It’s not just the Kentucky bourbon talking. Louisville is certainly its own city. From its trapped back in time buildings in the downtown area to its world famous events, this city that no one seems to pronounce exactly the same way packs in the quirky attractions. If you need a few reasons to visit beyond the Kentucky Derby in May, consider heading to the largest city in Kentucky for the quirky, off beat and remarkable at the same time.
Visit the World’s Biggest Baseball Bat and More at the Louisville Slugger Museum: You truly can’t miss this offbeat Louisville attraction. Outside of the Louisville Slugger Museum, you can pose with a 6-story replica of Babe Ruth’s Louisville Slugger bat. Composed of steel, the giant baseball bat weighs about 68,000 pounds and measures 120 feet tall. Within the museum’s doors, you can also pose with a giant baseball glove sculpture, handcrafted from 450 million year old Kentucky limestone. The factory tour is a true highlight for baseball fans for you can see where the official bats of Major League Baseball, the Louisville Slugger, are made as they have been since 1884.
Eat a Hot Brown at the Brown Hotel: From such a grandiose hotel, the Hot Brown is certainly a quirky element to Louisville amidst the refined. Just over from the hotel lobby, you will find the English Grill riddled with oak paneling, equestrian oil paintings and stained glass. On the menu in between fancier fare is the Hot Brown, an open faced sandwich composed of roasted turkey breast covered with Mornay sauce and Pecorino-Romano cheese. It is then baked until it achieves that golden brown color. The sandwich is complete once bacon and tomatoes are added at the end. The history of the Hot Brown stems from the 1920s ballroom dancers at the Brown Hotel. In the wee hours of the morning, they needed something hearty to feast on and Chef Fred Schmidt came up with the Hot Brown as we consume it today. You can also order a Hot Brown at the hotel’s J. Graham’s Café, the true home of the Hot Brown.
Pay Respects to Louisville’s Past, including Kentucky Fried Chicken at Cave Hill Cemetery: Generally cemeteries and fried chicken don’t go together. However quirky Louisville marries the two at the Cave Hill Cemetery. On the grounds, you can pause at the final resting place of Colonel Harland Sanders of KFC fame. Sanders set out to franchise his pressure-cooked fried chicken when most people his age were retiring. Cave Hill Cemetery is also home to a number of notable Louisville locals throughout its history. The cemetery was dedicated in July of 1848.
Study up on the Derby at the Kentucky Derby Museum: Located at Gate 1 at Churchill Downs in Louisville, the Kentucky Derby Museum provides a first hand look at the event for which the city is known across the world. Exhibits preserve the history of the event, often referred to as the most exciting two minutes in sports. Even if you can’t make it to the Derby in May, the museum highlights this fast sport and just what all the hype is about for those two minutes.
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