Posted on 2/2/14

dennis beard1 300OWENSBORO, Ky. (9/10/13) – By now most of our readers have probably seen last week’s article about one of our newest staff members, Jared Pedley, who is helping us provide local sports coverage at the SurfKY News Owensboro office. We’re glad to be able to offer that element on our site, and it is something I intended to do from the moment I started developing my set of goals about how to serve the “Region 3” community back when I came on board in February.

What wasn’t in the article introducing Pedley as a member of the SurfKY team was how important another person I met has been in creating the concept of sports coverage for the Owensboro regional office.

Let me take you back to the start of August. School was only days away from starting and I had just recently hired my first full-time reporter, Taylor Riley, which opened up the opportunity for me to take a step back from doing so much of the “original content” writing and focus more on developing other avenues where we could build an audience. This was, in my mind, the perfect time to ramp up the goal of getting sports coverage going. I went to a media day at Daviess County High School hoping to get some photos, meet the coaches and athletic director, and start working on a plan to cover football games. I hadn’t been introduced to Pedley at this point, so I was thinking through how I would cover some of these things myself. I’m not what you would call a sports buff, and most of my knowledge on the subject of football comes from my wife, Beverly, who in all honesty could be a referee for the NFL if she wanted. She sees penalties well before the whistle blows, and almost always knows what the call is before it is announced.

So it’s safe to say that despite my enthusiasm, I was feeling a little uncertain about how this would work out.

On the day of the media day event, I charged up the batteries, tossed them back in the camera, and headed over to the school. As I got to the track and pulled out the camera to start snapping photos, something terrible happened – the cover over the batteries popped open and all the batteries hit the asphalt. An embarrassing moment quickly became a potential disaster when the camera kept shutting down due to low battery. Something I had done had temporarily damaged at least one of the batteries.

Like most things that go wrong in my life, however, an incredibly great thing was about to happen as a result. A woman whose son plays for football at Daviess County came over and asked me if I would like her to send me her photos. Deborah Duncan had been taking shots of the groups as they lined up, and I had noticed she was using a really good camera to do that. I gave her my business card and told her if she did send some photos, I’d be sure to give her credit for them on the site.

She then told me she goes to all the games and offered to take photos to send with any stories I write. I think she saw the camera I was using, which is good but not sports action-shots good. I said I’d be glad to look at them and see what we could do.

I had no idea how important or helpful that meeting would be at the time, simply due to the fact that I had temporarily disabled my camera through the most ridiculous of accidents. But the photos she has sent me from the games so far have been phenomenal. I’ve been taking news photos professionally for more than eight years and I don’t think I’ve taken anything as impressive as the ones she has sent me. She has my thanks for sure.

Dennis Beard
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