Thunder Over Louisville 2014 Schedule

Photo of Thunder Over Louisville
There’s always so much excitement with this year’s Thunder Over Louisville 2014.
Photo credit: Solomon J Parker

We’re almost there!

Thunder Over Louisville 2014 begins in just a few short hours. Want to know what’s planned?

We start with the Airshow at 3 and it takes off from there! Get it? Takes off??

Here’s the full schedule with all the details from the official site. Have a great day Louisville!

  • 3:00-3:08 Opening Ceremonies with the Kentucky Air National Guard Special Tactics Squadron Parachute Jumpers.
  • 3:08-4:08 The Blue Angels, the U.S. Navy’s flight demonstration squadron returns to the air show after federal government budget issues prevented them from flying in 2013.
  • 4:08-4:11 C-130 Hercules Kentucky Air National Guard tribute: The Hercules, which can reach 374 mph, is the prime means for dropping troops and equipment into hostile areas.
  • 4:11-4:19 Canadian Hawks CT-155. Each of the two planes is a British single-engine and a two-seat advanced weapons trainer and versions designed for the Royal Canadian Air Force.
  • 4:19-4:31 Matt Younkin, Twin Beech 18. This plane, built in 1943, was first used by the United States Army Air Corps.
  • 4:31-4:51 The Lima Lima Flight Team: The team flies sophisticated formations in six early A model T-34 Mentor aircraft that were used by the U.S. Navy and Air Force for primary training in the 1940s.
  • 4:51-5:01 Jay “Flash” Gordon, L39 Albatros: The Albatros is a Czechoslovakian-built ex-Russian Air Force aircraft built in 1983 and restored and painted in colors of the Royal Thai Air Force.
  • 5:01-5:11 German C-160: The Transall C-160 military transport aircraft developed by Transall, an association of French and German aircraft manufacturers, features turboprop engines, a high-mounted wing and an upswept tail above a rear-access ramp leading to a large-volume cargo hold that was used to transport troops and freight.
  • 5:11-5:26 Trojan Horsemen T-28: The team flies six T-28 aircraft, also called the Trojan, which has a frameless canopy and a Wright R-1300 engine.
  • 5:26-5:41 AceMaker T-33: The T-33 Lockheed Shooting Star was America’s first operational jet fighter and trainer with a routine featuring vertical rolls.
  • 5:49-5:59 Cliff Robinson, PT-17: Robinson of Madison, Ind., owns this modified Stearman PT17 bi-plane, from those manufactured in the 1930s and ’40s.
  • 5:59-6:11 Team AeroDynamix RV Custom: This team flies 11 RV-Series custom-built aircraft with fixed wings that can attain speeds in excess of 230 mph. Each plane has its own paint scheme.
  • 6:11-6:21 Billy Werth, Pitts S2C: Werth flies corkscrews, spins and tumbles in a Pitts bi-plane that sports a red-white-and-blue design with stars on the wings and has a top speed of 212 mph.
  • 6:21-6:33 Air Force F-22 Raptor Demonstration Team: The crew flies the Air Force’s newest fighter aircraft and made its last Thunder performance in 2012.
  • 6:33-18:43 John Klatt, MXS: Klatt maneuvers his MXS, a carbon fiber, two-seat tandem sport aircraft, through a series aerobatics.
  • 6:43-7:03 Air Force F-22 Raptor Demonstration Team
  • 7:03-7:13 Air Force Heritage Flight Program: Featuring the F-22 Raptor, the P-47 Thunderbolt and the P-51 Mustang aircraft, the performance combines state-of-the-art fighter aircraft in close formation with vintage fighter aircraft.
  • 7:13-7:23 UPS 767: United Parcel Service Inc. showcases its flagship Boeing 767, which in regular use can carry up to 24 package containers weighing a maximum of 132,000 pounds.
  • 7:23-7:33 Nick Coleman, Christen Eagle: Lt. Col. Nick Coleman of the Kentucky Air National Guard flies.
  • 7:33-7:43 Red Star, Yak-52: The Red Star team flies its formation aerobatics with seven Yakovlev or Yak-52s, which were designed in the USSR, manufactured in Romania and used as a primary trainer by both. The team is made up of former military pilots now living in Louisville with many working for UPS.
  • 7:43-7:53 Lee Leet, A-29 Super Tucano: Leet flies this two-seat turboprop basic trainer used by the Royal Air Force, an aircraft often used for training fast-jet pilots in all aspects of military flying.
  • 7:53-8:03 Trojan Horsemen T-28
  • 8:03-8:23 The barges for the fireworks show move into position.
  • 8:23-8:35 AceMaker T-33
  • 8:35-8:47 Team AeroDynamix RV Custom
  • 8:47-8:57 Lima Lima T-34
  • 8:57-9:07Matt Younkin, Twin Beech 18
  • 9:07-9:17 p.m. The flying of the American flags.
  • 9:17-9:29: Bill Leff, T-34: Left flies his “Texan,” one of the most widely used advanced trainers for U.S. Army Air Force pilots during WW II and the Korean Conflict, for his Starfire Night Skyshow. It features special computer-controlled lighting and firework effects on the plane.
  • 9:30: Fireworks begin!

Incredible medical breakthrough by University of Louisville for spinal cord injuries

Photo of patient raising his leg while stimulated at the Frazier Rehab Institute.
Credit: Photo courtesy of the University of Louisville

There are so many great things going on here in Louisville. Today I hear Four paraplegic men voluntarily move their legs, an ‘unprecedented breakthrough’ for paralysis community. Wow!

This is big news. Here’s an excerpt:

Four young men who have been paralyzed for years achieved groundbreaking progress — moving their legs — as a result of epidural electrical stimulation of the spinal cord, an international team of life scientists at the University of Louisville, UCLA and the Pavlov Institute of Physiology reported today in the medical journal Brain.

Don’t forgot, University of Louisville doctors were the first to perform a successful hand transplant surgery. The healthcare industry has really found a friend in Louisville.

What’s next? May I request the wireless Net access that Josh Holloway has in Intelligence? (Maybe not, those virus updates would be horrible.)

Paul McCartney Coming to Louisville

Photo of Paul McCartney thinking about his trip to Louisville
Do you think Paul McCartney is thinking about his upcoming trip to Louisville?

Did you hear? Paul McCartney, yes that Paul McCartney, of Beatle fame, is coming to Louisville and playing at the KFC Yum! Center.

Paul McCartney has labeled his worldwide tour “Out There” and he is! For tour dates visit his Official Site.

What does this have to do with Louisville real estate?

Well, glad you asked, here’s what I want all your out-of-town fans should do. Come visit Louisville to experience Paul McCartney live and then while you’re here, you’ll fall in love with our fair city, want to move here permanently, and I’ll help you find the perfect home.

See? With A Little Luck it’ll be a great show for everyone!

Do Louisville Realtor Reviews Tell the Whole Story?

Photo of Woman reviewing Louisville Realtors on her laptop
Reading Louisville Realtor reviews will only tell you part of the story. Be aware of the sleight of hand that websites use to draw you in.

Back in 2010, I wrote, How to Find the Best Realtor® in Louisville, which is another way of asking, “Who’s the right Louisville Realtor for me?”

Like most things, there’s no “correct” answer. It depends.

  • Do you want an agent who’s super-successful and only has a few minutes available for you or a new, hungry agent?
  • Do you like tons of listings or just a select few?
  • Would you prefer an agent who quite friendly and wants to be your BFF or one that’s all business and focuses on getting the job done?

If you haven’t found your Louisville Realtor for life then most real estate clients head to the Internet to find an agent. So, what exactly do they find?

Internet Searching for Realtors Isn’t As Straight-Forward As You Might Think

The answer, as expected, is “it depends.”

What you type into the Internet search engine matters a great deal. As does the recent change Google made that defaults to results weighted by your browsing history.

What does that mean?

It means if you’ve visited a website, let’s say, a couple of times then when searching for a keyword phrase that occurs on this site, those pages will be moved higher in the results.

Did you know that? Google calls them personalized results.

On Google’s site, click the “Search Tools” button which will reveal some additional choices. See that one labeled “All results”? That’s the new Google algorithm that factors in a boatload of variables.

Screenshot of Google results with All results default setting
If you want a pure Verbatim set of results you now have to choose that under Search Tools » Verbatim, otherwise your own browsing habits influence your findings.

Isn’t that crazy? (Bet you didn’t think you’d be learning SEO today.)

Louisville Realtor Reviews

So back to Realtor searching. If you happen to type, “louisville realtor reviews” in the search engine (and assuming you live closer to Kentucky than you do Louisville, Colorado) then you’ll likely get results from the following major websites.

Zillow and Trulia

Screen shot of Zillow search results for Louisville KY Real Estate Agent Reviews
Like most web companies, Zillow and Trulia take money to place a Louisville Realtor higher in the results. Online reviews are nice but are they legit?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’re probably familiar with Trulia and Zillow, the behemoth web companies that are technology companies. This is important, they are not real estate experts.

Turns out, both of these sites are high on customer appeal and short on accurate information. It’s a shame that so many consumers are being hoodwinked. For more, read ‘Shopping Local’ applies to Louisville real estate websites too.

In our example, Zillow leads the pack with 1,381 results under Louisville KY Real Estate Agent Reviews. That’s a lot to sort through, huh? How do you choose the best Realtor for you?

Most people start at the beginning but notice the “Featured” button next to the top three? Those agents have chosen to pay Zillow money to have their names come first. Are they the best agents? Not necessarily.

Be alert to this because that’s how much of the Internet works. Pay us money and we’ll make you look good—a time-honored tradition.

In addition to the pay-for-placement, Zillow then displays agents based on the number of reviews. Sounds fair. Most sites work like this, to a certain extent.

In order for agents to have a large number of reviews, they must ask their clients to create an account on the website and then provide their ratings/feedback. Not always a fun request but hard-working agents do deserve some praise, right?

Just understand that there are ways to job the system. Results are not verifiable nor guaranteed and can be completely fabricated. But what else can an honest, Internet searcher do?

Angie’s List and Yelp!

Screen shot of Angies List results page for Louisville Realtors
Like most web companies, Zillow and Trulia take money to place a Louisville Realtor higher in the results. Online reviews are nice but are they legit? Search engines also fail to return accurate results.

Sure Angie’s List will be worthwhile in my hunt for the best Louisville Realtor, right?

Well again, there are plot twists. Agents do not have to pay Angie to get listed but this time consumers do! Money makes the world go ’round.

Once listed good luck getting noticed. I set up my account years ago and to this day have never seen my listing there, even if I search for “Tre Pryor”. Ghosts in the machine?

How about Yelp!? You know, the fun site with all the great restaurant reviews. They do Realtors too? Sure do, but… out of the 42 results for “realtor agents,” none have more than one review.

This is because Yelp!, in their attempt to weed out the bogus reviews (see Zillow, Trulia above) have a system in place that only displays reviews based on criteria that they won’t share with the public.

One day a review is up, live to the world, and then next it’s hidden. How useful is that?

Other Websites for Louisville Realtor Reviews

Screen shot of Homethinking results page for Louisville Realtors
You would think a site run by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) would have quality information, and it does, but that doesn’t mean it’s primary purpose is to make money for NAR.

Is there a single useful site on any of the Interwebs that can help a Louisvillian find a great Realtor?

  • Merchant Circle: 4208 results for “real estate agents in Louisville, KY” and not a single review. Sheesh! Half of the results aren’t even agents.
  • Homethinking: Claims “Realtors are ranked by their past sales and customer reviews” and for the most part that’s true. But agents that pay get listed first. Reviews can be submitted by agents so… how reliable is that?
  • Yellowpages and other indexes: Paid search placement and not extremely useful.
  • Top Agent Choice, Top Agents Ranked, et cetera: These sites simply try to get customer information so that they can then turn around and sell these “leads” to active Realtors. Not exactly shady but close.

Recommended Course of Action

So where does this leave us? When looking for Louisville Realtor reviews found online, the results fall into three categories.

  1. Worthwhile Realtor Reviews: These are hard to find but when you do, they provide useful guidance.
  2. Worthless Realtor Reviews: These are everywhere and scale from complete fabrications to misleading fodder.
  3. Scams: It wouldn’t be the Internet if it didn’t allow nameless cyber-charlatans the opportunity to take advantage of consumers.

Truthfully, the best advice is speaking face-to-face with your trusted friends and family about their experience with a Louisville Realtor.

If you’re completely new to an area, conduct a few phone interviews with prospective agents. Get to know them a bit and when the time comes to make a choice, go with your gut.

Who knows, maybe you’ll select an agent you think is worthy of your writing a Louisville Realtor review.

Preventing Theft During an Open House

Photo of Louisville home that needs extra security
Some homes need more security than others. A Louisville home like this one has lots of trees which add to its privacy but also makes it easier for dishonest people to take advantage.

Open houses are an effective way to show off your home and increase the chances of making the sale. If your belongings are still in the home you could be at risk for theft during the open houses. When there are a large number of individuals going through your home, often at one time, it can be difficult for your realtor to keep track of everyone at all times. These tips can help you keep your belongings safe during these open houses.

Secure Valuables and Medications

Keeping your valuables out is risky, even if you have them stored safely in your jewelry box, a few moments alone in the bedroom is enough for someone to take at least a few pieces of your treasured jewelry. Instead, store it in a lockable safe and take the key with you. You should also store your medications in a locked box as well.

Remove Identifying Documents

Some scammers will go to open houses to stake out what individuals have so they can familiarize themselves and break into your home later. This is why it is important to protect your identity as much as possible. This means putting away your mail in a safe place so no one can see your name or find out other personal information from documents you received in the mail, such as where you bank. It can also be helpful to remove any pictures of your family. This also a good time to make sure you have a home security system in place. You don’t want sticky-fingered thieves returning to a non-secured house.

Avoid Leaving Extra Keys

Your realtor has access to your home for showings. There’s no need to provide him or her with a spare key left on the counter or another open place. If an individual sees your key lying around, he or she may take it with them and gain entrance to your home when you are not there, taking items that belong to you. If your realtor needs a spare key, make sure you give it to him or her directly and get it back at the end of the showing.

Check All Doors and Windows

If someone attends your open house to find out what you have, they may leave an inconspicuous door or window unlocked so they can easily return later. This is why it is important to go through your home immediately after the open house and make sure that all the doors and windows are locked and secure. You can use this time to take a quick inventory to identify whether anything is missing. Talk to your realtor if you have any concerns.

Some realtors are able to increase security in an open house to keep your belongings as safe as possible. Even if your realtor can’t offer this service, though, there are things you can do to better protect yourself. Taking the right precautions will ensure that your belongings will be safe while you wait for your home to sell. Keeping valuables hidden and locked away, removing identifying information, checking doors and windows and not leaving extra keys lying around are all ways to protect yourself, even during an open house.

Finding a Trustworthy Louisville Realtor isn’t so tough

Trust graphic

How do you know who you can trust. You can’t… but others who’ve had experience with this person can tell you who is a trustworthy Louisville Realtor.

After completing a real estate transaction, I ask my clients to complete a Feedback Form. Yeah, yeah, I hear you. “That’s no fun!”

And, you’re right!

Thumbnail of a Tre Pryor Realtor Feedback Form
Purposefully reduced in size so as to not be readable, I did want to share this with you to see how much wonderful feedback this particular client shared with me. Wonderful!

Filling out a feedback form isn’t fun but it’s helpful to both of us. (Mostly me but being asked to share your feelings and thoughts is empowering for you as well.)

But the main reason I ask for feedback from my clients once the Louisville deal is done is that I want their honest opinion of how I performed. Just like checking the stats after a Kentucky or Louisville basketball game, I want to know, “How’d I do?”

I want to improve on my deficiencies and I want to continue doing the things my client liked.


Because I want to be a trustworthy Louisville Realtor for each and every real estate client—past, present and future. It could be you! And if you did want me to be your Louisville Realtor, I would want to be trustworthy as well.

I don’t publish all my testimonials but I do post many. I even encourage prospective clients to contact my past clients, if they so choose. It’s time well spent.

Trustworthy Realtor in Louisville

If you’re looking to buy or sell a home, you’ll want a trustworthy Realtor in Louisville, by all means, ask your friends and family. Do some research on the Internet. Call some prospective agents and ask them to meet you for coffee.

This extra work up front will help you zero in on the best Realtor for you and that will make the best home buying experience possible.

How does Customer Service apply to Louisville real estate?

Photo of Louisville customer service bear

Is this the kind of customer service you’ve received this Holiday season?

Christmas is upon us. It is literally on. It may even be inside us.

It’s been this way since practically Halloween but now the sense is palpable. You can feel it too, can’t you?

One of the heaviest weights is the responsibility to buy the gifts, whether they be Christmas, Hanukkah or otherwise. Not just getting the gifts but getting the right gifts, the best gifts… that’s what shows you really care, right?

Well, for me I don’t much want the local salesperson trying to talk me into the latest gadget that was their company memo told each employee to push. I hate being pushed. I like it better when I ask for help and then it’s provided. That’s good customer service.

Is that how you are?

When it comes to real estate, I tend to treat my clients the way I like to be treated. That’s all well and good but everyone is not the same.

Get this, some people like to be pushed. Can you believe it?!?

We all kinda freak when we find out that people like the opposite of us. Twizzler’s are far superior to Red Vines but there are still some of those (crazy) people who prefer the Red Vines.

It truly takes all kinds.

Customer service in real estate is quite complex, inordinately so. That’s because human beings are so complex. A real estate transaction has dozens of variables, a great deal of money on the line and people get stressed.

I strive to serve every one of my clients the way I would like to be serviced. Quick responses to questions with specific answers. Honesty. Lots of hard work.

If I don’t have an answer, I still respond with the comforting line that assures them, “I will get the answer for you.”

People won’t buy a particular Louisville home just because a Louisville agent is pushing it. If you try, you just break down any trust you’ve built up.

Ok, I’m done with my rant for now. I truly hope you enjoy this Holiday Season and I look forward to sharing 2014 with you!

How Do We Measure the Top Agents in Louisville?

Photo of a client happy with their Louisville agent
When your real estate client feels like this, that’s when you’re one of the top agents in Louisville.

Interesting questions this, “How do we measure the top agents in Louisville?” My conclusion may surprise you.

The Old Way to Measure Top Louisville Agents

Without a doubt, we would start with what most people are likely thinking

“The top real estate agents in Louisville are those that make the most money.”


“The top Louisville agents sell the most houses.”

And to a certain degree, these people are correct. That is an easy, non-subjective way to put Louisville Realtors into different buckets.

Ask me this question 7 years ago and I would have responded the same way. Today? Nah.

For some perspective, let me tell you a quick story.

I have a client, let’s call him Stuart. Now, Stuart was a client of mine in the past. But this call was for his Mom who didn’t have much money but needed a small, safe home in a part of Louisville that I don’t typically service.

Would I refer Stuart’s Mom to another agent? There wouldn’t be a lot of money in this deal for me.

But I could see the need and wanted to “be there” for Stuart and his family.

Would a top Louisville agent take this client? I think they would. At least… by the definition, I now subscribe to.

The New Way to Measure Top Louisville Agents

It’s not about money, it’s about service. Taking the heart of a servant and strive to make sure your client gets what they want, with the least cost and best possible experience.

I’m not batting .1000 but that’s my goal and it’s getting closer every day.

Do you rave about your Louisville Realtor’s service?

When Can You Trust Your Realtor?

Photo of a Louisville Realtor shaking hands with his client
Can you really trust your Louisville Realtor? That’s a great question. Learn how here.

Trust. It’s the key facet of every human relationship.

Before I became a Realtor, I thought Realtors enjoyed a great reputation. Why? Because my Realtor was a great guy—hardworking and trustworthy. I would refer him to all my friends and family, who each shared glowing recommendations.

When I became a Louisville Realtor, I found out that public perception of my chosen occupation was less than stellar.

Looking for evidence, we have to go back to 1989 for the oft-cited survey data. This report by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) attempts to put values on public perception. In it, Real Estate Occupations came in at a paltry 38.53 on the “Prestige Score” scale.

Please understand, very few occupations scored so low, dismally low to be sure. (It would be nice to have more recent results, however.)

There’s enough public perception out there that Realtors can’t be trusted. Is it fair to say, “One bad apple?”

Now, we’ve got people writing stories like, Why You Can’t Trust Real Estate Agents When Buying A House. Really, none of them?

Mr. Holman, the author of the piece, isn’t a Realtor but a member of the financial industry in Canada. I would suspect he has a better-than-average understanding of the industry. But why the blanket statement?

I think there are several reasons.

Where does the lack of trust come from?

First, society has become less trusting. See? There’s that word again.

There’s no question the economy is stagnant. The Washington Post, much to the chagrin of their political leanings, recently published The typical American family makes less than it did in 1989. Sigh.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that our more competitive economic landscape means any product or service with a sales component will grow more cutthroat.

Thus, we have an increased opportunity for Realtors who forego their fiduciary duties in favor of a quicker path to payday.

Second, in this day and age of exploding social media, it doesn’t take long for the word to “get around.” Find an agent cutting corners and mistreating their clients? Bam! Facebook post three minutes later and 253 “friends” now have their perceptions modified.

Lastly, due to the importance of a decision this large, every person involved in a real estate transaction experiences increased levels of stress. If you sell your hand-me-down chest of drawers for less than it’s worth, no biggie. But if someone gets a “steal” when buying your house, that’s a whole other story.

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve been involved in a deal when a perceived slight occurs and one of the clients blows their top. Last time, we found the document that proved the client had signed off on the rate. We closed the following day.

(The client later apologized for his outburst.)

The true nature of every industry

Even with all this against the profession, I still come back to this: Painting with the broad brush inevitably gets some paint where it doesn’t belong.

There are good Realtors. I know a good number of them here in Louisville. Heck, I’m one of them!

These agents will go the extra mile, even when there’s nothing in it for them. They’ll reschedule 9 showings because their client’s child became sick. They will accept phone calls, at home, at 10:30 pm because they understand that their client is stressing out.

There’s nothing wrong with educating the consumer Mr. Holman, but your premise is far too bleak and none too accurate.

My advice to all Louisville home buyers/sellers is to get quality referrals.

  • Don’t call a Realtor because you see her billboards on bus signs.
  • Don’t call an agent because they advertise on your favorite radio station.
  • Don’t call the guy with those late night real estate infomercials.
  • Don’t call a Realtor because their name sounds familiar.

Instead, seek out a trusted friend or family member who has used the same Realtor for multiple Louisville real estate transactions. Don’t worry, it won’t be as hard as you may think.

You most certainly can trust your Realtor. Just so long as you select the right one.