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Monthly Archives: May 2011

Wow, the Denver Derby Party was a total blast to photograph. My friend Lee Robinson asked me to help him cover the event along with his team of photographers. I new it would be a wild fashion oriented event finishing off with the Kentucky Derby race but I had no idea how much fun it would be. This years party was held at Infinity Park in Glendale, a perfect venue for this event which is a fund raiser for a Memorial Scholarship to Colorado State University in the name of Sean “Ranch” Lough who was a CSU student when he died in a mountain bike accident. Several of his friends started this party 10 years ago and now it’s turned into a huge event drawing as many as 20,000 people wearing Derby attire such as festive hats. One of the main events within the event is the Hat Contest. This years winner sported a bird cage hat that I new the minute I saw it, that it would be the winner.

Cheers, Kent

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Meghan and Clay were married April 30, 2011 in Birmingham, Alabama at the Gabrella Manor, a private estate. You couldn’t have asked for a nicer day, especially considering that only three days before the wedding the worst storm in the states history ripped through the area with several tornadoes.

The smell of blooming Jasmine with little white star shaped flowers filled the air during the outdoor ceremony and reception. A special thanks goes out to Steve Johnson, one of the owners of the Gabrella Manor as well as a photographer with Lifedance Photography who showed me around the estate the day before at the rehearsal which helped me find some great angles to use during the ceremony.

Congratulation Meghan and Clay!

Cheers, Kent

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Sweet Home Alabama! There are few things like being invited to a party in Alabama except going to a series of parties for my step brother’s son’s wedding. Tom and I grew up together spending summers and a few full years together in Huntsville, Alabama. It was mostly our teenage newspaper carrier days and we […]

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Recently, I flew into Birmingham, Alabama to photograph Clay and Meghan’s wedding. Clay is my step brother, Tom’s son. When we left Denver, the pilot said that our flight path would go around a large storm and we would land ahead of it. About a half hour before landing I looked out the window and saw a huge thunderhead that was higher than we were flying at 35,000 feet. We were heading straight into it as the plane turned a little south to avoid it and we had a perfect landing.

A couple of hours later at Tom’s home the local news station was going crazy broadcasting tornado warnings for Tuscaloosa and most of northern Alabama. The biggest tornado more than a mile wide ripped through Tuscaloosa about 55 miles southwest of Birmingham and was heading toward us! It ended up being the worst storm in the state’s history killing more than 300 people and knocking out power to about a 1/4 of the state.

Somehow, the wedding was able to continue as planned a couple of days later. Tom and his other son Tyler and I drove down to Tuscaloosa where Tyler went to college at the University of Alabama. In fact, he was there the morning of the storm. His mother Krista called him and asked him to come home because of the weather reports predicting a strong possibility of tornadoes in that area. Good call Krista. Several of Tyler’s friends ended up riding out the storm in an inside closet of an apartment with 7 people, 6 dogs and a cat!

I’ve been in and seen lots of tornadoes in my lifetime but the damage from this one was by far the worst I’ve ever seen. It’s amazing that there wasn’t a much higher loss of life. The fact that it happen in late afternoon rather than in the middle of the night plus the weather report predictions had to have helped.

For those of you who may not know, I was a newspaper photojournalist for more than 20 years documenting disasters such as this. It was good to know that I still have the personality to go up to people going through the rubble of what was once there house and talk with them, photograph them and exchange email addresses so I could send them pictures.

Good luck and Godspeed to the folks in Alabama recovering from these tornadoes.

Peace, Kent

A couple of hours later at Tom’s home the local news station was going crazy broadcasting tornado warnings for Tuscaloosa and most of northern Alabama. The biggest tornado more than a mile wide ripped through Tuscaloosa about 55 miles southwest of Birmingham and was heading toward us! It ended up being the worst storm in the state’s history killing more than 300 people and knocking out power to about a 1/4 of the state.

Somehow, the wedding was able to continue as planned a couple of days later. Tom and his other son Tyler and I drove down to Tuscaloosa where Tyler went to college at the University of Alabama. In fact, he was there the morning of the storm. His mother Krista called him and asked him to come home because of the weather reporting a strong possibility of tornadoes in that area. Good call Krista. Several of Tyler’s friends ended up riding out the storm in an inside closet of an apartment with 7 people, 6 dogs and a cat!

I’ve been in and seen lots of tornadoes in my lifetime but the damage from this one was by far the worst I’ve ever seen. It’s amazing that there wasn’t a much higher loss of life. The fact that it happen in late afternoon rather than in the middle of the night plus the weather report predictions had to have helped.

For those of you who may not know, I was a newspaper photojournalist for more than 20 years documenting disasters such as this. It was good to know that I still have the personality to go up to people going through the rubble of what was once there house and talk with them, photograph them and exchange email addresses so I could send them pictures.

Good luck and Godspeed to the folks in Alabama recovering from these tornadoes.

Peace, Kent

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