Friends of Rough gets $10,000 grant

By Matt Lasley mlasley@civitasmedia.com

April 1, 2014

The Williams Group, with Bluegrass Pipeline, awarded a $10,000 grant to the Friends of Rough River Lake (FORRL) last Thursday, March 27.

The grant will be used to help fund scheduled events held by the FORRL at Rough River Lake State Park.

FORRL President Howard Tomes said the $10,000 grant will be “a big shot in the arm. It will go a long way for events we have.”

A non-profit organization, the FORRL works with both Rough River State Park and the United States Army Corps of Engineers to hold events to improve the Rough River area and promote the area’s tourism and environs, Tomes said.

The FORRL’s mission is to become the leading civic organization for the park while the Dam Remediation Project is taking place, Tomes said.

To do this, the FORRL has started promoting its annual events early.

A portion of the Bluegrass Pipeline grant will likely be used to help fund the 2014 Rough River fireworks display, which will be held on Saturday, July 5, said Tomes.

Tomes said this annual event, hosted by Rough River Business and Tourism, typically shoots off between $10,000 to $15,000 worth of fireworks and is attended by around 20,000 to 30,000 people.

“It’s the biggest fireworks show west of Louisville,” he said.

Tomes said he is currently in the process of scheduling a meeting with other Rough River officials to attempt to make the day on which the fireworks are set off an all-day event with music, games, and, possibly, one or two hot air balloons.

Additional events that will be hosted by the FORRL in 2014 include the annual Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday, April 19; Fishing with a Veteran on Saturday, May 10; the Visitor Center Opening on Saturday, May 17; the Cardboard Boat Regatta on Saturday, June 28; the first annual Rough River Poker Run on Saturday, July 12; and the Dam Triathlon on Saturday, Aug. 9.

The FORRL will complete its 2014 schedule of events on Saturday, Sept. 13 with the event that started it, the Trash Bash.

Tomes said the FORRL wants to involve as many local individuals as possible in the goings-on at Rough River as possible because it is one of the largest economic drivers in Grayson County.

“People here need to take advantage of the lakes,” he said.

Individuals who wish to learn more about the FORRL or how to join may visit the group’s website at www.friendsofroughriver.org.