The Bluegrass State
Kentucky is commonly known as the “Bluegrass State” due to the presence of bluegrass found in many of its pastures. Despite the name, the grass is not actually blue; it produces bluish-purple buds, giving the fields a blue tint when viewed from a distance.
Birthplace of Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln was born in a one-room log cabin in Hardin County, Kentucky, on February 12, 1809. The Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park preserves this historic site.
Horse Racing Capital
The Kentucky Derby is the longest-running horse race in the United States, dating back to 1875. Held annually on the first Saturday in May at Churchill Downs in Louisville, the event attracts huge crowds and is part of the Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing.
More than 95% of the world’s bourbon is produced in Kentucky. Despite this, there’s no definitive answer as to why it’s named “bourbon,” though some believe it’s named after Bourbon County, a region in Kentucky known for its distilled spirits.
Mammoth Cave National Park
Kentucky is home to the world’s longest cave system, Mammoth Cave National Park. This UNESCO World Heritage Site has more than 400 miles of explored caves and still has areas that remain uncharted.
Home of the Corvette
The Chevrolet Corvette, an iconic American sports car, is exclusively manufactured in Bowling Green, Kentucky. The Corvette plant is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the state.
Historic Shaker Community
The Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill in Kentucky is the largest historic community of its kind. The Shakers were a religious group known for their simple living, architecture, and furniture, and this village serves as a monument to their way of life.
A Pioneering Music Scene
Kentucky has a rich musical heritage, being the birthplace of bluegrass music. The genre was popularized by Bill Monroe, a Kentuckian, who is often referred to as the “Father of Bluegrass.”
Daniel Boone and the Wilderness Road
Frontiersman Daniel Boone was a key figure in Kentucky’s early history. He blazed the Wilderness Road through the Cumberland Gap, which allowed for mass westward migration to the state in the late 18th century.
The Goldenrod: State Flower with a Twist
Kentucky’s state flower, the goldenrod, is often mistakenly believed to cause hay fever. However, the actual culprit is usually ragweed, which blooms at the same time but is less conspicuous.
From its world-renowned horse races and bourbon to its rich cultural history and natural wonders, Kentucky offers a diverse range of experiences that make it unique in the tapestry of American states.