visitors for a Republican event featuring National Rifle Association President Oliver North.