Bourbon boom meets rumblings in rural Shelby County

Shelby County residents push back against proposed bourbon distillery on rural road

SHELBYVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A new distillery is running into opposition in Shelby County.

This is the property where Jeptha Creed wants to build a new distillery. (Source: WAVE 3 News)
This is the property where Jeptha Creed wants to build a new distillery. (Source: WAVE 3 News)

A proposed Jeptha Creed distillery on rural Woodlawn Road is part of the county’s on-going bourbon boom.

But some residents are concerned that growth may come at a price.

“This is a place where people raise kids and grow cattle. And we're accustomed to a safe, peaceful environment,” resident Jene Hedden said. “And we're not sure what effect an industry is going to have upon the way we live here.”

County leaders said the proposed distillery meets zoning requirements.

A statement released by Jeptha Creed said plans include the construction of “a distillery, a bottling building and barrel aging rackhouses.”

Construction is expected to take years and the operation would employ 30 people upon completion.

A spokeswoman for Jeptha Creed described the company’s current operations near Interstate 64 as “beautiful, attractive and clean,” bringing "good publicity and employment to Shelby County.”

She said the new distillery will do the same.

There’s also an expansion by the Shelby County Bulleit Distillery, with a visitor center under construction.

Shelby County Judge Executive Dan Ison predicts the Bulleit addition will attract 50,000 people annually.

“We’re in a great location between Louisville and Lexington,” Ison said. “We fall into that bourbon trail, we make it easy to get to and easy to enjoy bourbon.”

There is no visitor center planned for the new Jeptha Creed site.

There will be a public hearing on the plan March 19.

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