Friends of the Speed

Friends of the Speed Chairpersons Erin Kusman and Austin Anderton.

Friends of the Speed Chairpersons Erin Kusman and Austin Anderton.
Photo by CHRIS HUMPHREYS | The Voice-Tribune

Last year, for the first time in the history of the Speed Art Museum’s Ball, the event was held off the museum’s grounds due to the massive renovation and expansion. This year will mark another first in the history of the Museum’s Ball. The Reverend Alfred Shands III will be honored for his incomparable commitment to the arts community, a name synonymous in the Louisville art scene.

This year’s Speed Ball on Saturday, March 1 returns to the elegant Gillespie in the heart of downtown. Upon entering, the glamorous décor will help set the mood to compliment Louisville’s swankiest affair. The stunningly beautiful frocks will have everyone captivated throughout the evening. The entertainment GalaxyRed will bring a unique flare, combining the Galaxy Band with St. Louis’ legendary DJ Crucial, promising guests an amazing evening.

I had the opportunity to sit down with Chairpersons of the late night ticket Friends of the Speed, Erin Trager-Kusman and Austin Anderton to find out about the pre-dinner they’re planning for guests at Rye Restaurant.

Lori Kommor: The Speed Art Museum Ball offers a late night ticket for guests, which begins at 9 p.m. Can you elaborate on the Friends of the Speed ticket?
Erin Kusman and Austin Anderton: The Friends of the Speed ticket includes dessert, dancing and drinks (open bar) from 9 p.m. until 1 a.m. They cost $150 per person. Valet parking is also available for Friends of the Speed when they arrive at The Gillespie.

Kommor: Are there any pre-party events planned for those who purchase a Friends of the Speed ticket?
Kusman and Anderton: Rye (900 East Market St. in Nulu) will be offering a pre-fixed menu for anyone who purchases a Friends of the Speed ticket. The menu will be $60 a person and include a welcome cocktail, salad/appetizer, entrée and dessert (you will have options in each category). They expect to fill up quickly with ball-goers, so make your reservations by emailing or calling 502.749.6200.

Kommor: Can you share any details about this year’s event, such as décor, food and entertainment?
Kusman and Anderton: Corbett’s will be catering the Ball again this year, including the delicious desserts that will be available to Friends of the Speed guests. The band this year is called GalaxyRed. They are an energetic seven-piece band out of St. Louis featuring DJ Crucial and will be playing continuous music all night long. This year’s Ball will honor the commitment and service to the arts community of The Reverend Alfred R. Shands III. The committee is working hard to bring a contemporary feel to the event, tying art into the décor.

Kommor: How can we learn more about the event and purchase tickets?
Kusman and Anderton: You can learn more online at or by calling 502.637.6363.