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Fancy Farm Gears Up For 137th Picnic

West Kentucky Progressive Connection via Facebook

Lovers of politics and barbecue will head to west Kentucky’s Graves County next weekend for the annual Fancy Farm picnic. There aren’t any major elections this year, but organizers say there’s never really an “off year” for the event.

Fancy Farm is famous for its political stump speeches. The picnic’s political chair Mark Wilson says he’s looking forward to the fiery style of two rivals from Kentucky’s statehouse — Speaker Jeff Hoover and Minority Leader Rocky Adkins.

“They like the old-style stump speaking venue we have here at Fancy Farm," Wilson said. "So we anticipate them two giving some barn-burner type of speeches.”

Adkins is a Democrat from Sandy Hook in eastern Kentucky and Hoover is a Republican from Jamestown in the south central part of the state.

Gov. Matt Bevin and Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes will not be in attendance. Senators Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul haven’t yet confirmed if they’ll show up.

The Fancy Farm picnic dates back to the 1880s, when St. Jerome’s Catholic Church began hosting the event in Graves County.

The event will be broadcast live on KET this Saturday.

Ryland Barton is the Managing Editor for Collaboratives for Kentucky Public Radio, a group of public radio stations including WKMS, WFPL in Louisville, WEKU in Richmond and WKYU in Bowling Green. A native of Lexington, Ryland most recently served as the Capitol Reporter for Kentucky Public Radio. He has covered politics and state government for NPR member stations KWBU in Waco and KUT in Austin.
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