FRANKFORT – Longtime Marshall County Judge-Executive Mike Miller has been selected to emcee the 131st annual Fancy Farm political picnic that unofficially will kick off this fall’s campaigns for governor and other state offices.
Miller, a Democrat, has held the county judge office since 1974.
Mark Wilson, who organizes the political speaking at the free picnic on the campus of St. Jerome Catholic Church in Graves County with his wife, Lori Wilson, said the picnic’s committee tries to alternate between Democrats and Republicans in finding an emcee.
“They’d run me out of town if we picked someone from the same party every year,” he said, noting that, in some years, persons not affiliated with any party are selected to emcee.
House Minority Leader Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, was emcee last year. Al Cross, director of the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues at the University of Kentucky and a former political reporter for The Courier-Journal, did the duties in 2009.
This year’s picnic on Aug. 6 is expected to attract a large crowd because of the race for governor. The public speaking is to begin at 2 p.m. CDT.
Wilson said Kentucky’s two U.S. senators – Republicans Mitch McConnell of Louisville and Rand Paul of Bowling Green, U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield of Hopkinsville and all candidates for state constitutional offices have been invited to speak.
The headliners will be Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear, who is seeking re-election, and his running mate, former Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson, and state Senate President David Williams, the Republican nominee for governor, and his running mate, state Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer.