News Column

Web series to feature festival

May 8, 2013

YellowBrix

May 08--In the past 34 years, Owensboro's International Bar-B-Q Festival has been featured on its share of cable channels -- Discovery, Food Network, the Travel Channel and Home & Garden Television.

And it's been seen on such syndicated shows as "Inside Edition."

But that's so 20th century.

This year, the festival moves to the Web with a short feature planned for YouTube's BeerLovesYou channel.

Lexington-based uHAPS Media will be shooting between four and five hours of footage at the festival for its "Unfiltered" series.

The company describes itself as "a tactical marketing firm that strives to be current, innovative and better. Whether it's through street teams, custom events, web, social media, text or mobile, we help our clients reach their target audience where THEY are."

"We're planning on interviewing some of the cooking teams from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, and coming back in the evening from 8 to 11 p.m. to interview more of the attendees, and get some footage of the bands," Thomas Shearman, the company's director of content & public relations, said Tuesday.

"We're excited that they're coming in," said Sharon NeSmith, co-chairwoman of the festival. "They'll film the Backyard Cooks, the cooking teams and the Mutton Glutton."

"I'm intrigued that it's about mutton," Shearman said. "That sounds interesting."

But the reason uHAPS Media will be in town filming is because one of its clients, Budweiser of Owensboro, is sponsoring the episode.

While TV viewership runs from the hundreds of thousands to the millions, Web series aren't at that level yet.

"Our viewership runs in the low 1,000s," Shearman said.

A recent episode -- "Hillbilly Days in Pikeville" -- had received 1,169 views by midday Tuesday.

Other episodes include "How To Make a Beer Bottle Christmas Tree," "Bar Hopping in Charleston, West Virginia," and "Notre Dame Fighting Irish Tailgating."

But Web series become available for viewing much sooner than TV shows.

"This should be online by the following weekend," Shearman said.

The company's videos are available at www.youtube.com/beerlovesyou.

Keith Lawrence, 691-7301, klawrence@messenger-inquirer.com

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