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Program 1617

1. Model A
2. Historical Marker 887—Giant Cooling Tower
3. The Plaza Theatre
4. Our Town—Wheelwright
4. A Tribute to Charlie

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Season 16 Menu

Bourbon County

For more information:

Producer/Editor: Tom Bickel
Videographer: Dave Dampier
Audio: Roger Tremaine

The Model A


Jerry Baker of Paris loves antique cars, but particularly the Model A Ford. He got his first Model A when he was 14 years old, and his enthusiasm for the classic car has never waned.

Jerry is well known among the antique car owners of Central Kentucky. He's the man they trust for all their repairs and restoration. Dave Shuffett pays a visit and takes a look under the hood to see firsthand the magic Jerry works on these cars.

The Model A was introduced by Ford Motor Co. in 1927 as the long-awaited successor to the Model T. Unlike the Model T (which Henry Ford famously said you could get in any color, as long as it was black), it came in four colors. It also debuted in seven different body styles.

According to, the Model A got 20-30 miles per gallon, had a top speed of 65 miles per hour, and ranged in price from $385 for a Roadster to $550 for the Sport Coupe with rumble seat.

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Lawrence County

Producer: Jim Piston

Historical Marker 887—Giant Cooling Tower

Few structures stand out on the horizon like a power-plant cooling tower. We take a look at the 320-foot-tall cooling tower at the coal-fired power plant on U.S. 23 north of Louisa.

Although cooling towers today reach heights of 500-600 feet and more, the Lawrence County tower was an engineering marvel when it was built in 1962. It had the largest capacity of any single tower in the world, cooling 120,000 gallons of water per minute.

The tower is a natural draft structure, meaning it creates a draft by using the natural buoyancy of warm air through a tall chimney. Cooling towers rely on evaporation to reduce the heat from the steam generated by a power plant. Its hyperbolic design, used for structural strength and efficiency, is often seen with towers for nuclear power plants as well as coal-fired power plants.

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Barren County

For more information:
The Plaza Theatre, 115 East Main St., Glasgow, Ky. 42141, phone: 270-361-2101

Producer/Editor: Jessica Gibbs
Videographer: Brent Boyens, Bentley Blair, Kyle McCafferty

The Plaza Theatre

Act Two

Glasgow's grand movie house of the 1930s has found new life in the 21st century with live music and dramatic performances.

The Plaza Theatre opened in 1934 to a Depression-weary community eager for the diversions offered by Hollywood. The Plaza soon became the stage for live acts as well. Over the years, Gene Autry, the Carter Family, Roy Rogers, and Dinah Shore performed in Glasgow.

After heavy use, the building fell into disrepair and was closed in the 1990s. However, the city of Glasgow purchased the theater in 2001 and began renovations, allowing it to celebrate its 75th anniversary in 2009. Today's lineup includes classic rock groups like Kansas, comic Paula Poundstone, local dance recitals, film festivals, and plays.

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Floyd County

For more information:
Floyd County (Images of America) by Lisa Perry
A Link To The Past: A Pictorial History of Wheelwright, Kentucky, The Model Coal Camp by South Floyd High School students

Producer/Videographer: Frank Simkonis
Editor: Dan Taulbee

Our Town—Wheelwright

Our next stop is Wheelwright in Floyd County. Once an ideal company town, it's now fighting to preserve its history and remain a viable community.

Wheelwright was founded in 1916 by the Elk Horn Coal Co. and named for a company president. In the 1930s Wheelwright was purchased by Inland Steel, which attracted and kept its miners by paving the streets, building a swimming pool and a nine-hole golf course, and maintaining its own telephone company, dental office and hospital.

The coal was depleted and the mine closed in 1951, but the memories of those prosperous days linger. Today, students are documenting their history even as they search for ways to reinvigorate their mountain town. At South Floyd High School in nearby Hi Hat, students in the information technology program have digitally restored historic photographs. Lisa Perry and the Wheelwright Historical Society have written a book, Floyd County (Images of America). And in 2009 the town held a Coal Camp Days Festival to raise funds for a scholarship fund and community projects.

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Fayette County

Producer: Dave Shuffett
Editor: Kelly Campbell

A Tribute to Charlie

In the spring of 2005, happy-go-lucky golden retriever Charlie Boscoe made his Kentucky Life debut as a rambunctious 2-year-old, joining Dave Shuffett for a visit to Reelfoot Lake in the special Wild and Scenic Kentucky. As time went on, Charlie took his place as the elder statesman of Dave's golden team. We are sorry to report that Charlie passed away on March 17, 2011. We look back at the many happy moments we shared with the popular canine co-host.

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