WELCOME to the Best of Lexington 2002!!!
We are a culture of dabblers. The sprawling suburbanization of America has meant an inevitable dwindling of commitment to the idea of community. Long gone are the days when you could just gather up a bunch of yourneighbors and work together to ostracize another neighbor because he was different, and needed to be taught a lesson.
We added the “Real” in the first year, because everybody had a Best of Lexington poll of some sort: tv, radio, and so on.
Then they tapered off.
Then they came back.
Now you see billboards all over town proclaiming “Kentucky’s best” or “Louisville’s best” Seems like everything from newsletters to webzines to shoppers and ad-rags have gotten in on the act.
To that, we respond with one word (two, if you pronounce them correctly): WHAT. Ever.
We’ve been at this for years now. We can spot a stuffer a mile away. We know when a dog is doing the voting at your house. We know your kids’ names and we ruthlessly disqualified them. (Read the rules: you had to be 18 to vote. Just like in America. And you had to sign your name. Just like in America.)
You also had to fill out half the ballot. That meant you had to know, and care, a little bit about this town. You couldn’t just fill in the name of your buddy’s band and slide 14 ballots under our door.
If you did that we threw them in the trash. Hundreds of them.
In an unprecedented break with industry practice, we also outlawed online voting this year. You’d be amazed how many people have the time to invent 432 email addresses for themselves just in order to vote for their favorite book.
To vote, you also had to have a little bit of discretionary income and initiative: enough for an envelope and a stamp anyway.
Now. Do people campaign for votes (as one disgruntled eye surgeon wrote in to complain about last year, after he lost)? As far as we can tell: yes. Presumably because they care what Ace readers think.
We noticed many establishments promoting “pick up an issue and vote in Ace’s Best of Lex.”
Great. Voting is to be encouraged. Again, just like in America. We wanted a cross-section of the populace, and we got one. This year’s oldest voter (at least the oldest one to disclose her age) was 71. Every neighborhood in Lexington was represented in the voting (along with some outlying counties). Professions included students, doctors, lawyers, bankers, architects, hairdressers, plumbers, and everyone in between.
No votes were fixed or solicited to favor an advertiser, a cousin, a boyfriend, or anyone else. The process wasn’t mobbed up. And no one on the staff was allowed to vote. (No conspiracy theories to be found.) Ballots were tallied by interns and contract labor (who were kept sequestered in dark rooms, uninfluenced by the outside world. We turned the lights off and on every few hours like they do at poultry factories to increase their productivity).
Yes, you’ll meet some “regulars” on the following pages. You will find some shocking upsets as well. OK…maybe not shocking, but possibly unexpected.
Other polls will come and go, but we (and the interns, who still have the shakes from nicotine and caffeine withdrawal) have, as always, worked very hard to ensure that this poll is a true reflection of the Ace readers’ votes for the REAL Best of Lexington.
We hope you enjoy it. The voting commences again throughout August of next year. With the winners, again, announced the last issue in September.
See ya every Thursday, till then.
With utmost sincerity,
~Yer Pals at Ace Weekly
Arts and Entertainment
BEST CHOICE FOR NEW LACC DIRECTOR
(Jim Clark has been named since the poll; the position is now titled President)
BEST ART GALLERY
Ann Tower Gallery LTD
UK’s Singletary Center Art Gallery
BEST VISUAL ART EXHIBIT IN LAST YEAR
Headley Whitney’s Tibbs exhibit
(the late) Reverend Howard Finster at Cerlan
BEST PHOTOGRAPHER, ARTISTIC
BEST LOCAL VISUAL ARTIST
Statistical tie: Bob Morgan/ Charles Jolly
BEST BOOK BY A KENTUCKIAN IN THE LAST YEAR
In the Presence of Fear by Wendell Berry
Clear Springs by Bobbie Ann Mason
No Heroes by Chris Offutt
BEST LOCAL THEATRE PRODUCTION IN LAST YEAR
Actor’s Guild’s Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change
The Three Musketeers – Shakespeare in the Park
BEST PLACE TO SHOOT POOL
BEST NEW LOCAL CD
Club Dub’s Return Home
BEST LOCAL BAND DUE FOR NATIONAL BREAKOUT
Voo Doo Symphony
Health, Beauty & Fitness
BEST HAIR SALON
J. Allen Studio
Statistical tie: Planet Salon/ Hair and Now
Hair & Now
BEST WAX JOB
Mia Max-Jennie King
Super Hair & Nails
Hair and Now
(Fox Hollow disqualified. Not local.)
BEST PERSONAL TRAINER
Van Dinh at Gold’s Gym
Andrea at LAC
Jason at Jefferson Fitness Center
BEST YOGA INSTRUCTOR
Wendy at Gold’s
YMCA (Beaumont & Downtown receiving most votes)
BEST MASSAGE (LEGAL PLEASE)
The Massage Center
(formerly known as Lexington Professional Massage)
BEST PERMANENT HAIR REMOVAL
Hair Today Gone Tomorrow
BEST PLASTIC SURGEON
Dr. Martin Luftman
Two Brothers in a statistical tie:
Andrew M. Moore II, and
Michael Moore (but where’s Woody?)
John Joy L..C.S.W.
Eat & Drink
BEST NEW RESTAURANT
Roy’s East High Diner
Aladdin’s Mediterranean Cuisine
BEST DATE RESTAURANT
a la lucie
The Homestead Restaurant & Bar
BEST ETHNIC FARE
Alfalfa’s International Nights
Kashmir Indian Restaurant
BEST HAPPY HOUR
Cheapside Bar & Grill
Roy’s East High Diner
Kate Savage’s Bleu Ribbon Catering
Tom Lundergan Catering, Concessions & Special Events
Tie: Corky’s/Tony Roma’s
And in third: a lot of fine-dining establishments that would probably sue for libel if named Best Dive.
BEST RESTAURANT SERVICE
a la Lucie
BEST VEGGIE-FRIENDLY RESTAURANT
Oasis Deli & Bakery
BEST ROLE MODEL FOR A LEXINGTON RESTAURANT
Mulane’s (Cinci); Grillfish (Miami); Magnolia’s (Charleston, SC); Maisonette (Cinci); Zen Palate (NYC); Tristan (Charleston, SC)
BEST CUP OF COFFEE IN TOWN
BEST KENTUCKY BOURBON
Labrot & Graham’s Woodford Reserve
BEST KENTUCKY BREWED BEER OR ALE
BEST PLACE TO SHOP FOR WINE
BEST AUTO DEALER
Don Jacobs on Nicholasville
BEST USED/NEIGHBORHOOD BOOKSTORE
Black Swan Books
The Thrifty Bookworm
BEST PLACE TO BUY/SELL USED MUSIC
BEST WOMEN’S CLOTHING
Isle of You
Ann Taylor Loft
BEST MEN’S CLOTHING
BEST ECLECTIC JEWELRY
The Black Market
BEST FINE JEWELRY
Shelia’s Fine Jewelry
BEST NEW STORE
Ann Taylor Loft
BEST GIFT SHOP (funky/eclectic)
Third Street Stuff
BEST GIFT SHOP (fancy/schmancy)
Crystal on Vine
BEST STORE YOU WISH LEXINGTON HAD
Nordstrom’s; Pottery Barn; REI; Crate and Barrel; Brooks Brothers; Bloomingdale’s; Neiman Marcus; Saks; Ikea; Prada; Anthropologie.
Sex and the City
BEST ELIGIBLE BACHELOR IN LEX
(Scott Padgett received MANY votes… and no longer lives in Lex.)
BEST BACHELORETTE IN LEX
(no other serious contenders for the title)
BEST POWER COUPLE
Alan and Kathy Stein
Brian and Cathleen Collins
Mr. And Mrs. Tubby Smith
SEXIEST LOCAL BAND
(the defunct for now) Catawampus
SEXIEST LOCAL NEWS ANCHOR (male)
Marvin Bartlett WDKY
Scott Padgett (not an anchor, but at WLEX)
Sam Dick WKYT
SEXIEST LOCAL NEWS ANCHOR (female)
Jennifer Nime WKDY
Alexa Gromko WTVQ
Nancy Cox WLEX
SEXIEST RADIO PERSONALITY (male)
Freak Daddy WKQQ
Jack Pattie WVLK
SEXIEST RADIO PERSONALITY (female)
Suzy Boe WXZZ
Jill at WXZZ
Andrea Sayre WBUL FM
SEXIEST ELECTED OFFICIAL
Home & Garden
BEST ARCHITECTURAL FIRM
Pohl Rosa Pohl
Sarah Tate House Architect
Guyon Architects LTD
BEST INTERIOR DESIGNER
Hubbuch & Co.
Holly Hanna Interiors LLC
Ann Greely Interiors
BEST LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT/GARDEN DESIGNER
Hillenmeyer Landscape Services
Henkel Denmark Inc.
BEST CONTEMPORARY/MODERN FURNISHINGS
Modern Details Inc.
Statistical tie: Bluegrass Bazaar;
Greentree Antiques & TeaRoom
BEST HOME INSPECTOR
BEST GENERAL CONTRACTOR
A Coppler Const.
BEST HONEST ROOFER
Mary Cherrey at Prudential
Becky Reinhold at Reinhold Group
Janice Brock at Prudential
BEST LUXURY APARTMENT COMMUNITY
Services & Professionals
First Security Bank of Lexington
Bank of the Bluegrass & Trust Co.
Fifth Third Bank
Chevy Chase Small Animal Clinic
Remmele Animal Clinic
All Creatures Great & Small Animal Clinic
BEST LAW FIRM
Stoll Keenon & Park LLP
Stites & Harbison
Greenebaum, Doll & McDonald PLLC
BEST TATTOO ARTIST
Tattoo Charlie’s of KY INC
QX Networking Design
E. Stephen Hein Florist & Party Productions
Best of Flowers
Originals By D’An Florist
Dean Dorton & Ford PSC
Dulworth, Breeding and Karns CPAS
Potter & Company LLP CPAS
James Wombles at Merrill Lynch
Betsy Brooks Bulleit at Hilliard Lyons
Buzz Carmichael at Hilliard Lyons
Lowell’s Bluegrass Automotive
Quality Firs Auto Care
Motorsports of Lexington LTD
BEST WRITE-IN CANDIDATE FOR MAYOR
Chuck Ellinger Jr.
Honorable Mention: Anita Madden
BEST USE FOR LEXINGTON MALL CURRENT CARAPACE
An outlet mall
BEST USE FOR WOOLWORTH SKELETON
A year-round farmers’ market
Honorable Mention: a “new Lynagh’s music club”
BEST THING TO HAPPEN TO DOWNTOWN THIS YEAR
Lexington Art Center
The Block Party/Jazz Alley
More music and nightlife downtown
BEST POLITICIAN YOU LOVE-TO-HATE
BEST COUNCIL MEMBER
BEST STATE LEGISLATOR
Ernie Fletcher (uh. His office might want to issue a press release about what it is he’s been elected to do-since he isn’t a state legislator.)
BEST IDEA YOU WOULD LIKE TO SHARE WITH LFUCG
In no particular order:
restore old courthouse for museum/major touring shows; more infill downtown; better mass transit; encourage more residential and retail downtown with financial incentives; buy the water company; don’t buy the water company.
BEST EVENING NEWSCAST
WDKY Fox 56
BEST NEWS HAIR
BEST LOCAL METEOROLOGIST
Brian Collins wkyt
Scott Padgett WLEX
T.G. Shuck WKYT
BEST LOCAL RADIO TALK SHOW
Tom & Dave
(Tom Leach and Dave Baker) WLAP
Sue Wylie WVLK
Jack Pattie WVLK
BEST (RADIO) DJ
Suzy Boe WXZZ
Tie: Andy Mason, WRVG / Rob Franklin
(Hot Burrito, WRFL)
BEST RADIO STATION
BEST PUBLIC ACCESS SHOW
Electric Toilet Brush
Clam Chowder Hour
Gov tv, Channel 3
BEST ACE COVER STORY IN LAST YEAR
(Risen, and Risen Redux. Easter season)
Goats and Galaxies
Statistical tie: Chris Offutt, No Heroes/ Bluegrass Bachelors
BEST TOPIC YOU WISH ACE WOULD COVER
In no particular order, a sampling includes (all are direct quotes):
Stevie Ray Vaughn; the West Nile coverup; serial killers; Scott Crosbie; Gatewood; political improprieties; Lexington’s economic and racial segregation; UK sports; local club scene; combat veterans in Lexington; the Ace mastiff; scuba diving; UK parking; high school sports; and so on..
We’re on it.
Meanwhile, to tide you over: the Ace mastiff is alternately played by Martha, the editor’s dog, and Martha’s stunt-double, Jake, who belongs to Bluegrass Bachelor alum, Dr. Chris Marek.