When nonresidents think of Louisville, images of the Derby typically emerge. The stylish hats adorning the heads of lovely ladies…the well-dressed gentlemen…the thrill of competition. Indeed, the Kentucky Derby Festival, which begins with the Thunder Over Louisville (a kind of opening ceremony on a grand scale), includes approximately 70 official events! There are parties galore! Everything culminates with the most famous horse race in the world. But honestly, Louisville is more than just the Derby!
When it comes to the Derby, they don’t call it the “biggest party in the south” for nothing. However, there is so much more to this vibrant city situated on the picturesque banks of the Ohio River. Louisville truly is a wonderful place to live, work, and play.
Family Life in Louisville
Despite the fact that residents know how to have a good time, Louisville is actually a very family-oriented city and a great place to raise children. It’s an extremely safe city, with violent crime rates much lower than communities with comparable demographics. That’s just one of the reasons Parenting Magazine ranked Louisville as one of the top 10 best cities for families.
Check out these family-friendly activities:
- First, we have the Louisville Zoo, featuring a huge display of wildlife, a water park, and other fun activities.
- Next up, is the Louisville Science Center where kids can learn while having fun.
- Louisville also hosts the Bluegrass Balloon Festival, one of the largest balloon festivals in the world.
It’s also known as the “City of Parks” which means there’s a place to play around every corner! Parents will also rest easy knowing that Louisville has low pedestrian accident rates, quick-fire response times, and great, affordable healthcare.
There are many events scheduled all over the calendar. Some of the best come from regular people with a great idea. Maybe you’re thinking about putting on a show and need to rent an LED screen in Louisville, I say, “Go for it!”
Louisville’s Cultural Identity
Although generally regarded as a family-oriented community, Louisville is also a vibrant city with much to offer those who haven’t settled into parenthood just yet. While the party scene is focused on the Derby for a few weeks out of the year, for the other 50 weeks of the year the city remains a lively place and home to a variety of popular restaurants and bars.
While some might insist that Louisville has somewhat of a cultural identity crisis, with it being situated just across the Ohio River from Indiana and having so much influence from mid-westerners and Southerners, those in the know realize that this just makes Louisville even more special.
The city boasts a unique blend of mid-western and southern culture, which is reflected in everything from the food to the arts. Indeed, foodies around the country have increasingly started giving Louisville chefs the praise they deserve. Critics are now calling Louisville one of the most important culinary destinations in the United States.
Theater buffs enjoy performances at various venues, including the Kentucky Performing Arts Center in downtown Louisville. For those with particularly sophisticated taste, the Kentucky Opera remains one of the oldest opera houses in the country.
In addition, sports lovers can enjoy a game virtually any time of year, as Louisville has five professional and semi-professional athletic teams. The culture of Louisville is also enriched by the presence of several colleges and universities, most notably the University of Louisville.
With so many areas of the country experiencing uncomfortable extreme weather conditions throughout much of the year, Louisville is one of those rare cities that boasts four distinct seasons.
We have warm summers that enable folks to enjoy the outdoors, but it’s also not uncommon to see snow every now and then in the winter. For anyone who enjoys climactic variety, Louisville is the city for you.
Louisville residents also enjoy a healthy economic climate. Statistics suggest that the economy in Louisville is stronger than many other major metropolitan areas that were hard hit by the housing recession. And that’s nowhere more apparent than in the local housing market. While foreclosure rates have skyrocketed nationwide, only about 1% of homes in Louisville are in foreclosure, which is about half the national average.
The cost of living here is also competitive with similarly situated cities across the United States. Louisville has also been singled out as a great place to start a business by various national publications.