A Trip To Frankfort

Thanks to my dear lifelong friend, Brenda Crabtree, my boys (grandson Kyle and exchange student Jan) got to be pages for the Kentucky Senate in Frankfort, Kentucky. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity and so thankful that they got to participate in the action in our state government.

They got to watch the heated debate of the House Bill 70. It was a perfect scenario to see the nitty gritty hashing out of different opinions on the floor. In case you are not familiar with HB70, it is a proposal to give convicted felons back the right to vote. If you want to learn more about the HB70, you can check it out here.

The boys even got to sit in on Kentucky State Senator Rand Paul’s news conference on the House Bill 70. They were able to meet with him and had a photo op. I believed they learned a lot from this experience and am thankful that they represented Eastern Kentucky in such a fine way.

jan, rand, kyle

Happy!! Spring Is Here !!!

Maintaining Grounds

We are excited to see Spring finally arrive. This winter has just about gotten the best of me. But, the sun has been shining and so three days this week my grandson, Kyle (whom I have enjoyed staying with me on the farm), and I started Spring cleaning the landscape; we started with the flower gardens because we are anxious for some blooms. It was so nice outside that Kyle was able to take off his shirt and get some sun and it felt good to get outside and sweat a little bit. Good for the soul. Now here on Sunday night there was yet another snow fall, so some of the yard and garden work will have to wait.

We have been walking the grounds and making plans for different projects we need to complete. Summer is the big wedding season and we have special projects to accomplish for the weddings we will be having here. However, the biggest project we have this year is planning for The Rugged Red trail half marathon in the Red River Gorge on September 5th and 6th. We are excited, but we know we got our work cut out for us.

The next event we have is the Kentucky Leukemia/Lymphoma Society’s fundraising hike through the Red River Gorge on April 12-13th. We will have their chili dinner brewing in time and a bonfire roasting on Saturday to kick-off their hike on Sunday. We look forward to meeting everyone coming in and will make them feel welcomed as we always do.

The Sparks Family Reunion is scheduled to congregate here on April 26, 2014. We look forward to the excellent food, friendship and family. We love for people to come to the farm; the more the merrier. We will be having Sparks coming from all over the country and excited to see some old faces, as well as the new. The Redbuds should be spectacular, in their blushing color, at that time.

We would love for you to come and visit. Please do call today to make your reservation for Spring time at 606-359-3366 or 606-481-4297. We can be found on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter. You can also check us out on Pinterest.

In the sweetness of friendship…

There is a story on the internet of an anthropologist who had these kids of a tribe in Africa run a race to reach a tree that had beneath it a basket of fruit he had put there. His expectations were that the kids would compete with one another and run as fast as they could to reach the tree, but instead the kids held hands and ran together. When he asked why they did this, one child said, “Ubuntu”. In their Xhosa culture, Ubuntu means “I am because we are.”

In all my endeavors, whether it be this Bed & Breakfast or the Rugged Red; and even further back in my bicycle journeys and stilt walk, they were all accomplished with the help of my friends. I have been blessed to have met some great people who assisted me in this journey of life. They have lent a  helping hand,  given me guidance and connected me to other “ones who see things differently” and therefore,  “think differently.”

by Eric Patrick Marr

by Eric Patrick Marr


One such friend is the Head Coach of the Wildcat Masters Swim Team at the University of Kentucky, Susan Bradley Cox. She is the one who introduced me to Eric Patrick Marr of the RunTheBluegrass race. He is now a friend indeed helping me with The Rugged Red. Susan also introduced me to the folks at the Kentucky Leukemia/Lymphoma Society.

I am truly honored to be of the company of this great woman. She has won 12 USAT National Championships, member of the Team USA (Triathlon) since 1989, ITU World Championships in Triathlon winner 9 times, an All-American Triathlete since 1989 and competed in the 1986 Hawaii Ironman World Championships and placed second.

This phenomenal woman will be inducted into the Kentucky Athlete Hall of Fame on June 18, 2014. I am proud of all her accomplishments and proud to know her. I just wanted to take this moment to give her kudos and congratulate her on all that she has done and all that lays ahead for her to achieve.

If you want to read what Eric Patrick Marr said about Susan Bradley Cox, click here. The RunTheBluegrass can be found on Facebook and so can The Rugged Red.

Leukemia Foundation Fundraising Hike

We will be hosting the Kentucky Leukemia/Lymphoma Society’s Fundraising Hike in the Red River Gorge. This will be their first year doing the hike in the Gorge, but if it is successful, it could be an annual event. This event will be April 12-13, 2014. We will be having a chili dinner on Saturday evening, followed by a bonfire. Sunday, we will lead them on a 14 mile hike through the lovely Red River Gorge. The Kentucky Leukemia/Lymphoma Society raised $30,000 with this event. You can learn more at www.teamintraining.org/ky.

Creation Falls

Bluegrass Bike Partner

bluegrass bike partner

We have partnered up with Bluegrass Bike Partner and Patrick Wesolosky. If you are in the area, give us a call. We can tell you about some of the best riding our state has to offer. Besides offering water, restrooms, and tools, we might even go on a ride with you. We have camping and lodging too. If you want to learn more about Bluegrass Bike Partner, you can find them on Facebook.

The Rugged Red Is Heating Up

We are hosting a trail half marathon in the gorgeous Red River Gorge of Kentucky this Autumn. We have a lot of good people working with us and they are pumping it out. I love their ads that they made and thought to share with you all. If you are interested in registering to run, please visit http://www.ruggedred.com

rugged red


rugged red 2


rugged red 3


rugged red 4


The Rugged Red can also be found on Twitter http://twitter.com/TheRuggedRed and Facebook https://www.facebook.com/TheRuggedRed