Bourbon, BBQ, music and art combine for Tastes, Talents and Tunes event to benefit United Way

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Work by Caitlyn Kidd-Bunch will be available for purchase at the Tastes, Talents and Tunes event. Patrons can also commission art by Kidd-Bunch.

Organizers of the Tastes, Talents and Tunes event, part of the Kentucky State BBQ Festival, are hoping to have a blowout fundraiser for the Heart of Kentucky United Way by bringing together a chance to commission artwork, drink bourbon, eat barbecue and listen to good music.

“Everything that could be different is different this year,” said Susan Hensley, organizer of the event, which has changed drastically from last year’s fundraiser. She credits Carol Webb, fellow Kentucky State BBQ Festival volunteer with the new idea.

For starters, the location has changed: the Friday night event has moved to Wilderness Trail Distillery with the rest of the festival; ordinarily the ticketed event has been held at the Pioneer Playhouse, away from the rest of the festival.

“The people at Wilderness Trail are the nicest,” Hensley said. 

The decision to leave the Playhouse was not a reflection on that location, as everyone there was great to work with, too, she said; they just wanted to try something different this year.

In the past, they’ve held auctions. The first two years, they auctioned painted rain barrels; then two years of canvas auctions; and a pallet art auction last year. Interest in the auctions has waned over recent years, prompting a need for something new, Hensley said. 

“We have a new location and a new idea. We keep changing things up,” she said.

This year, it will be a music-filled, bourbon-tasting art show, allowing patrons to view the artists and their pieces, and give them a chance to commission their own works or purchase those already made.

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Work by Kristan Paynter will be available for purchase at the Tastes, Talents and Tunes event. Patrons can also commission art by Paynter.

“The artists are excited about participating,” Hensley said.

This year’s artists include:

• Sarah Wiltsee, who uses pen and ink, oils and acrylics;

• Kristan Painter, who paints on wooden shapes using oils and acrylic paint;

• Caitlyn Kidd-Bunch, who paints in the style of realism, often contemporary portraits;

• Emily W. Maynard, a jewelry designer with Elva Field Jewelry, who primarily finds ways to reuse old pieces in new ways; and

• Paul Muth, a ceramic artist who will bring already made pieces, as well as his wheel to form new pieces.

A young artist, Delaney Simpson, will also be participating with block prints and mandalas. 

Simpson has been honored for her art in the 4H program, of which she is a member.

“I’ve been blown out by all of this art, because of the incredible talent of these artists,” Hensley said.

All of the artists will have items for sale. Patrons can also commission art to be completed. Hensley said 30 percent of all sales and commissions will benefit the Heart of Kentucky United Way.

Tastes, Talents and Tunes will be from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sept. 8. A limited number of tickets are available for the event, and they cost $50 each. 

The ticketed VIP event will begin inside the distillery. Four Roses and Wilderness Trail Distillery will be providing drinks: two drinks are complementary with a ticket and a cash bar will be open for cocktails; a Four Roses Bourbon sampling is optional; and a Bourbon Tasting 101 hosted by Dave Scheurich, a master distiller with more than 45 years in the industry, will be offered.

Pit masters will cook up their own specialties to serve. Music will be provided by Paul Childers and the Black Tie Affair Band. VIP parking is included.

Photo submitted
Work by Caitlyn Kidd-Bunch will be available for purchase at the Tastes, Talents and Tunes event. Patrons can also commission art by Kidd-Bunch.

Volunteers from the Hobart Corporation are creating a special item to be sold or auctioned off during Tastes, Talents and Tunes. Hensley said what the item is will be a surprise, but the item is perfect for those who enjoy outdoor dining and hosting, or for a man cave. All of the proceeds from that item will go to benefit the Heart of Kentucky United Way.

“We’re hoping to attract people who like good bourbon, good music and art they can choose,” she said.

SO YOU KNOW:

Tastes, Talents and Tunes will be from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sept. 8. Tickets are limited and cost $50 each.

To order tickets, call United Way at (859) 238-6986.