A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Annual battle re-enactment of ‘1778 Siege of Boonesborough’ set for this weekend

Fort Boonesborough State Park will host its annual “1778 Siege of Boonesborough” weekend this Saturday and Sunday. Events will include a battle re-enactment on both days at 2 p.m. There will also be a “night battle” at dusk on Saturday. A scene from the 1778 Siege of Boonesborough. The event commemorates the September 1778 attack on the fort by Native Americans and French Canadians during the...

September two-for-one camping deal offered at Kentucky State Park campgrounds

Kentucky State Parks are offering a weekday camping special this September. Guests can purchase one night of camping Sunday through Thursday and get a second consecutive night free from Sunday through Thursday. The offer is good from Sept. 4 through Sept. 27. When making reservations online, guests should use the promo code “Fall2018.” Three Kentucky State Parks have slightly different camping...

Big Bone Lick State Historic Site lowers lake level to reduce chance of dam failure after leak found

State officials are drawing down the water level of a small lake at Big Bone Lick State Historic Site in Boone County because of a leak in the dam. (Photo from Kentucky State Parks) The drawing down of water is intended to reduce the chance of a sudden failure of the dam at the 9.6-acre lake and provide an opportunity for the Department of Parks to access the damage. The dam is classified as a low-hazard...

Shupe to present nine ‘World of Reptiles’ shows at Kentucky State Parks during July

Scott Shupe was one of those kids who would surprise his mother when she washed his clothes. She would often find a snake or a toad in his pants pocket. “I never outgrew that fascination with wildlife,” said Shupe, who grew up in Graves County and now lives in Murray. The wildlife author and naturalist has worked in wildlife in Kentucky, Florida, South Dakota and Oregon during the last 40 years. Scott...

Help Wanted: Kids needed as citizen-scientists during statewide ‘BioBlitz’ on June 9

Children across the commonwealth have an opportunity to learn about and assist in scientific work at Kentucky State Parks while helping make a positive impact on our environment. On June 9, state parks across Kentucky will hold a “BioBlitz” — a short period of time when students, teachers, scientists and others conduct an overall count of animals, plants and other organisms in a designated area....

KSP invites families to explore the outdoors with children during ‘Kids to Parks’ Day May 19

Children across the Commonwealth can enjoy fun outdoor events as part of “Kids to Parks Day” on May 19 at several Kentucky State Parks. “Kids to Parks Day,” first celebrated in 2011 by the National Park Trust, helps to mark the beginning of state park events throughout the summer and the importance of active, healthy living. A hike at E.P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park (Photo from KSP) Kentucky...

Kentucky State Parks Culinary Trail, nine regional signature meals make state a destination foodies

Kentucky is a hidden gem of Southern fare, featuring one-of-a-kind restaurants and chefs specializing in local ingredients and distinctive cuisine. With the newly announced Better in the Bluegrass culinary tourism initiative, nine regional signature meals, culinary trails and hosting of the upcoming season of Top Chef, Kentucky continues to grow as a must-visit destination for all food lovers. The...

Kentucky State Parks offering 20 percent discount on weekday golfing at all courses through May 24

Golfers can get a 20 percent discount off the normal rate at all Kentucky State Parks golf courses Monday through Thursday through May 24. The golf course at Mineral Mound State Park (Photo from KSP) You can get the discount by reserving a tee time online at parks.ky.gov The discount does not apply to overnight golf packages. The park system offers excellent play at courses across the state. Parks...

Louisville’s E.P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park celebrates arrival of Spring with Goose Creek 5K April 14

Celebrate the arrival of spring by signing up for the Goose Creek 5K race at E.P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park on April 14, 2018. Prizes will be awarded to the overall female and male finishers, as well as the top two female and male finishers in each age group. The Goose Creek 5K at E.P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park (Photo from KSP) The registration cost is $25 through April 11 at 4 p.m. Day...

Kentucky State Park to serve annual Easter Buffet April 1 at 15 resort park restaurants

Kentucky State Parks will be serving the annual Easter buffet April 1 at 15 resort park restaurants. The menu includes beef carved on the line, baked country ham and local favorites. The meal will also include fresh fruit, a cheese bar, garden vegetables, salad and desserts. The price for adults is $19.50, and children (12 and under) are $9.50, not including tax. The price does not include a beverage....

Kentucky State Parks offering opportunities to watch March Madness Basketball at several park locations

College basketball fans have several options to watch their favorite teams during March at Kentucky State Parks. Natural Bridge State Resort Park near Slade has Trail’s End Tavern with TV sets and a variety of beverages available. The tavern is inside Hemlock Lodge. Trail’s End Tavern at Natural Bridge State Resort Park (Photo from KAP) Jenny Wiley State Resort Park at Prestonsburg also has...

Henderson’s John James Audubon State Park, other locations plan St. Patrick’s Day specials, events

Wear something green and get in free on St. Patrick’s Day at the John James Audubon State Park museum. The park in Henderson is celebrating St. Patrick’s Day on March 17 with specials for visitors at the museum, gift shop, and golf course. John James Audubon museum (Photo from KSP) Guests who wear green on Saturday receive free museum admission. They can also enjoy “Shamrock baked goods” at...

Department for Local Government accepting 2018 applications for Land Water Conservation Fund

The Department for Local Government announces the 2018 Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) application is open to the Kentucky State Parks to assist in their endeavors to improve existing outdoor recreational facilities. This will allow the Commonwealth to meet the Kentucky Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreational Plan (SCORP) Strategic Goal in maintaining and enhancing the Kentucky State Park...

Construction will close Henderson’s John James Audubon State Park campground during 2018 season

The campground at John James Audubon State Park will be closed during 2018 because of nearby construction work. (Photo from John James Audubon State Park) The dam that created Scenic Lake must be reinforced and the campground will be used as a staging area for construction equipment. The work, overseen by the state Division of Water, is being performed this spring on Scenic Lake Dam to bring it into...

My Old Kentucky Home marks 200th anniversary of Federal Hill with culinary tours, collection additions

My Old Kentucky Home State Park is celebrating the 200th anniversary of the construction of Federal Hill mansion with new tours and new displays at the popular Bardstown historic site. Federal Hill was built by the Rowan family in 1818 and became popular because of its connection to Stephen Foster’s famous song “My Old Kentucky Home, Good-Night!” Visitors can tour the home and learn about the...

Kentucky State parks announces appointment of new managers at four state park properties

Parks Commissioner Donnie Holland has announced the appointment of new managers at four Kentucky State Parks. The new managers are: Joe Mounce Joe Mounce is the new park manager at Cumberland Falls State Resort Park near Corbin. Mounce, a native of Somerset, has a master’s degree in recreation and park administration from Eastern Kentucky University, where he also earned his undergraduate degree. Mounce...

Kentucky Dams Village offering guided bald eagle tours to groups throughout January and February

Kentucky Dam Village State Resort Park is offering guided eagle tours to groups who provide their own transportation this winter. The tours are in addition to the Eagle Watch Weekend the park is holding Jan. 26-28. These guided tours would be ideal for church, schools, youth and senior citizen organizations to see bald eagles in the Kentucky Lake-Lake Barkley area during January and February. The...

Online registration now open for Kentucky State Parks 13th annual Family Adventure Quest

The Kentucky State Parks Family Adventure Quest is ready for its lucky 13th year after record-breaking participation in 2017. The digital photo scavenger hunt for families or friends had 438 teams out snapping photos in parks while tracking down objects, buildings, and facts to fill up their challenge booklets. Registration for 2018 is now open online or registration cards for mail-in registration...

Kentucky State Parks plans New Year’s Eve celebrations with events at parks across state

The Kentucky State Parks will celebrate the start of 2018 with several New Year’s Eve parties and events planned at resort parks across the state. Dinner buffets, entertainment, dancing and theater are among the options at the parks on Dec. 31. Many parks are offering lodging packages that include entertainment and meals. For more details on New Year’s Eve events at Kentucky State Parks, visit...

Carter Caves State Resort Park to host ninth annual Winter Adventure Weekend January 25-28

Carter Caves State Resort Park will present a weekend of outdoor adventure with its ninth annual Winter Adventure Weekend Jan. 25-28, 2018. Guests will be able to enjoy hiking, paddling trips, recreational tree climbing, cave tours including wild cave trips, winter survival, rappelling, ice climbing a zip line and other adventures. A list of trips is available for beginners and advanced winter adventurers...