September 17, 2010

Somerset, KY – TOUR Southern and Eastern Kentucky (TOUR SEKY) held its annual National Tourism Week event May 11, 2010 at The Center for Rural Development in Somerset, Kentucky. During the ceremony TOUR awarded more than $400,000 through its Community Initiative in Tourism for You (C.I.T.Y) and Let’s Paint the Town programs. The City of Liberty was the top winning city. The city was awarded $30,000 for a revitalization project in its downtown historic district. Blaine Staat with the Casey County Chamber of Commerce applied for the funding through the C.I.T.Y. program.

With the C.I.T.Y. grant, Liberty has purchased, assembled and placed 24 park benches of three different patriotic designs, six decorative streetlamps and four decorative street posts with signs to compliment existing fixtures in downtown. Liberty has also purchased and placed 36 planters of three differing designs and 12 hanging baskets around the historic downtown. There has also been new street banners hung depicting Liberty as an award winning city.

“Mayor Steve Sweeney and all the city maintenance have absolutely been essential in executing this grant,” stated Staat. Still left to install are two entry signs for the “Liberty Crossing” bridge and trail, six dogwood and crape myrtle trees, and 500 tulip and daffodil bulbs.

The C.I.T.Y. program is intended to assist southern and eastern Kentucky downtowns in attracting people to live, work, shop and play. The program has secured more than $700,000 for revitalization efforts in the region’s downtowns. C.I.T.Y eligible projects include downtown/streetscape master plans, facade improvements and landscape projects, among others.

For more information about each cities’ award and projects the funding will support, please contact Michelle Allen, 606-677-6142 or

TOUR SEKY is an award winning initiative of Congressman Hal Rogers. The organization’s mission is to educate, expand, develop and market the existing and potential tourism industry throughout southern and eastern Kentucky, while contributing to the economic, cultural growth, health and awareness, and overall quality of life of the region. For additional information about TOUR SEKY visit, or call 606-677-6093.