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Friday, April 30, 2021

The Lash Room Opens in Fort Thomas

Meet Kasey Swing, the owner of The Lash Room.
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By Jessie Eden

A new business has opened its doors in Fort Thomas!

The Lash Room, owned and operated by Kasey Swing, opened its doors this past January at 660 Highland Avenue. The Lash Room offers eyelash extensions and microblading...but new services are coming soon such as skincare services and other permanent makeup options.


- Microblading is a semi-permanent tattoo procedure where a special handheld microblading eyebrow pen is used to draw on strokes that mimic the appearance of real brow hairs. While it is a similar process to getting a tattoo, the ink that is used is far less concentrated than that of a regular tattoo and is specifically formulated for the microblading process.

- Lash Extensions are single strands of synthetic eyelashes that are curved to replicate a natural eyelash. They are applied to each individual natural eyelash one by one for a natural, beautiful, and luscious look. Eyelash Extensions are perfect for special occasions or for everyday wear.

Simply put, the Lash Room is LOVELY

The lash room has a cozy, comfortable boutique feel. With a fresh, welcoming feel, Kasey's goal is to make every customer walk away feeling beautiful. "All of our experienced lash artists are so talented in their own ways. We strive to make every guest experience positive and comfortable." 

A new concept for Fort Thomas

An Ohio native and current Fort Thomas resident, Kasey says that Fort Thomas was the perfect location for her specialized business. "I’ve lived in fort Thomas for a little over two years. I grew up in Ross, Ohio, but when I started house hunting I knew I wanted to be closer to downtown. I stumbled upon my little fixer upper in Fort Thomas and have been loving it and the town ever since."

Kasey is an esthetician and has been doing skincare and lashes for the past 6 years. "When I decided I wanted to start my own business, I knew I wanted it to be in fort Thomas. There’s really nothing like our shop in the area and I knew it would be a new, unique addition to Fort Thomas."

To learn more about The Lash Room, click here to visit the website and be sure to follow them on Facebook.

Newport Seeking Input on Festival Park Improvements

Goettafest 2019 at Newport Festival Park. 

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The City of Newport is seeking the public's input on the planned improvements to Festival Park, one of Greater Cincinnati's premiere gathering destinations. 

Thanks to a $2.5 million federal grant from the Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana Regional Council of Governments (OKI) that will help with partial funding, Newport is planning a complete overhaul of Festival Park, known for hosting annual festivals, gatherings and events that include Italianfest, Riverfest, The Great Inland Seafood Fest, Goettafest and Oktoberfest. 

The city has formed a planning committee to update the design for Festival Park. 

"Hundreds of thousands of people visit and enjoy Festival Park every year," said Newport City Assistant Manage Larisa Sims. "So why not ask people who enjoy the park what they think? Festival Park is a wonderful place to visit, but since we are planning to enhance it, we are open to ideas, thoughts and suggestions." 

"This project is intended to enhance the riverfront space to provide for ongoing festivals, but also to create a more inviting space for residents and nearby employees to enjoy on a daily basis," Sims said.  “The information from the survey will help inform our committee work and the ultimate design outcome.” 

New Healthy Meal Plan and Restaurant Coming to Newport Shopping Center

Clean Eatz owners, Chase Whitehead (l) and Brandon Cress (r) with their families. As parents of young children, they say they know all too well the importance of healthy — and convenient — food.


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by Robin Gee

The goal to eat healthier will get a little easier this summer with the opening of a new meal plan service and casual dining restaurant in Newport. Set to open in July, Clean Eatz will open in the Newport Shopping Center near Crunch Fitness, next to the Hallmark store.

Orangetheory Fitness, Newport Pavilion. Click here to learn more. 

Chase Whitehead
, personal trainer and owner of Orange Theory fitness in Newport, and Brandon Cress, vice president of business development at Cincinnati-based Tremor research and marketing, are partnering to open the Newport location of the popular franchise. Both say what attracted them to the project was the ability to support healthy food choices while providing the convenience of a flexible meal plan service at an affordable price.

Being in the fitness world, Whitehead said he speaks with people every day who are concerned about their health and their weight. They tell him they want to be healthier, but, it’s hard, especially when it comes to times when they also want something quick and convenient. There is a gap between people’s desire to eat healthier and the resources available to them to meet their goals, he said, and this is where Clean Eatz can help.

Cress explained how the plan works. Clean Eatz is a prepared meal service, but it doesn’t run on subscriptions, and food is ordered and picked up each week. The company announces six different meals, five entrees and one breakfast, on Thursdays. Up until Sunday night, people can pre-order as few or as many meals as they like. Then, the meals are made fresh and ready for pick up Sunday and Monday.

Because there are no subscriptions, customers can order any quantity and combination of the meals they want each week. The cost per meal goes down by a small amount based on the number of meals ordered. "So the more you order, the better the value, but you can order just one meal or 30 meals," Cress said.

About the food

Food in the Clean Eatz plan is "macro-balanced," said Cress, meaning it balances the number of carbs, proteins and fats in each meal, and most meals are under 500 calories. Clean Eatz has developed its own line of sauces and spices that can be added to the meals.

People who have special dietary concerns such as low carb, gluten free or vegetarian, can make substitutions for many of the meals. Flexibility is a key part of the program, he said.

"With a combination of spices and sauce options, different vegetable options, different varieties of meals available, you pretty much could have a something different every day of the year," Cress said.

More to Clean Eatz

In addition to the meal plan program, Clean Eatz will also offer a bricks-and-mortar casual dining restaurant on site.

"We see this as 'fast casual,'" said Cress. "People can come in and order off the menu to eat here. We will have build-a-bowls, signature salads, wraps, flatbreads, a healthy kids’ menu, healthy snacks – our loaded nachos, for example, are made with sweet potatoes – and also we offer protein smoothies."

The location will also have pre-made frozen meals available to take home that the owners call "grab and go meals." All the meal plan food is made fresh and refrigerated until it is picked up, but they recognize that sometimes people may want to just stop in and see what’s available from their freezer. "We’ll have many choices including family size meals and a great thin-crust cauliflower pizza," Cress said.

Although they will connect with a service like Door Dash, he said people should think about stopping by Clean Eatz to pick up their order much in the same way they would go to the grocery store.

The owners plan to offer healthy food catering as well. With many still working at home during the pandemic, they will wait and gauge the need for catering as it unfolds. They expect it to pick up as more people return to the workplace.

Providing a tool to meet good health goals

Clean Eatz is "a cheap, healthy option that is going to be super convenient. When I first heard about this, I thought this is great because every single week I get the question, what should I be eating? And this offers a simple, clear solution. All have to do is check the meal plan, everything is listed out for you," said Whitehead.

Whitehead plans to use Clean Eatz as an option when he’s counseling clients looking for healthy food options. The owners are spreading the word with other fitness centers, coaches and trainers as well. Already, packaging on the meals includes Weight Watcher points so those in that program can see quickly how Clean Eatz meals fit.

"People want to eat healthier. This is need driven," said Cress. "Right now obesity rates in America are sky rocketing. And the pandemic proved it to be a major issue for people. A lot of peep who did die from COVID had underlying issues, and many of those were obesity-related, things like diabetes and hypertension."

Our region includes states ranked high on the list of percentage of adult population who are considered obese "Honestly, Kentucky is number five in obesity with over 36 percent of the adult population considered obese. Ohio is number 13 with nearly 35 percent — so there is both a need and a desire to be healthier," he added.

The number of prepared meal services has grown steadily in recent years. One factor, said Cress, is convenience. He noted that both he and Whitehead have young children, and there are times when time and energy are at a premium. Fast food offers convenience, but he wanted to offer that convenience through food that is fresh and truly healthy.

Treating customers as "members"

Clean Eatz has no membership fees or membership programs, but Cress and Whitehead said they want to create a feeling of membership for regular customers. Based on Clean Eatz across the country, they said they expect to build a loyal, regular customer base.

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Vice President Harris to visit, NKY road closures expected

I-471. File photo. 

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Vice President Kamala Harris will visit Cincinnati on Friday, the White House announced on Monday. 

Orangetheory Fitness Newport Pavilion. 

The City of Southgate announced a change in time with their planned Arbor Day celebration. 

City officials indicated that the motorcade detail has a travel time range between 10:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. During this time, expect traffic delays  all around the area, exacerbated by bridge maintenance around I-75 and I-71. 

Southgate and Fort Thomas Police will assist with traffic between US-27 and I-471. Traditionally the lanes of travel are shut down for the Vice-President, while both ways of travel are shut down for the President.

Due to closures of 471 and 275 Friday afternoon in preparation for the visit of Vice President Harris, the City’s Arbor...

Posted by City of Southgate, Kentucky on Wednesday, April 28, 2021


No further details of the visit were released, including whether or not the Brent Spence Bridge will be discussed. 

The visit comes after after President Joe Biden's first address last night before a joint session of Congress to mark his first 100 days in office.

Ovation and Levee Developments on Track Together

The Ovation Music Pavilion features VIP seating, a generous mosh pit, three bars and grass-planted section atop the venue's garage to offer soft seating for fans.

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 by Robin Gee 

Justin Otto, general manager for Newport on the Levee, and Eric Buck, senior development associate for Corporex, were on hand Wednesday to speak with members at the April meeting of the Newport Business Association. Corporex is the developer for the Ovation project. Both shared updates and noted how fortunate it was to have two exciting developments on the river side-by-side.

Barre3 Fort Thomas. 90 Alexandria Pike. 

"You can build a Newport on the Levee anywhere. You can build it in Mason, Ohio. You can build it in Union Kentucky, but what’s really hard to build is an Ohio River, a Purple People bridge, a Cincinnati Skyline, a Newport Aquarium and, especially, a development like Ovation. We are so lucky to have something like this, a partner to feed off of, and to work with. It’s synergistic, bringing the northern part of Campbell County alive," said Otto, who also praising the city of Newport for its vision.

Buck agreed, "With nearly 1,000 residential units, our development is mostly residential, so to have an amenity like Newport on the Levee right next to us, that’s why we’re so excited to have the partnership, connecting our two projects and our developments. For me, and for all residents living in Newport, it’s not just about Newport on the Levee and Ovation, it’s all about the riverfront development, the district. That’s how it needs to be seen."

Preparing for the return to concerts

Buck gave an overview of the two phases of the Ovation Project. The first, nearing completion, is the $40 million, 38,000-square-foot concert venue in partnership with AEG Worldwide/PromoWest, one of the largest music entertainment companies in the world.

"With more than 180 events a year – that’s almost one every other night with an average attendance of 2,300 for each event, it creates a good catalyst for our entire project," he said.

RELATED: Ovation Project in Newport Has Plans for Hotel, Office Building Next to Music Venue

Due to the pandemic, few bands are touring right now, but Buck said that is expected to change by September. While the concert venue has perhaps created the most buzz, Buck’s updates highlighted what’s next for the project (Phase one and two) in addition to details about the performance space.

The concert venue boasts an outdoor space with room for up to 7,000 people. There will be three bars, a generous mosh pit area, an extra viewing screen off to one side of the stage, VIP seating and an expanse of real grass planted on top of the building’s parking garage for audiences to relax and enjoy the show.

When the weather turns cold, concerts will be held inside the building with space for 2,700. All told, Buck said they expect to draw between 350,000 and 400,000 music fans each year.

Buck said many of the features at the facility put an emphasis on ease of movement for concert goers, what he said AEG likes to call “the circle of life.” Getting people from their seats to the bar and in and out of the restroom as efficiently and as comfortably as possible is a key need addressed within the project, he noted.

Going vertical this summer

A rendering of the five-story office building and 124-room hotel, the next project for Ovation.

Next to the concert venue will be a 100-square-foot five-story office building built above a parking garage with retail shops on the first floor and a five-story, 124-room Homewood Suites Hotel with a plaza-level bar and a rooftop bar. "We plan to go vertical with that this summer," he said.

From there, Buck moved onto "phase two" of the project, which will be connected by a new, wide pedestrian bridge. He said the developers worked for almost two years with the Army Corps of Engineers to expand the Levee. This part of the Levee has walls 26 feet tall and will run in front of the planned residential building facing the river.

Over 50 years experience in NKY. Call now, mention FTM. (859) 287-2499.

More than 900 residential units are planned, rental and condominium. Presale for 88 condominium homes will begin this summer, he said. The site will include restaurants and retail on the first floor, and the plan is for the expanse between the residential units and the levee tol serve as the front lawn." The goal is to provide access to the river from the residential property.

"You will be able to walk directly down to the river," he said. People will also be able to drive up to the plaza level and straight into the off street parking with the help of a ramp. The project spans Central Avenue to the roundabout on Route 8.

Buck said developers also have been working with the city of Newport to help support acceleration of the city park in that area.

The developers are also excited about another city project that should be completed in the next few years – the renovations on the Fourth Street Bridge connecting Newport and Covington.

The mixed-use Ovation project includes rental and condo properties facing the Ohio River.

Ovation developers worked two years with the Army Corps of Engineers on the Levee expansion.

Praising new and long-time Levee tenants

Much of the work for Newport on the Levee has been completed or is nearing completion. Otto highlighted improvements to the facility including parking access from Third Street, a complete redesign of the Gallery Building, a total refresh of the promenade between the Gallery Building and the Bridgeview Box Park, a new entrance connecting the Gallery Building to the pedestrian bridge, and an open walkway along the river with restaurants and retail.

He also noted the addition of Trade™, a rotating group of 12 new and upcoming vendors along with four permanent retail spaces. 

Renovations to Newport on the Levee are nearing completion. This is a rendering showing the refreshed plaza and Bridgeview Park

RELATED: North American Properties Continues Plan to be "Newport’s Livingroom"

RELATED: More Changes on the Way at Newport on the Levee

The latest development has been the addition of one of the two new LED screens for events mounted on the plaza (with the second inside the Gallery Building due soon, he said.) The big screen comes just in time for the Levee’s second annual Run for the Roses event in the Bridgeview Box Park on May 1.

RELATED: Race to Newport on the Levee for the Second Annual Run for the Roses Event on May 1

Otto said he is most excited to welcome new businesses to the Levee. The Beeline offers craft cocktails, 2,800 square feet of space and access to an expansive outdoor patio. Its 'sister" is The Buzz also specializing in craft cocktails and featuring frozen drinks.

Craft brewery West Sixth Street adds Newport on the Levee to its list of locations in Lexington, Louisville and Frankfort. It will be in the space formerly held by Leaf and Lamb, which is moving inside the Gallery Building.

In the Bridgeview Box Park, Blackmarket Saloon will provide fresh-squeezed spiked lemonade. The Crepe Guys is a European franchise featuring sweet and savory crepes and coffee. It will take the place of Bon-Mi, which also moves inside the Gallery Building.

Otto said he wanted especially to thank all the tenants who have stayed with the Levee despite all the challenges from the pandemic and from the renovations.

RELATED: Newport on the Levee Announces Five New Restaurant, Bar Concepts 

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Campbell County Offers Convenient Drive Thru COVID-19 Clinic Saturday

Convenient drive-up COVID-19 vaccines available at the Southern Campbell County Fire Department Saturday, May 8.

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by Robin Gee

Vaccinations will be given on Saturday, May 8, at the Southern Campbell County Fire Department at 1050 Race Track Road in Alexandria. The shot is free to any Kentucky resident over age 18, but you still need to make an appointment.

Click on the COVID vaccine registration link to sign up.

As expected, you must wear a mask to the appointment and remain in your car at all times. If you are positive for COVID-19, you can still get vaccinated if you’re considered recovered and out of isolatin/quarintine. However, if you’ve recently received a vaccine for another illness, you must wait 14 days before getting a COVID vaccine.

You may be asked to provide proof that you are a Kentucky resident.

The Miranda Warning: How to Protect Your Rights

Josh McIntosh devotes his practice to serving those in his community by providing them with high-quality, results-oriented legal representation.

Editor's Note:
This article was authored by Samuel Banasek, a law student at Salmon P. Chase Law School, with guidance from Josh McIntosh. 
This collaboration was made possible through the Chase Know Your Rights Pro Bono Program.


You have the right to remain silent. It’s a phrase that every American has heard, whether through movies, T.V, or their own experience. The Miranda warning is a hallmark of the American criminal justice system, one that is repeated so often that people lose sight of what it actually means. In reality the Miranda warning is not just a speech police have to give as they arrest a suspect, but a reminder of that suspect's constitutional rights. Rights that can be taken away if a suspect fails to heed the warning.

Let’s start with the actual wording of the Miranda warning: “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney one will be provided for you.” As with all legal language every word of the Miranda warning is important, and has been interpreted to have a specific meaning. Though the warning acts to protect suspects, it allows them a narrow course of action if they want to retain their rights.

How to Exercise Your Rights:

If a suspect wants to exercise their right to remain silent they must do so unambiguously. A suspect may do this by stating: “I don’t want to answer any questions” or, “I need to speak to my lawyer first.” The key is for a suspect to indicate that they do not want to be subjected to police interrogation, and to do so as clearly as possible.

The Miranda warning was created to protect against the inherently coercive nature of police interrogation. Even though the warning exists police may still attempt to coerce a suspect into waiving their rights. Quite simply, police want suspects to make incriminating statements and will go to whatever lengths the law allows to obtain these statements. It is not enough to merely remain silent. If a suspect does so the interrogation may continue, and if the police elicit any kind of response it may be used as evidence. The best way for a suspect to protect their Miranda rights is to clearly state that they will not answer any more questions. If there is any question as to the suspect’s intent the interrogation may continue, which could result in incriminating evidence.

Even if a suspect asserts their right to remain silent the police may still attempt to resume interrogating that suspect later on. This is why the second part of the Miranda warning is so important: the right to an attorney. If a suspect asserts their right to an attorney, they may not be questioned further until an attorney is present. It is always better for a suspect to assert both their right to an attorney and their right to silence, even if the suspect does not have access to an attorney when the right is asserted. A suspect cannot go to trial without an attorney, so even a suspect that cannot afford an attorney will have one appointed eventually. Until this happens, a suspect that has clearly asserted their right to have an attorney present during questioning may not be interrogated further. Asking for the presence of an attorney is the best way for a suspect to exercise their Miranda rights.

Why not Remain Silent?

The difference between remaining silent and exercising the right to remain silent is incredibly important. Remember that unless the right is specifically invoked the police may continue to question a suspect and admit their responses into evidence, even if the response is to remain silent. If a suspect exercises their right it demonstrates that they are remaining silent intentionally, not just because they don’t want to give an incriminating answer to a question.

For example: a suspect is arrested on suspicion of drug possession. Illicit substances were found in their apartment, and police began questioning the suspect to establish a connection between the suspect and the substances. In this case, the suspect can remain silent when the police ask questions like “was this substance yours?” or “how did these drugs get in your apartment?” However, if they do, the prosecution can admit this silence as evidence and the judge or jury might assume that the suspect remained silent because the question had an incriminating answer. On the other hand, if the suspect exercises their right, the interrogation must cease, the silence cannot be used as evidence, and any further questions may be deflected by an attorney, which does not reflect as strongly on the suspect.

When the Right Applies:

It is important to remember that the warning only applies during interrogation while a suspect is in custody. A suspect is generally considered in custody if they are not free to leave. This can happen in a holding cell, during the arrest process, or even in the suspect’s own home. If a suspect is unsure whether or not they are currently in custody they can ask questions like “am I free to go?” or “am I being arrested?” If the suspect is not in custody the warning does not need to be given, however, the rights remain the same. A suspect always has the right not to answer any questions that might incriminate them whether in custody or not. Refusing to answer, insisting on the presence of an attorney, or simply walking away are all acceptable ways to cut off questioning while not in custody.

A suspect who has asserted their Miranda rights may still waive them later on. They may do this voluntarily, through signing a statement giving up their Miranda rights, or in some cases, involuntarily. While the police are not allowed to interrogate a suspect who has asserted their right to remain silent, they may question a suspect if that suspect initiated the conversation. This doesn’t apply to every conversation, a suspect can ask things related to the details of their custody (“can I go to the bathroom?” “can I make a phone call?”) without waiving their Miranda rights. However, if a suspect asks the police a question, or makes a statement, relating to their ongoing investigation the suspect is considered to have initiated a conversation and waived their Miranda rights. Anything a suspect says from this point on is admissible.

Similarly, a suspect who has waived their Miranda rights can always choose to exercise them later on. Even if a suspect agrees to subject themselves to interrogation, they can cut off questioning at any time. As before, this must be done unambiguously, either by stating that they want to remain silent, that they wish for the presence of an attorney, or both. If this happens, the police must honor the suspect’s rights or risk gathering inadmissible evidence. Although, the police can use anything the suspect said before the right was invoked.

Finally, there is the question of what happens if the police do not read the Miranda warning. In this case the suspect’s rights remain the same. That is, they still have the right not to respond to interrogation. However, if a suspect is interrogated while in custody and the warning is not given, any answers the suspect gives will not be admissible as evidence. Because of this, police will likely act to inform a suspect of their Miranda rights as soon as possible.


● The right to remain silent does not apply if the suspect remains silent, it must be asserted.

● Always assert both the right to silence and an attorney, even if a suspect has no access to an attorney one must be appointed for them eventually.

● Assert the right clearly, leave the police no room for misunderstanding or misinterpretation.

● After the right is asserted, do not say anything that relates to the investigation, as it might waive the right and allow the police to resume interrogation.

● If the police do not read the warning, it is possible that anything a suspect says will be inadmissible.

● The warning was created to combat the use of coercive tactics by police, but they can still attempt to coerce a suspect to surrender their rights.

If you are in need of representation in a criminal case or need help with a legal matter, contact Josh McIntosh Law by clicking here. 
Consultations are FREE.

The Real ID deadline just got postponed until 2023

Kentucky, Other States Advised of 19-Month Extension of REAL ID Enforcement Deadline

@odiin, via Unsplash. 

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Gov. Andy Beshear announced today that Kentucky and other states have been advised by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security that full enforcement of the REAL ID Act is being extended by 19 months.

The extension will give license issuance agencies time to recover operating capacity that was restricted to abide by health guidelines during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The new enforcement date is May 3, 2023. Before the announced extension, the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) and its counterparts in other states were preparing for enforcement to begin Oct. 1, 2021 – just over five months from now.

As of the new enforcement date, every air traveler 18 years of age and older will need a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license or identification card, state-issued enhanced driver’s license, or another TSA-acceptable form of identification at airport security checkpoints for domestic air travel.

“This extension is a prudent move,” Gov. Beshear said. “We are rolling out a modern, efficient network of KYTC Driver Licensing Regional Offices to issue all REAL ID-compliant licenses and identification cards. These offices have and continue to operate at limited capacity to meet social distancing and other ‘Healthy at Work’ requirements.”

Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas made the same point in announcing the extension.

“Protecting the health, safety, and security of our communities is our top priority,” said Secretary Mayorkas. “As our country continues to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, extending the REAL ID full enforcement deadline will give states needed time to reopen their driver’s licensing operations and ensure their residents can obtain a REAL ID-compliant license or identification card.”

KYTC Secretary Jim Gray said Kentucky’s issuance of REAL ID licenses and IDs will continue, as will the transition of all driver licensing services – standard-issue licenses and permits as well as REAL ID-compliant credentials – to KYTC Driver Licensing Regional Offices and away from the Office of Circuit Court Clerk in each county.

“The extension can be viewed as a needed grace period,” Secretary Gray said. “But our advice to drivers is still the same: If you want a REAL ID, make a plan now.”

Information is at

Tuesday Highlands Sports Round-Up: Boys Tennis Records Huge Win

Softball Pulls Out Road Win at Simon Kenton

Contributed Photo. The Highlands boys tennis team defeated Covington Catholic, 3-2 at Tower Park on Tuesday.

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The Highlands Bluebirds boys tennis team (12-1 overall) took down the rival Covington Catholic Colonels, 3-2 in a huge 9th Region battle.

"Tennis is an individual sport year-round as many of them do. But that's the beauty of high school tennis. It is a team sport," said Kris Laskey, Highlands Head Coach. "You're still playing on your singles or doubles court. But this is the one time they get to sort of see the importance of team. Your after that third point. The points were going back and forth in those matches."

Highlands won both doubles matches on the way to the win. Seniors Matthew Ericson and Joss Finseth won the first doubles, 6-4, 1-6, 10-6. Freshmen Eli Back and Eli Hornsby won the second doubles, 6-1, 5-7, 10-7.

Senior Peter Laskey won the first singles match 6-3, 3-6, 10-8. Even though sophomore John Laskey lost second singles, 6-1, 6-3, Coach Laskey pointed out he was on the court a long time. Junior Jacob Clifton lost his third singles match.

"A lot of team energy definitely contributed to the win," Peter Laskey said. "It was not only people on the court playing, but a lot of people off the court from parents to players cheering us on. I just take deep breaths and stay really focused."

Highlands travels to Lloyd Memorial on Thursday. Match time is 4 p.m.

Highlands 8, Simon Kenton 6:

The Bluebirds (16-4) know they may need to win games like this to make a deep postseason run.

"I'm definitely proud of the girls because we made some mistakes that we have to correct," said Milt Horner, Highlands Head Coach. "We're not going to reach our goals if we make some of the mistakes we made. The girls know that. Focusing on every pitch is one of our mantras and we're not doing that as well as we need to. We've gotten away with that against some lesser teams. We're not going to get away with that against good teams."

Horner said he has a list of 10 things to work on. But mental errors on the bases led to some outs against the Lady Pioneers.

Highlands scored two runs in the top of the sixth to pull off the road win over the Lady Pioneers (6-7). Freshman second baseman Bailey Markus doubled in sophomore Kennedy Baioni to put Highlands up for good. But senior Caroline Class found the gap to double in Markus.

"(It's about) relaxing in the box and knowing that you're teammates got you," Class said. "They'll be smart on the bases if you just put the ball in play. It's all that it's really about. Everyone contributed in some way offensively or defensively."

Simon Kenton put runners at second and third with one out in the bottom of the seventh. But Baioni induced a ground out then a strikeout with the bases loaded to end the game.

"I'm really happy for Kennedy," Horner said. "She was never our number one pitcher. (Junior) Gracie (Schlosser) was when she was in the eighth grade. Kennedy is now the ace of the staff. That's where we need her to do her job. Once you've been there and done it, it makes it easier to do it again."

Baioni came on in relief in the fourth inning. She struck out four and allowed four earned runs, five hits and a walk.

Highlands and Simon Kenton committed two errors each. But Highlands had a number of solid plays defensively to win the game. Markus and seventh grader Payton Brown caught line drives in the first inning. Simon Kenton left seven on base and Highlands left four.

"We were focused, which is what we've been trying to work on," Markus said. "We've been busting our tails for that, especially for the pitchers. In those situations (in losses at Pendleton County and Ursuline), we've crocked."

Highlands batted .296 (8-for-27) compared to .322 (10-for-31) for Simon Kenton. Markus went 2-for-3 with a run batted in and two runs scored. Junior Anna Greenwell went 2-for-4 with a double, three RBI and a run scored. Class, Greenwell and senior Bri Tharps had one stolen base each.

The Bluebirds built a 5-0 lead after two. Greenwell had a two-run double in the top of the second that saw Highlands score four times off Simon Kenton starting pitcher freshman Landrey Dance.

But Simon Kenton started the rally in the bottom of the third. Seniors Aubrey Dance and Macy Krohman hit consecutive solo home runs. Krohman, who pitched the last three innings taking the loss, is committed to the University of Illinois.

The Lady Pioneers tied the game in the bottom of the fifth with four runs. Freshman Emilie Young hit a three-run blast to center to tie it.

Krohman finished 3-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI. Young and Landry Dance each went 2-for-4. Young had the three RBI and run scored on the home run and Landry Dance scored once and drove one in.

"Krohman is the real deal," Horner said. "Simon Kenton has talked about this senior class since they were in the seventh and eighth grade. The third home run probably does not go out without the win. Caroline (Class) had a pretty good bead on it in center field."

Highlands travels to Boone County (8-8) on Thursday. Game time is 5 p.m. 
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St. Henry 7, Highlands 3:

The Bluebirds (10-8) lost the region game in eight innings. The Crusaders (12-5) scored five runs in the top of the eighth to leave Highland Park with the victory.

St. Henry batted .333 (13-for-36) to .272 (9-for-33) for Highlands. Juniors Foster Schuett and Ryne Wiseman went 2-for-4 to lead the Bluebirds. Seniors Jake Gulley and Vance Moore homered. Moore's pinch hit home run tied the game at two in the bottom of the seventh.

Highlands takes on Cincinnati McNicholas on Thursday. Game time is 5 p.m.

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Newport on the Levee announces five new restaurant, bar concepts

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Newport on the Levee has undergone massive changes since new owner, North American Properties acquired the massive retail, office and mixed use space. 

Now, as first reported by the Cincinnati Business Courier, we have the names and concepts of new restaurants and bars headed to Newport's Riverfront.

Four Entertainment Group (4EG) will open the Beeline, a 2,800-square-foot space with garage doors that will open up to views of the Ohio River and downtown Cincinnati. It's target opening date will be Labor Day, later this year.

The Beeline specializes in craft cocktails, with a selection of beer and wine. The bar will have an expansive outdoor patio, as well as garage doors that connect the indoor and outdoor portions of the bar.

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The developer also signed on four new food and beverage tenants to operate in its massive outdoor food hall set up in old shipping containers, dubbed the Bridgeview Box Park. The common theme of all of these concepts is that they are local. 

The Buzz: a "sister concept" to the Beeline, also owned by 4EG; will focus on craft cocktails and frozen drinks. 

West Sixth Brewing: a craft brewery with locations in Louisville, Lexington and Frankfort. This is West Sixth's first NKY location. 

Blackmarket Saloon: fresh-squeezed spike lemonade. 

CrepeGuys: a franchise started in Europe; offering sweet and savory crepes and coffee. 

State Farm offers 'Neighborhood Assist' Grant to help fund community projects

State Farm is now accepting applications for its Neighborhood Assist program. 
(Img: State Farm Neighborhood Assist, Boys & Girls Clubs of Southern Bergen County, Inc., NJ)

Do you know a great cause in Fort Thomas that could use an extra boost? Consider applying for this awesome grant through State Farm!

Local State Farm Agent Tracy Davis is spreading the word about the Neighborhood Assist program, now it its 10th year. The program is a crowd-sourced philanthropic initiative that lets communities determine where grant funding is awarded. 

But - move fast to get your chosen cause nominated. "It opens June 2 but they only accept the first two thousand entries. The top 40 get $25,000," said Tracy. "It’s great to be part of an organization that is so involved in our communities."

Tracy Davis is the Fort Thomas State Farm agent. She can help with all your insurance needs.

Here are some key dates to keep in mind;

- Submission phase: Starts June 2 and ends when 2,000 submissions are reached
- Voting Phase: August 18-27
- Winners Announced: Sept. 29

For information on your insurance options, Tracy Davis can help!

Please visit

To learn more about the grant, check out the description below or click here


State Farm Neighborhood Assist

Neighbors across the country will soon have an exciting opportunity to help change their communities for the better through State Farm Neighborhood Assist ® . Back for its tenth year, the program awards $25,000 grants to 40 nonprofit organizations to help fund neighborhood improvement projects.

State Farm invites the public to submit a community cause about which they’re passionate and to rally behind that cause for a chance to win a $25,000 grant through State Farm Neighborhood Assist. Anyone 18 years of age and older in the U.S. can participate. 

Here’s what you need to know:

  • The cause submission phase starts June 2 and ends when 2,000 submissions are reached.
  • Prepare now by going to and downloading the submission guide.
  • U.S. residents 18 and older can participate.
  • Each person can submit one cause.
  • All you have to do is submit the cause; you don’t have to “run the program.”

State Farm Neighborhood Assist, a crowd-sourced philanthropic initiative, lets communities determine where grant funding is awarded. The submission process is short and simple, and you can learn more by visiting You, or someone you know, could be the catalyst for positive change.

Your cause submission will be judged based on your answers to the following three questions:

  • How much does the cause focus on an unmet need in this community?
  • Why do you feel the $25,000 would address the unmet need?
  • How much of a lasting impact on this community would the grant have?

After the 2,000 limit is reached, the State Farm Review Committee will judge all the submissions to identify the Top 200 finalists.

These 200 finalists will then be uploaded to to be voted on by you and your community. The voting phase will last from August 18-27 and each person gets up to 10 votes per day, every day during those 10 days.

The Top 40 causes with the most votes will each win a $25,000 grant from State Farm!

Winners will be announced on September 29 at

U.S. News & World Report Ranks Best Public High Schools in Greater Cincinnati

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The usual suspects in Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati are listed as some of the top schools in the area.

U.S. News & World Report have released the 2021 version of the best high schools, according to them. According to the study, schools are evaluated on six factors: college readiness, reading and math proficiency, reading and math performance, underserved student performance, college curriculum breadth and graduation rates.

They ranked around 17,860 public high schools after reviewing nearly 24,000 public high schools in 50 states and the District of Columbia.

In Northern Kentucky, seven schools from the Cincinnati Metro area are in the top 20 (Beechwood #2, Highlands #4, Campbell County #14, Ryle #15, Dixie #20 and Cooper #25). 

Statewide Beechwood and Highlands were in the top 5, #2 and #4, respectively. Campbell County and Ryle checked in at #16 and #20 in the Commonwealth. 

For a full look at Greater Cincinnati's top 20, check out the chart below.

Greater Cincinnati's top public high schools (N. Kentucky schools in bold). 

1) Walnut Hills High School
2) Wyoming High School
3) Madeira High School
4) Beechwood High School
5) Indian Hill High School
6) Highlands High School
7) Turpin High School
8) William Mason High School
9) Mariemont High School
10) Sycamore High School
11) Kings High School
12) Anderson High School
13) Loveland High School
14) Campbell County High School
15) Larry A. Ryle High School
16) Lakota East High School
17) Springboro High School
18) Milford Sr High School
19) Waynesville High School
20) Dixie Heights High School

25) Randall K. Cooper High School

Former NKU basketball player, 2016 Kentucky Mr. Basketball signs with NFL's Raiders

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The Las Vegas Raiders announced Monday that they have signed Carson Williams to join the NFL as a tight end. The 2016 Kentucky Mr. Basketball winner has not played football in about a decade.

Try the Fort Thomas Matters burger! 1017 S. Fort Thomas Ave. 

Williams played two seasons for the Northern Kentucky Norse before transferring to Western Kentucky, where he finished his college career. 

Kentucky’s Mr. Basketball in 2016, Williams averaged 26.3 points and 10.7 rebounds per game for Owen County High School, securing a scholarship to Northern Kentucky University. He made two trips to the NCAA Tournament with the Norse before taking his talents to Bowling Green. In two seasons at Western Kentucky he averaged 10.9 points and six rebounds per game while shooting 52.9% from the field.

Despite a collegiate career with more than 1,300 points, Williams realized basketball would not be in his future much longer. After seeing George Fant sign a $30 million deal with the Seattle Seahawks in 2020, reaching the pro ranks in football seemed much more obtainable for Williams. Fant was a star on the WKU basketball team that had only one year of collegiate football experience when his NFL aspirations turned into a reality. Williams recalled a conversation he had with Fant shortly after the former Topper inked the life-changing deal.

“He said, ‘You gonna do this football thing, or what?’ and that was really weird to me,” Williams told the Courier-Journal, “because that was something that at the time I had been thinking heavily about, wondering whether to pursue it or not, but I hadn’t told anyone about it.”

Williams spent some of the spring away from the basketball team to prepare for his pro day. The 6-foot-5, 240-pound athlete posted a 38-inch vertical and a 4.73 second 40-yard dash.