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Guest editorial: Thoughts on the Old Courthouse

Fresh off major victories in the Nov. 2, 2010 election, with successful endorsements in It's Just for A Smile News for County Judge Ann Melton and PVA Willie M. Feese, JR, - he got them both re-elected - the editor and publisher of the highly influential print publication (a wholly separately owned news operation from offers a common sense suggestion for the use of the Historic Courthouse: as a primary venue for the Performing Arts. For him, it isn't about picking and grinning, Hee Haw, or even Gospel Music. That isn't his cup of tea: It's just a straightforward approach to getting more business in Columbia, KY, and that, he admits, tickles and entertains him more than anything besides his delightful grandchildren.

By Ralph Waggener
From the Editor and Publisher of It's Just for a Smile News

I was thinking the other day about all the singing groups and entertainers we have here in Adair County.

Adair County is blessed with some of the greatest performing artists to be found anywhere.

There are gospel groups and Elaine Bennett' ensemble, the Dream Depot Players, who perform original comedy and enjoy singing together.

We have a building in the middle of the Square that would be an ideal place for night time performances. There is plenty of unused parking places and the old court room would make an ideal place for plays and special acts to perform.

Somerset has the The Center as a magnet for Performing Arts. Some call it The Taj-MaHal, because it is a very good looking building and the only way it could have been built was the doings of Congressman Hal Rogers, who has brought millions and millions of dollars into Pulaski, his home, county.

But we Adair Countians can, as a community create our own Performing Arts Center, right in the middle of our Public Square and The County all ready owns the property and really doesn't have a good use planned for it. We can protect this historic building and have it used for a good purpose and keep it taken care at the same time.

A lot of people like to talk about tearing down this Great Old Icon, but I believe this is just talk. Seems some want to be against every thing now-a-days and the old court house falls into that category, along with our school system.

I don't profess to be big on the performing arts. That's not my cup of tea; I have a lot of friends who really enjoy this and I have enough sense to know we are all different in our make up.

But I do like business! I look at things in a profit and loss perspective and I see that a lot of communities in our area of Kentucky have thriving entertainment places in their cities. Just look at Cave City, Hodgensville, Somerset, Edmonton, Russell Springs and Renfro Valley. They all have popular performing arts attractions.

I could see that, with the right management, this center spot of Columbia, could be an additional draw for businesses. With the wonderful mix of restaurants we already have, on and right off the Square, entertainment of all sorts, performing several nights each month, right here in Columbia, KY, could be a reality.

Add to that the saving of this historic building and helping take care of the ongoing upkeep of it at the same time and we have a major win for all of Adair County.

Maybe our Congressman will somehow will learn about this project and decide to help send some foreign aid to Adair County. Yes, just maybe! -Ralph Waggener

The writer, Ralph Waggener, can be read regularly in the twice monthly It's Just for a Smile News. The copies are distributed free at locations around Adair County, with one of, if not the, largest press runs of any Columbia publication. Subscriptions aren't available, but many out of town Adair Countians have clandestine operatives get an extra copy and mail it to them. -CM

This story was posted on 2010-11-07 06:27:02
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