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The succulent plants you so carefully tend in your garden are like an oasis in a desert—a feast for the eyes and stomach, waiting to be harvested at just the right time. Sometimes, though, the fruits of your labor are prematurely usurped by a garden intruder impressed by what it sees as a gourmet, all-you-can-eat buffet.

Gardens and landscaping around our old Kentucky homes often include plants that provide wildlife a very high quality food source, Springer explained. They are more tender and have more nutrition and water content. Springer, University of Kentucky. Mount plastic insulators on inch wooden, fiberglass, or metal stakes. Make two concentric circles around the area, 3 feet apart.

String the stakes in each circle together with wire strands, placing the wire in the outside circle, 18 inches from the ground. Then put two strands on the inner stakes at 10 and 24 inches. If a double fence is not practical from a space standpoint, he suggests building a standard fence from posts and chicken wire, woven field wire, or welded mesh wire at least 8 feet tall.

Make sure the fencing is tight against the ground. Deer will not burrow, but they will look for an easy way to go under it. Individual plants or smaller plant groupings can be protected by draping them with lightweight netting. Loosely secure the netting around the base of the plant to prevent the deer from nibbling on the leaves. Frustrated gardeners have resorted to a variety of techniques to try to deter Bambi and friends from foraging and grazing on prized roses, vegetables, and hydrangeas: human hair, Irish Spring soap shavings, aluminum pie pans suspended on string, motion-activated lights, and water sprinklers.

Others have tried crushing garlic, concocting a mixture of fragrant herbs, or spraying capsaicin oil onto plants to keep the deer away. Soderstrom said commercially available repellents have a higher success rate, but the key is to alternate their use. They are applied directly to leaves and the stem to create smells and tastes offensive to deer. Repellex offers two types of repellents: a liquid spray applied to the plants and leaves, and systemic tablets or granular forms put into the soil, then absorbed into the plant, making it bitter to animals. The process takes several weeks, so it is important to use a spray on the foliage the first few weeks.

Most box retailers and nurseries offer a choice of products in liquids, concentrates, or powders. The Texas destination will gain valuable brand awareness, and meeting planners will get a muchneeded phone charge as well as a great destination for their next conference.

Contact Visit McKinney at www. Group tourism is booming because of a strong economy and the fact that 10, people turn 65 in America every day. Along with the strong tourism uptick comes the desire to visit and experience new destinations and venues. The Group Travel Family has recognized the travel needs of group and meeting planners for over 25 years and has built a strong presence to help travelers discover towns and cities they would otherwise never experience. The Group Travel Family is dedicated to group travel planners and operates seven national travel meetings each year.

Keep up the great work. The hotel employs numerous environmentally conscious practices, including the use of organic and biodegradable products and progressive recycling and conservation. The Hotel Retlaw will feature rooms with featherbed-covered mattresses, Egyptian cotton sheets and luxurious duvets. Live jazz music will be featured nightly. Club dining will be refined-casual showcasing specialty burgers and premium steaks, flat-bread pizzas, Wisconsin cheeses and old-fashioned soda fountain treats.

Part of the revitalization efforts in downtown Fond du Lac and surrounded by entertainment, arts, shopping and nightlife, the Hotel Retlaw is located two miles from Lakeside Park and Lake Winnebago. Guests can enjoy open spaces and access to six recreational trails spanning 50 miles for biking, hiking and nature. The hotel is also a block from the Thelma Sadoff Center for the Arts. Owner Steve Wilson has announced plans to expand Hermitage Farm into a world-class agritourism destination, with plans for a new farm-tofork restaurant featuring menu items grown in the on-site, five-acre garden, a country store stocked with local farm products and picnic lunches, specialty bourbon retail and tasting rooms, an art walk instillation and hayloft event space.

Visitors will also be able to dine inside renovated horse stalls. Current visitor experiences include a main house, built in , which is available for tours, weddings and event rentals, and a recently renovated stud barn that gives visitors a look at the daily activities of Hermitage Thoroughbred operations and the sport of combined carriage driving, which Wilson actively competes in. The stud barn houses a carriage gallery, com-.

The new 20,square-foot center will allow the foundation to add to its current historic architecture tours and tell new stories about contemporary architecture along the Chicago River, Lakeshore East and North Michigan Avenue. The new center will have a welcome and tour center on the ground level and innovative exhibition spaces, including a digitally enhanced Chicago Model that will be expanded from 1, to nearly 3, structures and wrapped in an interactive, cinematic experience.

When one of these fails to deliver as promised, it can cause a lot of problems and concerns. But by avoiding panic, keeping your wits about you, and rationally seeking solutions, a workable alternative can always be found. We were faced with operating nine departures of this highly popular itinerary without having any lodging secured at the peak of the autumn season, plus at a time when the pope was scheduled to make much-anticipated appearances in Boston. Consequently, I had no other choice but to call just about every decent property in Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine and Massachusetts.

I was on the phone continually for hours on end in an attempt to cobble together enough rooms so that somehow, we could manage to accommodate our almost guests. But if I and my colleagues had panicked and thrown up our hands in despair, the results would surely have been disastrous. Recently, I encountered a much less daunting task caused by a Canadian Rockies hotel I had booked last spring on behalf of a consulting client for a fall tour.

When I contacted the hotel, I was told that they did not have our reservation and no rooms were available, our arrival being over the Canadian Thanksgiving weekend. I sent an email explaining our need for 30 rooms to more than two dozen comparable properties nearby, but the first responses we received from those that still had space were far more expensive than we were seeking.

However, after a couple of days, a most attractive property emerged with rooms at close to the same rate we had originally anticipated. Airlines are a different animal, so if your group should be faced with a significant delay or flight cancellation, never, ever go to the counter and start screaming.

Keep calm and tackle whatever your problem might be with your chin up. You will find a solution. And they would ask him to show them around his borough. People started asking me to show their family members around. My friends encouraged me to start doing tours of the borough. So I thought, if I could do it the right way, put it on a bus and show people clips of movies filmed here as we passed by locations, it could work well. His first tour was a pizza tour, which remains a popular option for visitors today.

The tours included samples at various Brooklyn pizza restaurants, as well as a visit to Coney Island and a photo stop at the Brooklyn Bridge. And his contacts there introduced him to the. You ne ver k now what people may be i ntere sted i n se ei ng. And on tours, I want to showcase all the things that make Brooklyn great.

Today, there are more than 10, state parks in the U. The beauty of these parks is varied and breathtaking, ranging from coast to coast, traversing mountains and deserts. Each park offers numerous activities, from fishing and birding to canoeing and horseback riding, the sorts of outdoor adventures that are suitable for group travelers.

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Here are some worth visiting. With equestrian outfitters Lehigh Valley Trail Rides, groups can enjoy a scenic and relaxing ride and take in the serene beauty of the park. More than 18 miles of trails wind through forest that displays the vibrant colors of fall. The outfitter uses natural horsemanship training techniques to ensure their horses are gentle and well mannered. COM —. Each offers visitors different perspectives on the park and its scenery. Other attractions include a monarch butterfly sanctuary and a bird walk with 60 species of birds.

The conference center comprises two historic lodges and four cottages, including one that author John Steinbeck called home. It also features new mountain biking trails. The park is famous for the picturesque Cape Fear River, which hosts guided rafting tours that wind through the scenic rock formations along several miles of calm water before hitting Class I and II rapids. Wildlife sightings are frequent on rafting trips, and guests can expect to see bald eagles and blue herons, among other birds. Also available are tubing adventures on the river with stops for lunch at a popular local restaurant called Mermaid Point.

Four-wheeling and snowmobiling are popular trail options, and several local companies rent kayaks, canoes and mountain bikes. You can delve into the natural world a dozen different ways. Visit paradise in tropical Costa Rica, with its sandy beaches, lush forests, exotic plants, incredible animals, and stunning waterfalls. There are multiple options for camping and hiking, but viewing the astounding canyons and rock formations by hot-air balloon is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

The park was designated an International Dark Sky Park in , meaning that there is no light pollution and stargazers can view the night sky much as it would have looked hundreds of years ago. With these ideal viewing conditions, park rangers provide programming such as full-moon walks and seminars using telescopes. The park has miles of multiuse trails made for hiking, biking, backpacking, horseback riding and two- and four-wheel-drive-vehicle exploration. History buffs will enjoy visiting nearby ghost town Terlingua and hipster destination Marfa.

Explorers will want to check out the ocean caves, sea arches, anchialine pools, cliff diving and blowholes. ORG —. At nearby Zephyr Cove Resort, fishing enthusiasts can take a boating excursion with everything included, from refreshments to tackle. Lucky fishermen will have their catches cleaned and bagged by the tour staff to take home. The park sits between Lake Michigan and Hamlin Lake and is popular for hiking, biking, stand-up paddleboarding, canoeing, row boating and more than five miles of white-sand beach.

Hikes take visitors through sand dunes, wetlands and marshlands and to a historic lighthouse. The view from the top of Big Sable Point Lighthouse is worth the effort to climb it for the stunning panoramic view of the lake. The gently flowing Sable River is also popular for kayaking and tubing, with most recreational equipment available for rent on the beach. Heated yurts in the park and groomed trails make an excellent place to cross-country ski or snowshoe.

Snowmobiling is popular in the San Juan mountain range, and rainbow trout and perch are abundant when ice fishing on Jackson Lake. Nearby Hesperus Hill, a family-owned ski hill, also offers snow tubing. Driving in from points west in Tennessee, there are vantages outside Knoxville and Maryville where vistas open up to reveal row after row of soft, undulating ridges on the horizon. Peace lies there. At , acres, the park is huge, especially for a park in the eastern U. The visitor count was almost Despite its popularity, I can find solitude, at least relatively speaking, in almost miles of trout streams or along miles of trails, all the while realizing that I share the park and surrounding region with many others, including groups of all sizes and types.

As a region, the Smokies appeal to myriad groups. It could be a hiking club using Townsend as a base for some day hikes, a multigenerational family reunion focusing on Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, a church youth group attending a denominational rally or a seniors group just wanting to soak up fall color in the mountains. Just hav-. Mother Nature spent too much time preparing for them to be ignored.

In addition to getting the lay of the land at an expansive 3D tabletop map, Sugarlands features one of the best National Park Service videos in the country.

People from Bourbon County, Kentucky

Perhaps the easiest group activity is to drive to 5,foot Newfound Gap and straddle the line between Tennessee and North Carolina for a group photo. You can imagine the scene when Franklin Roosevelt visited in to dedicate the park, which citizens had donated to the nation after considerable public and private fundraising. What a difference almost a century of healing can bring. The famous Appalachian Trail passes through Newfound Gap, and you can take an out-and-back walk on it.

The walk from the parking lot to the futuristic-looking observation deck is a short quartermile jaunt that is steep and memorable.

Red River Gorge Encounter

It may make you wish you exercised more. There are many other opportunities for group trail time, and rangers at the Sugarlands Visitor Center are your best counselors. From Sugarlands, you can walk two flat miles into Gatlinburg on the Gatlinburg Trail, or you can enjoy a loop of. Cherokees even helped the first American settlers who trudged over the mountains in the early s to the spot that became Gatlinburg. It was a tiny hamlet when the national park was created, but that changed almost overnight. What evolved is a compact, attraction-filled, largely walkable town hemmed in by the park on three sides.

First-timers to Gatlinburg, who may be most eager to see a black bear in the woods, are just as thrilled to see sharks, rays, sea dragons and electric eels. The largest of three massive tanks holds , gallons of saltwater and has a glass tunnel so you can watch toothy sharks glide overhead. Perhaps most impressive at Anakeesta are panoramic views of Mount LeConte, which, at 6, feet, is the third-tallest peak in the national park.

Visit the campus, view artwork by local, national and international artists in five galleries, and experience a completely different way to enjoy the Smokies. It occupies a valley of the Little Pigeon River. Slicing through town is a four-lane divided route named simply the Parkway that is lined with attractions, amusements, restaurants, theaters, mom-andpop motels, chain hotels, souvenir emporiums, miniature golf courses and one genuinely historic site.

This is a kid-in-a-candy-store place built for fun and games. It begins each season with entertainers from around the world for the Festival of Nations and then continues with multiple themed festivals before presenting weeks of holiday music and lights during Smoky Mountain Christmas. Do it all. Bring your groups to a place guaranteed to put a sparkle in the eye and create ear-to-ear smiles. Experience a destination with more shows and shopping, more arts and crafts, more spectacular mountain views and more delicious down-home cooking.

Take a detour from the ordinary to discover a town filled with fun for anyone, any age. One of the most unexpected sights in the Smokies is a towering replica of the Titanic — yes, that Titanic. Another unexpected attraction is Pigeon Forge Snow, which offers 11 lanes of indoor snow tubing on real snow year-round. Live entertainment, a hallmark of Pigeon Forge, is delivered in more than a dozen theaters.

Free outdoor entertainment is offered at the walkable Island in Pigeon Forge development, along with restaurants, shops and rides. The mill was built in and continues grinding corn and other grains today. Adjacent are the Old Mill Restaurant, especially good for a powerhouse breakfast before a mountain hike; the Pigeon River Pottery — check out the face jugs, along with artistic ceramic pieces; the Old Forge Distillery; and other heritage-oriented shops.

A guaranteed selfie location is on the Sevier County Courthouse lawn. Imagine the millions of people who have had their pictures taken with Dolly. Most people know Townsend because it provides access to Cades Cove, a picturesque valley that nurtured an almost self-sufficient farming community before the national park was formed. The mile loop road around Cades Cove is highly popular, and it leads to an enjoyable up-and-down, 2. Two Townsend attractions link it to the national park. One is the Great Smoky ] Mountains Heritage Center, whose mission it is to preserve and interpret the heritage of the people who inhabited the mountain communities before the park came along.

There is an excellent museum and a collection of 13 historic buildings, including a cabin, a chapel and an underground still. Groups can book narrated Cades Cove tours on passenger vehicles. You go to ABR to learn about its assistance to black bears, often sick, malnourished or injured. Since , ABR has treated and returned to the wild more than bears. Its rehab facilities are not public, but the education makes you appreciate any bear you see in the wild. ABR offers group-worthy programs in classroom settings, and it happily arranges hikes for small groups.

One leads to a known bear den high in a tree. These over-the-top mansions sit atop rocky cliffs overlooking crashing Atlantic waves. Groups can sample the highlights of local food and drink on culinary walking tours through the heart of the city. This legacy of wealth and iconic scenery makes Newport a favorite island destination for groups traveling in New England.

In Newport, visitors can see the same number of impressive buildings in a matter of minutes. During the Gilded Age, wealthy residents of Newport wanted to flaunt their wealth, so they built opulent building on top of opulent building. When they get out of the bus, it is a wow moment. These American castles exceed expectations. Each features extraordinary architecture, furnishings and art. Each mansion offers headset audio tours, so group members can walk through at their own pace. The Vanderbilt family constructed one of the grandest Newport homes, The Breakers, as a symbol of its social and financial standing.

Both companies make stops at five or more restaurants to sample the trendy culinary dishes. These tours show you the secret spots that travelers might not find on their own. Guides share interesting tidbits about Newport history and culture along the way. Newport Cocktail Tours offers a walking tour that maps out seven of the best craft cocktails in town. The contrast between highly stylized mansions and rugged coastline makes for a stunning picture.

Homes built in the s sit next to homes built last year and practically every decade in between. Also known as Ten Mile Drive, the scenic route leads to stops along the Atlantic Ocean for photo ops, hikes, beach access and other activities. Brenton Point State Park features unparalleled ocean views where guests can relax while watching waves crashing onto the shore. Nearby, Fort Adams State Park offers historical tours of its preserved coastal fortification, which was active from to the first half of the 20th century.

To understand Newport and its connection to the sea, many locals recommend voyaging out on the water. People say their favorite part of their stay at Newport was the harbor cruise. Newport offers eight vessels appropriate for group tours. Sailboats, schooners, powerboats and other vessels take groups out regularly for informative and scenic tours. Passengers can help crew haul up lobster traps for a hands-on way to discover sea life in Newport. Groups can dine at a waterfront restaurant for views of the harbor and local delicacies.

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Visit our website for sample experiential itineraries, group friendly restaurants Visit our website for sample experiential itineraries, group friendly restaurants and overnight packages. The Group Travel Leader Inc has two decades of expertise in working with industry partners to produce stunning print pieces. We write, design, sell, and mail your finished magazine.

Marine wildlife cruises allow groups to see the massive scale of a whale, make eye contact with a seal or watch a sky full of puffins. Coastal destinations sometimes specialize in species common in the area, though most wildlife cruises look for a variety of creatures. Sometimes, cruise passengers even see land animals like wild ponies that often congregate along the coast.

Other times, onboard guides know where local pods of dolphins frequent for guaranteed wildlife-viewing opportunities. To catch a glimpse of fascinating coastal creatures, groups can try one of these wildlife-watching cruises. Humpback whales grow to an average of 45 feet long, and seeing such a massive creature in person is an awe-inspiring experience. These whales frequently breach the water with common above-water behaviors such as tail slaps, leaps and group lunge feedings.

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In the late s, there were only about humpback whales in Monterey. Since then, the local humpback population has grown to 2, Although the species migrates to Mexico during the winter, humpbacks live in Monterey Bay from spring through late fall. Although Monterey whale-watching cruises focus mostly on the humpback whales, participants also commonly spy blue whales, gray whales, minke whales and, occasionally, sperm whales. Monterey Bay became known as the whale-watching capital of the world because of its large and deep submarine canyon close to the shore.

The latter company offers charters aboard catamarans holding , 70 or 47 passengers. The tour staff includes photographers and drone operators to provide guests with souvenir photos and videos of their experience. The three-hour tours allow plenty of time to spot whales and watch them interact with the boat and each other. Though not as large as other ocean creatures, seals charm travelers with their expressive brown eyes, fluffy fur and playful demeanors.

Wildlife cruises in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, showcase the local seal population. Sometimes thousands of harbor and gray seals swim and lay out along the shore at Monomoy Island, a barrier island and wildlife refuge off the coast of Chatham. Guests can glide through narrow channels into isolated lagoons where these seals rest between feedings. Naturalists narrate tours with information on the various Cape Cod seal species and how the Marine Mammal Protection Act in helped local populations of seals recover from near extinction. Narrators also keep an eye out for whales, schools of fish, seabirds and the occasional great white shark.

Monomoy Island Excursions accommodates up to 35 people on its foot catamaran for a tour of the island and the nearby scenic Wychemere Harbor and Stage Harbor. During the minute tours, guides not only watch for wildlife but also tell stories of the island and the historic Monomoy Lighthouse. Five species of seals, along with humpback whales, minke whales and fin whales, feed at the sanctuary.

Though people are always curious about the bottlenose dolphin in Gulf Shores, Alabama, the dolphins are often just as curious about the people. Bottlenose dolphins exhibit considerable intelligence, such as using tools like marine sponges to forage for food. This intelligence makes seeing the underwater mammals even more compelling during dolphin-watching cruises in the Gulf Shores and Orange Beach area.

Friendly dolphins put on a show for passengers with playful behavior. Since Gulf of Mexico bottlenose dolphins rarely travel more than 10 miles during their entire life, guides from cruise companies like Cetacean Cruises have named many of the dolphins in their area. Cetacean Cruises follows a pod of between 30 and 50 dolphins with two to three calves each year. Nature cruises of between one and two hours get up-close to resident dolphins. The longer cruise weaves its way through hidden creeks and back bays for likely encounters with ospreys, herons, bald eagles and alligators.

Sail Wild Hearts also offers dolphin cruses in its passenger boats. The company also offers sunset cruises and private charters. During the U. Puffins mate for life, so the spring nesting time is a reunion for mated pairs, which stick together for 20 years, practically their entire lifespan. What these inch-tall birds lack in size, they overcome with striking, colorful beaks and impressive numbers. The birds live on rookery islands through the summer to nest and tend their young.

Kenai Fjords National Park in Seward, Alaska, shelters several puffin coastal colonies, which groups can view on a wildlife cruise. These cruises highlight the puffins, as well as other seabirds including black-legged kittiwakes, murres, oystercatchers and cormorants. Even without wildlife sightings, cruises float past stunning scenery with towering glaciers and snow-capped mountains.

Major Marine Tours offers five cruise options that visit bird rookeries and other wildlife-viewing areas. The cruises range in duration. The 3. The longer cruise features a lunch of Alaska salmon and prime rib. All vessels include tabled seating in heated cabins as well as outside viewing space. Unlike choppy ocean waters, the waters near the islands stay relatively calm allowing groups to easily view the year-round orca whale residents.

The thrill of spotting a pod of foot-long orcas in the quiet Salish Sea draws guests from around the world to local whale-watching cruises. While scanning for whales, onboard naturalists relate interesting information about whale behavior and the difference between the fish-eating southern resident orcas and the mammal-eating transient orcas. The southern resident orcas are on the endangered species list, so tours also stick to responsible wildlifeviewing practices and urge passengers to help protect these giant creatures. During a typical cruise, groups can also watch sea lions sunning themselves on rocks, bald eagles in treetops and cormorants nesting on bluffs.

Minke whales, humpback whales, porpoises, river otters and seabirds also live in the area. When not staring at the water, groups can bask in the surrounding beauty of the Olympic Mountains and the Cascade Range. According to legend, a shipwrecked Spanish galleon released wild horses onto Assateague Island years before Europeans colonized Virginia.

The refuge protects not only the ponies but also abundant migrating and permanent waterfowl. Cruises depart from Chincoteague Island for up-close views of the ponies as well as bald eagles, herons, white-tailed deer and sika elks. The Assateague Lighthouse and surrounding wilderness create gorgeous vistas during the boat tours. Groups can cruise in the channel between the islands to access areas of Assateague Island where many of the ponies live. The July festival started in and draws crowds that reach 40, Visit St.

Tammany Parish and bring your appetite for great Louisiana cooking, and for living. A couple of years ago, I had the bright idea of going camping in the Everglades in late spring, a time when most people avoid the area because of the heat and mosquitoes. I quickly realized that my small head net and thin flannel shirt were not adequate cover against the 10, mosquitoes that materialized the instant I left my car or tent. The mosquitoes were so abundant that I could hear them outside my tent at night.

On the plus side, I did get the chance to see wild manatees up close in the river, which almost made the trip worth it. When I was in Greece, I got to help a local shear one of his sheep. It was hard to wrangle it, but in the end, it was cool getting to experience that and help the animal. We went on various game drives each day and saw lions, giraffes, zebras and other animals from the safety of our safari vehicles. One afternoon, though, the guides got us out of the vehicles to walk about yards away, where a rhinoceros family was quietly grazing.

I was amazed by these creatures; they seemed completely unimpressed with me. We went up and down Jekyll Islands beaches half the night looking for nesting sea turtles, new nest sites and turtle tracks. When I was 9 years old, my father woke me one day at dawn and told me to get dressed. We drove with my older brother and our uncle to the pier at Cherry Grove and slithered through a throng of people to stare at a world-record-size tiger shark stretched out in the back of a truck. It was 14 feet long and weighed 1, pounds.

A local fisherman had caught it and managed to land it on the beach. It stood as the largest ever until someone caught one slightly larger 40 years later in Australia. The best part for me that day was that my younger brother did not get the wakeup call. What can I say? We hope you enjoy these tips.

COM Better order more name badges. With 53 meeting rooms, two ballrooms, an exhibit hall and 1, guest rooms, the Galt House can easily accommodate large groups and conferences. Start planning your next event at galthouse. Clockwise from the top: A meal in Daniel Boone Country includes regional favorites such as soup beans, ramps and chow-chow relish.

Photo courtesy KY Dept. The memories your group will make and the stories you will hear, past and present, will last a lifetime. Beautiful horse farms are everywhere, offering a behind-the- scenes look at raising, training and caring for these magnificent creatures — from thoroughbreds to American Saddlebreds. Get a taste of Kentucky through the unique flavors of our state. Across the state, chefs are cooking regional favorites and putting their own spin on traditional dishes.

From the traditional down home Southern fare to upscale fine dining to street food and anything in between, there is a Kentucky restaurant or meal to fit your inner foodie. While you are here, you have to try one of our very special spirits: bourbon! Whether you are new to bourbon or an expert, whether you prefer your bourbon on the rocks or mixed, or if you want to eat your way through bourbon country, there is a bourbon experience waiting for you here.

No matter your favorite tune, you can always find live music across Kentucky. Kentucky is also the perfect retreat for groups seeking adventure. The most adventurous groups will enjoy whitewater rafting at Cumberland Falls, rock climbing in the Red River Gorge or admiring the breathtaking view from Natural Bridge.

Kentucky has 17 resort state parks that offer lodging, recreation and access to some of the most picturesque locations in the country. Groups touring Kentucky will find lots of distinctive foods to sample during their trips. Here are some of the signature dishes your travelers can enjoy in each region of the state. Guests arrive on the property in late afternoon to tour a special outdoor exhibition of Dale Chihuly art and then sit down to enjoy a world-class dinner prepared by resident chefs Newman Miller and Alex Dulaney.

Invented by German settlers who settled in the greater Cincinnati area in the s, goetta is a meat-and-grain sausage dish. Northern Kentucky celebrates its German connection during Goettafest. Groups can still order this signature sandwich at the Brown Hotel or at numerous restaurants in central Kentucky.

Winchester and surrounding Clark County celebrate their role in inventing beer cheese by promoting the Beer Cheese Trail and hosting the annual Beer Cheese Festival. The Beer Cheese Trail consists of eight restaurants with local beer cheese recipes. This Southern relish is prepared with cabbage, green tomatoes, bell peppers and a vinegar-based sauce served over soup beans in Daniel Boone Country. Also known as piccalilli, chow-chow offers a tangy Southern flavor. It features ingredients from Appalachian home gardens and is a staple of daily diets in the area. Agritourism plays a key role in this south-central region of the state.

Blackberry jam cake with caramel icing ensures that juicy summer blackberries last long into the fall and winter seasons. The dessert mixes blackberry jam, pecans, cinnamon, nutmeg and whiskeysoaked raisins. The region is also known for salmon croquettes, made by frying salmon patties dipped in egg and bread crumbs. Farmers from the western corner of Kentucky carried the tradition of smoking hams for generations. Ham dishes in this area typically come paired with a side of homegrown vegetables like pole beans or sweet corn. Whether or not they enjoy the strong flavor of bourbon, many visitors include a bourbon tour on their itinerary to learn about its fascinating history and distilling process.

Some cities, such as Bardstown and Louisville, will welcome several new bourbon experiences, including new. The reason so many distillers chose Bardstown for their base of bourbon operations is simple: the water. Springs in the area were ideal for making whiskey, so over the years Bardstown has attracted several distilleries, among them Heaven Hill, the Barton Distillery and the Willett Distillery.

In June, the facility also opened a whiskey library, a bar and a fullscale restaurant: Bottle and Bond. The restaurant serves seasonal local fare. Louis company relocated to Bardstown in April to begin distilling Kentucky bourbon. Lux Row Distillers, owned by Luxco, opened an 18,square-foot facility to house twelve 8,gallon fermenters and to offer tours.

The acre site will sit on a former quarry, which the company will transform into a freshwater lake and park. Plans also call for a vintage passenger train to run through the entire complex. Book a tour at BuffaloTraceDistillery. After Prohibition, Louisville bowed out of the bourbon scene for many years. With several distilleries already open and more on the way, though, Louisville is filling its streets with distillers once again. The distillery now serves moonshine and will eventually produce bourbon and rye whiskey. The Old Forester is credited with creating the first bottled bourbon.

The flames go up as they toast the barrels.

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  6. Groups can add a culinary experience, such as a traditional mint julep demonstration. Interpreters start with fresh mint that grows in the on-site garden and then add house bourbon, spring water and a sprig of mint over crushed ice to finish the drink. Everyone sips the Kentucky cocktail before taking home a souvenir cup. Nelson Building, known for its s cast-iron architecture.

    With so many options, how will travelers choose where to begin their Kentucky bourbon journey? The welcome center occupies a space on the first floor of the Frazier History Museum. When Pearse and Deirdre Lyons, co-founders of Alltech, first emigrated from Ireland, they felt a close kinship with the hardworking people of Appalachia.

    Desiring to share this heritage with the world, they started construction of the Dueling Barrels Brewery and Distillery in Pikeville. One of the only distilleries to produce bourbon, moonshine, ale and beer, Dueling Barrels offers minute tours about the processes behind the. After a video about Alltech and the region, participants head to the distilling and brewing room for a minute tour and tasting. Groups can sample moonshine made from a copper pot similar to the ones bootleggers once used in the nearby mountains.

    The site can produce up to 40, beer barrels and 2, whiskey barrels annually. The James E. Pepper distillery opened in Lexington in and had become something of an industrial giant in the city before fading into obscurity in the midth century. In , however, the brand was revived by Amir Peay, a Californian with an interest in bourbon. Peay first learned about the brand when he noticed the advertisement for James E. Pepper Whiskey on a boxing photo.

    After acquiring the brand, Peay underwent a decade-long distilling journey that led him to reopen the James E. Pepper Distillery in Lexington in July. Photos courtesy Lexington CVB. Peay stayed as close to the original brand as he could, with old bourbon recipes, original whiskey bottles, photographs and even pieces of the still. Tours explain the fascinating history of the brand and the founder, James E.

    Pepper, once notorious for his wealth and horse racing. After tours, groups can sip on rye whiskeys, such as the Old Pepper Rye and the Henry Clay straight rye. In the future, bourbon made on-site will be available for tastings. An impressive distillery and event space opened in northern Kentucky in with one thing in mind: anticipation.

    New Riff Distilling wanted its first official batch of bourbon to stand out in flavor, which is why the company waited four years for the whiskey to age before releasing it to the public. New Riff released its first bottles of bourbon to the public in September. The closest bourbon distillery to Cincinnati, New Riff offers three different tours to taste this new product. At one point, participants can dip their fingers into a fermenter to taste whiskey mash. You can see every part of the process. We were built with tourism in mind. Inside, the Lab grants behind-the-scenes access that ends with a more thorough tasting session.

    To find out where you can see bourbon barrels being made, go to visitlebanonky. Cities to Visit in Learn more at GoToLouisville. And at the Kentucky Artisan Center,. Before buying local artwork, visitors can interact with artists during their creative processes at the Kentucky Artisan Center.

    Every Saturday, the center hosts demonstrations by Kentucky artisans so guests can interact with them. It aims to educate visitors about its featured artisans and the processes they used. While travelers browse through crafted glass, ceramics, metal sculptures, woodworks, jewelry, specialty foods and books, they learn about the artists from informational displays and knowledgeable staff.

    Groups can also schedule food tastings, book signings and musical performances. There are some real one-of-a-kind pieces of art as well as things that can be reproduced like photographs. We feature the whole range of creative work. Groups can schedule gallery talks to learn more about the chosen works. Directly off Interstate 75, the shop works well for groups seeking either a quick break or a longer educational experience.

    Stay In Clay County Kentucky...

    Workshops that teach a specific artform can allow visitors to learn enviable skills such as basket weaving. To change that, they opened the Kentucky Bourbon Marketplace. Though the shop recently sold to David Erickson and Stephen Vittitow, guests can still receive an education on bourbon before shopping and sipping. The site can set up demonstrations with master distillers to talk about this history of bourbon-making. The bar offers brands of bourbon and several original cocktails.

    At the boutique shop, groups can hunt for bourbon-themed apparel, gourmet foods, cakes, barrelheads, jewelry and accessories. On a typical visit to the acre living-history museum, groups can smell bread baking in a wood-burning stove, listen to baby goats bleating and watch chickens roaming free.

    Draft horses loosen soil and pull wagons to give rides. Re-enactors in period attire demonstrate skills once commonplace, such as quilting and forging horseshoes. During tours, guides share details about day-to-day existence in Appalachia. For a more comprehensive explanation of the history, guests can wander through the Museum of Appalachian History. The attached gift shop sells regional arts and crafts. Travelers get to tap into their own creativity to create personalized quilts at the National Quilt Museum. The Museum Experience program lets guests experiment with precut fabrics in a variety of colors.