County Harvest Showcase
event promotes food,
crafts, and agricultural heritage
Helen E. McKinney
NEW CASTLE, Ky. (July 2008) Wendell Thomas
has spent years perfecting his barbecue sauce. He has been a competitive
cook traveling the barbecue circuit since 1998 and will bring his culinary
expertise to the Henry County Harvest Showcase on July 26.
Wendell and his wife, Ernestine, will be among other local cooks displaying
their mouth-watering local products. The Thomases are members of the
National Barbecue Association and have been featured on Cable TVs
Food Network. They have won numerous awards in Chicken, Ribs, Pork Shoulder
and Beef Brisket categories in cooking competitions.
Thomas of Smithfield, Ky., will
bring his Falls City
to the showcase.
Upon retiring and taking up barbecuing as a hobby, the
couple has traveled hundreds of miles from their Smithfield, Ky., home
to attend competitions. Traveling the Kansas City Barbeque Circuit,
they have been to Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, the Carolinas and Illinois.
The Thomases were one of the first teams to compete in the Madison
Ribberfest event and will compete in Madison again this year in August.
We love the travel and the people we have gotten to know over
the years, said Thomas.
The Thomases will prepare their special barbecue alongside the Henry
County Cattlemans Association, the Pleasureville Depot and chefs
from the Louisville area in this showcase of the best agricultural resources
Henry County has to offer.
This event is a grassroots attempt to promote the agricultural
economy to local residents and also an opportunity to reach out to our
city neighbors and help them to reconnect with the land, said
Maryellen Garrison, Henry County Extension Agent.
The 9th annual Henry County Harvest Showcase and Lunch at the Farmers
Market will be held from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. at the Henry County Fairgrounds.
Food, games, livestock, crafts, contests, music, fresh produce for sale,
straw and flowers are just some of the offerings on the days schedule
If attendance numbers prove that the public is interested in the future
of agriculture, then the 4,000 people who visited the showcase last
year left with a sense of satisfaction. Visitors came from the Kentucky
counties of Oldham, Shelby, Trimble, Jefferson, Fayette, Owen, Franklin
and Mercer counties.
This free family event provides fun for all ages. Of special interest
to children are the old-time games and a visit to the Livestock Pavilion.
The day will begin at 7:30 a.m. with breakfast provided by the Henry
County Chamber of Commerce for those setting up booths. Visitors can
enjoy lunch made from locally grown produce under the shade of the Big
This event takes you back 30 years, said Barbara Gregory
of Gregory Farms and president of the Henry County Farmers Market.
The public is able to browse, eat and visit, getting a first-hand view
of rural America, she said.
Many out-of town and even out-of-state people who are visiting relatives
in Henry County actually schedule their visit around the showcase, said
There is something for everybody.
Equine events, demonstrations, an Antique Tractor Show and childrens
games will begin at 10 a.m., a broom making demonstration will be held
at 11 a.m., a Husband Calling and Liars Contest at 12:30 p.m.,
and a Corn Hole Tournament at 2 p.m. (with registration at 1 p.m.).
Music will be played throughout the day by the Henry County Band, Music
N a Box, Muddy Loafers and Unfinished.
The Henry County Ag Diversification group will meet at 2 p.m., and the
Community Farm Alliance will hold a meeting at 2:30 p.m.
The Antique Tractor Show is a combination of display and operation.
Last year 19 tractors participated, said organizer Mike Ray. We
hope for more this year.
A display of a belt-driven rock crusher will return, said Ray, and stationary
engines will be on hand in addition to the tractors.
At 1 p.m., Tractor Games will begin. Included will be a slow race, egg
n spoon race, standing start race and a log chain drag. The Salt
River Antique Power Club is the local club that plays a major part in
the tractor show, said Ray. Members hail from Spencer, Shelby, Henry
and other surrounding counties.
An Antique Tractor Pull is a new addition to this years showcase
lineup. Beginning at 4 p.m., antique engines will round out the days
For more information, contact the Henry
County Extension Office at (502) 845-2811.
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