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Middleton’s documentary ‘History of Sweetness: 100 Years of Ruth Hunt Candy’ debuts on KET this month

Steven Middleton PictureSteven Middleton (Class of 2004 and 2008) has spent most of his documentary film career capturing the unique stories, places and people of the Bluegrass State. Now, viewers will have the chance to see his latest film project on a Kentucky candy icon.  

"History of Sweetness: 100 Years of Ruth Hunt Candy" will debut on the Kentucky Educational Television (KET) family of networks this month. It will premiere on KET at 2 p.m. Sunday, June 13. Subsequent airings will occur on KET 2 and KET KY throughout the summer.  

Ruth Hunt Candies was founded in 1921 by Ruth Tharpe Hunt. With two company stores in Lexington and the original factory complex in Mt. Sterling, it creates over 70 varieties, including Woodford Reserve Bourbon Balls, pulled cream candy and its signature Blue Monday Bar.  

Middleton said after the COVID-19 pandemic put a halt on potential filmmaking projects, he jumped at the chance when the owners of Ruth Hunt Candies reached out to him to make a documentary for the company's 100th anniversary.  

"I was just honored to have a purpose again. I feel like I was needed," he said.   

Middleton said the documentary captures the unique nature, history and success of Ruth Hunt Candies. These include Ruth Hunt being a female entrepreneur in the 1920s, the company’s support of the Mt. Sterling arts community and, at one point, being the official candy of Churchill Downs.  

"She was a single mother and ran and created this candy empire. That was amazing," he said.  

Middleton earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2004 and a Master of Arts in Applied Communication in 2008, both from MSU. As an instructor at MSU since 2008, he specializes in courses covering mass communication, documentary and video production, television production, and social media management.    

Middleton can be reached at 606-783-9583 or   

To learn more about MSU's Department of Communication, Media and Languages programs, visit, email or call 606-783-2134.