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Kentucky Life season premiere features Princeton’s Little Busch Stadium, EarthJOY Treehouses, Kentucky’s most-played football rivalry and life in Lynch


Kentucky Life season premiere features Princeton’s Little Busch Stadium, EarthJOY Treehouses, Kentucky’s most-played football rivalry and life in Lynch

For Release: 09/21/18 11:26 AM

The season premiere of KET’s Kentucky Life goes to the ballpark for some wiffleball at Little Busch Stadium in Princeton. Host Doug Flynn tours glamour treehouses in the woods of Bracken County. Many African-Americans came to Lynch for the coal mines and have stayed for the community they’ve built. And finally, Kentucky’s most-played football rivalry is between two northern Kentucky 1A football teams located less than two miles apart. The program airs Saturday, Oct. 6 at 8/7 pm and Sunday, Oct. 7 at 4/3 pm on KET and Monday, Oct. 8 at 7/6 pm on KET2.

At first glance, Princeton’s Little Busch Stadium is remarkable for being a faithful one-quarter-size replica of Busch Stadium in St. Louis. What’s truly remarkable is that this family endeavor was created to honor the life of 12-year-old Jake Hodges, who passed away in 2008. Ken and Katie Parker of Princeton built the stadium on several acres of their land to support the work of the Jake Hodges Foundation, which presents scholarships to students who display honesty, character and integrity in the classroom and on the playing field. Kentucky Life visits during the foundation’s annual wiffleball tournament, which invites roughly twenty-five teams comprised of all age groups to compete in the classic backyard pastime each year.

Then, Flynn takes a hike into the Bracken County woods to explore the treehouses at EarthJOY Tree Adventures near Germantown. Shelly and Bill Byrne originally put the adventure in “Tree Adventure” by introducing people to tree climbing using harnesses and ropes, but now customers can get their adventure by strolling in and spending the night in one of their treehouses. These treehouses have all the comforts of home, such as air conditioning, heat, a kitchen, comfortable beds and outdoor decks on which to soak up nature. Flynn explores the couples’ first two treehouses: the Kentucky Climber’s Cottage is a two-story house built by famed treehouse builder Pete Nelson, while the Aaliyah is a cozy hobbit house with a swinging bridge that connects it to the two-bunk Snuggle Palace.

Next, the program travels to Lynch, in Harlan County, to continue the story of the African-American families who came to work in the coal mines near this southeastern Kentucky town. Kentucky Life visited Lynch in 2016 and learned about these families’ history in the town. Now the program talks with those who stayed after the coal boom faded to hear about how they made a life in Lynch. Brown University Ph.D. candidate Karida Brown is a descendant of one of these Lynch families, and she has made it her work to document the stories of these African-American families through the Eastern Kentucky African-American Migration Project and her recently published book Gone Home.

Finally, Kentucky Life makes a quick stop in Dayton to experience the sights and sounds of Kentucky’s most-played high school football rivalry. Dayton and Bellevue are located on the Ohio River in Campbell County, just a few miles apart. The cities’ class 1A high school football teams have renewed the tradition of playing each other twice each season – and this year will face each other for the 142nd and 143rd time.

Kentucky Life is a KET production, produced by Brandon Wickey. Segment producers for this episode are Jim Voskuhl, Brandon Wickey, Lillie Ruschell and Brandon Turner.

KET is Kentucky’s largest classroom, where learning comes to life for more than one million people each week via television, online and mobile. Learn more about Kentucky’s preeminent public media organization at, on Twitter @KET and at


Todd Piccirilli
Senior Director, Marketing and Communications