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Contents:
Program 703

1. a Pollitte family reunion
2. potter Tommy Clark
3. painter Jeannie Spears
4. musician/environmentalist Debbie Tuggle
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Mason County

For more information:
• Jim Columbia, 7053 Olivet Church Rd., Maysville, KY 41056, (606) 742-2397

Producer: Joy Flynn
Videographers: George Murphy, Michael Follmer
Editor: Dan Taulbee


All in the Family

A Pollitte family reunion

You’ll meet a lot of interesting people in this episode of Kentucky Life, starting with a whole crowd of Pollittes.

For generations, the Pollitte family has been reuniting once a year on the church grounds donated by its ancestors in 1817. The event has grown big enough to require name tags to keep all the relations straight, and some family members even sport T-shirts made specially for the occasion. The one we visited, in the year 2000, was the 67th annual gathering.

The Pollittes’ roots run deep in Northern Kentucky. On a tour of the church cemetery, Jim Columbia (who evidently married into the clan) shows host Dave Shuffett family graves dating to the early 19th century.

These days, the 21st-century Pollittes keep track of one another—and keep adding to their extensive genealogical archives—through e-mail and the Internet. But chances are they will keep getting together once a year for those time-honored family-reunion traditions that you can only do in person: meeting, greeting ... and, of course, eating.

Watch This Story (6:11)




Taylor County

Producer, videographer: Cheryl Beckley


Ceramisauruses?

Potter Tommy Clark

Most kids go through a phase of fascination with dinosaurs. It seems that Tommy Clark of Campbellsville never quite got over his, though.

The Taylor County potter specializes in an art form he calls “dinoware,” creating detailed clay sculptures of the fantastic prehistoric beasts that still roam the imaginations of children everywhere. So while other people dig up preserved pieces of dinosaurs from the ground, Clark uses the ground itself as raw material to create dinosaurs of his own. Along the way, he’s also acquired a nickname that would make Steven Spielberg proud. Meet Tommy “Jurassic” Clark.

Watch This Story (4:11)




Metcalfe County

Producer, videographer: Gale Worth


From Moon Maps to Christmas Cards

Artist Jeannie Spears

Our next interesting person is another artist, Jeannie Spears of Edmonton in Metcalfe County. In a long and productive career, Jeannie put her considerable drawing skills to work for a variety of “clients.” She worked for the U.S. Department of Defense, helping to create maps used by the military during World War II and in Korea and Vietnam, and for NASA, preparing maps that helped get humans to the moon.

For the last 20 years or so, though, she’s been working mostly to please herself—and the many friends she made along the way. She creates Christmas ornaments and cards, silk-screen prints, and paintings.

Watch This Story (5:43)




Letcher County

Producer, videographer: Gale Worth


Music for Nature

Singer/songwriter Debbie Tuggle

Musical environmentalist? Or environmental musician?

Either way you put it, it’s obvious that Debbie Tuggle is passionate about both music and the natural world. She combines those two loves into songwriting, and the results have three times won her the National Take Pride in America Award for environmental stewardship through music education.

This segment includes a performance of “Bad Branch Falls,” sung by Debbie at the falls in Letcher County. She also talks with Dave about the importance of preserving Kentucky’s wild places.

Bad Branch Falls is a Kentucky state nature preserve located on the south side of Pine Mountain. It was also featured in Kentucky Life Program 421.

Watch This Story (5:36)


SEASON 7 PROGRAMS: 701702703704705706707708709: Along U.S. 60
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