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Bluegrass & Backroads was honored with an Emmy® Award by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. Bob Shrader and Matt Hilton, producers and hosts of the show, attended the 48th Annual Ohio Valley Regional Emmy® Awards to accept the award for Best Magazine Feature/Segment. Winners of the coveted Emmy® Awards were revealed on July 28th during a black-tie dinner held at Belterra Casino, Resort and Spa in Florence, Indiana.

Bluegrass & Backroads was also nominated for three additional Emmy® Awards this year.

The Emmy® Award-winning segment focused on Cramer Schneider, a Kentucky teenager who did not allow the physical limitations of being blind prevent him from showing award-winning cattle.

“I am so glad that it was this story that won the Emmy. Cramer Schneider set a goal much higher than the Emmys for us in sharing his story,” said Shrader. “I would like to thank the Schneider family for letting us come into their lives with cameras and interview questions. This is what makes me feel good about my job; when I can share positive stories that might otherwise go unnoticed.”

Shrader and Hilton make up Kentucky Farm Bureau’s two-man video production team, and are responsible for writing, filming, interviewing, hosting, directing and editing each show. The duo is now busy filming the 10th season of Bluegrass & Backroads.

“This recognition means a lot for the show. It proves that stories about Kentucky’s farm families can touch a wide audience as well as get critical acclaim,” said Hilton. “Bob and I put many hours of work into Bluegrass & Backroads so it is nice to be given such a prestigious award.”


As the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS) announced nominees for the 46th Annual Ohio Valley Regional Emmy® Awards, Kentucky Farm Bureau’s Bluegrass & Backroads was selected for Best Magazine Feature Segment. This prestigious awards program recognizes the finest television and media professionals in the nation and bestows the highest possible honor to its winners – the Emmy®.

In 2009, Kentucky Farm Bureau broadcasters (l-r) Bob Shrader, Mike Feldhaus and Matt Hilton proudly display their Emmy® Awards

“To be nominated by our peers for the award is already an honor in itself,” said Bob Shrader, Kentucky Farm Bureau’s video production coordinator. “We know that Bluegrass & Backroads is producing positive results with its message of agriculture and rural living in Kentucky, but an Emmy nomination also affirms the direction we have taken stylistically and professionally.”

Kentucky Farm Bureau’s two video producers, Shrader and Matt Hilton, work diligently to complete all the writing, filming, interviewing, hosting, directing and editing responsibilities needed to produce each show. The two-man crew is now busy filming the eighth season of Bluegrass & Backroads.

The Bluegrass & Backroads Emmy® Award-nominated story is a seven-minute feature highlighting an organization based in Lexington, Kentucky, called the North American Racing Academy (NARA). Created by thoroughbred horse-racing jockey, Chris McCarron, NARA is the first training facility in the United States designed to help riders master the skills needed to succeed as a jockey.

“We didn’t necessarily set out to win an Emmy® when we began producing this season of Bluegrass & Backroads,” said Hilton, “especially with just two people working on it behind the scenes. The goal was always to find intriguing stories from the people who make Kentucky such an interesting place to live and work, then tell their tale in a way that shows just how special our state truly is. We definitely accomplished that mission with the feature story on the North American Racing Academy.”


“Bluegrass and Backroads,” won two first-place awards in the Ohio Valley Regional “Emmy Awards” administered by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in July 2009. The program won top honors in the general “magazine” category and videographers Matt Hilton and Bob Shrader won Emmys for their photography in a story about a retirement farm for thoroughbred horses.

Kentucky Farm Bureau Executive Vice President David S. Beck described the awards as “a tremendous accomplishment.”

“These awards are very prestigious,” Beck said. “This involves dozens of TV stations in four states plus universities and government agencies. For Kentucky Farm Bureau to be judged as having the best feature-type program is quite an honor.”