When Rick Faris was 15, he dreamt he would have a guitar shop of his own to turn his passion into his daily life. He’s not in Kansas anymore, as he’s now in Owensboro and has opened the Kentucky Guitar Works at the Center for Lutherie, complete with everything he’ll need to make his dreams a reality.

“It’s absolutely incredible. It’s here. I still can’t believe it. So I feel very blessed,” Faris said. “I’m super excited and ready to take on the future as we go forward and figure out what all the fun things we can do in this space.”

The Kentucky Guitar Works at the Center for Lutherie will be located in the building formerly occupied by the International Bluegrass Music Museum at 207 Second Street. Faris and his company, Faris Guitar, will serve as the primary tenants. Faris will be crafting, selling, and teaching how to make guitars.

Faris, last year’s International Bluegrass Music Association’s New Artist of the Year, said he already has applications for apprentices and those interested in guitar-building classes.

Faris said the classes won’t be rushed, as attendees will intricately learn every part of the Lutherie process.

“We’re just going to build a guitar side by side here, and I’ll help you through the rough parts, and we’ll get through it together,” Faris said.

Guitar Works is set to cover “A to Z” of the guitar-making process. Guests will first walk into a showroom, which leads to the fabrication area that takes up most of the space.

Much like lutherie, building the space took problem-solving, Faris said. There isn’t a master design key for building a lutherie business, he noted, so they had to customize and craft the space to what he needed most.

“It was definitely awesome to have a blank slate and be able to just build it from the ground up,” Faris said.

Now that the space is designed to meet Faris’ needs, he can return to creating at his full capacity.

Faris has been crafting guitars for more than 20 years, and he said having a facility like the Kentucky Guitar Works is a rare commodity. Faris began crafting handmade guitars in 2000. Faris Guitar, which has customers worldwide, builds handmade guitars with a sound influenced by the 1930s pre-war traditions. All guitar production for the company will now take place entirely at Kentucky Guitar Works.

Kentucky Guitar Works will occupy the entire first floor of the 207 East Second Street property, totaling about 1,800 square feet. The building is leased through the RiverPark Center. The space will feature a gallery for an exhibition, a demonstration area, and merchandise, but the primary draw will be the instrument building.





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