June/July – Owensboro Parent 2024

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June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 5 IN EVERY ISSUE 8 From the Editor 9 Around OBKY 10 Parent Profile KEEPING IT REAL 12 Real Life with Lora Wimsatt Every Child, Every Story 14 Hashtag MomFail Go Sports! Youth sports ratings from a boy mom MAKING IT 15 Recipe S’mores Rice Krispie Treats 18 Craft Time Summer Fun: DIY Marbleized Paper Crafting SPECIAL SECTION 19 18 Under 18 Meet the next generation of leaders and achievers DISCOVER 40 The Book Nook Check out these book recommendations from local super readers! 44 Cultivating Connection Helping Children Navigate the World of Friendship OUT & ABOUT 46 Events Calendar Our list of fun things to do around town this season! 50 Your Guide to Summer Local events and activities to fill your summer break! 62 Kids Meal Deals Check out these local kids meal deals! FROM OUR READERS 64 We Love our Dads! Photos submitted to our Facebook page sponsored by Owensboro Health! Contents JUNE // JULY 2024


I’m most looking forward to two full months without sports! We have a couple small trips planned, but mainly I’m excited about slowing down for a little while.

ASHLEY Serving in the Dominican Republic on a mission trip with GO Ministries.





Katie Albers

Christina Dalton

Jamie Johnson

Lora Wimsatt

Do you have a story idea? We want to hear from you! Email your suggestion to ashley@tannerpublishing.com



Brock Quinton

Owensboro Parent is a FREE magazine because of community support. Thank you to the great group of businesses and organizations who advertise.


Dave Mackey

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Jason Tanner

I am looking forward to spending time kayaking on the lake!

MONICA Getting to harvest all of the fruits and vegetables we planted in Spring!


“ “ “ “ “ ” ” ” ” ”

For more information about advertising call 270-297-1600 or email brock@tannerpublishing.com.

2624-A New Hartford Rd. Owensboro, KY 42303 270-297-1600

I’m looking forward to warm weather and family vacation.



6 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024
Ashley Wedding
Plain Daniel Benedict
Andrea Roberson



My family got me these adorable hats for Mother’s Day and I couldn’t love them more! It seems like we are always at the soccer or baseball field, so a hat has become an essential accessory for this sports mom. These were hand embroidered locally by Rosie Posie Stitchery.

From the Editor

In the 13 years I have been editing Owensboro Parent, I don’t think I have ever been so excited for an issue to release so that we could reveal to the community our newest feature –18 Under 18.


The term “snackle box” has gone viral and I can totally see why. I got these for my kiddos from Amazon and they have been a game changer. All of the compartments lend themselves to variety of snacks. My kids love having so many options and I love that these allow me to balance healthier choices with the sweet treats.


This is one of my favorite summer covers! Not only is Reed one those cuties in the sunglasses, but it was just a fun photo shoot. From the crafts and snacks to the perfect backyard setting – this was one of our more elaborate concepts for a cover design. But it was definitely worth it!

I would love to take the credit for this idea, but my husband, Drew, is the one who suggested it. Our community is familiar with 40 Under 40, a feature that our sister publication Owensboro Living puts out in collaboration with the Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce. After their 2023 list was released, Drew said, “Why don’t you do that in Owensboro Parent, but highlight students?”

I don’t really like to admit that he is right too often, but this really was a genius idea.

With the help of local middle and high schools along with youth-oriented organizations from across the community, we had nearly 100 nominations that our selection committee narrowed to 18.

These students are simply incredible. They shine academically and athletically, contribute meaningfully to their community, demonstrate leadership among their peers, and have triumphed over adversity.

We’re honored at Owensboro Parent to introduce you to our inaugural class of 18 Under 18 and share their inspiring stories.

A heartfelt thank you goes out to the Hager Educational Foundation and the Public Life Foundation of Owensboro for generously supporting these students with scholarships, as well as to the local businesses and organizations that sponsored this special section.

You should be so encouraged by this next generation of community leaders. Our future is bright, Owensboro!



MentorKids Kentucky has opened the doors on its new home, just a stone’s throw away from the previous location on Veach Road. Officials hope to turn the new space into a multipurpose area with everything they need during their mentorship process.

Executive Director Berly Tillman Sullivan said the new spot includes a living area with televisions, a play area


Owensboro Middle School Track and Field star Ayden Fountain is currently ranked #1 in the state of Kentucky among middle school boys in 100m hurdles. In early May, Apollo hosted the College View Invitational where Fountain broke the Kentucky Middle School record.

The 8th grader cemented his spot at #1 after recording a time of 14.58, beating the previous Kentucky Middle School boys record of 14.69. Even though last year was his first year doing hurdles, Fountain is currently 1st

for younger mentees, a kitchen, and a dinner area.

Sullivan said the dining and kitchen space will not only provide the mentees with a warm meal during meetings but also teach the mentees how to cook food — especially that which is often found in food pantries.

“I really want to teach them how to make food that you can pick up from the food pantries. We want to teach them how to make it right … and can utilize what they have instead of just promoting the kitchen,” Sullivan said.

The facility still has some finishing work to be completed, but Sullivan said the building will be open to

in MileSplit’s Kentucky Middle School Boys rankings.

With track and field nearing the postseason, Fountain said one of his goals for the rest of the season is to win the conference championship.

Last year Ayden reached the state championship and placed 28th, but this year he also has made it a goal to return to the big stage and win it all.

Fountain is set to start high school this coming Fall, and the leap from the middle school level to high school is not concerning to him at all. Fountain said he still plans to continue training as hard as he does now with the intention of becoming ranked #1 in the state in high school as well.

mentees and volunteers to use in the near future.

Sullivan aims for the building to be accessible from roughly 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. to allow mentees and mentors to meet in a safe space for group or oneon-one sessions. To increase security, Sullivan upgraded the building to accommodate video and audio security recordings.

With this change in security detail, MentorKids is upgrading the services they’re able to provide, including adding laundry units that will be free to use for mentees. The desire for free laundry comes from her experience as a child.

“When I was in elementary school, I went to school with dirty clothes all the time. I never want that for another kid. So the (kids) can come in, put a load of laundry in, and hang out,” Sullivan said.

Ultimately, Sullivan said they hope the mentees can find an area of safety within the building. With students ages 6 to 14, she said they have to try to find something throughout the space that can be used for them, but first and foremost, she wants them to have one constant feeling.

“I’ll put it on that wall: Jesus loves you no matter what,” she said. “If there’s one thing that I want to be known for, I want this building to be known that there is nothing you can do that will shake the love He has for you.”

June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 9

Mary-Katherine Maddox


As a radio personality, I am one half of the Morning Show on The Country Station 92.5 WBKR every day. I was born and raised in Owensboro (OHS Class of 2005) minus the four years I spent in Louisville at UofL getting my degree in Communications and Political Science. My sweet and incredibly supportive husband Michael and I have been together for 18 years. We met waaaay back when at The Brother’s Pizza. He booked the bands that played there. We have the coolest kid ever. Rollins is almost 10 and is a 4th grader at Sutton Elementary. He’s hilarious, so smart and very thoughtful. We have two old cranky cats, a golden retriever named Freddie and we just adopted Freddie’s new best friend, Duane, from SparKy Rescue. I am a proud member of the Fabulous Ladies Reading Club, lifelong volunteer in the local theatre scene, I love karaoke, antiquing/thrifting and making art.


Oh gosh, it’s hard to narrow it down. I love helping promote small businesses and local events on the morning show. We have lots of exciting things happening here in Owensboro and the tri-state. Helping raise money for incredible causes like St. Jude, Puzzle Pieces, Sparky Pet Rescue, and so many more fills my heart with joy. Being able to spread that joy by making people smile and laugh on their way to work and school is my jam! Meeting new people out and about in the community is my favorite though. This “job” really is a dream come true for me. I’m beyond grateful.


He thinks it’s really cool! He rocks a WBKR backpack at school. When I first started a year ago, I was REALLY nervous one evening thinking about the show the next day and he could totally tell. He gave me a big hug and the best pep talk. My favorite little cheerleader! He loves to read my stories I write for the WBKR website and loves helping me come up with fun topics. For National Bring Your Kid to Work Day this year, he hosted the show with us and totally rocked it. Radio Rollins may be on the airwaves some day if we’re lucky!


I have to preface this with the fact that feel totally unqualified to give any kind of parenting advice. Honestly, my advice is to ignore advice that doesn’t work for your child or your family. When I first became a mom, I was so overwhelmed by all of the things I was supposed to be doing. Even now, I sometimes have anxiety about whether I am doing “the right thing.” But every child is different, so there is never a onesize-fits all solution. Just love them, encourage them, teach them how to be kind and work hard. Don’t sweat the “small stuff” for sure. OP

Photo by Jamie Plain

Keeping it Real

June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 11


Every Child, Every Story

Owensboro Parent is introducing a new feature this month, celebrating the children and youth of our community through their “18 Under 18” feature. How exciting and refreshing to see our young people recognized for excellence in the arts, academics, athletics, community service and overcoming adversity!

Faithful readers of this magazine know that articles like these have always been an important part of every issue. Owensboro Parent has richly earned a reputation for spotlighting everything positive about our community … but this new spotlight will be an even more focused reminder of how fortunate we are to live in a place where kids are given so many opportunities to explore their talents, skills and interests.

It is fair to say the editors will never run out of sources. The 2020 U.S. Census documented a total population of 103,458 in Daviess County, of which 24.1 percent are younger than age 18. That’s about 24,933.378 kids.

Parents, guardians, teachers and others who work with children and teens on a regular basis will no doubt be eager to submit

nominations for these features. For what it’s worth, I can think of a few kids (ahem) who are deserving of nomination as “best grandchildren in the whole wide world.”

But even if that is not a real category, and even if the kids who are most precious to my life are never featured within the pages of this magazine, and even if I personally do not know many or even any of the kids who do make the spotlight, it doesn’t matter. I applaud Owensboro Parent for their dedication to celebrating kids, and I am looking forward to reading about all of them.

Because here’s the thing: All these kids belong to all of us.

All 24,933.378 of them.

Even the kid who acts out in public and throws tantrums in the checkout line because Mom won’t (or maybe can’t) buy that candy bar.

Even the kid for whom a straight C report card would be an academic highlight.

The kids who walk down the street in a pack, shoving one another and blowing vape smoke and laughing way too loudly and stepping into the street without looking both ways.

The kid who sits quietly in the back of the room, doodling in his notebook and never raising his eyes

from the floor tiles when walking down the school hallways.

The kid whose hair was pink yesterday, is blue today, might be shaved tomorrow.

The kid who takes your order at the fast food restaurant who isn’t working to save money for college but rather is trying desperately to help keep the lights on at home.

The kid who stands waiting at the summer feeding program site an hour before the bus shows up.

The kid who collects pine cones, interesting rocks and weirdshaped sticks and thinks it’s a museum because he’s never seen a real one.

The kid who waits until no other kids who might laugh at him are around before he sneaks over to the Little Free Library to see if anyone has dropped off any new books since his last visit.

I mean it when I say how happy I am that so many of the children and young people of our community have been and will continue to be celebrated in the pages of this magazine.

But let’s remember that all 24,933.378 of the kids in Owensboro-Daviess County belong to all of us, and every single one of them is deserving of love. OP

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Lora is a mother, grandmother and writer. She enjoys the everyday blessings and adventures of life, especially her family.

Youth sports ratings from a boy mom GO SPORTS!

Afew years ago, I decided to rank the youth sports that my children, ages 9 and 6, have played. I ranked them on a scale of “really bad mood” to “rainbows and butterflies.” That scale was absolutely ridiculous, and I really don’t know what I was thinking when I wrote that.

I also received a lot of feedback on my ranking of basketball at “really bad mood” because the buzzer is too loud. I am a geriatric millennial. Don’t you expect this from me?

I’ve learned more about youth sports over the last few years. So, I’ve decided to grade youth sports this time around, because that other scale just won’t work. The sports will be graded on my personal experience, not the experience of my child.

The following sports will receive grades: baseball, basketball, and soccer. They will be graded on my knowledge of the rules, weather/location, and miscellaneous opinions. The boys also swim during the summer, but I just don’t have the space to fit it in the rankings. Sorry swimming.


Spring is my favorite season despite my horrible allergies to everything in nature. I enjoy sitting at the field and watching the boys play, especially when it feels nice outside. The baseball field also has a concession stand to fuel my need for Diet Mountain Dew.

My husband always coaches the boys’ teams, so I don’t really have to do anything but show up and watch. This gives baseball bonus points.

Overall, baseball gets an A.

buzzer. There is no concession stand so I must make sure I come prepared with caffeine.

I do love watching the boys play basketball despite the loud buzzer and cold gym. They get a little more banged up than they do in baseball, but that’s good for them.

Overall, basketball gets a B, only because of the buzzer and cold weather.



Henry has played four seasons and Simon has played two seasons of baseball. My husband was the head baseball coach at OHS for seven years. Somehow after sitting through seven years of home games, I still only know the basic rules. But that has been okay. I understand what is going on in the game and only rarely call the umpire a referee.

Baseball occurs in the spring.

Henry played one season of basketball. He was not a fan. Simon played for one season. He is a huge fan and will play again next year. I played basketball way back in the 90’s, so my knowledge of the rules isn’t exactly where it should be. If you see me looking at my phone during a basketball game, I am probably googling what a jump ball is.

Basketball occurs in the winter, my least favorite season. The basketball gym is usually cold. Yes, I wear a coat, and yes, I still strongly dislike the

Henry has played soccer for five seasons and Simon has played for three. The rules of soccer are too complex for me to comprehend. I will never understand offsides. I have never played soccer. Luckily my husband has, and he is happy to coach. I spend soccer games cheering on the boys and probably yelling something completely irrelevant about the game. My favorite quotes are “kick the ball” and “run.” Sometimes paired with “go sports.”

Soccer is a fall sport for the Johnson family. The fields are usually about ten degrees colder than the real world. I now know to bring a sweatshirt even if it’s 80 degrees outside. There are no buzzers, only whistles. The concession stand is always stocked with Diet Mountain Dew and they also sell miniature pizzas, which are a personal favorite since I was introduced to BookIt in grade school.

Overall, soccer receives an A-, only because I don’t understand the rules. Pretty solid scores for youth sports this year. Thanks for reading this far.

Have a great summer! OP

14 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024
Jamie is a full-time working mom to two little boys, wife to Logan, and part-time writer. Her pieces have been featured in HuffPost Parents, Motherly, Today Parents and PopSugar Moms. You can follow her blog at HashtagMomFail.com! KEEPING IT REAL HASHTAG MOMFAIL




Making it
Photo Jamie Plain

If you love the classic campfire treat of s’mores but want a twist on the traditional recipe, then you’ll love these s’mores Rice Krispie treats! This easy and delicious dessert combines the flavors of graham crackers, chocolate, and marshmallows in a fun and portable Rice Krispie treat form. Perfect for a picnic or a backyard barbecue, these s’mores Rice Krispie treats are sure to be a hit with both kids and adults alike. So grab your ingredients and get ready to indulge in a sweet and gooey treat that will have everyone asking for seconds!


›› 6 Tbsp unsalted butter

›› 16oz bag mini marshmallows

›› 7 cups Rice Krispie cereal

›› 1 tsp vanilla extract

›› 1/2 tsp sea salt

›› 1 cup chopped chocolate

›› 2 cups graham cracker pieces

›› Garnishes: extra mini marshmallows, chocolate, and graham cracker pieces


›› Grease a 9x13 pan and set aside.

›› Brown some butter in a large pot: cook, stirring occasionally, until the butter starts to foam and turns brown.

›› Turn heat to low and immediately add 16 oz. bag of marshmallows. Stir until all of the marshmallows are completely melted.

›› Remove from heat and add vanilla and salt. Add the cereal and gently fold it in until all of the cereal is well coated in marshmallows.

Add in another cup or two of mini marshmallows, graham cracker pieces and chocolate pieces. Gently fold it all together until combined.

›› Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan. Lightly press the mixture into the pan using a greased spatula. You can also add some toasted marshmallow, graham crackers, and chocolate pieces on top as garnish - gently press them all into the tops.

›› Let cool for one hour before cutting. Enjoy! OP

RECIPE AND PHOTO BY JAMIE PLAIN Jamie Plain is a nationally published culinary and commercial photographer working as a full-time staff photographer for Tanner Publishing. She has a knack for making tasty food and pretty art. See more of her portfolio at jaastudios.com.

16 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024
June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 17

SUMMER FUN DIY Marbleized Paper Crafting

Looking for a creative way to keep the kids entertained during those long summer days? Say goodbye to boredom and hello to creativity with this simple and engaging DIY craft project: marbleized paper!

With just a few basic supplies, you and your little ones can create beautiful, marbleized designs that are perfect for a variety of fun projects.


›› white paper (card stock or printer paper) a baking sheet

›› foam shaving cream (not gel)

›› food coloring

›› a popsicle stick (or similar tool for swirling)

›› an old credit card or gift card for scraping


›› Begin by spreading shaving cream onto the baking sheet in a thick, smooth layer.

›› Drip food coloring onto the shaving cream in various spots.

›› Use a popsicle stick to gently swirl the colors together, creating unique patterns.

›› Press a piece of paper onto the surface of the shaving cream, then lift it off after about 30 seconds.

›› Use an old credit card to scrape away the excess shaving cream from the paper, revealing the marbled design underneath.

›› Once your marbleized paper is dry, the creative possibilities are endless! Use it to cover homemade journals, create unique greeting cards, or even frame it as a piece of art. Let your imagination run wild!

With just a few simple steps, you can turn a lazy summer afternoon into a fun and creative crafting adventure. OP

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WRITTEN BY ASHLEY WEDDING Ashley is the editor of Owensboro Parent Magazine. She enjoys everyday adventures with her husband, Drew, and their three kids, Avery, Reed and Mason. Photo by Jamie Plain

VERA Lashay

LaShay Vera epitomizes resilience and determination, embodying the very essence of a leader. Despite facing challenges that would daunt many, LaShay stands tall, and according to those around her, is wellspoken, strong, and smart.

Despite a difficult childhood, LaShay is an AP student with a 3.9 GPA. She is an active member and leader at Girls, Inc. and was one of only 10 girls from the US and Canada selected to participate in their prestigious National Council.

Within the halls of Apollo, LaShay’s leadership shines brightly. She is an active participant in the ACE Program (Academic, Career Exploration) Program through Owensboro Community & Technical College and she received the Kiwanis Girl of the Month and Girl of the Year awards. Her involvement in the Leading Eagles program showcases her commitment to nurturing the next generation, as she mentors incoming freshmen, imparting wisdom and offering support as they navigate high school life. And on the basketball court, she demonstrates leadership through teamwork and dedication as a member of the E-Gals Basketball team.

Looking beyond high school, LaShay’s aspirations extend far and wide. With dreams of pursuing a career in law, she envisions herself walking the halls of academia, driven by a passion for justice and a thirst for knowledge. Yet, even as she sets her sights on the future, LaShay remains rooted in the present, dedicated to maximizing her potential during her final years at Apollo.

Guidance counselor Ashley Dillbeck has witnessed firsthand the remarkable qualities that define LaShay.

Dillbeck says LaShay possesses all the hallmarks of a great leader – driven, inquisitive, kind, and articulate. Yet, what truly sets her apart is her unwavering commitment to personal growth. Every day, she strives to be better, not only academically but also as a human being.

“Her leadership potential, public speaking prowess, and passion for change are unmatched,” Dillbeck said. “I believe she may be the President one day! This girl is unstoppable.”

under eighteen


Seventh-grader Levi Hausner embodies a rare musical talent that transcends his age. From the moment he picked up his first instrument, Levi’s journey has been one marked by dedication, passion, and a relentless pursuit of excellence.

Behind Levi’s remarkable journey lies a supportive family who nurtured his passion from a young age. Encouraged by his father, Jeff, Levi’s musical journey began 4, guided by a natural ability to learn and innovate. Despite initial challenges in learning to read music, Levi’s determination and his family’s support paved the way for his musical success.

Levi effortlessly navigates a diverse array of instruments. His repertoire is as impressive as it is varied. This young student can play drums, piano, banjo, accordion, harmonica, fiddle, viola, mandolin and sax. Recently, at the KMEA Assessments, Levi’s skill on both the violin and piano earned him the prestigious “Distinguished” ratings, leaving judges in awe of his skill and maturity as a musician. He is also a finalist for the Owensboro’s Got Talent competition.

Yet, beyond the accolades and achievements, music holds a deeper significance for Levi. It’s not just about mastering notes and rhythms; it’s about expressing himself and connecting with others through the universal language of music. Whether he’s jamming with friends at school or accompanying Heritage Christian School’s orchestra, Levi’s love for music shines through in every performance.

According to Levi, “Life would be boring without music.”

The piano, in particular, holds a special place in Levi’s heart. It’s where he feels most at home, where he can unleash his creativity and command the full range of musical expression. “I am most skilled at it,” Levi shares, “I have more control playing what I hear.”

But Levi’s talents extend far beyond the realm of music. Engaged in various activities at Heritage Christian School, including cross-country, Levi is a well-rounded student. Moreover, his involvement in his church’s youth group reflects his commitment to both his faith and community.

Looking towards the future, Levi dreams of becoming an engineer for NASA, but also continuing his passion for music. “I would like to play music at events,” Levi shares, envisioning a future where his musical talents intertwine with his career aspirations.

Levi Hausner is not just a talented musician, but a young soul whose journey inspires us to pursue all of our passions.

under eighteen

MOSS Jonathan

Jonathan Moss is the epitome of dedication and achievement both on and off the basketball court. With a passion for the game that ignited in first grade, Jonathan’s journey has been marked by milestones of excellence, culminating in his recent accolades as Messenger-Inquirer First Team All Region and Co-MVP of the 9th District in high school basketball.

Jonathan stands at the forefront of his team’s success, guiding them to an impressive 24 victories while simultaneously excelling in scoring, assists, and steals. But Jonathan’s influence extends beyond statistics; he’s a motivator, inspiring his peers to unite for the collective good. His commitment to teamwork and his ability to rally others speak volumes about his character and maturity.

Yet, Jonathan’s story isn’t confined to the basketball court. Despite his athletic prowess, he remains grounded in his academic pursuits, boasting a commendable GPA of 3.78. Recognizing the importance of education as a stepping stone to his future endeavors, Jonathan plans to challenge himself with dual credit classes in his junior and senior years, ensuring he’s well-prepared for life beyond high school.

Family holds a special place in Jonathan’s heart, serving as a source of motivation and support. As a brother and uncle, he cherishes the bond he shares with his loved ones, fueling his drive to succeed not just for himself, but for those who look up to him.

With his sights set on continuing his basketball career post-graduation, Jonathan dreams of securing more offers to play Division I basketball and leading DCHS to the state tournament.

Whether on the court or in the classroom, Jonathan approaches every challenge with tenacity and resolve, proving that with dedication and drive, any dream is within reach.

under eighteen


CALDERON Dayris Dimas

At 18 years old, Owensboro High School senior Dayris Dimas Calderon navigates her academic journey with English as her second language. Yet, instead of seeing it as a barrier, Dayris transformed her own language-learning challenges into a beacon of support for others walking a similar path.

Guidance Counselor Christie Fogle speaks fondly of Dayris, describing her as a diligent student with a perpetual smile. Despite English being her second language, Dayris has excelled academically, maintaining straight A’s throughout her high school years. She offers a helping hand to fellow English Language (EL) students, welcoming them to her school. She guides them through the maze of unfamiliar hallways, makes sure they know which bus to get on, and most importantly, she fosters a sense of belonging in their new environment.

Dayris’ passion for aiding others is deeply rooted in her own experiences. As the eldest of four children in a family that immigrated to the United States nearly two decades ago, Dayris understands the challenges of adapting to a new country and culture. Learning English became a vital skill, one she acquired through perseverance and dedication in the classroom. Now, as she prepares to embark on her college journey, Dayris is set to become a first-generation college student, a testament to her own determination and the unwavering support of her hardworking parents.

“I am beyond grateful to be who I am and who I come from,” Dayris said.

With her sights set on a future in nursing, Dayris’ plans to attend Kentucky Wesleyan College in the fall, with aspirations of transferring to the University of Louisville’s nursing extension in Owensboro. Her ultimate goal? To become a labor and delivery nurse at Owensboro Health, where she can continue to make a difference in the lives of others.

But Dayris’ impact isn’t confined to the walls of her school. As an AmeriCorps peer leader, she dedicates her time to supporting and tutoring English learning students, bridging the gap between language barriers and academic success. She’s also an active member of the National Honor Society and HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America), where her leadership and achievements shine brightly.

As Dayris reflects on her journey thus far, her pride in her accomplishments is evident. Yet, amidst her own successes, her heart remains focused on serving others. Dayris’ story is one of resilience, compassion, and the potential that lies within every individual, regardless of where they come from or what language they speak.

under eighteen

BOYD Treasure

Treasure Boyd’s journey at Heritage Park High School is a testament to her resilience and determination.

Relocating from Indiana, Treasure’s path to success was not a straight one. At the young age of 11, she found herself navigating the complexities of the foster care system. Her high school experience was marked by constant upheaval, with several changes in enrollment and academic struggles leaving her credit deficient upon her arrival at Heritage Park.

Yet, despite the challenges she faced, Treasure refused to be defined by her circumstances.

“Since coming to Heritage Park I have opened up and found love in my teachers,” she said. “I’m more open and not so sheltered because they accepted my loud personality and didn’t try to dim my light.”

It was during the school’s Veterans Day ceremony that Treasure’s light shone brightest. With courage, she sang the National Anthem in front of her entire school.

Treasure is known for her fearlessness in standing up against bullying and advocating for herself and others. She embodies courage in the face of adversity.

For Treasure, the journey towards success is fueled by a determination to defy the odds. She is driven by the desire to excel in every aspect of her life, to rise above mediocrity and embrace greatness. Inspired by the support of her mother and the acceptance she found at Heritage Park, Treasure radiates positivity and confidence.

“I want to be the best, not average,” Treasure said.

Treasure is prepared to embark on the next chapter of her journey. With aspirations of a career in cosmetology and nursing, she has her sights set on conquering new horizons and leaving her mark on the world.

under eighteen

BEST Bellany

Bellany Best’s journey as a servant leader began at age 9 when she felt the call to become a missionary during a revival at her church. Since then, she has dedicated herself wholeheartedly to spreading love and hope to those in need. “I hope to become a missionary and travel to places that need me most,” Bellany shares. Her dream is to become a nurse and work at Amazima, a Christ-centered school in Uganda that provides education, medical care, and discipleship for women and children.

At just 16 years old, Bellany serves as the missions director at her church, where she organizes fundraisers to support her passion for missions work. From crafting and selling handmade clay jewelry to hosting bowling events and movie nights, Bellany has used creative ways to help give back to others.

“None of this is for me. Everything I do is for God,” she emphasizes.

Despite her age, Bellany’s impact on her community and beyond is immeasurable. Through her monthly missions meetings, she educates the youth at her church about mission work across the world, instilling in them a sense of compassion and global awareness.

This July, Bellany will embark on her first missions trip to the Shechem Children’s Home in the Philippines, a place dear to her heart. “I have been sending donations since February 2023, and I am excited to finally have the opportunity to visit in person,” she shares. Her fundraising efforts, coupled with the support of her church community, have made this dream a reality, providing much-needed resources to children affected by human trafficking.

Beyond her work with the church, Bellany is actively involved in various school clubs and organizations, including Fellowship of Christian Athletes and the International Club at Apollo.

According to Apollo High School guidance counselor Keith Johnson, “Leaders in school aren’t always the young man in the front of the room. They aren’t always the young lady that is in the most clubs. Sometimes the best leaders are the servants, who put the needs of others in front of their own. When I think of Bellany, I think of a young lady that doesn’t want the attention of others, but one that would rather serve and glorify God with the gifts and talents that she has been given.”



EMULLEN Parker under eighteen

ighth-grader Parker Mullen excels at what some may consider two very different passions – football and art. Showcasing a unique blend of athleticism and creativity, Parker is a stand-out student at his school.

Parker’s artistic skill is nothing short of extraordinary, according to Chelsea Hoffman, CVMS guidance counselor. “His drawings come to life and are out of this world,” she said. Parker’s creativity weaves together intricate designs that captivate the imagination and cleverly incorporate his personal interests.

As a dedicated football player for CVMS, he embodies the spirit of sportsmanship and determination. “His coach describes him as relentless, goal-driven to be the best, and a true sportsman,” shares Hoffman. Parker’s passion for the game is matched only by his commitment to excellence, both on and off the field.

“Art and football are not necessarily intertwined, but they are just examples of how broad mine, or anyone’s interests can be, and they show different parts of my personality,” Parker said. “I don’t think a person has to choose one thing in life to excel at or be interested in. A person can like sports, and also like and appreciate the arts as well, and I’m an example of that.”

Yet, what truly sets Parker apart is his kindness and leadership. Whether he’s volunteering with kindergarten classes through Guys in Ties or lending a helping hand to a friend in need, Parker’s maturity and compassion shine through. “You will never meet Parker without a smile on his face,” said Hoffman. “His maturity and kindness towards others are contagious.”

For Parker, leadership isn’t just about leading by example; it’s about character. “To me, leadership means being selfless and not just caring about yourself,” he said. “It’s about doing the right thing and working hard even when others are not watching you.” Through his involvement in National Junior Honor Society, Guys in Ties, and football, Parker demonstrates these qualities day in and day out, inspiring those around him.

As Parker looks to the future, his dreams are as vast and vibrant as his artistic creations. “I want to continue to grow stronger physically, mentally, and spiritually,” he shares. Entering high school next year, Parker has signed up for introduction to theater, trying his hand at a new form of artistic expression.

From pursuing his passions to excelling on the football field, Parker’s journey is filled with endless possibilities. His journey reminds us that true greatness lies not in talent alone but also in making a positive impact on the world around us.

AGOODWIN Alaya under eighteen

laya Goodwin, an all-A student and a member of the National Honor Society, radiates ambition, resilience, and a profound commitment to community service. Her story is not just about academic excellence but a narrative of compassion, leadership, and a strong desire to make a difference.

Alaya celebrates diversity and promotes cultural understanding. She approached her school’s guidance counselor, Chelsea Hoffman, with a vision to honor Black History Month in a more inclusive and meaningful way. Together, they orchestrated a series of weekly presentations highlighting the often-overlooked heroes of black history, breaking away from the predictable narratives to shed light on lesser-known figures who paved the way for generations to come. The next year, Alaya organized a panel of local black leaders to speak to the school.

“The way I see kids talk and bully because of how others look and act is what motivated me to let them know that it’s not right nor is it popular to do so,” Alaya said. “I took it in my hands to educate this generation on how to respect and understand what they say and how it hurts us.”

Alaya’s motivation stems from her personal experiences with discrimination and bullying. She has seen firsthand ignorance and prejudice and she knew she had to take a stand. For her, it wasn’t just about educating her peers; it was about fostering empathy, respect, and acceptance for people of all races and backgrounds.

Driven by her values and fueled by her faith, Alaya founded the College View Culture and Community Connections Club (CV3), a safe haven where students of every race, gender, and sexuality can come together to celebrate their differences and forge meaningful connections. As the president of CV3, Alaya leads by example, inspiring her peers to embrace diversity and stand up against injustice.

“I was taught as a kid to be prepared for the unprepared and that’s what makes me a leader,” Alaya said. “You have to be that person that stands out in front of a crowd.”

But Alaya’s impact extends far beyond the walls of her school. As an active member of Breaking the Cycle, a local organization dedicated to steering troubled youth away from violence and incarceration, she lends her voice and her talents to uplift her community. She has been recognized for her advocacy of mental health awareness and volunteers as both a student ambassador and a tutor.

According to Breaking the Cycle founder Breonna Greer, “Alaya has shown exceptional resilience in overcoming adversity and steadfastly advocating for social justice when faced with discrimination. Her multifaceted achievements epitomize the diverse talents and contributions of youth in our community.”

Looking to the future, Alaya dreams of becoming a dermatologist, using her skills and knowledge to give back to the community that has supported her every step of the way.

Alaya Goodwin, is not just a student, but also a catalyst for change and a testament to the transformative power of compassion and courage. She reminds us all that no dream is too big and no challenge too daunting.



For senior William Randolph, traditional classroom settings have often posed challenges. But the unique approach to education provided at OIA has helped William thrive.

When William began studying CAD modeling and 3D print design, he truly found his niche. Under the guidance of his teachers and mentors, William has not only excelled but soared to new heights. “When I realized I could design anything I wanted on a 3-D printer, I got hooked on it,” William shares.

Recently, William entered a national competition through the Educational Army Outreach Program where students were asked to design a pin for veterans appreciation. William’s design was chosen as a finalist out of 1,700 submissions and ultimately he won his age division. He traveled to Ohio over Memorial Day weekend for a veterans recognition where he was able to hand out his pins to those in attendance.

William, who has autism, said he hopes his story will help encourage and empower others. “Although it may be hard, never stop pursuing what you love,” he said.

William admits that autism is a “blessing and a curse.”

“It helps you see the world in a different way but blocks out some of the things you need to be highly successful,” he said.

To help him find success in high school and in his transition to college, William receives Pre-Employment Transition Services through Puzzle Pieces, which provide invaluable support and guidance as he prepares for adulthood.

Puzzle Pieces Pre-ETS Manager Bobbi Sandifer said, “It’s truly evident that William leads with his heart in all things that he does. I am lucky to have gotten to watch him grow into a student who has found his passions and taken those and turned it into something productive that helps others or brings others joy.”

In addition to his academic pursuits, William is also carving out a path for himself in the workforce. This summer, he will be joining the team at Holiday World, where he hopes to gain valuable experience and explore new opportunities. “I will be a sweeper and hope to possibly work into other positions as I get more experience,” William said.

Next year, William plans to attend Owensboro Community & Technical College and enter their electrical program, where he hopes to eventually land an apprenticeship.

William’s journey reminds us that with passion and perseverance, anything is possible, and that the greatest achievements often arise from the deepest challenges. As he continues to pursue his dreams and make his mark on the world, William is an inspiration for us all.

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DECHMAN Jonathan

At Grace Christian Academy, there’s a standout student who draws the attention of all the younger kids. Whether he’s on the basketball court or simply walking through the halls, senior Jonathan Dechman is like a magnet for these young students, who eagerly rush to him, hoping for a hug or a highfive.

Described by his principal, Dr. Chris Holmes, as a beacon of leadership both on and off the court, Jonathan’s commitment to excellence extends far beyond the realms of academics and athletics. Whether he’s volunteering in his church, serving his community, or lending a helping hand at school, Jonathan is willing to go above and beyond. For him, service isn’t just a duty—it’s a calling, a way to put his faith into action and model his life after Christ.

“He possesses traits that seem increasingly uncommon in today’s culture, and he uses them, not to make himself look good, but to benefit others,” Holmes said. “I am so proud of Jonathan – he is living proof that a young man can be what he should be!”

Jonathan’s journey at Grace Christian Academy has been marked by numerous achievements. As a dedicated athlete, he has left his mark on the school’s sports programs – from leading the cross country team to a remarkable 2nd place finish at the KCAA State Meet to being recognized with the prestigious 2023 KCAA Mr. Cross Country Award. His skill on the basketball court earned him the title of GCA’s most tenacious defender and made him a finalist for the KCAA Mr. Basketball Award. And now, in his final season on the golf team, Jonathan is gearing up for the KCAA State Championship.

Jonathan received the GCA Male Student Athlete of the Year Award all four years, an achievement for which he is most proud.

Despite his busy schedule, Jonathan makes time for the things that are important to him like volunteering, playing guitar, or giving a simple high-five to a younger student at GCA. To him, being a hero isn’t about fame or recognition—it’s about making a difference in the lives of others, one small act of kindness at a time.

After graduation, Jonathan plans to embark on a career as an HVAC technician with Henry’s Plumbing and Heating, with dreams of one day owning his own company.

In a world where true leaders are often hard to come by, Jonathan Dechman stands out as a shining example of what it means to lead with integrity, compassion, and humility. As he prepares to embark on the next chapter of his journey, one thing is certain: the sky is truly the limit for Jonathan.

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WOOD Bella

Bella Wood is a small-town sensation sweetening the lives of locals with her passion for baking, which has blossomed into a flourishing business, Sweet B’s Bakery.

Bella’s journey into the world of baking began at the young age of 8, under the loving guidance of her grandmother. From those early moments in the kitchen, a spark ignited within her, fueling a lifelong passion.

At just 16, Bella took the leap and started her own business, driven by a desire to share her delectable dessert creations with her community. Specializing in French macarons, she quickly made a name for herself, gracing local market events at Reid’s Orchard, The Cottage, and Hayden Farms with her irresistible treats.

One day, Bella plans to open a brick-andmortar presence in Owensboro, dreaming of a place where locals could indulge in her confections and forge lasting connections.

In 2024, Bella’s dedication and talent earned her a spot in The World’s Greatest Baker contest, a prestigious opportunity that put her skills to the test on a global stage. Through multiple rounds of competition, Bella showcased her creations and shared her story, captivating hearts along the way.

Despite falling just shy of the top spot, Bella’s spirit remained unbroken. Refusing to let setbacks dim her drive for success, she returned to her kitchen with renewed determination, ready to conquer new horizons.

Beyond her baking endeavors, Bella is a beacon of kindness in her community. From donating blood at the Western Kentucky Regional Blood Center to volunteering at the local animal shelter, she embodies the true spirit of service and compassion.

Through it all, Bella remains grounded in her roots, grateful for the opportunity to share her love of baking with the world.

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Eighth-grader Khalil Shemwell embodies determination, leadership, and compassion, setting an inspiring example for his peers and community alike.

Khalil’s journey of triumph begins with his commitment to Breaking the Cycle, a transformative program dedicated to empowering youth. Under the mentorship of founder Breonna Greer, Khalil has emerged as a leader, earning the prestigious Breaking the Cycle Scholar Award multiple times. His innate ability to inspire and uplift others has made him a natural leader among his peers, fostering a culture of positivity and resilience within the program.

A true athlete at heart, you can find Khalil on the basketball court and the football field with unmatched skill and dedication, proudly representing Owensboro Middle School with every shot and touchdown. His passion for sports is matched only by his academics, as he consistently makes the honor roll.

Yet, amidst his rigorous academic and athletic pursuits, Khalil remains grounded in his commitment to community service. Whether he’s lending a helping hand at the Northwest Alliance neighborhood clean-up or participating in Serve The Boro, Khalil makes giving back a priority.

In his own words, Khalil shares his philosophy on leadership, emphasizing the importance of responsibility and authenticity. For Khalil, being a leader means staying true to oneself, leading by example, and guiding others with integrity and compassion. His genuine humility and unwavering dedication set him apart as a role model for his peers, inspiring them to strive for greatness in every endeavor.

Looking towards the future, Khalil dreams of attending a Division I college, where he hopes to further hone his athletic talents and pursue his passion for sports. Whether he graces the courts of the NBA or the fields of the NFL, Khalil is driven by a desire to excel.

As Khalil continues to write the next chapter of his remarkable journey, one thing remains abundantly clear: his commitment to excellence serves as an inspiration to all who have the privilege of knowing him.

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CURRY Eriyah

Seventh-grader Eriyah Curry possesses a spirit that radiates excellence and compassion in every aspect of her life, leaving her mark not only in academics and athletics but also in community service and leadership.

Through Breaking the Cycle, a mentor program dedicated to empowering youth, Eriyah has blossomed into a shining example of dedication and service. She has embraced the values of community service and leadership, speaking at local businesses in order to promote the organization’s mission. Eriyah seizes opportunities to further her career aspirations by participating in college trips organized by Breaking the Cycle.

Academically, Eriyah’s achievements speak volumes about her commitment to excellence. Consistently earning a place on the honor roll, she is dedicated to her studies. But Eriyah’s pursuit of excellence extends beyond the classroom. On the athletic front, she shines just as brightly, excelling in track and field, cross country, and basketball.

“I participate in as many activities as possible,” Eriyah said. “I feel it is important because the community needs more people to serve and help and I enjoy it!”

When asked about her proudest accomplishments, Eriyah humbly reflects on her achievements in basketball and cross country. However, she acknowledges that her success is not solely her own. With determination and the unwavering support of her parents and faith in God, Eriyah continues to strive towards her goals, fueled by a desire to inspire others.

But perhaps what truly sets Eriyah apart is her compassionate spirit and inclusive nature. She prides herself on being thoughtful of others’ needs, always striving to ensure that everyone feels included and treated fairly. For Eriyah, being a leader means taking charge and responsibility, while also uplifting those around her.

Looking towards the future, Eriyah remains steadfast in her determination to keep working hard while enjoying what she does. With dreams of playing college basketball and becoming a multi-sport athlete, she is poised to continue making waves both on and off the court.

In Eriyah Curry, we find not just a student, but a shining example of resilience, compassion, and leadership. Her journey serves as a reminder that with dedication, kindness, and a heart full of passion, anything is possible.

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ESTES Chapel

Chapel Estes, a vivacious 15-year-old in the eighth grade at Daviess County Middle School, not only excels in her academic pursuits but also shines as a leader – and queen – among her peers.

According to DCMS guidance counselor Melissa Phelps, “Chapel is her own person regardless of ‘norms.’ She doesn’t let Down syndrome keep her from doing the things she loves.”

Chapel is described as fearlessly marching to the beat of her own drum. Her social nature is a cornerstone of her character. Her innate ability to include everyone and make them feel valued is a testament to her natural leadership qualities. Outgoing and charismatic, Chapel effortlessly creates a welcoming environment wherever she goes, fostering connections and friendships with ease.

Chapel’s friends affectionately describe her as fun, sassy, and confident, traits that only add to her magnetic charm. It’s no wonder that she was overwhelmingly voted as Queen at the school’s Spring Fling dance, a testament to the love and respect she garners from her peers.

“Her dream came true that night and she loved every part of it,” said Chapel’s mom, Renea. Chapel is multi-talented, cheering on the DCMS cheer team and dancing for Musick Studios, showcasing her passion for music and performance. Chapel will be moving on to cheer for the high school next year.

Renea attributes a lot of Chapel’s success to wisdom that her doctors imparted when she was born: “Never treat her any differently than your other children. Have no limits and be her strongest advocate.”

“We have never let Down syndrome define her,” she said. “As a family, we embrace the philosophy that ‘low expectations are a greater disability than Down syndrome itself.’”

Renea says that despite facing challenges, including her speech, Chapel forms profound connections with everyone she meets. Her simple yet heartfelt compliments leave a lasting impression, ensuring that no one feels left out, a reflection of her own desire to be included and valued by all.

Through her inclusive nature, leadership qualities, and infectious enthusiasm, Chapel inspires others to dream big, embrace life fully and celebrate the beauty of diversity.



Tanner McFadden’s journey through the world of hockey is nothing short of remarkable, a testament to his dedication and the support of his family and community. From the young age of 4, Tanner’s life has revolved around the ice rink.

His love for the sport was ingrained in him from birth, being the 12th member of his family to lace up and hit the ice. Inspired by his siblings and relatives, Tanner’s passion for hockey only grew stronger with each passing year. His early years were marked by determination and a burning desire to play, even if it meant sneaking into his siblings’ gear just to get a taste of the game.

As he progressed through the ranks of youth hockey in Owensboro, Tanner’s talent became evident. But like many young athletes, he faced challenges along the way. Rejection from the local high school team served as a setback, but Tanner refused to let it define him.

Instead, he embraced his parents’ mantra of “pray, trust and wait,” knowing that opportunities would come if he remained patient and steadfast in his pursuit of his dreams.

And come they did, in the form of an invitation to join the Evansville Youth Hockey Association, under the mentorship of seasoned coaches.

With Evansville as his new hockey home, Tanner’s journey took on a new chapter, one filled with growth, resilience, and triumph. He transitioned from defenseman to forward, honing his skills and making his mark on the ice with the Thunder Varsity Team.

His junior year proved to be a pinnacle moment. The Thunder was the first team to bring home the Indiana Hoosier League Championship to Evansville and the first EYHA team to play as a finalist in the 4A State Championship. “Although we lost 1-0, we felt like champions,” Tanner said. With many firsts for the program, the Evansville Youth Hockey Association noted this team as one of the greatest teams in EYHA history.

But Tanner’s story extends far beyond the rink. Despite his demanding schedule as a student-athlete, he has found time to excel in other pursuits, from excelling on his school’s golf team to his role at Ollie Wash, where he is training to become a night manager.

As he looks ahead to his senior year and beyond, the future is bright for Tanner McFadden. With his sights set on college and a career in business and economics, he is poised to tackle whatever challenges come his way with the same tenacity and grace that have defined his journey thus far.

In Tanner’s own words, “the sky is the limit,” and with his determination and the support of those who believe in him, there’s no doubt he’ll reach new heights both on and off the ice.

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Born with achondroplasia, Lily Howard has faced her share of challenges. Yet, rather than allowing her condition to define her, she has embraced it as a part of who she is. She has learned to advocate for herself and others with disabilities, proving that obstacles can be overcome with resilience and grace.

“I want people to know that even though I am smaller than the average eighth grader I can still do things and accomplish things,” Lily said. “I don’t want people to think I’m disabled, but that I do things in a different way. I’m differently abled!”

Lily is not just a student but a shining example of compassion and leadership. She is a member of the Student Council and Yearbook Club and she actively contributes to her school community, leaving a positive impact wherever she goes.

But Lily’s influence extends far beyond the walls of her school. A seasoned actress with six years of experience, Lily has found her passion in theater. It all started with a suggestion from a family friend, and since then, she has never looked back. From her first role in “Monster in the Closet” to her upcoming starring role in “Finding Nemo, Jr.” Lily has captivated audiences with her talent and charisma. She is also passionate about makeup and makeup effects, an art she has showcased in local productions and events.

Lily’s love for the stage is a platform for her to inspire and uplift others. Through her involvement with the Theatre Workshop of Owensboro and the Penguin Project, Lily has dedicated herself to her craft. Whether it’s through acting, mentoring, or using her skills in makeup artistry, Lily is committed to entertaining her audience as well making a difference in the lives of those around her.

“Theatre gives me a way to help others and make them happy,” Lily said. “If I can help transform a shy kid into an actor on stage that has confidence it makes me feel good that I was able to help somebody.”

When asked about her future aspirations, Lily knows exactly what she wants to do. Her dream? To grace the stages of Broadway one day. But before that, she plans to pursue her passion for theatre at Murray State University, followed by specialized training in makeup effects at Tom Savini’s program.

Lily’s journey is continuing to unfold, but with her talent, determination, and heart, who knows what stage we may see her on one day.



Throughout his middle school journey, Lucas Congleton has consistently exemplified the values of leadership and service, earning the nomination for the “Most Christ-Like” award at his school each year — an achievement for which he is most proud.

Described by his guidance counselor, Leah Schwindel, as a “bright, kind, and devoted young man,” Lucas is the epitome of an intrinsically motivated student. His commitment to maintaining honor roll grades while actively participating in athletics and various extracurriculars speaks volumes about his work ethic and determination.

Soccer isn’t just a sport for Lucas; it’s his passion. As a member of several local teams and the OCMS track team, Lucas thrives in the competitive arena, showcasing his skills as a player and a leader. His role as a middle school captain of the soccer team highlights not only his athletic skill but also his ability to inspire and motivate his teammates. He was also chosen as JV player of the year as an eighth grader for 2023 soccer year.

Rooted in his deep faith and sense of community, Lucas actively engages in various service projects both within and outside his school. “Community service is a priority because I enjoy helping others and working toward goals,” Lucas said.

Whether he’s participating in Buddy Ball, making Christmas cookies for neighbors, cooking for St. Benedicts homeless shelter, working at his parish’s neighborhood block party, serving at Catholic mass as an alter server or building beds for children in need through Heavenly Sleep, Lucas approaches each project with enthusiasm and compassion.

Lucas envisions a future where he may pursue a career in medicine, but he is also contemplating the path of a Roman Catholic Priest. Regardless of the professional avenue he chooses, Lucas’s ultimate dream is to “be a good person and a pillar to the community, serving others.”

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Eh Skiter’s journey is one that weaves together resilience, ambition, and compassion. From her early years in a refugee camp in Thailand to her role as a student leader at Burns Middle School, eighth grader is an inspiration.

Born to parents who sought refuge from the civil war in Myanmar, Eh’s upbringing was shaped by the adversity her family faced. Upon arriving in the United States in 2014, Eh and her family embraced their new home in Owensboro with open arms. While adapting to a new language and culture presented its hurdles, she found solace and support in the community around her. With the guidance of loving teachers, Eh mastered English and began to thrive academically and socially.

Her involvement in extracurricular activities speaks volumes about her passion for learning and her commitment to making a difference. Eh plays volleyball and tennis and participates in Kentucky United Nations Assembly (KUNA), where she was named Outstanding Ambassador. She is in her school’s Student Technology Leadership Program as well as National Junior Honor Society and has been named a BMS Outstanding Fox.

But Eh’s leadership extends beyond her achievements; it’s rooted in her unwavering kindness and empathy. As a friend and advocate, she uplifts those around her, fostering a sense of belonging and empowerment within her school community. Her genuine desire to support others, whether by lending a listening ear or offering a helping hand, embodies the true essence of leadership.

Eh dreams of studying psychology at Princeton University and forging a career path that allows her to give back to her family.

“I want to make my parents proud,” Eh said. “Growing up, they weren’t able to get an education, and they worked day and night in order to provide for me and my siblings. I want to provide for them, and be able to graduate, something they weren’t able to do.”

Eh exemplifies the limitless potential within each of us to overcome adversity and create positive change. As she continues to chart her course towards a future filled with promise, Eh reminds us all that with determination and kindness, anything is possible.

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Super Readers Recommend! Middle Grades Books are the Best Books

Have you ever noticed that the vast majority of the best children’s novels have protagonists that are ages 10 to 14? And yet, this is the very age when kids begin to lose their grit for reading. This summer, challenge your preteens and teens to turn off their screens and get lost in a book! We asked super readers from across Owensboro to share their favorite recommendations!

Super reader: YAO YAO DONG

Daviess County Middle School


The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart

This series is filled with wonderful and creative stories of these 4 kids called Reynie Muldoon, George “Sticky” Washington, Constance Contraire, and Kate Wetherall who are all geniuses in their own ways. It teaches you the importance of cooperation, and I love how every kid has their own personalities and attitudes.

The Paper Girl of Paris by Jordyn Taylor

The Paper Girl of Paris contains the most ADORABLE love story while also being a historical fiction. It’s in the perspectives of Alice, who’s in modern times, and Alice’s great-aunt, Adalyn, who’s in the midst of the Nazi occupation of France. The message is that we all have to summon the courage to fight for equality.

Super Reader: ANNALISE ABEL College View Middle School

Recommendations: The War that Saved my Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

This easy-read historical fiction book is about a disabled girl with a clubfoot during World War II in England. I love how she learns to overcome the battles in her own life and how she learns her self-worth.

The Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson

In this teen mystery book the main character, Pip, is trying to find out what really happened to Sal Signh and his girlfriend. I love how this novel leaves readers at the edge of their seats wondering, “What will happen next?”

Super Reader: TRINITY W iMiddle School


The Quantum Weirdness of the Almost Kiss by Amy Noelle Parks

The Quantum Weirdness of the Almost Kiss is one of my favorite books because it is funny and also very heartwarming at the same time. This is a book that I can read over and over.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is also one of my favorite books because it is hilarious at the beginning, and very sad at the end. I loved the development of these characters throughout the series.

WRITTEN BY KATIE ALBERS Katie grew up in Owensboro and loved words so much that she became a school librarian and even alphabetized her family: Josh, Katie, Lance, Mallory, Noelle, Oaken, and Polly (the cat).

40 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024

Super reader: TATUM DEWITT iMiddle School


Never Vacation With Your Ex by Austin Siegemund-Broka and Emily Wibberley

When you read Never Vacation With Your Ex, it kind of makes you feel like you are there witnessing it with the characters.

Bellegarde by Jaime Lilac

When reading Bellegarde Bloom I immediately connected with the book. Overall, they are both amazing books and should be on your must-read list for this summer.

Super Reader: HAYDEN CHRISTENSEN Burns Middle School


The Lightning Thief by Rick Riorden

There is a new Percy Jackson and the Olympians show streaming on Disney+ which is based off of Greek mythology. If you like that series, then you may also like the books by Rick Riordan.

Prisoner of Cell 25 by Richard Paul Evans

Also check out the Michael Vey series by Richard Paul Evans because it is super entertaining and thrilling.


Avoid the Summer Reading Slip

Institute 10+ minutes of DEAR time as a full family habit each day. (Drop Everything And Read)

Schedule regular visits to the library in your calendar of summer fun!

Tackle the reading challenges at the public library!

Keep books in the car and make a rule against driving and screens.

Most importantly: Let your kids see you reading for pleasure! They will be more apt to do the same.

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Free Sports Physicals for StudentAthletes at Owensboro Health

As your children prepare for the upcoming sports seasons, ensuring they are physically ready to participate is essential. Owensboro Health Orthopedics and Sports Medicine is here to support your student-athlete’s journey with free sports physicals in June. These evaluations play a crucial role in their sports and overall health journey.


These exams are important for many reasons. First, they can help to identify any underlying health conditions that could increase the risk of injury. For example, a doctor may find that an athlete has a heart condition that could put them at risk for sudden cardiac injury. Second, sports physicals can help identify musculoskeletal problems that could lead to pain or injury. For example, a doctor may find that an athlete has a knee injury that could be aggravated by playing sports.

Early detection and management can prevent complications and enhance

performance, making these assessments a key step in your child’s sports preparation.


The orthopedic team is ready to welcome your student-athletes at the Owensboro Health Pleasant Valley Medical Building, located at 1301 Pleasant Valley Rd., Suite 500B. We’re open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., until the end of June, offering flexible options to fit your busy schedule. To make an appointment, please call 270-4177940.

This service is also available in Henderson, Monday through Friday, 8 to 11 a.m., at the Owensboro Health Henderson Healthplex, Orthopedics Clinic at 1200 Barret Blvd., Henderson, KY 42420.


In addition to walk-in options at our clinic facility, we are excited to

announce that we will be hosting walkin physicals at several local schools, offering even more opportunities for your student-athlete to receive their physical at a convenient location. Several local high schools and middle schools had the opportunity for these physicals in May, and more are to come in June:

Henderson County High School

June 5 • 3 to 8 p.m.

Henderson County High School

June 6 • 9 a.m. to noon

Apollo High School

June 19 • 9 a.m. to noon

Grayson County High School

June 20 • 1 to 4 p.m.

Do not miss this opportunity to have your middle or high school student’s health evaluated by our specialists, ensuring they are ready to participate safely in the sports they love. OP

ABOUT OWENSBORO HEALTH ORTHOPEDICS AND SPORTS MEDICINE: Athletic activities keep you healthy but can also lead to injury. When you need help getting back in the game, turn to the sports medicine specialists at Owensboro Health. With locations in Owensboro, Henderson, Powderly and Leitchfield, trust us for an accurate diagnosis and precise treatment of many sports-related injuries at a facility close to home.

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Helping Children Navigate the World of Friendship

Friendships play a major role in how we view the world, develop our beliefs and perspective. Childhood friendships have a certain kind of magical quality to them. You can probably think of some friends right now that you have known since elementary school. These early friendships provide companionship but also help to support a child’s social, emotional and cognitive skills. While parents may feel they have little influence on their child's peer interactions, they can significantly impact their development by teaching and modeling healthy relationship skills. Parents and guardians can have a huge impact on helping their kids develop healthy relationships and friendships by teaching and modeling these skills.

Close friendships offer many benefits, from combating loneliness to improving our overall well-being. For instance, during adolescence, having close friends can help with stress and anxiety, making high school more manageable. Friendships enrich life, providing a space for authenticity, shared experiences, and support during tough times, which can increase confidence and self-esteem, particularly in youth. A good rule of thumb is that you can survive high school if you have at least one good friend.

Friendship making skills are critical for a person to thrive in the world. Exploring what it takes to be a good friend and nurturing these connections can create lifelong bonds that shape one's future. How can we guide our children in cultivating enduring friendship skills? These five

steps below can help you develop these skills in your children.


When your children are little encourage play with other children. Create opportunities for your children to interact with other children. These types of activities teach children to take turns, share and learn empathy. Every interaction can be a learning opportunity.


Research shows that children who have strong social skills have a higher chance of staying in school, happier in their future relationships and maintaining better health overall. You can model social skills that encourage communication, sharing and being able to express yourself. When children have strong social skills this is the foundation for developing healthy, lasting friendships.


Kindness is a big part of a positive relationship. Encourage your child to be kind to others, welcoming and open to new friendships and to stand up against bullying of others. You can ask your kids what they did today to make other kids feel included or happy. And you can reciprocate by telling them how you made others feel included and showed kindness. It sounds like a simple enough task but you are actually sowing seeds that will impact

their future interactions with others.


This is an important part of helping them to have lasting relationships. As your children are figuring out friendships you have to be an active listener. Sometimes when our children bring us a problem they are having with a friend, we don’t see it as a big deal. Keep in mind that it’s a huge deal in their world. You can support your child’s friendships by being actively involved and knowing what is going on. You can help to guide conflict resolution and problem solving skills.


As the parent or guardian be the positive example for your child. You can be the friendship model for them by showing them through your own friendships and social interactions. Be the very best example of showing others kindness, empathy and respect. Your child is learning every single day by watching your interactions with others.

I think we can all agree that not all friendships are created equal. Sometimes it takes awhile to find our people. Friendships aren’t perfect. They take work and time. They require active participation and interaction. Children don’t know what they don’t know.

Summer is the perfect time of year to practice these skills. The sooner you start, the better off your kids will be. OP

44 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024

Out & About


7 Local Things to do THIS SEASON





Porchfest is an exciting event that brings 10,000 members of our community together for a day of fun and music. It’s a celebration of local talent, showcasing local musicians playing on the porches of houses in the Griffith Avenue neighborhood. Each stage features numerous acts playing their own unique music, from rock to jazz to folk. Grab your lawn chairs, come out and enjoy the music!


Finding Nemo, Jr.




Embark on an unforgettable journey under the sea with “Finding Nemo, Jr.,” a delightful musical performed by talented young actors for all ages! Based on the beloved Disney film, this heartwarming tale follows the adventures of a young fish captured by a diver, and his father’s courageous quest to find him. Presented by Theatre Workshop of Owensboro, catch the show at The Empress Theater from June 13 to 30. Showtimes are Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m. Tickets are $20 and can be purchased by calling (270) 683-5333 or visiting theatreworkshop.org.


The Strawberry Festival

JUNE 8 & 9

THE COTTAGE, 6869 KY-56 {

Now in its third year, The Cottage’s Strawberry Festival has become a beloved community event, attracting thousands of attendees over the two days. With the introduction of the Car Show, visitors can anticipate an electrifying blend of classic cars, family-friendly entertainment, over 150 vendors, “truck town,” pony rides, a petting zoo, and much more. Alongside the Car Show, festival-goers can enjoy live music, scrumptious strawberry treats, artisanal crafts, and a myriad of other activities.

46 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024

4th of July Festival



The celebration will get started in Smothers Park along the downtown riverfront at 5 p.m. Live music will begin with an opening act at 5 p.m., and The Downtown Band at 7 p.m.. At 9:15 p.m., the 15-minute fireworks show will be launched from barges on the Ohio River for everyone gathered along the riverfront. Three additional locations throughout the city will also be launched simultaneously with the riverfront show. These locations include Southern Little League Fields, Owensboro Sportscenter/ Moreland Park, and Owensboro Warehouse Leasing/former GE plant. Spectators can tune in to 92.5 FM WBKR to listen to the soundtrack to which the fireworks have been choreographed.

German American Bank Fireworks Festival

JULY 5 @ 5 P.M.


Mark your calendars for July 5th as the German American Bank Fireworks Festival lights up Yellow Creek Park! Starting at 5 p.m., enjoy a host of activities including food trucks, inflatables, a petting zoo, pony rides, and live music - all for free! Don’t forget your lawn chair for prime viewing as the fireworks dazzle the sky at 8:45 p.m.

June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 47 4 5

Sunset Flower Market Day


FROM 4 TO 8 P.M.


Looking for a great way to spend an evening with family, friends, or that special someone? Well, look no more! Come on out to Reid’s Orchard Sunset Flower Market Day for food, vendors, live music and you can pick your own flower bouquet!

Yellow Creek Park Car Show



Don’t miss the Car Show at Yellow Creek Park, presented by the Corvette Lover’s Vette Club! Whether you’re cruising in a classic car or a rugged truck, all vehicles are welcome with a $20 registration fee payable on-site. Join from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. for a showcase of stunning automobiles and trucks.

48 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024 6 7 OUT & ABOUT

Your Guide to SUMMER

50 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024
Photo by Alex Morgan, courtesy of ROMP Festival

FAMILY FUN Takes Center Stage at ROMP

This June, ROMP Festival will return to Owensboro for its 21st year of music and memorable fun! Held at Yellow Creek Park, the festival is nestled in the rolling hills of the 150 acre spacious grounds. Most notable to the park are the serene surroundings, complete with a small lake for fishing, beautiful nature trails, and a rustic pioneer village.

Aside from the very best in bluegrass music ROMP offers a plethora of other activities for the whole family. Families can enjoy free events daily throughout the duration of the festival. Unique interactive musical workshops, local food trucks, craft vendors, and Kentucky Proud products highlight the three day long event.

ROMP offers free admission to

kids 12 and under and is a familyfriendly festival, so there is much to see and explore. The park’s splash pad is always a hit during the warm summer temps, and kids can also investigate the inclusive “ROMP Kids Zone.”

The “Kid Zone” is equipped with daily entertainment and fun for children of all ages! This year the area will feature a live banjo demo and workshop where children are invited to “build their own’’ afterwards. Children’s yoga is set to fully engage youngsters in movement and fun! There will also be harmonica and kazoo lessons available from Art the Dude complete with a free instrument. Hootie the Owl of the Western Kentucky Raptor Center, a non profit organization dedicated to the conservation of birds of prey is set to

make an appearance as well!

Kids Zone will be fully immersed in their “Bluegrass Era” celebrating the life of Jerry Garcia providing crafts like “Groovy Garcia Glasses” and “Light the Way” lanterns. In addition to these fun activities festival friends can also paint, create, and listen to an interactive story about the father of bluegrass Bill Monore, receiving a free train whistle to make a high lonesome sound!

ROMP is the perfect time to camp with your family since the festival offers family-friendly campsites with quiet hours from 10 p.m. to 7 a.m.

Y’all come! It’s certain to be a fun filled festival for the whole family! Kids Zone is open Thursday - Saturday 8 a.m to 2 p.m. see the full schedule on the next page!

June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 51
Photos provided by Owensboro Times


8 - 9 A.M.

Light the way lanterns

Help us kick off ROMP with Craft Time in the Kid Zone! Create your own lantern that shines as brightly as you do!

9 - 10 A.M.

High Lonesome SoundInteractive Storytelling

Help celebrate the legacy of the Father of Bluegrass Bill Monroe and help bring his story to life! Receive your very own train whistle as you interact with the story. (First come first serve.)

10 - 11 A.M.

Nature Art Collage

Using all natural materials, create your own collage from the leaves and trees around you!

11 A.M. - 12 P.M.

Rad Ribbon Wands

Create your own ribbon wand while listening to some bluegrass jams!

12 - 1 P.M.

Boho Dream Catchers

Use your imagination to create your own web of dreams!

1 - 2 P.M.

Blue Moon of Kentucky button art

Celebrate the bluegrass state by decorating your very own Kentucky souvenir!


8 - 9 A.M.

Upcycled Owl Art

Using recycled materials create your very own owl art in honor of our Romp Fest mascot!

9 - 10 A.M.

Bluegrass blow painting

Create your own bluegrass inspired painting using paint and a unique fun technique!

10 - 11 A.M.

Build Your Own Banjo

Piece together your own “5 string” banjo and enjoy a live banjo demo from Appalachian musician Gerald Mullins!

11 A.M. - 12 P.M.

Record Mandalas

Feeling crafty? Create your own craft from a vinyl record for ROMP fest and let your imagination run wild!

12 - 1 P.M.

Pickin’ and Picasso Painting

Create your own masterpiece painting while listening to some bluegrass jams!

1 - 2 P.M.

“Bluegrass Era” Festival

Friendship Bracelets

Piece together a friendship bracelet and share it with a festival friend!


8 - 9 A.M.

Children’s Yoga Workshop

Join yoga instructor Dana Behl for a fun and flexible time learning yoga!

9 - 10 A.M.

Groovy Sound Bath

Join Rebecca Samples for a groovy and rad time! Relax and enjoy the soothing sounds all around you!

10 - 11 A.M.

WKY Raptor CenterFeathered Friends

Get up close and personal with ROMP’s favorite feathered friends!

The Western Kentucky Raptor Center will provide a hands-on program where children will learn about birds of prey and animal rehabilitation.

11 A.M. - 12 P.M.

Groovy Garcia glasses

Enjoy the sounds of Jerry Garcia while you create your own groovy glasses that are far out!

12 - 1 P.M.

Children’s Harmonica Workshop (sponsored by Hohner)

Join ROMP veteran presenter Art Woodward for a fun and innovative harmonica workshop. Space is limited, and harmonicas are first come first serve.

1 - 2 P.M.

Flower Power Headbands

Design and create your very own flower crown to wear during the festival!

52 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024
Photo by Alex Morgan, courtesy of ROMP Festival Photos provided by Owensboro Times

DREAD, ROAR, & EXPLORE this summer at DCPL

ive into a summer of adventure and learning at Daviess County Public Library with their exciting lineup of programs for kids! From June to July, families can join the Read, Roar, and Explore Summer Reading 2024 initiative, offering a variety of engaging activities for children of all ages.

Throughout June, the library hosts a range of captivating events. From designing whimsical chocolate bars, to magic shows, to a reptile showcase, there’s something for everyone. Families can also explore

the world of citrus-powered energy at Family STEM Night or unleash their inner paleontologist with the Jurassic Jungle Jar Take-Home Craft.

In July, the fun continues with activities like the Carnival Party featuring Wild Child Inflatables, Daniel’s Fun Foam Factory, and Dino Discoveries. Kids can also join the Level Up! Tween Gaming Guild or attend the an interactive and educational dinosaur encounter.

Many of DCPL’s events require registration, so visit their website for more details and to sign up.

54 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024

Beat the Heat with these Family Flicks

Looking for a cool way to beat the summer heat without breaking the bank? Look no further than Midweek at the Malco! Every Wednesday, families can catch a fun family film for just $3 per ticket. It's the perfect opportunity to gather the family, grab some popcorn, and enjoy quality time together. Mark your calendars for these special family flicks at a great deal!
















June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 55 MALCO

Discover the “best week of your summer!”

Get ready for an extraordinary week of fun and learning at Connect Camp, coming to Kentucky Wesleyan College’s campus from June 24th to June 28th. Designed for children from Kindergarten to 5th grade, this day camp offers an immersive experience filled with engaging activities, daily faith-based lessons, and the opportunity to forge lifelong friendships. From secure check-in and check-out procedures to a diverse array of activities, every aspect of Connect Camps is meticulously crafted to ensure top-notch quality and nonstop excitement.

At Connect Camps, children have the opportunity to explore their interests and develop new skills by choosing from a variety of activities. From archery and basketball to crafting and painting, there’s something for everyone. They can even unleash their inner superhero in the “Under Cover” activity, where they’ll learn about service and leadership while having a blast.

One of the highlights of Connect Camps is its Christcentered approach, with engaging and interactive sessions designed to deepen children’s understanding of faith and identity.

Whether they’re shooting arrows, creating crafts, or whipping up delicious recipes in “Epic Eats,” campers are sure to have an unforgettable week of growth, friendship, and fun.

With Connect Camps, parents can rest assured that their children are not only having a blast but also developing valuable skills, making meaningful connections, and growing in their faith. Don’t miss out on this incredible opportunity for your child to have the summer of a lifetime at Connect Camp!


Parents, as summer approaches are you seeking enriching activities for your kids? Consider the theatre arts! Theatre Workshop of Owensboro (T.W.O.) offers an exceptional opportunity with its Summer Drama Camps.

Split into age-appropriate groups, these camps cater to various interests and skill levels. For 7-11 year olds, the camp begins July 8th, led by T.W.O. Education Coordinator Calli Whitmore. It covers acting basics, stage presence, and more, culminating in a family performance on July 12th.

Older children, aged 12-14, delve into technical aspects like lighting, sound, and set construction from July 15th to 19th. They also craft a short play for a final showcase. Simultaneously, teens aged 1418 explore musical theatre from July 22nd to 26th, with a grand performance on the 26th.

For those who miss the initial sessions, another camp for 7-11 year olds runs from July 29th to August 2nd, ensuring everyone gets a chance to participate.

All camps run from 10:30 am to 12:00 noon at T.W.O.’s Trinity Centre, accommodating 15 students per class for personalized attention.

Priced at $100 per camp, these programs offer affordable, quality summer activities. To enroll, call (270) 683-5333 and secure your child’s spot.

This summer, let your child’s creativity shine on stage with T.W.O.’s Summer Drama Camps. Whether they dream of performing or prefer behind-thescenes roles, these camps provide an unforgettable journey into the enchanting world of theatre.

56 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024


As the temperatures rise and the days grow longer, families in Owensboro are gearing up for a summer filled with fun and outdoor activities. With an array of events and programs offered by the Owensboro Parks and Recreation Department, residents have ample opportunities to enjoy quality time together while taking advantage of the city's beautiful parks and facilities. Here's a rundown of some exciting events happening this summer that you won't want to miss:


Sundays are for family bonding at Ben Hawes Golf Course. Kids play free with a paid adult, offering a chance to enjoy golf or FootGolf together.

WATER SAFETY SWIM DAY AT COMBEST POOL (JUNE 17): Dive into safety with swim lessons, tips, and free swim time. A free event aimed at making everyone a safer swimmer.


Celebrate with discounted entry on Flip-Flop Day (June 21), buy one, get one free ice cream on National Ice Cream Day (July 21), and free swimming for parents on National Parents Day (July 28).


Every Sunday from May 19 to September 2, enjoy free giant games by the river at Allen Sts. East Lawn Area.


Get a free donut on Donut Day (June 7) and buy one, get one free ice cream on Ice Cream Day (July 21) at Smothers Park.




Free car wash fundraiser on June 8, Dugan Best Gala Day on July 13, and Juneteenth Freedom Day Community Celebration on June 22.

With so many exciting events and activities to choose from, there's no shortage of ways to make the most of your summer with Owensboro Parks and Recreation. Whether you're looking to relax by the pool, enjoy a round of golf, or simply spend quality time with loved ones outdoors, the city's parks and facilities offer something for everyone. So pack a picnic, grab your sunscreen, and get ready for a summer filled with memories to cherish for years to come!

June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 57

Step into Summer DANCE CAMPS

Looking for a way to beat boredom and keep your child active this summer?

Look no further than Johnson’s Dance Studio’s exciting lineup of dance camps! Located at 2705 Breckenridge Street, Johnson’s Dance Studio offers a variety of camps tailored to different ages and interests, ensuring a summer filled with fun, creativity, and movement.

Wiggle Giggle & Pretend Camps“Calling all Super Heroes”

Let your child unleash their inner superhero with a week of dance, performances, bouncy house fun, crafts, games, laughter, and friendship!

Week One: June 24th-28th

Week Two: July 15th-19th

9 a.m. - noon each day

Ages 3-8

Cost: $125

Aerial Dance Camp

Take movement to new heights with this camp, where participants learn skills on suspended fabrics.

June 24th-27th

Beginners: 11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Experienced: 1:30 - 3 p.m.

Ages 6 & up

Cost: $100

Rhythm & Groove Camp

Tap into the rhythm of summer with fun choreography and new tricks to keep dancers on their toes.

June 17th-19th

1:30 - 3 p.m.

Ages 8 & up

Cost: $75

Intensive Workshops with Contemporary Techniques

Training the Stars of Tomorrow: Summer Dance Session

Explore different styles of dance over 5 weeks, including Combination, Creative 2’s, Hip Hop, Ballet, Tap, and Jazz.

June 17th - July 17th

Ages 2 & up

Cost: $155

Join professional dance teachers and JDS staff in exciting sessions for intermediate to advanced dancers, featuring different instructors each week.

June 17th - July 17th

Ages 11 & up

Cost: $125/week or $400 for all 5 weeks

With Johnson’s Dance Studio, your child can dance their way through summer and create unforgettable memories while staying active and engaged. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to join the fun - register today and let the summer dance magic begin!

58 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024


Cook Up Some Summer Fun

Stir up some culinary magic this summer at the Little Chefs Cooking Camps at Joys Cooking Classes and More. If your child has a passion for cooking or simply loves to get creative in the kitchen, this camp is the perfect opportunity for them to learn new skills and discover the joy of making delicious meals from scratch. Led by the talented Ashley Webb, this camp offers two hours of hands-on cooking fun each day from June 24th to June 28th and July 15th to July 19th, children ages 6 and up will learn to whip up delicious dishes like chicken nuggets, French toast, cheeseburgers, homemade pasta, and more. Each day features a different menu, culminating in a delectable recipe book for budding chefs to take home at the end of the week.

June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 59


Get ready to seize every moment of summer fun with our ultimate local family bucket list! At Owensboro Parent, we understand how quickly summer flies by, so we’ve crafted a collection of exciting adventures to ensure your family makes the most of every sunny day. From fun outings to sweet treats, our bucket list is your ticket to creating cherished memories and enjoying quality time together all summer long.

›› Grab your favorite breakfast and enjoy a morning in Daviess County Public Library’s Reading Garden. While you’re there, check out the nearby world’s largest sassafras tree before venturing into the library for a program.

›› Have a picnic at Wonder Whip or go for a latenight ice cream run to Big Dipper!

›› Check out the newest features at the Owensboro Museum of Science & History –interactive water tables, Little Tots Farm Gallery, and Amazing Airways!

›› Visit as many Owensboro and Daviess County parks as you can! Map them out as a family and try to hit them all!

60 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024

›› Volunteer with a local nonprofit.

›› Take a family bike ride on the Greenbelt! Pick a section you’ve never explored or make a goal to ride from one end of the Greenbelt to the other.

›› Get an apple slushy from Reid’s - and enjoy the Reidland play area while you’re there!

›› Go on an animal scavenger hunt at Smothers Park and find all of the creatures hidden throughout the playground.

›› Beat the heat at Edge Ice with a family ice skating adventure!

›› Visit Western Kentucky Botanical Garden where you can explore their playhouse, have a picnic and see the fun Garden sculptures.

›› Cool off at any of our local splash parks.

›› Feed the animals at Trunnell’s before having all the farm-tastic fun at the Family Fun-Acre.

›› Make a family challenge to try all of the flavors at your favorite shaved ice vendor!

June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 61


with The Eric Group!

Summer is the perfect time for a road trip to create unforgettable memories with your family. And what better way to do that than by experiencing the magic of live music together? This summer, hit the road with the Eric Group, concert event specialists, taking advantage of the fantastic music venues and events they put together across the region that cater to families of all ages. So, pack your bags, load up the car, and get ready for a summer filled with rhythm, melody, and family fun with the Eric Group!

June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 63

Beaver Dam Amphitheater:

A Gem Just Down the Road

Kicking off our musical journey is the Beaver Dam Amphitheater, celebrating its remarkable 10th season. Nestled in the heart of Beaver Dam, this outdoor venue offers the perfect setting to soak in some tunes while basking in the summer sun. With a diverse lineup of artists scheduled throughout the season, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Plus, keep an eye out for Rocky, the Dam’s adorable new mascot!


on 2nd:

Free Outdoor Concerts for the Whole Family

For a Friday night filled with music and community vibes, head over to SOUNDS on 2nd in

Beaver Dam. Running from June through September, this series of free outdoor concerts promises an evening of food, drinks, and good times for the entire family. It’s the perfect opportunity to unwind, groove to some tunes, and connect with your neighbors under the stars.

Madisonville 4th Fest & Praise in the Park:

A Musical Extravaganza

Venture a little further down the road to Madisonville, home to the largest 3-day outdoor music festival in the region. The Madisonville 4th Fest & Praise

64 OWENSBORO PARENT • June // July 2024

in the Park is a must-visit for families looking for an out-of-town adventure. Taking place at the scenic Madisonville City Park, this event offers free admission and a lineup of performances that will leave you dancing all weekend long.

Musical Legacies:

Honoring The Everly Brothers and John Prine

As you embark on your musical adventures this summer, take a moment to appreciate the profound impact of The Everly Brothers and John Prine on the music world. Their memory will be honored with bronze statues at Festival Square in Central City, unveiled on June 14, in the presence of their families. Later that evening at Lu-Ray Park Amphitheater don’t miss a special benefit concert paying tribute to their contributions. Don’t miss this historic event!

Castle Knoll Amphitheater:

Where Music Meets

Family Fun

Just a short drive north in Paoli, Indiana, awaits the Castle Knoll Amphitheater, the newest addition to the summer music scene. Castle Knoll is perfectly positioned for extended family fun with Wilstem Wildlife Park and Big Splash Adventure nearby.

Summer Nights Concert Series in Munfordville:

Music, Food, and Fun

Hop in the car and head less than two hours away to Munfordville for the city’s Annual Summer Nights Concert Series. This free event offers a lively atmosphere complete with food trucks, vendors, and, of course, fantastic music. Extend your trip with visits to nearby attractions like Kentucky Down Under and Mammoth Cave for an immersive family getaway.

Friday After 5:

Where the Weekend Begins

And let’s not forget the vibrant music scene right in our own backyard. Downtown Owensboro comes alive with the Back to Our Roots Season of Friday After 5, a beloved family-friendly event returning to the RiverPark Center this summer. With live music, delicious food vendors,

and activities for all ages, it’s the perfect way to kick off your weekend with the ones you love.

LIVE on the Banks:

Music Under the Stars

For even more free music downtown, be sure to catch LIVE on the Banks at the Overlook Stage every Saturday night from May through September. With the picturesque river as your backdrop, soak in the sounds of talented local artists while enjoying a relaxing evening with your family.

This summer, let the music be the soundtrack to your family adventures. From outdoor amphitheaters to bustling downtown streets, our region offers endless opportunities – and spectacular venues – to create lasting memories together. So, grab your loved ones and hit the road with the Eric Group! Let the melodies guide you to an unforgettable summer filled with family and music!

June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 65



Dee's Diner - one free kids meal per adult meal purchase (in-house only, ages 5 and under)


Moonlite Bar-B-Q InnUp to 2 kids eat free (ages 10 & under) with adult buffet purchase from 11am-2pm and 4-8:30pm

Zaxby’s – Up to 3 99¢ kids meals with the purchase of an adult meal from 5-8pm

Huddle House – 1 free kids meal when you spend $6.99 or more on adult entrée


Beef ‘O’ Brady’s – Kids 12 & under eat for $2.99 all day every Tuesday when dining in!

Fazoli’s – Up to 3 99¢ kids meals with the purchase of an adult entrée

Freddy’s – Free scoop or cone with the purchase of a kids meal on Family Night. Kids can enjoy coloring pages, crayons, balloons and stickers!

Pizza Hut (South Frederica location) – 1 free child buffet with the purchase of an adult buffet from 4:30-7pm

Trunnell’s 54 Deli – 1 free kids meal with the purchase of a signature sandwich

Huddle House – 1 free kids meal when you spend $6.99 or more on adult entrée

McDonald’s – $1.99 Happy meals from 4-7pm; dine-in only


Trunnell’s 54 Deli – 1 free kids meal with the purchase of a signature sandwich


Salsarita’s – Free kids meal with the purchase of an adult entrée; dine in only

Beef O’ Brady’s – Free kids meal (ages 12 & under) from 4-8pm with each adult meal purchase; dine-in only

June // July 2024 • OWENSBORO PARENT 67
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