The John James Audubon State Park in Henderson will present “John James Audubon: Before His Birds” a play written by A.J. Casey focusing on the life of John James Audubon while he and his family lived in the Henderson area. This event will be held in the parks museum garden on Thursday, August 19th and Friday, August 20th at 7:00 p.m.
The gorgeous outdoor setting of the play’s presentation is in keeping with Audubon’s love of the natural world, and is a fitting tribute to Audubon’s many treks into the wilderness surrounding Henderson during his time there. The museum itself will lend a dramatic backdrop to the production.
Ticket prices are $10 for adults and $5 for children and students. Tickets may be purchased at Matt’s News & Gifts in downtown Henderson and at the Audubon State Park museum.
For more information about the park and this event, call (270) 826-2247.
Along the banks of the Ohio River, the John James Audubon State Park in Henderson Kentucky is home to the world’s largest collection of Audubon artifacts. The museum at the park interprets Audubon’s life through his art and personal memorabilia. The Nature Center comprises three areas: a wildlife Observation Room; the Discovery Center with hands-on exhibits; and the Learning Center where the park naturalist and art educator conduct environmental and art programs.
Audubon arrived in Henderson in 1810 with his wife and infant son, determined to make his fortune in first the mercantile business and later as an operator of a mill. He also explored the surrounding wilderness in search of wild birds to study and to sketch. Although his businesses did not flourish (he would later be jailed briefly for bankruptcy), it was in Henderson area where he honed his skills as an artist.
Audubon lived in Henderson for nine years, longer than anywhere else in the United States. Two of his four children were born during that time and one child was buried in Henderson. Not long after the mill failed, the Audubon family moved from Henderson. Later he would publish his masterpiece, the famous “The Birds of America.”
Audubon’s skills as an artist grew during his years in Kentucky despite his collection of work suffering a serious setback. Many of his sketches and paintings were destroyed when rodents built a nest in the box where his work was stored. Audubon was forced to replace those pieces using a better technique; a technique that eventually would garner great acclaim and secure his prominence as a wildlife artist.
John James Audubon State Park is in Henderson, Kentucky just about 125 miles from Metro Louisville via scenic US-60. (For detailed directions, consult www.maps.google.com). Besides the museum, facilities at the park include cottages, golf, camping, fishing, hiking trails, and picnic shelters.
John James Audubon State Park
3100 US Highway 41 North
Henderson, KY 42419-0576
Telephone: (270) 826-2247