Organizers of the annual Lincoln Day Dinner describe the scheduled speakers for the June 30 event as the best ever.
Headed by Senate President Mitch McConnell, the Hardin County Republican Party’s gathering at the Historic State Theater also features leaders of both state legislative chambers, a Kentuckian who charmed the 2016 Republican National Convention and two new legislators from neighboring counties.
“This is the strongest lineup of influential speakers in the history of the party,” said Pete Countryman, who has attended the GOP event for more than two decades and been the program director for six years.
Jim Weise of Elizabethtown, the former 2nd Congressional District GOP chairman, echoed Countryman’s assessment.
“It’s the most powerful program ever,” he said.
Built around a theme of “new beginnings, promises made, promise kept,” Countryman said the evening will focus in part on Kentucky General Assembly achievements since Gov. Matt Bevin’s election in 2015 and Republicans taking the state House in 2016. McConnell, the senior senator from Kentucky, will close the evening with an assessment of the federal government.
Sen. President Pro Tem David Givens, R-Greensburg, and House Majority Whip Kevin Bratcher, R-Fern Creek, are scheduled to appear.
Also speaking will be state Sen. Ralph Alvarado, the first Hispanic elected to the Kentucky legislature. Alvarado, 47, a physician from Winchester, is the son of immigrants. He drew headlines during last summer’s national convention with his convictions about America’s status as a land of opportunity and a belief that family values shared by most Latinos are consistent with the GOP platform.
First-term legislators, state Sen. Steve Meredith of Leitchfield and state Rep. Brandon Reed of Hodgenville complete the agenda.
Countryman said the evening will be dedicated in honor of Ralph Reese of Radcliff, a World War II veteran. Jody Ingalls, a local singer with a repertoire of WWII-era hits, will portray British star Vera Lynn and serenade Reese with the period tune “White Cliffs of Dover.”
Admission is $50 per person. A flyer promoting the event says tickets can be purchased by calling Kathy Sargeant at 330-329-0925, Laura LaRue at 270-401-2500 or Ken Randall at 270-352-2210. The dinner begins at 6:30 p.m. June 30 following a social hour.