Henderson Area Arts Alliance (HAAA) Hires New Director

The Henderson Area Arts Alliance has a new Executive Director, Greg Gibson from Henderson, Kentucky.

Greg-2014-06-26-HAAAGibson became the interim director for the Henderson Area Arts Alliance in early January of this year, after former director Kyle Arnett resigned to become Executive Director of the Henderson County Tourist Commission.

During the short five months as interim director, Gibson has worn many hats and has a strong grasp on what it takes to be an exceptional executive director and to continue to grow the arts in Henderson County.

“Henderson is home for me, and I am passionate about both the arts and Henderson. As the executive director I have many goals and visions and to not only make our community a place for kids and adults to further their entertainment opportunities, but to make Henderson a place where people from all over the world come to visit, experience and explore the arts,” said Gibson.

Gibson began his career as a Walt Disney World “Imagineer” in the 1980’s, then as Senior Project Designer and Vice President of Marketing for ITEC Productions, an entertainment design firm based in Orlando, Florida, engaging clients from all over the world by creating and producing sustainable themed entertainment projects to fit their needs.

Frequently self-labeled as a “producer” Greg has been involved with diverse productions, special events, a 3,000 square feet, $3 million dollar “Castle of Miracles” playhouse, live shows, parades, dark rides, theme parks & resorts and more than a dozen miniature golf courses.

Later in his career Gibson founded Gibson Entertainment Design Associates, a design-consulting firm which creates and implements a variety of leisure entertainment, family and themed pediatric healthcare environments for his clients. One of his biggest local accomplishments during his tenure was designing the implementation a 6,000 sf themed pediatric healthcare unit at the Center for Children on the main campus of St. Mary’s Medical Hospital in Evansville, Indiana.

Truly rooting himself in Henderson, Gibson became the Program Director for BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS of Henderson County opening the agency’s doors to the community in 2011. Here he successfully launched and managed a new satellite office by developing strategic partnerships and community relationships to support growing the new 501(c) 3 mentor matching program. He increased brand awareness, rallied community support and successfully matched more than 60 “littles” with their BIG mentors.

Graduating from the University of Cincinnati with a BS degree in Industrial Design from the College of Design, Architecture, Art & Planning, in addition to a Certificate in Business Administration, Gibson has earned numerous awards throughout his career which include being named a recipient of the “Young Professionals under 40 to Watch” by the Orlando Business Journal. He also received the Golden Brick Design Award for creating the Howard Phillips Center for Children from the Downtown Orlando Partnership, and he was presented with the My Giraffe Hero-Sticking Your Neck Out for Children from the Henderson County Collaborative Partners Advisory Council. Serving children and families in the Henderson community is paramount for Greg.

Community involvement is also a high priority for Gibson as he currently serves on the Henderson County Family YMCA Board of Directors, as well as the Downtown Henderson Partnership Board of Directors and the advisory board of River City Renaissance. In addition to serving on multiple boards, he was the event coordinator for the 2013 Sandy Lee Songfest Ellis Park event, a member of the Henderson Leadership Initiative Class of 2013, and has served as a Trustee and Deacon Chairperson for Community Baptist Church.

“Greg’s previous professional resume & experience, his proven past performance in fundraising and grant-writing, along with his strong knowledge of and ties to the Henderson community (both on a business and a personal level) These skills, his work ethic and his passion for the arts, made him a great fit to be the next Executive Director of HAAA” says Tony Krampe, President, HAAA Board of Directors.

With the expertise and drive to see the Henderson Area Arts Alliance thrive, Gibson so far has helped with scheduling and promoting of the 2014-2015 season show lineups, met with numerous donors and corporate sponsors, and is continually building relationships in the community.

Gibson adds, “I want to see healthy partnerships and collaboration between arts organizations, schools, educators, festivals, businesses, artists, corporations and individuals so that together through the ARTS we create an even greater American River town! Henderson has so much to offer and be proud of so lets showcase our strengths and continue to build on our rich 20 year history and make the next decade for the Arts even better!”

For information about the Henderson Area Arts Alliance or to view the 2014-2015 season show lineups and to purchase tickets visit www.haaa.org or 270.826.5916

About Henderson Area Arts Alliance
Founded in 1993, the mission of Henderson Area Arts Alliance (HAAA) is to is to create a vibrant community by providing quality arts experiences for all. HAAA also seeks to enrich the quality of life in the area, promote economic development and tourism, educate and incorporate students in the arts and humanities, and provide a wide array of programming at affordable prices. A key objective for HAAA is to provide a full season of performing arts at the Henderson Fine Arts Center, a $6.5 million facility that opened in June 1994 and houses performing arts events and visual arts exhibits. HAAA strives to enrich its patrons with culture, entertainment, and exposure to new art forms. For more information on HAAA or for donation information, please visit www.haaa.org.

Henderson (KY) is Growing!

Downtown Henderson 2013

Where is Henderson (KY) as a community going, growing and progressing? In order to answer that question we believe 20/20 vision is needed.

Having recently graduated from the 2013 class of Henderson Leadership Initiative as a class we delved into questions like this and others as we focused our attention on the health and wellness of our community along with surveying the general population on questions involving recycling and the state of our downtown environment.

As a product of Henderson and the late 1950’s, I grew up in the 1960’s & 70’s when downtown Henderson was full of activity and businesses.  Shops and restaurants were seemingly always seemed busy….

Places like the downtown YMCA where Mr. & Mrs. Heib cared for youth and adults in our community, the Kraver, Klutey’s jewelry store and grill, Ruby’s Café, JJ Newberry’s and soda fountain, FW Woolworths candy counter, Mann’s women’s ready to wear, MAC’s men’s & boy’s clothing,

Bernstein’s, Bohn’s ,the Fashion Tree, Peartree, Frank G Schmidt, and the Traditional Shop were common businesses to frequent.  Our streets were alive with cars, pedestrians and commerce.


What happened to those businesses and our vibrant downtown area?  Some still remain; Alles, Simons, Campbells, O’Daniels to name just a few.  Others disappeared as urban sprawl, subdivisions and malls became popular.

We found through our class analysis we may have just turned the corner downtown.  Residents are excited to see tangible improvements being made in residential living spaces and redevelopment of commercial buildings.  Newly renovated residential properties like those of Glen & Judy Stone’s (Princess building) and Curt Hamilton’s second story living space are beautiful, functional, contemporary and in demand.  More are on the way!

Residents told us recent downtown infrastructure improvements to our city streets and the addition of the new Henderson Riverwalk is beautiful, useful and needed.

We believe with proper planning, visioning and communication Henderson can once again attract and retain young and seasoned professionals who love what Henderson has to offer.

Last week I was just in Atlanta working, commuting 13 miles one-way which some days could take 40 or more minutes to commute to downtown Atlanta’s Merchandise Mart.  Many folks are looking to escape the concrete jungles like Interstate 75 in Atlanta and relocate to smaller vibrant communities like Henderson, Kentucky.  Young entrepreneurs like Jason Munoz, co-owner of CKB and who want to make Henderson “their forever home.”

We live in one of the best river town cities in America.  Visitors tell us how great it is.  History shows us where we’ve come from and what we’ve accomplished.

Downtown Henderson 2013Our future depends on each of us who live in Henderson and how we embrace and support our community.

TOGETHER we can revitalize, recycle and reshape this place we call home.

Just as the new river walk leads us beside the mighty Ohio with it’s spectacular views, it can also be the beginning of a path that leads us to newly paved streets populated with pedestrians visiting new eateries, bistros, cafes, internet based businesses, retail storefronts, and specialty grocers.

20/20 vision-Where we came from……who we are……how we’re growing!

We the class of 2013 HLI urge each of you to get involved in our community, YOUR community and help Henderson turn another corner and page in the history books.  The synergy and momentum Henderson has experienced in recent years is just the beginning of a bright new downtown environment.

Through active communication, teamwork and getting our story out we can spread the word that we’re one of the BEST river town communities to live in America.

This blog appeared as a guest editorial in the Henderson KY newspaper The Gleaner on Saturday, January 25, 2014. Subscription required to view.

2012 Holiday Charity Cakeballs


Need a special hostess gift or a scumptious secret Santa gift for your office party?  Holiday Charity Cakeballs make the perfect package! They’re delicious, beautiful and each cakeball is handmade in our own kitchen. Since 2009, sister’s Ann & Cathy Jagelewski, Greg Gibson and this year joined by Janet Hayden have put on their aprons to create, bake and decorate unique, flavorful cakeballs.  This year, 14 cakeball flavors, packaged in 3 distinctive gift sets are available for a limited time.

Please place your order online here!


Over 5,000 tasty cakeballs have been baked to benefit local community charities.  Earlier this year over 1,200 cakeball pops were handcrafted to benefit a local youth mentoring organization.  These three women and one man have been very blessed in life and chose to share their gifts, talents and baked creations by helping organizations who help others…..and Charity Cakeballs was born.

This year Holiday Charity Cakeballs are available in three delicious, distinctive packaging options;


Holiday Cakeball Sampler-$20, a dozen handcrafted cakeballs in nine mouthwatering flavors (packaged with a beautiful holiday ribbon on a window box)


Holiday High Balls-$17, nine luxurious liqueur cakeballs in 3 tempting adult flavors(packaging includes an exotic animal print ribbon with a naughty feather)


Frosty & Rudy Kiddie Balls-$7, four balls in two kid-friendly flavors (complete with reindeer feed for Rudolph’s friends)


This Holiday Season just over 1,200 cakeballs will be created for our friends/families enjoyment, and when they’re gone…..well they’re gone, till next year anyway!  So, get your orders in fast and early for these confectionary creations. They’re the perfect holiday gift for the person with a sweet tooth!

Please place your order online here!

For your convenience there are two pick-up dates/locations this year; Thursday, December 13th (Newburgh, IN) and Saturday, December 15th (Henderson, KY).

Thank you in advance for your order and allowing Charity Cakeballs to help others in our community.

Merry Christmas

Ann, Cathy, Janet & Greg


Gibson/Seitz Family Estate Sale of the Year!

Come see Henderson, Kentucky’s BIGGEST Family Estate Sale of 2012.   Beginning Friday, October 12th and Saturday, October 13th859 Watson Lane, between Green River Road and Hwy 41 will host a GIANT FAMILY ESTATE SALE!  Everything MUST GO!  Just in time for early holiday shopping.

Collectibles, artwork, vintage clothing, antiques, housewares, linens, electronics, furniture, and more including a beautiful brick home with a swimming pool and rental income potential will be available.

Sale starts at 7am this coming Friday (October 12, 2012) and continues on Saturday (October 13, 2012) morning.  Please park responsibly regarding neighboring properties.

Just a small DETOUR (less than 1/2 mile) off of the Hwy 60 200 mile Sale!  Deals of the century!  A don’t miss sale!

See you on Friday and Saturday!

Family Recipes for Life

Does your family have a favorite dessert recipe or two, or three or many?  Our family does and for years I have promised to put together a family collection of our favorites as a Christmas gift. Just one problem, that task always kept getting pushed to bottom of the to do list.  October of this year rolled around and things were no different, I had started a new full time job in August, family and church responsibilities, trying to stay on top of three residences and not doing too good at job at any of them, there was excuse after excuse I could make.  Somehow I had waited long enough and I decided on November 1, 2011 to complete the project I had started 4 years prior.

Originally it was to be cookbook of all the family favorites, including Granny Gibson’s chicken and dressing, Granny Hoover’s tasty slaw dressing along with favorites of Mom’s and Sue Vada’s which all the children grew up eating.  However, once I rolled up my sleeves and got into the thick of compiling and laying out the book, I quickly realized in order to meet my December 25th deadline it was going to be a book of favorite dessert recipes this year.

In the past I’ve created a few self published coffee table style books, one for Nibby’s parents Norris and Mary Elizabeth Priests 5oth wedding anniversary, and one for my father, Elmer Gibson’s 75th birthday as gifts.  For these I used mypublisher.com and they turned out to be very nice and beautiful books.  This time however after some online research I stumbled across blurb.com website and found they have easy to use recipe templates which makes organizing and editing a cookbook a breeze.  So after many hours of reviewing family recipes and photographs I got started.  Some 40 or so hours later the book in the cloud was ready to be uploaded to the blurb.com website and my family’s Christmas presents were ordered.  Five days after that they were delivered to my doorstep in two different formats, a hardback version, complete with dustcover and a lesser priced softbound paperback version.  Blurb.com also offered a ebook version for your ipad, so when your baking in the kitchen you can just pull out the ipad and pull up the recipe.

If you’ve ever thought of producing a family compilation of recipes for yourself or as a gift I would encourage you to do so.  It’s a wise investment of time and resources to create a treasured momento you and your family will have forever.  Not to mention all the family favorites in one place.

Have you thought of producing a family cookbook? If you choose to do so  you and your family will cherish your labor of love forever.

A New Agency Opens in Henderson with BIG Plans for Children

Big Brothers Big Sisters of America has been around for well over 100 years and is known as the nation’s largest youth mentoring organization.  Locally here in the tri-state area Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ohio Valley which serves a handfull of counties including Henderson, Kentucky has been in existence for more than 20 years.  This service to Henderson has been limited due to lack of funding and required resources to make and monitor each match.  However, just 4 weeks ago, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Henderson County opened it’s doors at 111 South Adams Street (located within the Housing Authority of Henderson).

This community opportunity was made possible by persons like; Judge Rob Weiderstien, who saw a need from increased numbers of youth appearing in the court system and chose to do something to change those statistics, and women like Darlene Marshall-Ware who gives of herself selflessly to help children in our community succeed, she started something with a passion, Becky Durham who’s heart for children overflows with love, compassion and caring with big results.  There are more, many more persons in our community that have stepped up to Start Something BIG for the children of Henderson by providing guidance, experience and passion by donating their time to the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Henderson County Advisory Board.  This group of committed community volunteers began meeting almost 12 months ago, continues to meet monthly and have launched a new satellite office here in Henderson County to better serve our youth, which will have its ribbon cutting and open house next Friday, September 16th, 12:30 pm.  In addition the group has not only raised community awareness, funding, donations and volunteers, the Advisory Board has established a goal of 30 matches in the first 12 months, which records indicated most likely will be surpassed within the first 3-6 months of operations.

A strong, passionate team of like-minded community volunteers wanting to Start Something Big for the youth of Henderson have done just that. But our works only begun, we need your help.  To help make Big changes for children of Henderson, KY by donating, volunteering or advocating contact me, Greg Gibson at ggibson@bbbshenderson.org or 270 631 0738 and together we can change the life of a Henderson child.

Who do you look up to?

How far back into your childhood can you remember…… 6, 4, or even 2 years of age?  Now what are some of your earliest memories and who influenced your life?  Was it a teacher, family member, friend, church leader or just a stranger who came to your aid?  Chances are it may have been a number of the above or some combination of individuals who were involved with influencing your life.

In my life there are six individuals that come to mind.  They are;
1.  Parents
2.  Grandparents
3. 5th Grade teacher
4.  Youth director
5.  Art teacher
6.  Pastor

The lessons learned from these individuals range from manners to major life decision making choices.  Invaluable life lessons from people who invested in my future. Thank God these people were around for me.

So who influenced you during your childhood?  Who continues to influence you?  The bigger question is who are you influencing?  Maybe it’s your children, a niece or nephew, a brother or sister, a neighbor or a student of yours.  If your answer is, I don’t know here’s a few suggestions for you;

1.  Become a big brother or big sister and mentor a needy child (there’s a local chapter in the grass roots phase right here in Henderson, you can get in on the ground floor)

2.  Volunteer at your church to teach a class, help with the children or youth ministries.

3.  Spend time with a child and read a book, listen to them talk, take them to a park, etc.

4.  Become a child advocate and help fight for children’s rights.

5.  Volunteer at an after school program and help children in a variety of capacities.

6.  Get involved with a local school where’s there’s a variety of opportunities to work one-on-one with children.

The list is endless.  The payoff is priceless and the long term effect is life-changing.  I can’t think of a better way to leave a legacy!

So who do you look up to?


Lasting Memories from 10 Powerful Everlasting Moms

Lessons learned from mom are sometimes too numerous to count, at least the moms in my life are.  Here are some memorable moms and lessons I’ve learned from them.

1.  Pauline Gibson-Family is everything and life around the table is important.

2.  Adell Martin-Compassion in life is to be used generously.

3.  Nancy Gibson-Always, always have hope and faith.

4. Ernestine Seitz-Dignity and grace are qualities we can all exhibit in life, even to the end.

5. Regina Gregory-Hard work and family go hand in hand.

6. Virgie Hoover-Everything is sweeter in life with desert.

7.  Paulette (PJ) Mohler-Smile, humor and hard work always pay off.

8.  Meg Clark-Faith and kindness are keys that unlock many of life’s mysteries.

9.  Cindy White-Spiritual gifts are to be shared.

10. Martha Gibson-Caregiving is something we train for all of our life, and selflessness is a something our Lord and Savior practiced.

May the memories of the moms in your world warm your heart and prepare you to better serve others this Mother’s Day weekend.

A Smiles a Lasting Memory


Some people just have it…..a great smile! You know one of those ear to ear heart-warming grins.  One of those that is permanently plastered below their twinkling eyes.  My friend Margaret Edwards had one of those smiles.

Of all the many times we visited together she always answered the door with a big, warm smile.  It just made you feel welcome, loved and that she cared.  Our visits were sometimes only a couple of minutes but sometimes would last hours.  She was a lady who at 94 was younger in mind and spirit than many 30-year-olds I know.  A prayer warrior, devoted family mother, grandmother, great-grandmother……sister, aunt you know the lady in the family and in church whom everyone loved.  She was forever during our visits talking about her sisters, grandsons and grand-daughters and how much they meant to her. An angel of a lady.  A God loving example of how we are to live, in peace and harmony with one another.

We lost an angel this week.  Margaret at 94, the eldest senior member of Community Baptist Church family completed her work here on this earth and has moved onto more heavenly surroundings.  We’ll miss her laughs.  We’ll miss her stories.  We’ll miss her compassion.  But most of all I’ll miss those warm, wonderful smiles.


Nine days No Notebook

You’d think a week without a computer wouldn’t be a big deal, right?  Think again.  During the past week I’ve needed a computer multiple times each day only to find myself saying, “You’ll have to wait to mark that item off your todo list until the new MacBook Pro arrives”.  Didn’t realize just how much I depend on technology.  Being so closely affiliated with Nibby Priest the “Techno King“, to whom I’m frequently saying,”If you didn’t spend so much time on your computer, fb, twitter, watching internet church services and googling, maybe you’d get some real work done”.  Well, I found out this week in order to get real work done you need a notebook.

The new 15″ MacBook Pro finally arrived on Tuesday this week (six days after the previous one died) and today Saturday it was unpackaged, set up and now in full service.  It’s faster, sleeker, lighter and the image quality is much better and brighter.  All the way around Greg’s Apple is a much sexier machine.  Included with the shipment was Apple’s Magic Mouse and it’s truly amazing!  Those Apple industrial designers sure create some awesome Apples!

Well now that my work load has truly stacked and backed up, hopefully this latest and greatest personal notebook computer will assist and enable me to reduce the queue line list of todo’s even faster.  Writing two proposals and grants, a press release, 15 emails, an employment application, updating 2 websites and blogs will hopefully be made easier and more expedient.

Boy I didn’t realize how much I depend on my Apple!  Nine days, No Notebook……No Fun!