HoF, Green River Distilling Co.to debut 'Bluegrass, Bourbon and Bites'

Jan. 26—The Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum and Green River Distilling Co. will host the first "Bluegrass, Bourbon and Bites" event from 6-9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 24 at the Hall of Fame, 311 W. Second St.

The 21-and-over event premiere will include a number of hands-on experiences stationed throughout the museum, including a mixology class presented by Green River Distilling Co. where participants will be able to learn about "spirits, tools and techniques used to craft a speciality cocktail," while clogger and Hall of Fame instructor Barry Lanham will lead a square dance workshop.

Green River Distilling Co. will host a tasting of different bourbon offerings on-site, while the Hall of Fame's Pickin' Parlor will be open for people to try out various bluegrass instruments with instructors ready to help beginners learn how to play.

Food from local barbecue establishments and heavy hors d'oeuvres will be provided by local restaurants, while a cash bar will be available for guests to purchase drinks and cocktails throughout the night.

The band Kentucky Shine will be the featured entertainment for the inaugural event.

Caryn Wells, national brand ambassador for Green River Distilling Co., said the idea for the event came about when the organizations collaborated for the Bourbon Women Association's SIPosium in Louisville "where we basically brought Owensboro to everybody" while utilizing the Frazier History Museum.

"The idea was to give them a sense of Owensboro through the lens of the iconic brands that really define Owensboro in terms of our identity and our culture," said Chris Joslin, executive director of the Hall of Fame. "And it went so well that we continued to talk about, 'How can we accurately present that in Owensboro for the hometown and really tie those things together, but in a really fun way?' "

"A lot of people don't know that the Bluegrass Museum is there, and they also don't know our distillery is here and that we're on the Bourbon Trail," Wells said. "It was important to obviously highlight those two things, as well as kind of like bring a 'Taste of Owensboro' and just make it simple."

Lindsey Hart, event sales manager at the Hall of Fame, feels the event will give the public a more "immersive, experience-based night out where they can really have some hands-on interaction" with both the bluegrass and bourbon elements.

"Everyone who buys a ticket will also have time to take part in these workshops and get more hands-on experience with learning about these two parts of Owensboro," she said. "That's exciting."

While the first one hasn't occurred yet, the hope is to continue the event for years to come.

"The original concept is to hopefully do it more than just once," Wells said. "Maybe do it quarterly, so that it gives people something to look forward to and be able to focus on different foods that are out there, different restaurants that are around, maybe bounce it back and forth between the distillery and the Bluegrass Museum."

Joslin and Hart hope people enjoy themselves and walk away with knowledge.

"We want people to have fun. We want them to experience something unique," Joslin said, "and we want them to be able to learn something that's impactful."

Tickets for the event are $80 and can be purchased at bluegrass-hall.ticketleap.com/bluegrass-bourbon—bites.