Archive for KY: Louisville

In the Fall of the Year 2013

Changing Leaves

     Fall is a great time to jump in the car with the kids and head for our beautiful state. October is the most colorful month of the year in Kentucky. The state parks are either at peak color or soon will be. Although the Oak trees are still green, a variety of trees, from Dogwood to Sourwood and Blackgum to Maples and Hickories, among others, are in full color. Trees are showing off their glorious reds, yellows and oranges all along the countryside. And hopefully there will be some color throughout the remainder of the month.

But before you think about October, fall leaves, and the St James Art Show, we’ve got another event up our sleeves that we know you will absolutely enjoy. And all you’ll have to do is sit there and laugh. Of course, you’ll have to take a short drive to Louisville and stay in one of out fantastic bed and breakfasts.   If you come, you can be assured your evenings can be filled with scrumptious cuisine at one of Louisville’s fine local restaurants and, after dinner, you can enjoy the best theater you’ll find anywhere.

Actor’s theater

Actors Theatre of Louisville’s 50th Anniversary Season kicks-off September 3 with the hilarious comedy Noises Offone of the funniest plays ever written about the theater. You can find all the details on the season here.

hilarious comedic play

[Noises Off is] directed by Associate Artistic Director Meredith McDonough [and tells the story of] a troupe of manic misfits [who] unite to perform Nothing On, a sex farce stuffed with entrances and exits, mistaken identities, sardines and slamming doors—but the drama backstage is even more entertaining than the comedy on.  Noises Off, one of the funniest plays ever written about the theatre, brings the actor front and center for an evening of hilarity and impeccable timing (Michael Frayn).

Audience Advisory: Adult language and content.
Age Recommendation: Ages 15+
See more…..

Behind-the-scenes tech event-August 31

Enjoy delicious appetizers from Orange Clover Kitchen & More as you hear from Director and Associate Artistic Director Meredith McDonough speak about the rehearsal process and offer some insight on Noises Off. After this light reception, you’ll be invited into the theatre to watch part of a technical rehearsal for the show. It’s your chance to get a sneak peek at the production and catch a glimpse of what goes on during the rehearsal process! This event is free but ticketed. For more information, contact the Box Office at 502-584-1205. See more …..

50TH ANNIVERSARY SEASON AT ACTOR’S

Noises Off  Sep 3 & 4
Dracula  Sep 14 & 15
The Mountaintop  Oct 8, 9 & 10
Tom Jones  Nov 12 & 13   Extra Seat Passes Only
A Christmas Carol  Nov 26, 27 & 29
The Pirates of Penzance  Jan 7 & 8   Extra Seats Passes Only
Our Town  Jan 21 & 22
38th Humana Festival of New American Plays  TBA

Nancy Hinchliff, freelance writer/innkeeper

Are You ready for Romance?

It’s that time again. The time when many of us start thinking about what to do on Valentine’s day for that very special person in our lives. We’ve done the flowers and chocolates, bought his or her favorite thing and taken them out to dinner. If you’ve run out of options, we have a great suggestion for you.

Why not spend the night or the week-end in a beautiful bed and breakfast in historic  Louisville, Kentucky? Our inns are welcoming, with distinct atmosphere and amenities, and delicious gourmet breakfasts. Our innkeepers know what makes their guests happy and comfortable. Great attention to detail is given when furnishing and decorating their guest rooms.

Belgian Waffle

Each and every one is focused on making your morning breakfast a delight. You won’t be disappointed when you sample the delicious Belgium waffles, pancakes, or French toast prepared in ways that might include fresh fruit, tantalizing sauces, and authentic maple or other flavored syrups. If you prefer, our innkeepers, many of whom are chefs, can prepare astonishing omelets, and other vegetable and egg dishes, accompanied with Kentucky ham, sausage, or bacon.  Muffins, scones, home-made granolas, and other individual specialties of a particular inn may also part of your morning meal.  And don’t forget the fresh ground, gourmet coffees…Europeans blends,

Scrambled Eggs

French Roasts, Columbian, Hawaiian, Jamaican, etc.

In addition, our innkeepers will help you find interesting things to see and do in the city and

nearby. Louisville has amazing local restaurants with every kind of cuisine you can think of. And our museums, theaters, and cultural attractions are first class. Not to mention world famous Churchill Downs which hosts the Kentucky Derby drawing thousands of international guests.

You won’t regret choosing our bed and breakfasts and our wonderful city to delight that special someone. I can guarantee it will be a visit you will not easily forget.

by Nancy Hinchliff, freelance writer and innkeeper

 

Come to the Kentucky State Fair: Aug.16-26

By Nancy Hinchliff, freelance writer/innkeeper

Hank Williams Jr. in concert Thurs, Aug. 16th, Main Stage

OK, so you can’t afford that trip to Disneyland or to some other exotic location. You and your kids can still have fun camping in the woods or even in the backyard, or maybe visiting grandma. The goal is to get away together. Throughout the summer, cities typically have lots of special events happening and Louisville is no exception. A perfect combination of all things good and fun for everyone is the Kentucky State Fair/, August 16-26. And, this year, it will be bigger and better than ever. It’s a good idea to plan your visit now.

Since 1902, Louisville has hosted Kentucky’s State Fair. The Fair is obviously known for its tradition in agriculture and food. This year it will not disappoint you. Among other delicacies, you’ll find elephant ears, funnel cake, corndogs, polish sausage, pineapple whip, lemon-slushies, roasted corn, BBQ and Krispy Kreme donut burgers! Everywhere you look, there’s another food booth or cafe. The kids will love the cotton candy, delicious hot dogs, and ice cream.

Thousands of awards will be given in categories such as fine arts, crafts, agriculture, and live stock. One category still popular in today’s modern culture is “housewifery”. The competition judges everything home-made from Textiles to Cherry Pie. But the largest entry department is still agriculturally-based, an acknowledgment to Kentucky’s largest industry and history.

Live stock

The live stock exhibitions and competitions range from Rooster Crowing contests to Blue Ribbon contests for cattle, goats, horses sheep and pigs, as well as exhibits of poultry, pigeons, and rabbits. An assortment of dogs will show off their special tricks and Border Collies will demonstrate the technique of herding. There is also a Discovery Farm where the kids can pick up and cuddle the baby animals. And, if you love horses, there’s a World Championship horse show

4-H and FFA

Cloverville is a village set up to allow 4-H participants to display their skills and compete for champion honors in entomology, geology, forestry, electric, foods, horticulture, woodworking, clothing, knitting and crocheting, home environment, consumer science management, technology, country hams and photography. Check out the diversity of skills that are developed and offered through 4-H programming across the state. The West Hall is also home to the Kentucky FFA (Future Farmers of America) exhibits showcasing the best among youth in agriculture, including products such as tobacco, hay, corn, floral arrangements, mechanics and woodworking.

During the Sale of Champions, eight 4-H and FFA exhibitors sell their champion livestock to hometown and national supporters. The animals represent the Grand and Reserve Grand Champions in each of their respective species as selected during the Fair’s livestock show. The Kentucky State Fair features one of the most esteemed livestock shows in the nation and winning a class is highly coveted.

The Thrillway

One area popular with the kids is the Thrillway, with all its many exciting rides. Tickets may be purchased ahead of time

Main Stage Concerts

Tickets for the Kentucky State Fair Main Stage Series events will be available at Kentucky Exposition Center Ticket Office, KFC YUM! Center Ticket Office, Kentucky International Convention Center (KICC) Ticket Office and all Ticketmaster outlets. Out of town visitors may purchase tickets through Ticketmaster. Tickets purchased through Ticketmaster are subject to a convenience charge. There is no service charge at the KEC or KICC Ticket Offices. To charge by phone, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. For accessible seating, call (502) 367-5144 or (800) 231-8085. artists include Hank Williams Jr, Journey, with Pat Benatar and Rascal Flats.

Free Concerts

Many concerts are free with paid admission to the Fair. All shows begin at 8 p.m. (expect August 26) in the original Cardinal Stadium at the Kentucky Exposition Center. Gates open at approximately 6:30 p.m.Some of the musical artists include Ted Nugent, Boys II Men and the Oak Ridge Boys.

Food and Music

Many of the dining areas combine music with their special food offerings…a nice combination where you’re, tired, hungry, and just want to relax. You’ll find a variety of foods that will interest the whole family, from hamburgers to Bar-B-Q to salads and desserts.

Accommodations

Be sure to check out Louisville’s many bed and breakfasts on line for availability. Many of them are within 5-10 minutes from the fairgrounds, some are offering special “Kentucky State Fair” rates, and all of them are reasonable and comfortable…..See you at the Fair!

New Year’s Resolutions That Don’t Cost an Arm and a Leg

by Nancy Hinchliff, Innkeeper/freelance writer


New Year's Resolutions checklist

Stick to your New Year’s resolutions without a pricey gym membership, fancy equipment, expensive classes or other budget-busters. Rest assured, you can stand pat in your resolutions throughout the year without spending a bundle. Here are the most popular New Years resolutions, along with tips on following them when you’re on a tight budget.

Exercise more

Instead of buying an expensive gym membership, put on a pair of sneakers and walk! Walk in the park, walk in town, walk in the city. Borrow a neighbor’s dog and walk. Park your car at the far edge of the parking lot and walk. Forgo the elevator and walk the stairs. If you think about it, you’ll find lots of ways to work more walking into your day.

Eat healthy foods

Pursuing a healthy eating program can easily bring down your food costs because healthy eating starts with fresh produce and basic ingredients that don’t cost a lot. See Healthy Eating, for Less for tips, hints and ideas for healthy eating for the budget-minded.

Stop smoking

Instead of expensive medical programs, hypnosis and/or nicotine patches, check out the many free programs and websites that can help you kick the habit. Start with the Centers for Disease Control How to Quit Smoking page: www.cdc.gov/tobacco/quit_smoking/how_to_quit

Take up a hobby or learn a craft

You don’t necessarily need to invest money in materials, books and classes to take up a hobby—why don’t you revisit a pastime that you used to love? Go on and find those knitting needles, or retrieve the roller blades from the back of the closet, or dust off the stamp collection. You just might fall in love again.

Read more

Instead of breaking the bank at the bookstore, visit your local library and check out a new book every week. Most libraries also have magazines for perusing, along with computers with fast Internet connections and lots of helpful advice for finding what you need online.

Learn something new

There’s no need to enroll in expensive college classes if you are looking to expand your horizons and learn something new. Look into “auditing” a class at your local university or community college. Many schools will allow you to sit in on classes (and participate!) without paying tuition (and without earning credits—but you just want to learn, right?). You can also inquire at your local library, community center or bookstore about free or low-cost classes or reading groups covering a huge variety of topics.

Take a vacation

Instead of flying or driving to faraway destinations and spending your hard-earned money on a motel and meals out, take a “staycation.” Stay at home during your time off, but make a commitment to sightsee, visit museums and generally get to know your hometown all over again.

Visit a Louisville bed and breakfast!

We are a short drive from Indianapolis, Chicago, Cincinnati, and St Louis. Although a little longer travel distance, it is still easy to get here from Nashville and Georgia. And, of course, Kentuckians, for the most part, have a doable weekend getaway spot. The bed and breakfasts all have Valentine’s Packages to satisfy your romantic mood. Do come and visit us, but call ahead of time.

Other options

There are lots of popular resolutions that don’t cost a cent to begin with. You don’t need a lot of money to pursue these resolutions:

  • Cook more
  • Get organized
  • Spend more time with family and friends
  • Help others or volunteer

Cooking at the Cottage

by Nancy Hinchliff, Innkeeper/free-lance writer

If you’re looking for fun things to do while you’re in Louisville, here’s a unique idea. Cooking at the cottage opened in

The Gourmet Cottage, Louisville, Ky

November of 2010. It’s a cookware retail shop that carries of variety of items that any cook would love to have in their kitchen. But what is so unique about this establishment is that they conduct cooking classes right on the premises. As a retail store, they specialize in cookware, bakeware, decorating supplies, gadgets, coffee/tea/chocolate, and bridal & gift registries.

Classes are held at the retail store which is with ten minutes of any one of the member bed and breakfasts of the Louisville Bed and Breakfast Association. You can book your cooking class at the same time you make reservations at your favorite Inn. Louisville has wonderful local restaurants. The chefs who teach at the Cottage are all owners and/or executive chefs at one of Louisville’s fine restaurants. Many of them also teach at the local Culinary Arts School at Sullivan University.

“Our goal at the Cottage is to offer our customers old fashioned, personal service with a smile! If there is anything you need, just ask one of our staff members and we will be happy to help you find it or if you want, try to special order it for you. Remember, we have gift certificates available, for any amount, which can be used on merchandise and/or cooking classes. These make a wonderful gift for that special foodie in your life!

Participation in a Cooking at the Cottage hands-on class places you in a typical cooking environment with inherent risk. By registering for a Cooking at the Cottage event, you agree to release Cooking at the Cottage and its staff, employees and contractors, from all liability arising from direct or indirect damages or injury.” (Mark & Linda Kunz Bayens).

Fantastic Fall Foliage, Spooky Neighborhoods, and Halloween

by Nancy Hinchliff, Innkeeper/freelance writer

Fall Foliage

Fall is a great time to jump in the car with the kids and head for our beautiful state. October is the most colorful month

turning leaves in Kentucky

of the year in Kentucky. The state parks are either at peak color or soon will be. Although the Oak trees are still green, a variety of trees, from Dogwood to Sourwood and Blackgum to Maples and Hickories, among others, are in full color. Trees are showing off their glorious reds, yellows and oranges all along the countryside. And hopefully there will be some color throughout the remainder of the month.

Old Louisville

Plenty of ghosts

It has been said that Old Louisville is one of the spookiest neighborhoods in the country. Why? Because, according to legend, there are ghosts on every block peering from many of the gardens and leaning against the mansion gates. They sit on the steps of the Christian Science Church and sob each night from the windows of the houses down the street. Seems as though they’re everywhere.

Old Louisville has beautiful tree-lined streets with turn of the century mansions built in seven major kinds of architecture. They are decorated with gargoyles, chameleons, serpents, swans, turrets, and towers and enhanced with a variety of wrought-iron fences, hand-carved doors, and stained-glass windows.

Ghost stories galore

There are also hidden balconies, secluded courtyards, and secret passageways. All of this dark and spooky ornamentation sets the scene for our ghostly reputation. I keep thinking there must be some explanation for all these creepy decorations … some reason why they’re here … and why so many of them? It certainly is something to ponder. The many ghost legends and the historical accouterments make Old Louisville one of the most interesting areas in Kentucky.

The Spirit Ball

The Spirit Ball, a wonderful Masquerade Ball in Old Louisville, will be held on Saturday, October 30, 2010 from 8:00 p.m. to midnight. This will be the fifth annual Spirit Ball and will be held in one of Louisville’s most opulent Victorian mansions, a 1890s masterpiece known as the Conrad-Caldwell House. Gourmet fare and expertly mixed cocktails amidst the backdrop of costumed splendor will be served. Join us and keep the past alive as you enjoy a one-of-a-kind masquerade ball that is sure to be the highlight of your Hallowe’en season for years to come. Tickets are available online now

A magnificent Richardsonian Mansion on St. James Court, it is the finest example of this architectural style in the city.

ghostly Conrad Caldwell house in Old Louisville

Also known as “Conrad’s Castle,” this is one of the most stunning of Old Louisville’s houses and defines Richardsonian Romanesque architecture.

Hallowe’en

You don’t have to stay home to celebrate Hallowe’en. Bring the kids, stay in Old Louisville, and go trick or treating in the spookiest neighborhood in the US.

Hallowe’en, “celebrated each year on October 31, is a mix of ancient Celtic practices, Catholic and Roman religious rituals and European folk traditions that blended together over time to create the holiday we know today. Straddling the line between fall and winter, plenty and paucity and life and death, Hallowe’en is a time of celebration and superstition. Hallowe’en has long been thought of as a day when the dead can return to the earth, and ancient Celts would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off these roaming ghosts.” … “The more secular community-based Hallowe’en has become a children’s holiday. Although the superstitions and beliefs surrounding the holiday may have evolved over the years, as the days grow shorter and the nights get colder, people can still look forward to parades, costumes and sweet treats to usher in the winter season.”

The American Hallowe’en tradition of “trick-or-treating” probably dates back to the early All Souls’ Day parades in England. During the festivities, poor citizens would beg for food and families would give them pastries called “soul cakes” in return for their promise to pray for the family’s dead relatives. The distribution of soul cakes was encouraged by the church as a way to replace the ancient practice of leaving food and wine for roaming spirits. The practice, which was referred to as “going a-souling” was eventually taken up by children who would visit the houses in their neighborhood and be given ale, food, and money.

celebrating haloweenl

The tradition of dressing in costume for Hallowe’en has both European and Celtic roots. Hundreds of years ago, winter was an uncertain and frightening time. Food supplies often ran low and, for the many people afraid of the dark, the short days of winter were full of constant worry. On Hallowe’en, when it was believed that ghosts came back to the earthly world, people thought that they would encounter ghosts if they left their homes. To avoid being recognized by these ghosts, people would wear masks when they left their homes after dark so that the ghosts would mistake them for fellow spirits. On Hallowe’en, to keep ghosts away from their houses, people would place bowls of food outside their homes to appease the ghosts and prevent them from attempting to enter.

Other Attractions

October is a great time to visit one or two of the wineries and distilleries for samples of superb Kentucky wine and Bourbon, and makes a great day trip from Louisville. A drive down the Bluegrass Parkway to the horse farms or a trip down a country road to the Huber Farms, just across the bridge in Indiana, for fresh apple cider makes an enjoyable fun day of fall fun for the whole family. There are also plenty of Fall festivals and outdoor concerts going on.

Accommodations

The Louisville Bed and Breakfast Association has twenty member bed and breakfasts. Their Inns are beautiful, comfortable, and clean. Rates vary according to room sizes and amenities. All of them serve wonderful breakfasts each morning and will be happy to accommodate your dietary needs.

If you decide to visit, be sure to book a Ghost Tour with the Old Louisville Visitor’s Center.

One way to take a family vacation in a sagging economy

by Nancy Hinchliff, Innkeeper and free-lance writer

This year, all of us are going to have to come up with some creative ideas for summer travel. The economy is still in a slump, but the kids are out of school, they’ve worked hard all year and, hopefully have gotten passing grades! They really deserve a break. One of the most painless ways for folks to take the kids along on vacation is to take a car trip. You can stop along the way, they sleep in the back seat, play video games, and listen to music with ear-phones on. They can eat snacks and drink beverages in the car and even take fido along. Most dogs love to travel with the family. And, it’s a lot cheaper than air flight.

There are many cities in the US that make good central locations for a week-end or week-long getaway and Louisville, Kentucky is one of them. The choices in accommodations are better than ever. You can spend the day in a nearby state park offering a beautiful woodland setting, or on a farm, or spulunking at Mammoth Cave. All are great places for kids. Worn out from sight-seeing but happy, you can return to your central location in Louisville and relax in one of Louisville’s beautiful bed and breakfasts.

Bed and Breakfasts are ideal for combining what a city has to offer with the surrounding area. You can situate yourself in a beautiful Inn for a week and take day trips to small villages, farms, lake, beaches or whatever you like. A city like Louisville, in Kentucky, is perfect. It has all of the above, plus outstanding restaurants, museums, theater and many attractions. There are a whole host of events and festivals going on all summer, from the Shakespeare Festivals in Old Louisville’s Central Park to My Old Kentucky home pageants to the Kentucky State Fair.

Another advantage to staying in Louisville is that it is very accessible from many other states; such as Illinois Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Tennessee, Iowa and Arkansas, etc. The interstate highway system is amazing and easily leads right into downtown Louisville. Another advantage is that Louisville has approximately 18-20 amazing bed and breakfasts, most centrally located.

Stay at a Louisville Bed and Breakfast Instead of a Hotel

The economy appears to be inching slowly into a recovery and business and leisure travelers alike are traveling again. And while people are still looking for value, they are also looking for a memorable experience. That’s why, more and more, travelers are choosing to stay at B&B’s because we offer quality, and value and we make MEMORIES!

Every Louisville Bed and Breakfast is UNIQUE – that’s because most of our B&B’s are in historic homes where the craftsmanship and quality of construction is so outstanding that they are still standing after over a hundred years. While we strive to preserve the historic integrity of these beautiful structures, we also know that our guests want modern conveniences. That’s why we have all renovated our B&B’s to offer private bathrooms for each guestroom (many with whirlpool tubs), central heat and air, WiFi, TVs and DVD players, and so on. Our B&B’s offer the finest of AMENITIES including luxury linens, soaps and shampoos, comfortable robes and, of course, the most comfortable beds that you’ll ever sleep in away from home! Since our Louisville B&B’s are individually owned and reflect the tastes of the owners, we are all different – no cookie-cutter hotel rooms here! Our Owner-Innkeepers genuinely LOVE their work so you can rest assured that your stay will be the very best!

Our Innkeepers are some of Louisville’s best TOUR GUIDES. We are fantastic resources of information on where to go, what to do, where to dine and what to experience in our wonderful city. Compare that to the average hotel concierge whom may or may not live around the hotel where they work and, therefore, may or may not have intimate knowledge of the area.

Hotels are now trying to be more like B&B’s by offering breakfast for their guests. The difference is that they are offering breakfast buffets of packaged foods for hundreds of guests while we are serving a FULL GOURMET BREAKFAST to a much, much smaller group of guests. Breakfasts at our B&B’s are an event! Our breakfasts are homemade each day and made especially for our guests on that particular day. We are also quite adept at working around dietary restrictions. Have you ever tried to order a lactose and wheat-free breakfast at a hotel buffet? It’s not a pretty sight!

Our B&Bs include many FREE amenities that the average hotel does not, including snacks, homemade desserts, complimentary wine, coffee and tea, cola and bottled water. We also offer DVD movies and games free to our guests as well as a variety of books, magazines and newspapers. Our guests are offered free WiFi, and business travelers can rest assured that their office needs are available at our B&B’s. Parking is always free at our B&B’s which is certainly not the case at area hotels where parking can be as much as $20 a day.

So, when you are planning your trip to LOUISVILLE, whether it’s for business or pleasure, consider staying at one of our Louisville Bed and Breakfasts. You have our PERSONAL guarantee that we will take excellent care of you!

Fair time is an excellent time to visit Louisville, Kentucky

I don’t know why they call it fair, when it’s really superb. Every year, in late August, the Kentucky State Fair brings out the stalwarts who brave summer heat, to enjoy the multitude of attractions. This year will be no exception, except that it will be exceptionally hot. Record high temperatures have scorched nearly everything, but our enthusiasm. But then, the whole country is burning up, so forget it and come on down for some distracting fun. I may be preaching to the choir here, but just in case you’re from waaay out of town, there is something for everyone at this two-plus week gala, and most of it is under roof and comfortable.

Music fans are treated to a dizzying array of great concerts. A great State Fair tradition that has been going on for years, the choices for 2010 are exciting: Headliners Tim McGraw, Rascal Flats, Charlie Daniels and the Oak Ridge Boys, to name just a few. There will be lots of music going on in the restaurant-sponsored tents, too. Horse shows, livestock, and exhibits galore make our State Fair another outstanding reason for coming to Louisville in August, specifically the 19th-29th. Be sure to check out the ugly lamp contest contenders. It’s a hoot.

In fact, there is so much to see and do that you probably want to stay a night or two. Furthermore, you might want to make it a Bed and Breakfast getaway. If you’re a B&B regular, you know what I mean. If you have been thinking about a B&B stay, but just haven’t done it yet, you are in for a real treat. Hotels are nice, often, bland perhaps. You know how that $95 room turned into $150 because the parking was $18 and the movie was $12.99, and you never saw the same person twice? All B&B Inns are unique. The people who greet your arrival are the ones who help you find things around town, serve your gourmet breakfast in the morning, and see you on your way. B&B Inns are like visiting with some very good friends who have a great house. Just, please, don’t call us in the middle of the night, because it’s just me and Mama here and we have to get up early to fix breakfast. We don’t have a night clerk.

Watch these pages in the months ahead for exciting happenings in our town and around the area. The FEI Equestrian Games, aka, the Horse Olympics, is coming in September. That will be centered at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, just 75 miles east on I64 to I75. The annual St. James Court Art Show, in the heart of Old Louisville, convenes again on the first weekend in October. It is one of the oldest and best of its kind. Breeder’s Cup, thoroughbred racing’s richest weekend is here, at Churchill Downs again this year, too. November 5-6 are the dates for that event. Whatever brings you to Louisville, Possibility City, we want you to be glad you came and leave with a desire to come again. There is always a lot going on.

Summer is a great time to visit Louisville, Kentucky

Summer is a great time to visit Louisville! There are many activities, festivals, concerts and all sorts of fun things to do, both during the week and on weekends, as well.

July Events:

The Kentucky Shakespeare Festival (www.kyshakes.org) performs classics from the Bard in Central Park in Historic Old Louisville (www.oldlouisville.com). This year is the 50th Season of Summer Shakespeare in the Park! It is now the longest running Shakespeare Festival of its kind in North America. The season started on June 16th with “The Tempest” and the final performance was July 18th with “Twelfth Night” at 10:00 AM. Admission is free and donations are accepted. Kentucky Shakespeare is committed to the fundamental belief that the arts are for everyone, and to their “Free Will” campaign, which allows them to bring the summer season of professional theatre to the public free of charge through the generous support of their funders, donors and community. The works of Shakespeare are used to enrich our community through accessible, professional, theatre experiences that educate, inspire and entertain people of all ages.

Another wonderful “Period” festival is the Annual Jane Austen Festival at Historic Locust Grove (http://locustgrove.org/index.htm). Inside the Visitor’s Center, a Regency Emporium features booths with beautiful silk shawls, fabric, bonnets, jewelry, and antiquarian books. You can even have your silhouette cut! There is also a fantastic silent auction with Jane Austen books, movie memorabilia and tea-themed baskets and much more. Fans from all over the country came for this event wearing period costumes and you feel as if you accidentally stepped in a period movie. This year’s featured author is Kim Wilson, member of the Jane Austen Society in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Her works include, “In the Garden with Jane Austen” and “Tea with Jane Austen”. There are more talks and demonstrations to attend and the ever-popular Regency Style Show.

The Second Street Neighborhood Association presents The Annual Old Louisville “Hidden Treasures” Garden Tour (www.holidayhousetour.com). This walking tour features ten gardens in the center of the Old Louisville Historic Preservation District – the largest residential Victorian neighborhood in the United States. “Outdoor rooms are the focus of this year’s tour,” said Judy Payne, the event chairperson. “The homes selected on Third and Fourth Street feature terrific outdoor living spaces in the garden.” Highlights this year include examples of an outdoor entertaining area and a variety of water features and sculptures. Several of the gardens were designed by master gardeners and represent a full spectrum of time on a master garden plan – from a first-year garden to more mature gardens. With the support and backing of the Second Street Neighborhood Association, as well as sponsors and volunteers, the Annual “Hidden Treasures” Garden Tour has become a successful Old Louisville summertime tradition.

Anytime you squeeze more than 100 bands and more than 20,000 people together over the course of a three-day festival, you can rightly expect a bit of excitement! The wildly popular 2010 Forecastle Music, Arts and Activism Festival made a spectacular debut in its new venue on the Ohio River at Waterfront Park. Judging by the happy crowds, it seems to have found its ideal home. While the festival has had its moments in the past, there has been nothing to match the feeling of standing in front of a stage listening to a band from Scotland while the last remnants of a pink Kentucky sunset fade behind the George Rogers Clark Memorial Bridge. It felt like being at home and an event all at once… the best of both worlds!

The festival has never enjoyed a better layout. The West Stage, the big one, was the main event. There are two other stages and you can wear yourself out hopping from one band to another. Along the perimeter of the new venue were setups for food, beer, art, eco-warriors and even a circus. With the Ohio River as a backdrop, the aesthetics were ideal!

The Louisville Blues and Barbeque Festival (www.bisigimpactgroup.com/blues) at the Water Tower on Zorn Avenue celebrates its 12th year in July 2010. You can sink your teeth into some fabulous barbeque and then wet your whistle with some smoking hot blues!

Late July and August Events:

The legendary Churchill Downs (www.churchilldowns.com) will be the home for the first ever HullabaLou Music Festival (www.hullabaloufest.com/hullabalou/line-up/schedule). Over 65 bands will perform on five different stages on July 23rd, 24th and 25th. Acts include Dave Matthews Band, Bon Jovi, Kenny Chesney, Steve Miller Bank, Jason Aldean, Al Green, Zac Brown Band and The Avett Brothers, Gladys Knight, Loretta Lynn, War, The Doobie Brothers and many, many others.

Churchill Downs continues to host events between the spring and fall meets with Fork, Cork & Style, a first-ever event on Sunday, September 12 from 1:00PM – 10:00PM. Bringing to life its theme of “Fork, Cork & Style”, the festival will present signature foods from around the country, celebrity chef cooking demonstrations, a wine tasting featuring 150 elite brands and innovative ways to dress up your next tailgating party. Emeril Lagasse is one of the celebrities who will kick off the event. The cost is $60 for general admission for both the food and wine events. For more information, visit www.forkcorkandstyle.com.

And the music goes on all summer long at Fourth Street Live! (www.4thstlive.com) with their Free Summer Concert Series from June to September! There are free shows for all ages before 9:00PM. A legal guardian must accompany patrons under 18. After 9:00PM, patrons must be at least 21 years of age. Visit 4thstreetlive.com (www.4thstlive.com/hot_country_nights.cfm) for a full concert series schedule. Free parking after 6:00PM at the Fourth Street Live! Garage, located on 5th Street.

Louisville enjoys all major performing arts such as ballet, opera, theater and, this month, we will be enjoying Jersey Boys at the Kentucky Center of the Performing Arts (www.kentuckycenter.org).

Jersey Boys” is a documentary-style musical based on the lives of one of the most successful 1960s rock’roll groups – The Four Seasons (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Four_Seasons_(group)). The musical opened on Broadway to rave reviews in 2005. It has since had a national North American tour, along with productions in the West End, Toronto, and Melbourne. “Jersey Boys” won four 2006 Tony Awards including Best Musical, Best Actor (John Lloyd Young), Best Featured Actor (Christian Hoff), and Best Lighting Design (Howell Binkley).

Louisville is also home to The Louisville Palace Theater (www.louisvillepalace.com), a national treasure of Spanish-baroque architecture. From July 16th through August 28th, they will be presenting the world acclaimed “Hitchcock – The Movie Series” every Friday and Saturday evening at 8:00PM. There is a 2:00PM matinee on Saturday. All movie admissions are $5.00. For more information, contact the Louisville Palace box office at 625 S. Fourth Street by calling 502-583-4555 or visit their website.

To give our readers a bit of history of this remarkable building, The Louisville Palace is a theatre, in downtown Louisville, Kentucky, located in the city’s so-called theater district, on the east side of Fourth Street, between Broadway and Chestnut Street. It has a seating capacity of 2,700 people. This historic landmark opened at 10:15AM on Saturday, September 1, 1928 at a purported cost of over two million dollars–a whole lot of money in those days! It was designed by architect John Eberson. Although the building’s outside facade is dynamic in appearance, it doesn’t provide a clue as to the immensity and spectacular design of the interior of the theatre. Upon entering the lobby and grand foyer, the Spanish-baroque motif begins its development. Cobalt blue, bursts of red and gold indirectly light all of the niches, coves and entrances. In the waiting area between the foyer and theatre itself, above is a curved, vaulted ceiling with 139 sculptures of the faces of historical figures – the eternal greats. In a central portion one finds plaster busts of Socrates, Beethoven, Dante and even John Eberson himself! The actual theater room inside The Palace is heavily ornamented and displays an imitation nighttime sky on the ceiling. In any direction, there is something magnificent to please the eye and spark the imagination. “Enter and view with astonishment the magnificence that the hand of man has wrought. The more you look, the more you will see.”—The Courier Journal September 1, 1928.

Today, the theatre features an array of popular movies, both old and new. It is also a special place to see a music performance, and many popular artists have graced its stage: Bob Dylan, Jewel, Hilary Duff, Queensrÿche, Godsmack, Jonas Brothers, Robert Plant & Alison Krauss, Aretha Franklin, Dame Edna, Tom Waits and many, many others.

And nothing says summer like a good state fair! The Kentucky State Fair (www.kystatefair.org) is one of the largest in the region and all of the exhibits are in air-conditioned comfort at the Kentucky Exposition Center (www.kyexpo.org). The fair runs from Thursday, August 19, 2010 – Sunday, August 29, 2010. Main stage concerts, for which there will be an additional charge, include Tim McGraw, Rascal Flats, Sugarland and Jeff Dunham. At the fair, you will find the latest in advances in agriculture, daily entertainment with free concerts, home-made product and produce showcases, commercial exhibits, and livestock of every imaginable species. There are also horse shows including the 4-H Horse Show, the Miniature Horse Show, the Quarter Horse Show and the most prestigious World’s Championship Horse Show of Saddlebreds. This exciting event, held annually in conjunction with the Kentucky State Fair, crowns world champion saddlebreds in different divisions. The show attracts people from all across the US and from around the world. More than 2,000 horses compete for over $1 million in awards.

You can find more information about this remarkable horse breed at Wikipia, The Free Encyclopedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Saddlebred.

Horse enthusiasts will also enjoy the following two events:

  • The 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games (www.alltechfeigames.com) will be held for the very first time outside Europe at the Kentucky Horse Park (www.kyhorsepark.com) in Lexington, Kentucky, September 25th through October 10th. While in Kentucky, don’t miss the chance to visit Louisville – the state’s largest city!
  • The 2010 and 2011 Breeder’s Cup World Championships (www.breederscup.com) will be held again in Louisville, Kentucky at Churchill Downs (www.churchilldowns.com) on November 5th and 6th, 2010.

As if the above were not enough, there are yet more things to do while visiting Louisville:

  1. The Speed Art Museum (www.speedmuseum.org) showcases the work of Pop Art’s most famous artist, Andy Warhol, through October 31st.
  2. The Ironman Competition will be held on August 29, 2010 (www.ironmanlouisville.com). The Ford Ironman Louisville made its debut in 2007 and has quickly become one of North America’s most popular Ironman races. The 2.4 mile swim for Ford Ironman Louisville takes place in the Ohio River and the bike and run course goes through various areas of Louisville to include not only downtown, but also Prospect, Clifton, the city of LaGrange, Clarksville, Ind. and Butchertown. The race will also feature a spectacular finish at Fourth St. Live.
  3. 41st Annual Street Rod Nationals will once again return to Louisville in August. The Street Rod Nationals is the world’s largest Street Rod gathering. It is hosted, annually, by the NSRA (National Street Rod Association). Every year that it has been held in its current location in Louisville, the event has topped more than 10,000 cars. All of these cars are “Pre-49” (manufactured before the year 1949).
  4. The Louisville Bats (http://louisville.bats.milb.com/index.jsp?sid=t416) continue the 2010 Season at Slugger Field. The Louisville Bats are the AAA minor league baseball affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds.

Future Events:

  1. The St. James Court Art Show (www.stjamescourtartshow.com) has happened every year for the last 54 years on the first weekend in October. This incredible show – the largest of it’s kind with 750 juried artists – will start Friday, October 1st and run until Sunday, October 3rd.
  2. The 34th Annual Old Louisville Holiday House Tour (www.holidayhousetour.com) will take place December 4th and 5th.