The Beauty of the Hills and Valleys!
By Glenn Arnette, lll
My next experience in the great state of Kentucky started when I had the pleasure of meeting the Director of the Shelby County Tourism Commission, Charles Kramer. Now this gentleman is really an asset to his community. He is a walking encyclopedia of knowledge. Shelbyville is a wonderful small community surrounded with beautiful historic homes and is known as “The Saddlebred Capital of the World” because it is the home of many of the county’s most outstanding American Saddlebred breeding and training facilities. Friends, this goes back to the days of Daniel Boone when in the 1760’s he travel to Kentucky on “American Horses”, the forerunner to the modern Saddlebred.
Charles Kramer took us to see the famous historical Undulata Farm, now owned by Edward “Hoppy” Bennett, named so because of his fascination to Hop-Along-Cassidy! Believe me; I had a real education, understanding and appreciation for the Saddlebred horse as told by “Hoppy”. Known today as the “Grandfather of Saddlebreds”, he is responsible for bringing back the world of Saddlebreds. His home located on the farm stands in grandeur over the grounds and creates the elegance of time gone by. It is one of the most beautiful historic homes and farms in Kentucky. This is a must for any visitor to see while touring this great state.
My suggestion is to make Shelby County a destination for your family vacation and enjoy a good time shopping, experiencing the arts, visiting historical sites or leisure recreation including beautiful golf courses and delightful people. This is a central point to many short day trips.
After the visit to Undulata Farm and after having a “finger licking good time” at Claudia Sanders Dinner House in Shelbyville we headed for The Luci Center headed up by its founder and Executive Director, Paula Nieto. The Luci Center is a non-profit 501c3 therapeutic horseback riding center and an affiliate of the North American Riding for the Handicapped Association (NARHA). Their mission is to enrich the minds, bodies and spirits of individuals with disabilities through horse-related activities. The setting for this property and center is located by surrounded hills and valleys and makes the perfect setting for youth and adult adventures.
Next we headed to Metzger’s Country Store. It was located somewhere along the road and was one of the most exciting “all in one stops of the day”. I had myself a timeout with a RC Cola and a Moon Pie!
Following our break, we headed to the City of Louisville and our stay at the famous historical hotel, The Seelback Hilton. (The home of the delicious glass of champagne with a shot of Kentucky Bourbon.) What a staircase and a lobby that rivals that of “Gone With The Wind”. Magnificent in its renovations and history, complete with a resident ghost, and dignitaries of the past including Al Capone, F. Scott Fitzgerald and nine United States Presidents. The grand Ballroom was used in the movie the Great Gatsby for Tom and Daisy’s wedding. How about the Oakroom, it was a gentleman’s billiard room where Al Capone once frequented. Now it is a five diamond restaurant. This turn-of-the-century hotel is located right in the heart of the city of Louisville and right in the heart of the club and restaurant district. This party street is blocked off from traffic each night for those who love to wander from place to place. We dined at the Maker’s Mark Bourbon House and Lounge and met Susan Dallas of the Louisville Convention and Visitors Bureau. Wow! She is a fantastic host and a personality that can bring the world to Louisville. Believe me, she knows her city and wants everyone visiting the area not to miss a thing!
Now that we have made it to Louisville, I will be telling you about Wagner’s Pharmacy, the Derby Museum, the Turf Club at Churchill Downs and a wonderful restaurant called Proof on Maine. Do Kentuckians believe in Bourbon? Please!
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