Call To Artists


Bluegrass Greensource seeks  local artists to create works of art on fully functional rain barrels.  This year, the theme for all barrels will be horseracing, and we need you to put your artistic spin on one of only 10 barrels.


Thousands of people will be exposed to your artwork throughout April and May of next year.  Each barrel will be displayed, along with artist bios and contact information in high volume areas throughout Central Kentucky.  Examples of past display locations include Starbucks on Main Street in Lexington, Magees Bakery and The Hub Coffee Shop in Georgetown.

All rain barrel artists’ contact information will be promoted to supporters who buy plain barrels and who participate in rain barrel making workshops to potentially provide future work.

Additionally, because of the theme, Bluegrass Greensource is actively working to have all of the barrels on display at Keeneland during their spring meet.


Barrels will be displayed in various locations throughout April and May of 2016.  All barrels will be brought together during Bluegrass Greensource’s annual event, GreenFest on May 21st,and will be sold to help fund Bluegrass Greensource’s environmental education activities throughout our region.


  • Submit a rough sketch of your racing barrel idea by November 30, 2015
    • For reference, these are 55 gallon drums that measure 34 1/4 inches tall and 23 1/4 inches in diameter.
  • Artists will be selected and barrels can be picked up on December 15, 2015
  • Completed barrels MUST be returned to Bluegrass Greensource by February 1, 2016
  • Artist Responsibilities
    • Priming the barrel
    • Creating a functional, attractive piece of art that can withstand the weather
      • Acrylic paint works best and artists are not allowed to adhere anything (such as paper, tiles, etc.) to the barrels
      • To help with planning, the spigot is the front of the rain barrel, and the back is usually against a wall.
    • Submit supporting information, including the title of the work, artist’s bio, contact information and a short interpretation of the work at the same time (or before) as the barrel.
  • Bluegrass Greensource Responsibilities
    • $50 will be given to each artist to help defray the cost of supplies
    • Professionally topcoat each barrel
    • Work with local media to give as much exposure to this program as possible


Bluegrass Greensource is THE source for all things green in Central Kentucky, encouraging small steps toward a sustainable future for our communities.  Formerly known as Bluegrass PRIDE, Bluegrass Greensource is a non-profit organization that provides education and resources on how we affect our environment. Since 2001, we have provided outreach to schools, community groups, businesses, local governments, and citizens throughout Central Kentucky.

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GreenFest gives attendees new green ideas, offers food, music, more

Did you ever want to learn about keeping chickens or bees in your backyard? What about whether or not solar panels would work in Lexington, or on your house, or how to have a “green” lawn?

Bluegrass Greensource is excited to announce our first annual sustainability fair called GreenFest on May 23 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. We expect the event to attract 200 – 300 people throughout the day, and have Red State BBQ and West Sixth Beer as well as live music and a DJ to give it that festival atmosphere.

Since 2001, Bluegrass Greensource has provided resources to the citizens and students in Central Kentucky, but this will be the first time we are offering a sampling of workshops on a variety of topics all in one setting. Each of the workshops will give the participants enough information to ease their curiosity or give them enough information to figure out if the subject might work for them, and the tools to find out more information.

We are also excited to announce that we will be serving beer from West Sixth, and Ale 8-1, as well as have Red State BBQ on hand for lunch and a live band and DJ all day long. And, no Bluegrass Greensource event would be complete without kids activities that allow kids of all ages to play games while actually learning about our environment.

To round out the event, we will have vendors to peruse where you can learn about local environmental efforts or buy recycled clothes from local entrepreneurs. I am very excited about the event, and I hope that all of you who read this will come out and find something of interest.

GreenFest will be in the parking lot of our new building at 835 National Avenue in Lexington. We would love to show you around our “green” office with a Big Ass Fan, walls painted with recycled paint and reused furniture from ReStore! GreenFest will be on May 23rd from 10-4 rain or shine (don’t worry – we have two big tents to keep us dry if it rains).

A full workshop schedule is below.

10 a.m. Recycling 101 with Lauren
10:30 a.m. Tree Care with Bridget
11 a.m. Sustainable Lawn Care with Dan
11:30 a.m. Beekeeping with John
12 p.m. Tiny Homes with Christine and Candice
12:30 p.m. Solar Power with Jamie
1 p.m. Backyard Chickens with Link
1:30 p.m. Energy Efficiency with Jamie
2 p.m. Rain Gardens with Kara
2:30 p.m. Composting with Schuyler
3 p.m. Rain Barrel Workshop with Amy

1 Amy-Sohner

Amy Sohner is executive director of Greensource and a graduate of the University of Kentucky in Natural Resource Conservation and Management. Sohner has worked with Greensource since its inception in 2002 and is a Certified Environmental Educator. She is involved with the Kentucky Environmental Literacy Alliance, the Bluegrass Rain Garden Alliance, the Licking and Kentucky River Basin Teams, and serves as vice-chair of the Keep Lexington Beautiful Commission. Sohner lives near the Kentucky River palisades with her husband, two daughters and a multitude of pets.

This article appeared in KY Forward on May 14, 2015.