Patrick DeSpain


UofL, Farm to Table Team For More Local Foods

December 31, 2012

Louisville’s Farm to Table organization is working with the University of Louisville help the university source more of its food locally.

Sarah Fritschner, who leads Farm to Table, has been instrumental in streamlining communication between food service providers, major distributors, and local vendors. Recently, the university hosted a catering fair to introduce local producers and larger distributors.

Fritschner found that food service provider Sodexo, which holds a contract with U of L, was also under contract with Sysco. So she worked with Sysco, the world’s largest broad line food distributor, to start carrying locally-sourced products at U of L.

“There’s more available than you think there is,” she said. “It’s not about the farmer in the pickup truck. You don’t have to find a friend of a friend who knows somebody with chickens to get fresh eggs. The systems are growing.”

The university officials responsible for catering orders were present at the fair, as were eight local caterers. Attendees had an opportunity to sample locally sourced food and preview menus from caterers like Sodexo, Center Plate, and the City Café.

“What we were trying to do is introduce caterers who have catered for U of L in the past to come in and see that it’s not about necessarily dealing just with farmers, that they have access to local food — that they don’t have to know somebody who knows somebody,” said Fritschner, a former Courier-Journal food editor. “They can just call up their Sysco rep and go ‘okay, what do you have that’s local?’”

Metro Government created Fritschner’s position with a portion of the funds awarded to Kentucky from the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement.

Under the agreement, Kentucky sets aside part of the funds it receives from cigarette manufacturers each year for assisting farmers who wish to transition from tobacco to other crops.

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Ice Skating Under the Big Four Bridge Approach? Maybe.

December 24, 2012

Louisville’s Waterfront Development Corporation has revised its plans for an ice skating rink at Waterfront Park.

The seasonal rink was originally planned to go up last year at a location on the festival plaza, near the Christmas tree vendors. But funding fell through and complications with utilities in the original location nixed the plans.

Funding again didn’t come through this year.Now, the Waterfront Development Corporation is looking at putting a rink under the Big Four Bridge approach next year. Director of Facilities Gary Pepper believes the new location could be a pavilion for other events during warmer parts of the year.

“The Big Four Bridge is due to be completed here the next couple weeks which will free up all that construction space underneath it, and in the spring time we’ll reclaim all that area and then look heavily at maybe next fall but we still don’t have any funding in place to do it yet,” Pepper said.

Pepper says funds will have to be raised privately and the WDC is seeking donations for the project.

This holiday season, rinks opened in Jeffersonville and in Fourth Street Live. Pepper says the Waterfront Park rink could be more grand than those to draw skaters.

Pepper said plans may include “some kind of pavilion, ice rink in the winter time, more of a permanent type slab that would accommodate multiple uses.”

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Louisville Man Pleads Guilty to Charges Related to Aircraft Exported to Iran

December 5, 2012

Louisville resident Behzad Karimian (a.k.a. Tony Karimian) pleaded guilty on Monday to charges related to the unlawful export of aircraft parts from the U.S. to Iran. 

Karimain and another person exported “and causing the export of services” with the sale of a GE Aircraft Engine Model CF6-50C2, and the procurement of helicopters made by Bell Helicopters, alleged the FBI, citing two indictments. They allegedly didn’t have the required authorization from the U.S. treasury department, the FBI said.

“All of the aircraft and aircraft parts involved in this case were intended for civilian use,” the FBI press release said.

Karimian and Asefi could face a $500,000 fine and up to 40 years in prison. Sentencing is scheduled before Chief District Judge Joseph H. McKinley, Jr. on March 4, 2013 in Louisville.

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UofL’s ‘Photo Wrangler’ Curates Final Exhibit

November 3, 2012

For Bill Carner, it’s been a decades-long career surrounded in nostalgia — black and white photos, often, of a Louisville that may be forgotten without the visual evidence he’s spent a career collecting.

Carner is ending a 35-year run as the curator — or, as he’s called, “photo wrangler” — for the University of Louisville Photographic Archives. To celebrate, the exhibit “Bill Carner’s Swan Song: A Final Curatorial Exercise” will open Thursday and run through Jan. 25 at U of L’s Ekstrom Library.

In producing the exhibit, Carner gathered favorite photographs from friends and colleagues that have inspired him and contributed to his own development as a photographer. Carner speaks of each image in the collection with warmth and recollection.

“It’s an homage to some of my friends and some of my favorite photographers,” Carner said. “I put together an exhibit of around 40 really great photographs to look at. I think people will enjoy it. I know I’m enjoying putting it together.”

Carner applied for his position at the University of Louisville while completing his Masters degree. He moved to Louisville from Reddington, Pa., to enroll in the Center for Photographic Studies ,where C.J. Pressma became his mentor.

Carner went on to develop relationships with other prominent Louisville photographers. 

For example,  Carner met Stern Bramson in the 1980s after Courier-Journal Publisher Barry Bingham made a donation of photos from the Royal Photo Company — a Louisville commercial photo company founded in 1904 — to the University of Louisville Archives. Carner said of his relationship with Bramson, “We had a splendid time, a real nice ride.” A photo taken by Bramson appears in the exhibit. The picture shows a nun in a walk in cooler stocked with locally brewed beer.

“I had to put something in there for Stern,” Carner said.

Carner described how he came by some of the photos in the archive: 

“Steve Cohen had a gallery in Los Angeles. Back in the mid eighties he started coming around. He was like a peddler going up in the mountains. He had a trunk full of photographs . . . and we would buy some photos. It was like having the salesman come to your farm up in the holler. He would tell you what was going on in the world out there beyond where you were. He would inform us what was happening in the photographic art world. It was always fun to see him and fun to see some photographs. We had a little money and we could buy one or two and that kept him coming back and the stories kept coming and we got some beautiful work from him.” 

The personal narratives behind each photograph bring the exhibit seemingly to life. Carner elevates his exhibit beyond simply cataloging a career in photos — he reminds the viewer how photographs capture memories, friendships and inspiration. 

A reception begins at 5 p.m. Thursday in the lower level of Ekstrom Library. Photographers featured in the exhibit include August Sander, Guy Mendes, David Plowden, Danny Lyon, among many others.

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New Menu Labeling Law Takes Effect

October 15, 2012

A new menu labeling ordinance goes into effect Monday for many Louisville restaurants.

The ordinance was first proposed in July and only applies to restaurants that already have calorie counts for their menus available.

“Any food service establishment that posts caloric or other nutritional information on its website—or through other communications methods—that they need to make that same information available to customers on site at the restaurant,” says Department of Public Health and Wellness spokesman Dave Langdon.

The rule does not apply to chains with more than 20 locations, as the Affordable Care Act already requires such establishments to disclose nutrition information.

Public Health and Wellness officials will review an establishment’s website for nutritional information prior to its regular food inspection. Restaurants found in violation of the ordinance will have 14 days to come into compliance. After the 14 day period, they will be subject to a fine of $25 per day.

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