‘Kentucky Life’ host hangs up his hat — and walking stick
After 15 years, KET and Kentucky Life are saying good-bye to its longtime host, and his pooch pals. Dave Shuffett has announced his retirement.
“My 22 years in state government and 15 years at KET have afforded me wonderful opportunities,” Dave tells his viewers. “I’ve seen the beauty of the commonwealth and met the people who make our state such a special place.”
Since 1999, Dave has traveled the state for KET’s Saturday-night staple, where in any week you can experience stories that run the gamut from moonbows and mountain music to the Civil War and sheep shearing. He’s also hosted, with Amy Hess, KET’s Kentucky Collectibles since it premiered in 2012.
Dave will continue to be on the air this fall as Kentucky Life begins its 20th season Saturday, Oct. 4 at 8/7 pm on KET.
As loyal Kentucky Life viewers know, Dave hails from Greensburg along the Green River, a place he’s revisited often in stories through the years. He’s a graduate of Murray State University, where he majored in communications. From there he spent six seasons as host and producer of Kentucky Afield, the state’s longest running series, produced by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife and airing on KET.
In 1994, Dave was selected by the League of Kentucky Sportsmen and the Kentucky Wildlife Federation as its Kentucky Conservation Communicator of the Year. Dave’s work has attracted numerous other awards too, including preservation and conservation awards, and regional Emmy nominations as a KET host.
In 1995, he went on to pursue his own television series and production company, Outdoors with Dave Shuffett, where Dave brought his enthusiasm for the wonders of nature to a national audience.
Any mention of Dave would be remiss without talking about his canine companions, which brought animal lovers throughout the state a lot of joy as his loyal sidekicks. Most recently, golden retriever Toby was by his side. Sadie, an adopted border collie, traveled with Shuffett for thousands of miles on the program until she passed away at age 15. Charlie, another golden, was top dog for several seasons.
“Dave has tirelessly traveled from one end of Kentucky to the other, and everywhere in between, to bring viewers many of the wonderful and unique people, places, and stories that make Kentucky so special,” said Shae Hopkins, KET executive director. “Dave will be greatly missed.”
We know you’ll miss Dave too — and join us in wishing him all the best in his retirement. But he’ll be with us on the air throughout this season — and for years to come in encore presentations of his friendly, enthusiastic take on our Kentucky life.
So what adventure awaits Dave next? He says, “I plan to pursue some other writing and media projects … and catch up on chores! The homestead is fallin’ apart. The fence needs paintin’, the house needs stainin’, the stalls need fixin’ and the horses need ridin’.”