Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Q & A with David Contarino: Herrington Lake a Peaceful Retreat

David Contarino

David Contarino is a busy man. As a political and communications consultant, PAC chairman, and father, his days are a whirlwind of activity. That all changes when his family packs up for a weekend getaway to their cabin on Herrington Lake. Here, David Contarino discusses why time away from the hustle and bustle of life matters so much to him.

Q: Good morning, Mr. Contarino. There has been a lot of talk lately about mental health and stress. Much of this is caused by work. Today, we’d like to talk about how you, as a busy professional and public figure, handle your personal and family time.

David Contarino: The time I get to spend with my family are my most cherished moments in life.

Q: We understand your family owns a small cabin on the Shores of Herrington Lake. Can you tell us about the area?

David Contarino: Sure. Herrington Lake is a long Kentucky lake that runs from just south of Shakertown to near Danville and it's where we go for peace, quiet, and solitude. It's considered a playground for many of the outdoor enthusiasts that live in and visit the area.

Q: What type of activities are available at the lake?

David Contarino: As with all lakes, you have swimming and other recreational sports. What makes Herrington Lake rare is the abundance and variety of fish that can be found in its waters.

Q: Is it a popular fishing destination then?

David Contarino: Absolutely! Herrington Lake boasts an abundance of crappie, largemouth bass, bluegill, and catfish.

Q: And are you an avid fisherman?

David Contarino: I’m not competition material but my family and I do enjoy grabbing our poles for a lazy afternoon on the shore. In fact, one of my favorite memories from the lake is hooking a massive 15- pound catfish with a pole we bought for my daughter from Walmart. That was a very unexpected experience!

Q: Tell us about your family's property...?

David Contarino: It’s got plenty of room and a big stone fireplace. It's on a slope that has a great view of the water. My wife and I have been bringing our children here for many years.

Q: The southside of Herrington Lake is quite the remote area…

David Contarino: It absolutely is. In fact, I don't even get cell phone reception at the cabin.

Q: That sounds like it truly offers you the opportunity to unplug.

David Contarino: It does and it's something that I think everyone needs to do occasionally.

Q: Why is it important to get away from the office? It seems like taking off for a weekend at the lake would compromise productivity.

David Contarino: It's just the opposite, really. When I'm at the cabin, I have an opportunity to re center my thoughts and I’m able to return to work with a fresh view. Plus, being able to experience the beauty of my home state is a reminder of exactly what we work for through Kentucky Family Values.

Q: Kentucky is filled with beautiful places. What drew your family to this particular area?

David Contarino: Actually, it was a combination of factors. The solitude, the wildness of the lake. Boating, swimming, fishing. There are numerous marinas nearby where you can dock or rent a boat. The lake itself is something like 2,300 acres.

Q: Is there anything unique about the lake?

David Contarino: Herrington Lake was actually pretty famous back in 1925. This is when Kentucky Utilities dammed up the Dix River for a hydroelectric power project. Herrington Lake was, at the time, the biggest earth-fill-base dam and today remains the deepest lake in The Commonwealth at a max depth of 248 feet.

Q: That’s interesting. Do you have personal ties to the area?

David Contarino: My wife is from Kentucky and we knew that we wanted to both live and spend our vacation time and money here.

Q: Despite its draw, we wouldn’t call Lake Herrington a major tourist attraction…

David Contarino: It is remote in parts, especially where we are but that is exactly how my family and I like it. We really enjoy being able to just be together without distractions.

Q: If you had to describe the perfect day at the lake, what would that be?

David Contarino: First, a nice breakfast on the deck overlooking the lake, followed by jet skiing with my wife and kids. Maybe catch a few fish and always try to go for a good swim. After lunch, take a nap in a hammock then grab the kayaks for a little more time on the water before coming in for barbecue on the deck.

Q: We can’t disagree – that sounds amazing. Thank you for taking the time to talk to us about your retreat. It’s always good to know what areas are good for relaxation.

David Contarino: It was my pleasure.

David Contarino is strategic communication consultant and PAC chair based in Louisville. He is the co-founder of Kentucky Family Values and has worked with dozens of local politicians throughout the years. While he loves the entire Commonwealth, David Contarino says his two favorite things about Kentucky are the Derby and the many lakes and rivers that cut through its breathtaking landscape.


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