Saturday afternoon, the temporarily risen Colonel Harland Sanders led a “bucket” of extra crispy Kentucky Colonels upon his remote-controlled Hoveround from WHY Lou Two: Electric Nulu at 806 E. Market St. west to Garage Bar at 700 E. Market St. for the inaugural March of the Colonels. Colonel Will Russell, owner and founder of both WHY Louisville and WHY Lou Two, created this event to celebrate the original store’s eighth anniversary of keeping Louisville weird:
“We just opened [the East Market Street] store two months ago. We acquired through Joe Ley Antiques a bunch of wonderful fixtures from Fontaine Ferry, including this ticket booth, the funhouse mirror and the fortune teller. He also sold me a wax Colonel Sanders figures, which is wearing one of the Colonel’s original suits. And one of my crazy friends… who is also a Colonel, he said, ‘You need to put that guy in a Hoveround and march down the street with a bunch of Colonels behind him.’ And I said, ‘I think that’s wonderful idea; let’s do that!’”
The project went through one of the Grand Canyon-rated mobility devices – given to Russell for free by a fellow Colonel – before paying $100 on Craigslist for the final, functional chariot of the fried chicken god. The Hoveround was then rigged by Colonel Joseph Clagg of local hackerspace LVL1 to be operated via remote control.
At around 2 p.m., the original Colonel wheeled out of WHY Lou Two, nearly going off-ramp in his slightly buzzed and resurrected state. Behind Col. Sanders were around 20 of his brethren – decked out in their finest white suits and black ties – King Louis XVI, a devil, a random French woman, and an assorted cast of characters. The Colonels formed a protective “bucket” around Col. Sanders as he slowly led the parade down the sidewalk from WHY Lou Two to Garage Bar, catching the attention of passersby as the well-preserved restaurateur occasionally swerved into the crowd to greet a beautiful woman now and again.
Upon arrival at Garage Bar, the Colonel allowed for several photo-ops among the public after posing with his fellow Colonels – including Kentucky For Kentucky founder Griffin VanMeter, Clagg, and the entire upper management of both WHY Louisville stores -- under the hot summer sun, taking shelter near the “crashed-car” installation at the NuLu bar and restaurant.