Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

October 26, 2013

Block party brings neighbors together

ASHLAND — Many who live along Ashland’s Bradley Drive had other places to be Saturday, although they chose to stay home and spend an afternoon celebrating the value of good neighbors instead.

“I skipped going to Louisville for my brother-in-law’s party, which is going to be off the hook,” said Retta Wilson, who lives on Bradley Drive with her husband, Charlie. “We moved here in 2009 and it’s the best neighborhood we’ve ever lived in.”

A bitter wind threatened to dampen spirits as the neighborhood block party got under way around noon, but the spirit of the occasion seemed to keep the crowd warm as they shared a meal and found seats for the real action as auctioneer Jeff Webb encouraged them to compete with bids for items ranging from a decorative wreath, baseball lessons, a gold package, a basket of Halloween goodies and perhaps the most prized item, a blue and white basketball signed by the 2013 UK basketball team and Coach John Calipari.

“Is that this year’s team?” one person in the crowd along the street asked as Webb urged them to consider the basketball’s potential value after this year’s team claims the championship.

“Yes. It was signed by Calipari and the whole team except Willie Cauley-Stein. He wasn’t there the day they did the signing,” said Amy Gray, who co-organized the annual block party along with Teresa Church.

The crowd, including many individuals wearing UK logos on their clothing and standing next to a corn-toss game adorned in the school’s colors, engaged in spirited bidding for the ball.

 As the bidding got heated, neighbor Mike Sturm lost track of the action at one point and added $5 to his already-high bid of $155. When the gavel came down, Sturm was pleased to pay $165 for the autographed basketball.

“I will probably give it to my stepdaughter, Courtney Martin. I’m a UK fan, but she’s an even bigger UK fan,” he said.

Accompanied by his dog, Remington, Ashland Mayor Chuck Charles made a point of visiting the neighborhood gathering, winning the bid for a Longaberger basket filled with Halloween treats, speaking with the men at the back of the crowd and checking out the collection of homemade desserts, as well as hot dogs, pizza and a table full of lunch foods before following the large dog back down the lane. Additional auction items which earned the crowd’s bids included balls and a golf package at Austin Hills; personal tutoring by Jesse Griffith and baseball lessons from Tim Rice, and UK items “donated by U of L fans,” Gray said.

Gray said proceeds from the auction will go to River Cities Harvest, as well as helping toward next year’s block party, welcome trays for new neighbors, emergency assistance for a neighbor facing unexpected challenges or even memorial flowers in the event of a neighbor’s death. Emphasizing that Teresa Church does more to pull the event together than she does, Gray estimated the block party costs $300 to $400 and a full year of planning. Even with expenses and time factored in, Gray said the event is absolutely worth the effort.

“Oh, gosh yes. We have the best neighborhood in the world,” she said, reaching a conclusion about the “priceless” nature of the gathering with the help of neighbor Retta Wilson. “I mean, how do you put a value on this? My kids are growing up in Mayberry.”

Neighbor Judy Gray described the close-knit nature of neighbors along Bradley Drive as “the kind of place where if somebody is digging a ditch, everybody comes out with their teaspoons to help.”

TIM PRESTON can be reached at tpreston@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2651.

Text Only
Local News
  • BREAKING: APD probes gun report near Blazer campus

    April 24, 2014

  • Judge denies renewed motion to dismiss Rosen lawsuit

    A judge has refused to dismiss a former Boyd district and circuit judge’s lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of a law that affects his ability to run for re-election this fall.
    In an order entered on Friday, Franklin Circuit Judge Thomas D. Wingate denied a renewed motion to dismiss by current Boyd Circuit Judge George W. Davis III, an intervening respondent in the suit filed in January by Marc I. Rosen.

    April 23, 2014

  • Ashland football players join special-needs students for prom

    The purple chiffon gown and the sparkling tiara are back in the closet four days after the big dance, but Karina McBride still hasn’t stopped talking about Saturday night — the decorations, boys bringing her cups of punch, her first kiss (on the cheek, her mother hastens to interject), and dancing the night away at her first prom.
    “She’s been flying high since that night,” said Michele Woods, who is Karina’s mother and who brought together friends and volunteers to organize a prom for special needs students.

    April 23, 2014

  • Concrete pouring at Putnam

    Workers are pouring concrete foundations at Putnam Stadium and once those are dry and cured will be ready to install seats at the historic arena.
    The workers are putting in 12-hour shifts to keep on schedule to complete the stadium’s reconstruction in time for this fall’s football opener, said site supervisor Craig Chinn of Trace Creek Construction.
    The most visible work is happening on the home-team side of the stadium, where workers Tuesday were setting forms for the cylindrical concrete piers that will support the seats. Once those are poured, cured and inspected they will add the seats.

    April 23, 2014

  • Unique races for Carter magistrates

    Carter County magistrate ballots are full of candidates eager to represent constituents in each of the five districts that make up the county’s fiscal court.

    April 23, 2014

  • Martin County marks 50 years since LBJ visit

    Today marks 5o years since former U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson visited Inez resident Tom Fletcher and promised to end poverty in America on April 24, 1964. On Friday, Inez will be commemorating the occasion with a special event.

    April 23, 2014

  • Trail Town trial run to be in Olive Hill this Sunday

    Olive Hill will participate in a trial run this Saturday in the city’s push to become a certified Kentucky Trail Town.

    April 23, 2014

  • Some area farmers may be eligible for LIP program

    The Grayson  Farm Service Agency, (Boyd, Carter, Elliott and Lawrence) is having registration for the Livestock Indemnity Program to eligible producers who suffered losses beginning Oct. 1, 2011, and subsequent years.

    April 23, 2014

  • News in brief, 04/24/14

    The King’s Daughters Pregancy and Infant Loss Support Group invites families who have experienced the loss of an infant during pregnancy or following birth to participate in a butterfly release and prayer ceremony at 2 p.m. May 10 at the Ashland Central Park fountain.

    April 23, 2014

  • Garner hosting National Day of Prayer activities

    The Garner Missionary Baptist Church will be hosting day long events at the Kyova Mall to commemorate the National Day of Prayer on Thursday, May 1.

    April 23, 2014

Featured Ads
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP basketball
SEC Zone