Royals at KY. Center for African American Heritage

(WHAS 11)--It was a Royal fanfare for Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla as they headed into the Kentucky Center for African-American Heritage Friday afternoon, the first stop of many in Louisville.

A once in a lifetime meet and greet some would say to see the future King of England come to town to focus on Kentucky's finest research in sustainability.

From the moment they stepped out of their motorcade, the royals were greeted by the sounds of the River City Drum Corp and cheers from dozens of local students. The pomp and circumstance continued inside the center with an entourage of secret service. The royal couple parted ways, walking through dozens of displays.

"He was way more laid back than I thought he was going to be. Extremely interested in what's going on in the community here. He asked some really good questions. Seemed to have done his homework beforehand," Erika O'Donohoe, with Propeller Health said.

From food on your table to 3D printing your own organs, the couple seemed just as interested in the people working behind the scenes.

"We didn't known what way they'd come, if Camilla would stop by or the Prince because they spilt up. But the prince stopped by and he shook our hands right away which we weren't expecting because they told us not to touch him and he was just very warm and down to earth and very kind," Meaghan Watson, with Propeller Health said.

"He spent a lot of time at all of these individual exhibits. He's very inquisitive, asks a lot of questions and it's always great to see he has a great sense of humor," Stuart Williams, with the UofL Bioficial Organs Program said.

Even Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear cracked a few jokes during their stay.

"Ninety five percent of the world's bourbon is made right here in Kentucky, the other five percent is simply counterfeit," Beshear said.

The prince gave ample time with each group.

"He was very interested in transplantation progress we'd made." Dr. Gordon Togan, from the division of plastic surgery at UofL said.

"What was fun for me was for him to meet Mr. Rickelman," Dr. Christina Kaufman, the Executive Director of the Christine M. Kleinert Institute for Hand and Microsurgery (CMKI) said.

One of the more major successes so far in this room was Kentucky's 7th hand transplant recipient, Donnie Rickelman, who personally shook hands with the prince thanks to the men standing next to him.

"It's great for Louisville, it's great for the state. It's great for everyone," Rickelman said.

Prince Charles later took part in a private round table discussion at the center focused on agriculture, before heading off to his next stop.


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