Release Date Contact: Diane Comer
Tuesday, July 15, 2014 502-564-7005, ext. 120
Frankfort, Ky. – Exploring how the National Park Service (NPS) “Discover Our Shared Heritage” Travel Itinerary Series might be put to use in Eastern Kentucky – and how innovative marketing of heritage tourism could reap huge economic returns – will be the focus of keynote presentations during the “Capitalizing on Culture” conference Aug. 1-2 in Pikeville.
Other sessions will examine place making, economic development through historic preservation, benefits of nonprofit advocacy, pumping life back into traditional downtowns, cemetery preservation and genealogical tourism, and identifying themes that can help the region link unique places and create heritage tourism opportunities by telling an authentic story.
The third entry in the 2014 Kentucky Preservation Series, “Capitalizing on Culture” is presented by the Kentucky Heritage Council/State Historic Preservation Office (KHC), Shaping Our Appalachian Region (SOAR) and Community Trust Bancorp Inc. Other presenting partners are Preservation Kentucky Inc. (PKI), the Kentucky Main Street Program, Friends of Kentucky Main Street, Pikeville Main Street Program, the City of Pikeville and Pike County.
This free, two-day conference will take place at the Eastern Kentucky Exposition Center from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Aug. 1, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 2. Go to http://www.heritage.ky.gov/news/2014caponculture.htm for a complete agenda.
Don Wollenhaupt, chief of interpretation and education for the NPS Southeast Region, will kick off the Friday program using African American history and Civil War sites to illustrate how a travel itinerary can be packaged and nationally branded to facilitate a well-rounded experience. A panel discussion will follow with representatives from Big South Fork National Park, the Lewis and Clark Trust, Daniel Boone National Forest and the Kentucky African American and Native American heritage commissions.
The Friday panel will include Phil Osborne, president of Osborne and Associates in Lexington and chair of the SOAR Tourism, Arts and Heritage working group. “Kentucky – especially the Appalachian Region – is so steeped in history and culture that many take it for granted. I see tremendous opportunity in nurturing that tradition of history, heritage and culture into its own tourism sector,” he said.
“Anything our SOAR working group can do to help push that concept along will be a welcomed challenge. The reward will be in the risks we take to bring that story to new generations of Kentuckians and to those who have migrated elsewhere who need to understand the deep roots that helped make them who they are today.”
At 1 p.m. Saturday, Griffin VanMeter of Bullhorn Creative and Kentucky for Kentucky will discuss the work he has done for his North Limestone neighborhood in Lexington and how place making helps define communities. This will be followed by a panel discussion with entrepreneurs from several successful eastern Kentucky small businesses.
Also Friday will be a discussion on preservation advocacy led by Betsy Hatfield, PKI executive director, followed by a roundtable discussion with representatives of regional and local preservation nonprofits discussing how their efforts have lasting benefits. The day will end with a free reception hosted by Preservation Kentucky, and free tours of historic sites associated with the Hatfields and McCoys.
Other Saturday presentations will examine cemetery preservation and genealogy-based heritage tourism, the National Register of Historic Places as a heritage tourism tool, state and federal rehabilitation tax credits for historic buildings, and Kentucky ArtPlace and Our Town, two programs that were the subject of a Kentucky Arts Council conference in May. Grant recipients who have benefited from these programs gathered to discuss opportunities to connect creative arts communities across the state, and two eastern Kentucky sessions will include recaps of that meeting as well as broaden the discussion to include anyone interested in building stronger communities and stimulating economic growth through arts and cultural engagement.
For conference updates and program information, visit www.heritage.ky.gov.
Hampton Inn of Pikeville is serving as the conference hotel, with rooms available for $94 per night through July 23. For information or reservations, call 606-432-8181.
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The SOAR initiative was launched by Gov. Steve Beshear and U.S. Rep. Hal Rogers in late 2013, after a stunning downturn in the coal market exacerbated historic challenges in eastern Kentucky related to unemployment and poverty. SOAR is intended to help the region develop and put into action new locally-oriented strategies to attack persistent challenges. For more information, visit www.soar-ky.org
An agency of the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet, the Kentucky Heritage Council/State Historic Preservation Office is responsible for the identification, protection and preservation of archaeological resources and historic buildings, sites and cultural resources throughout the Commonwealth, in partnership with other state and federal agencies, local communities and interested citizens. This mission is integral to making communities more livable and has a far-ranging impact on issues as diverse as economic development, jobs creation, affordable housing, tourism, community revitalization, environmental conservation and quality of life. www.heritage.ky.gov
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Presented by The Governor of Kentucky · 700 Capitol Avenue, Suite 100 · Fankfort, KY 40601 · 502-564-2611