Have y'all heard of Creative Mornings? It's a monthly lecture series geared toward creative people. Here in Louisville, we're headed into our seventh month of CM meetings, which offer coffee and pastries from the best local shops, a chance to hang out with the movers and shakers of the local creative community, and an always-inspiring message. (Last month's event with the guys from Kentucky for Kentucky actually led me to go home, secure an internet domain, and get started on a business plan for an idea I've had in mind for a while now.) For creative folks across the Commonwealth, the Creative Mornings events are a regularly scheduled burst of inspiration. In fact, the theme of this month's CM talk is Inspiration.
Earlier this week, CM Louisville announced an Instagram contest where they asked their fans and friends to post a photo that symbolizes inspiration. Of course, I knew immediately what I'd say. Kentucky inspires me. Every. Single. Day.
This week, there's been a whole lot of bad news. I've been heartbroken by the stories coming in from Johnson County; there's just so much devastation and sadness back home that it just doesn't seem real. But, there are so many incredible people across the Bluegrass State who are putting so much good back into the world. Kentuckians are donating time and resources to provide immediate aid to Johnson County. And there are so many more ways that our fellow Kentuckians are making our Commonwealth a better place. Just in case you need a little reassurance that people -- especially your fellow Kentuckians -- are trying to do good things, here are five ways that Kentucky can inspire you today:
- Glean KY's Burgers & Beats, this Sunday at Wallace Station in Versailles. Glean KY makes use of a really simple, yet brilliant premise: the food that's being wasted at supermarkets, farms and farmers' markets can be collected and donated to food banks. Don't miss their annual fundraiser at Ouita Michel's charming Wallace Station restaurant, featuring live music, local ice cream, and more!
- My Kentucky Tee's Old Friends Campaign Tee. Our friends at My Kentucky Tee are so creative and fabulous. Now through Monday, July 20th, you can order this adorable t-shirt from My Kentucky Tee; $5 from every tee sold will go to Old Friends Thoroughbred Retirement Center. I love the idea that we can give back to the horses who bring us so much entertainment (and often big wins!) as they age! (Check out Love, Lexington for more information and gorgeous photos of Old Friends!)
- The Missing Animals of Flat Gap Flood Facebook Page: It's often an afterthought, but in the wake of major catastrophes like the floods in Johnson County, the pets who are fortunate enough to survive are often displaced or separated from their owners. It's awesome to see the lost and found communities springing up on social media to help offset this problem!
- Sundy Best Johnson County Benefit: Sundy Best is my hometown's favorite up-and-coming roots-country duo. They've played the Grand Ole Opry, but they'll always be Prestonsburg boys at heart. Next Wednesday, July 22nd, they're putting on a free benefit concert in Johnson County as a donation drive for those affected by flooding.
- The Abbey at Gethsemani: The Trappist Monastery in Nelson County served as the inspiration for Thomas Merton's classic memoir The Seven Storey Mountain. The oldest monastery continually operating in the United States, the Abbey sustains the simple, contemplative life of its inhabitants through farming efforts and the production of cheeses, fruitcakes, and fudge. A few days ago, Kentucky celebrated Summer Harvest Day; the Kentucky branch of the U.S. Postal Service celebrated this occasion at the Abbey at Gethsemani while presenting the USPS's Summer Harvest Forever Stamp. When I received a press release about this event, I was reminded of the interesting history of the Abbey and the ways that life at the monastery inspired Mr. Merton.
What's inspiring y'all today?