The VIPP Report: The first African American secretary for the Smithsonian visits KCAAH in Louisville

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By Sherlene M. Shanklin

On September 25th at the Kentucky Center for African American Heritage they hosted An Extraordinary Evening with Dr. Lonnie Bunch.

Dr. Bunch is the 14th Secretary of the Smithsonian Institute.  That consists of 19 museums, nine research centers and the National Zoo.  He was previously the founding director of the National Museum of African American History.

The Heritage Center is located a 1701 W. Muhammad Ali Boulevard in Louisville, Ky.

See link for my WHAS11.com photo gallery Dr. Lonnie Bunch in Louisville, Ky

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The VIPP Report: KCAAH will host a grand re-introduction event featuring the first secretary the Smithsonian

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Special Report by Sherlene Shanklin, WHAS11 an ABC affiliate, Louisville

Louisville, KY,  When you think of re-introduction you think about how you are going to embrace change.  The Kentucky Center for African American Heritage, (Heritage Center) will turn a page to history by starting a new chapter with the launch of their Inaugural Quarterly Membership event that they are calling “An Extraordinary Evening” honoring Dr. Lonnie G. Bunch III, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution on Wednesday, September 25th at the Heritage Center from 5:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

I’ve had several people ask me who is Dr. Bunch?  He’s the 14th Secretary of the Smithsonian and the first African American to hold the position.  He assumed the position on June 16, 2019 where he now oversees 19 museums, 21 libraries, the National Zoo, along with numerous research centers and several education units and centers.

His past position was the director of Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture.

The re-introduction event will hold it’s first bourbon tasting west of 9th Street which will feature 12 top tier exclusive brands which they call the “Bourbon Alley”.  Woodford Reserve’s Master Taster Katie Farley will be sharing her craft with the guests. At this event, they will also honor the first African American master distiller on record Uncle Nearest.

Did you know that Brough Brothers Distillery has a micro-distillery in West Louisville?  They will also be apart of the event.

Dr. Neeli Bendapudi, President of UofL will serve as the emcee for the event as Mayor Greg Fischer, and other elected officials and dignitaries will be in attendance as guests enjoy a tour of new exhibits, cocktails, food pairings and of course networking opportunities.

For additional information visit the Heritage Center’s site at www.kcaah.org.

If you have a story idea, send it to me at The411@whas11.com.  You can follow me on social for the real-time news and announcements at Twitter @sherlenemediapr & FB @SherleneShanklin.

The Kentucky Center for African American Heritage is located at 1701 W. Muhammad Ali Blvd.

KCAAH Evite Ticket Link-sm

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sherlene Shanklin: KCAAH welcomes Dr. Lonnie Bunch of the Smithsonian

The VIPP Report: KCAAH’s Grand Re-Introduction Event Featuring Dr. Lonnie Bunch

An Extraordinary Evening

KCAAH’s Grand Re-Introduction Event Featuring Dr. Lonnie Bunch

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Kentucky Center for African American Heritage

1701 W. Muhammad Ali Blvd, Louisville, KY

 LOUISVILLE, Ky. September 25 –The Kentucky Center for African American Heritage  (Heritage Center)  is embracing the change of season with a rebirth on Wednesday, September 25th from 5 – 8:30 pm. The evening will launch the Inaugural Quarterly Membership Event with “An Extraordinary Evening” honoring esteemed guest Dr. Lonnie Bunch, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution and Founding Director, National Museum of African American History.  In June 2019, Dr. Bunch assumed the helm as the 14th Secretary – and first African American – of the 19 museums of the Smithsonian Institution; its nine research centers, and the National Zoo.

The evening will begin with Louisville’s first bourbon tasting west of 9th Street, featuring 12 top tier, exclusive brands. Katie Farley, Woodford Reserve’s Master Taster will be sharing her craft in this “Bourbon Alley”. Sample Uncle Nearest, the small batch whiskey distilled to honor the first African American master distiller on record in the U.S, and Brough Brothers spirits crafted by our neighbors in the West End. These and other featured brands pay homage to the center’s drive for inclusivity.

Dr. Neeli Bendapudi will emcee our program of comments from Dr. Bunch and Aukram Burton, Heritage Center Executive Director, special presentations by elected officials, and a tour of Heritage Center new exhibits, cocktails, southern savory food pairings, and networking opportunities will all follow.

Doors will open at 5pm on September 25th at the Kentucky Center for African American Heritage. Obtain entry with the purchase of a “Circle of Friends” membership to the Heritage Center for $125 per person.  In addition to admission to the Extraordinary Evening, membership benefits include admittance to three additional quarterly Heritage Center events; JB&B Holiday Celebration – Dec 2019; Miss Ida B. Wells – March 2020; Juneteenth Film Festival – June 2020.
Purchase online via Eventbrite link. Or call Kelly Dettor at 502 – 894 – 9768.

About Kentucky Center for African American Heritage
KCAAH is situated in the heart of the historic Russell Neighborhood, located in Louisville’s West End Corridor, an area undergoing revitalization and slated to become an arts and cultural district.
Located at 18th and Muhammad Ali Boulevard, the Heritage center occupies a 55,000 sq. foot campus and overlooks the area that once was Old Walnut Street. This area holds special significance for Kentuckiana’s African American community.
The Heritage Center is the result of a collection of African American educators, artists, and historians who have collaborated to give the long-dormant history of African American’s in their region the voice and platform it deserves.  This group evolved from the Louisville and Jefferson County African American Heritage Committee into its current mold, with a single unifying goal of promoting the Kentuckiana region’s black heritage.
The Center is a vital contemporary institution, providing space for performances of all types giving the rich heritage of African Americans the platform they deserve. The Center’s long-term goals include various spaces for career specific learning for students such as music, recording, trade industries and theater. 
1701 W. Muhammad Ali Blvd., Louisville, KY  40203

www.kcaah.org

Sponsors for the Grand Re-Introduction event include:

Presenting Sponsor, Brown-Forman;

Platinum Sponsors, Humana; University of Louisville, Office of Research and Innovation

Reception Sponsor, Strothman and Company

Supporting Table Sponsors: AARP KY, ACTORS Theatre, HJI Supply Chain Solutions, Louisville Healthcare CEO Council, Louisville Tourism, Republic Bank, Signature HealthCARE, TOPS Magazine, York Management, Inc.

The VIPP Report: KCAAH announces plans to develop a Media Arts Center named to honor Kentucky native Colonel Charles Young

The Kentucky Center for African American Heritage announce plans to develop a Media Arts Center named to honor the Legendary Colonel Charles Young

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Logo_no_TxtThe Kentucky Center for African American Heritage (Heritage Center) is embarking on the expansion of a new Media Arts Center in a vacant 14,000 square foot wing on the campus. The proposed media arts center will be a state-of-the-art facility serving as the communication arm of one of the primary heritage centers in the state of Kentucky. The Media Arts Center will house a 40′ x 50′ “black-box” with a maximum seating capacity of 200, providing a unique and versatile space where artists of all disciplines showcase their creative work. The center’s layout will also include a lower and upper level. The lower level will include a dressing room with sink and toilets, green rooms, options for loading in and out, public restrooms, office and storage spaces. The upper level will include editing suites, sound booths, meeting rooms and access to the control room and lighting grid over-looking the “black-box” theatre. This venue will offer local artist and media producers a platform to produce video, theatre, music, dance, literary, public lectures, community forums and more.

The new Media Arts Center will offer a professional learning environment where media and the arts are used to promote and preserve Kentucky’s African American heritage and the shared heritage with the African Diaspora by hosting and producing programs, performances, exhibits, and a repository of video programs that will be broadcasted and/or distributed throughout Kentucky and the nation. The fund-raising goal for the project is 3.5 million dollars.

To initiate this capital campaign, the Heritage Center has retained the services of Charles Blatcher III, as the Project Fundraising Director for the construction and development of the new Colonel Charles Young Media Arts Center located on the 68,000 square foot campus in Louisville, Kentucky.

Mr. Blatcher brings a wealth of experience working as a principal organizer for the National Coalition of Black Veteran Organizations (NCOBVO). The coalition came together in unity of purpose to promote a greater understanding of the important role Black service men and service women perform in the defense of the nation. As chairman, Mr. Blatcher has led the coalition as the chief advocate for Black Military History and Colonel Charles Young.  Under his leadership, the call for the posthumous honorary promotion for Colonel Charles Young to the rank of Brigadier General has gained prominence. He is not a stranger to Kentucky. He has played a major role in promoting educational tourism in the Kentucky/Ohio region. The Coalition dubbed the route connecting the Colonel’s birth cabin in Mays Lick, Kentucky to the national monument and archives in Wilberforce, Ohio as “the Colonel Charles Young Corridor.” We have seen some things move in a positive direction under his leadership.  We look forward to the expertise and dedication he brings to the Media project.  Mr. Blatcher recounts why naming the Media Arts Center in honor of Colonel Charles Young:

I welcome the opportunity to be a part of developing the Media Arts Center. Especially in the name of the legendary Colonel Charles Young. It’s an honor he deserves. In his period of history, he was more than an outstanding Soldier, he was a great communicator as a visual artist, musician, and poet, who spoke several languages. Colonel Young stood with

intellectuals of the times, such as W.E.B. DuBois, Booker T. Washington, and poet, novelist, and playwright Paul Laurence Dunbar who were among his close friends.

Colonel Young has a presence in African-American art and literature. One of the most notable instances of this is Countée Cullen’s 1925 poem “In Memory of Colonel Charles Young.” Another case of Young’s legacy in literature is from his close friend, W.E.B. Du Bois, who spoke at Young’s eulogy. DuBois claimed that “The life of Charles Young was a triumph of tragedy.” Charles Young is also represented in paintings and other art. Notably, a painting by J.W. Shannon titled “Portrait of Cadet Charles Young,” which currently belongs to The National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center in Wilberforce, Ohio.

He was a creative man who left behind a treasure of musical scores, poetry, and writings. The thought of him one day having his name above a Media Arts Center would have pleased him. What is pleasing for me is to think one day some of his work may be presented in a theater in a building named in his honor. I welcome being a part of making it happen. I am optimistic in the pride this effort will bring to the Community, City of Louisville and the State of Kentucky.

KCAAH is working in tandem with the Black Media Collaborative (BMC). BMC is a network of media professionals including directors, producers, writers and specialist working in the film, television, radio, animation, theatre, literature, journalism and Internet industries. BMC is dedicated to developing media literacy and skilled people in the production of media to provide significant economic, employment and cultural benefits in our community.   BMC will provide the human resource capacity to develop an onsite media production facility which will be dedicated to radio, film, video and theatre productions, which will provide both training and performing venue.

The center will also collaborate with the African American Theatre Program (AATP) at the University of Louisville. AATP produces theatrical productions about Black life in Kentucky and throughout the African Diaspora. Founded in 1993, the African American Theatre Program is committed to staging works by new and established African American dramatists, developing a broad audience for African American theatre, and offering an in-depth curriculum that focuses on the theory and craft of acting, directing, and designing for Black Theatre.

To setup and interview please contact VIPP Communications at info@vippcommunications.com.

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VIPP Communications is a full service public relations, event mgmt & production firm  headquartered in Louisville, KY with clients and/or projects all over the U.S. We can create, maintain and sustain your brand.  Our clientele range from small businesses, non-profits, corporate leaders, entertainment to current and retired professional athletes.  Contact one of our team members to see if we can assist you at info at vippcommunications dot com.  http://www.vippcommunications.com.

 

 

 

The VIPP Report: LCCC will raise the roof in a ceremony for a new theater

PREPARING AREA YOUTH TO BE THE GREATEST IN THE ARTS ARENA WITH A NEW THEATER ALONG THE MUHAMMAD ALI ARTS, CULTURE AND INNOVATION DISTRICT

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LCCC RAISES ROOF FOR GRAND LYRIC THEATER   

Louisville Central Community Centers, the developer of the Muhammad Ali Boulevard Arts, Culture and Innovation District, is constructing a performing arts facility to support its Kids Art Academy and the continued development of the district at its’ Old Walnut Street Development at 1300 W. Muhammad Ali Blvd.

On Friday, February 15, 2019 at 10:00 am there will be a roof raising ceremony with key stakeholders in the community, LCCC and advocators to bring Muhammad Ali Blvd back to life will be in attendance to lend their support.  Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer, Councilwoman Barbara Sexton Smith, an arts enthusiast, former Councilman David Tandy, Fund for the Arts’ CEO, Christen Boone, and representatives of the Norton Foundation and the Gheens Foundation all have confirmed their participation in the ceremony.  Representatives of the LCCC Kids Art Academy, the Tiny Tykes Theater Troupe and the Youth Repertory Theater Troupe of Louisville will perform to celebrate this achievement.

During the era between 1940-60’s, there was a theatre that was considered the hub where artists showcased their talents, which many went on to become professional entertainers performing alongside entertainment legends like Helen Hune, the jazz and blues singer with Count Basie’s band.  So, in 2019 we will revitalize the name The Grand Theater and Lyric Theater on historic Old Walnut Street in Louisville, KY in hopes of bringing life back into the arts and the community with a rich history in arts and entertainment.

The 300-seat Grand Lyric Theater will be home to LCCC’s Kids Art Academy (KAA), a youth arts education program with a focus on all facets of performing arts for over three decades.  KAA currently serves hundreds of school-age youth annually and has produced theater troupe sell-out productions of “Broadway-quality” musicals as “Beauty and The Beast”, “Black Nativity”, “A Christmas Carol”, “Once On This Island” and the nationally acclaimed show, “The Wiz.”. This state-of-the art facility will also serve as another venue for community groups to use for training, rehearsals and performances.

National experts from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) of Washington, DC endorsed LCCC’s economic revitalization vision by recommending to our community that Muhammad Ali Blvd. between 6th to 21st Streets be transformed into a cultural arts commercial district to help create a vibrant corridor that supports economic development and job creation west of Ninth Street.  This plan aligns itself with what used to be the historic Walnut Street (now known as Muhammad Ali Blvd.) between 6th to 15th Streets, an area once the commercial heart of the black community that contained thriving businesses, professional offices, restaurants and entertainment venues prior to the razing of the commercial district by an urban renewal plan in the 1960s. This plan has been included with support of Louisville Metro and Louisville Metro Housing Authority as an important part of the transformation of Russell.

Partial funding has been provided by U. S. Housing & Urban Development through its community development block grant to the city of Louisville and a number of private sources.  To complete the theater, additional sponsorship and naming opportunities are available to support:

  • lighting, sound and recording systems – $265,000
  • main stage, staging area and loading dock area – $140,000
  • rehearsal, restrooms and dressing rooms – $270,000
  • lobby, vestibule and restrooms – $250,000
  • seating, coat check and storage – $280,000

To setup an interview to discuss the Grand Lyric Theater and/or to setup a tour after the roof raising contact VIPP Communications at booking@vippcommunications.com.  We will see you on Friday, February 15th for the ceremony.  Please arrive at least 15 minutes in advance so you can be in position to get everything you need for your stories.

 Louisville Central Community Centers Inc. is celebrating its 70th year of service to residents of the Russell neighborhood and west Louisville community.  As an anchor institution, LCCC provides an array of services including early childhood education, youth development, workforce development training, small business and neighborhood development activities.

The VIPP Report: Will he win the “Hart” of Oscar fans?

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By Sherlene Shanklin, WHAS11 Louisville, ABC Affiliate

And the hosting duties of the 2019 Academy Awards goes to none other than comedian/actor Kevin Hart.  The Academy did not get to make the announcement but the man with 64.9 million good friends also known as his Instagram followers received the “exclusive” announcement.

Hart announced Tuesday evening by posting an Oscar with the message saying “The day has finally come for me to host the Oscars. I am blown away simply because this has been a goal on my list for a long time….To be able to join the legendary list of host that have graced that stage is unbelievable.”

KevinHart tour media photoThis is not the first time the academy asked Hart to be the host but Hart feels like this is the right time for him to take on this task and mark it off his bucket list.

He thanked his fans for their support and of course his close friends and family but what was so powerful was acknowledging his late mother by saying “I know my mom is smiling from ear to ear right now.”

The 91st Academy Awards will present some 20 plus awards for their artistic and technical merit in the film industry.  You can see the show live on Sunday, February 24, 2019 on ABC.

If you have a story idea, send it to me at the411@vippcommunications.com.  Follow Sherlene Shanklin on Twitter @Sherlenemediapr and Instagram @Sherlenemediapro.

Follow The VIPP Report on Twitter @thevippreport and @vippcomm.

The VIPP Report: Accessories that “Make A Statement”

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The holiday season is quickly approaching and many have no idea what to buy as gifts.  You find yourself getting the wrong size or the wrong color.  Why not just give them accessories that can go with anything!  VIPP Style Accessories is preparing for  Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday.  Accessorize your life with great statement pieces.   The online accessories store has a little something for everyone.

Go to http://www.vippstyle.com and review their selections.  New items will be added daily to get you ready for holiday parties, gift ideas and of course New Year’s Eve.

Follow them on IG: @vipp_style; FB: @vippstyleaccessories.

Happy Holidays and Happy Shopping from Team VIPP Style!!!!!

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