Bill Monroe Museum: Construction update 

Construction work on the Bill Monroe Museum on Bill Monroe Avenue, US Highway 62 in Ohio County, KY, is progressing well with the outside of the wood frame structure complete. 

Despite some inconvenience due to snow and ice during January, work has advanced so much so that the Ohio County Tourism Commission, the owners, hosted a sold out fundraising dinner in the hall last Saturday, January 27, 2018, to pay for a security system and display cases. Funds are to be used for exhibits, furniture, and to perform some much-needed restoration on delicate items. 

During the evening that began with hors d’oeuvre, there was a meet and greet and tours of the museum, with guides indicating where exhibits are expected to be on view when the museum is opened. Guest speakers were on hand, along with music from the King’s Highway bluegrass band: Mark Hargis (mandolin and vocals), Zeb Hargis (guitar and vocals), Kristy Richards Westerfield (bass), and young Isaac Tieman (fiddle and vocal).   

The museum made one of Bill Monroe’s mandolins available for use by Mark Hargis, who played Monroe’s Lonesome Moonlight Waltz for the audience, and Aaron Jacob, from Becky and the Butler County Boys, during what was the finale of their performance. 

The official opening is scheduled for September 13, 2018, marking 107 years since Monroe’s birth in 1911. 

Kristy Richards Westerfield has provided a selection of photographs taken by her during the evening of the benefit.

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About the Author

Richard Thompson

Richard F. Thompson is a long-standing free-lance writer specialising in bluegrass music topics. A two-time Editor of British Bluegrass News, he has been seriously interested in bluegrass music since about 1970. As well as contributing to that magazine, he has, in the past 30 plus years, had articles published by Country Music World, International Country Music News, Country Music People, Bluegrass Unlimited, MoonShiner (the Japanese bluegrass music journal) and Bluegrass Europe. He wrote the annotated series I'm On My Way Back To Old Kentucky, a daily memorial to Bill Monroe that culminated with an acknowledgement of what would have been his 100th birthday, on September 13, 2011.