08 Oct Plan a Family Reunion
Plan a Family Reunion in Shelby County
With miles of fenced pastureland, a naturally gorgeous park system, Kentucky’s only designer outlet mall, plenty of local dining options and lodging with lots of elbow room, Shelby County makes a great destination for family reunions. It’s affordable and accessible and offers an array of activities so all members of the family can find something to suit their interests – all against the scenic backdrop of the American Saddlebred Capital of the World.
All for fun and fun for all
Find shelters and pavilions for groups of all sizes and equipped with amenities such as grills, picnic tables, playgrounds, restroom facilities and, in some cases, water and electricity. Located at various Shelby County parks, these facilities range from covered shelters to a historic home that puts reunion members within range of an indoor swimming pool and 9-hole executive golf course to the roomy Red Orchard Barn. Find a list of facilities and rental agreements here.
Each park has its own charms: Clear Creek is home to an outdoor swimming pool with water slide and Lake Shelby with fishing and boating; Shelby Trails Park offers horseback riding lessons and guided trail rides; Red Orchard Park, ablaze with color during fall, is where the Miller Outdoor Education Center with wildlife exhibits is located; and tiny Finchville Park has a walking trail, athletic playing field, and small pond.
The shoppers of the group will enjoy an outing to the Outlet Shoppes of the Bluegrass. Home to about 100 choice designer stores, including Tory Burch, Michael Kors, Fossil, Justice, Gymboree and so many others, this beautifully designed shopper’s paradise also has eateries for grabbing lunch or a snack.
Moonshine, anyone? Tour and taste at Jeptha Creed, the Shelbyville distillery known for using heirloom Bloody Butcher Corn to create the authentic flavors that characterize its moonshine, vodka and bourbon. You’ll get a behind-the-scenes look at the Jeptha Creed process and a hands-on experience in seeing, smelling and touching the corn as well as in tasting the spirits.
Prefer seeing horses in action? Head to Simpsonville’s Kismet Farm for a tour of an American Saddlebred horse farm and learn what these graceful equine show athletes are all about. Riding lessons are also available for all ages and abilities.
Kids can create a souvenir at GoghCrazy Art Studio. Sign them up for a class or book a private party and choose an art project: canvas painting, wooden project, wreath, Pinterest craft, weaving, clay or another. Everything needed to create a souvenir masterpiece is supplied, including aprons.
Good food and fellowship
Spend your reunion time catching up and getting reacquainted with your family – not stuck in the kitchen. Rent a food truck to serve a meal at your lodgings or while gathered for the day at one of Shelby County’s parks.
Dig into Southern-style barbecue with Will’s Grill food truck: pulled pork, fire-roasted chicken, ribs and sides including mac ‘n cheese, green beans, chips and coleslaw – even French fries and fried green tomatoes. D.T. Barbeque is another good food truck choice for lovers of barbecue and all the fixins’.
For a sit-down dining experience that you can get only in Shelby County, the historic Bell House Restaurant serves fine dining with “southern hospitality.”
Families that stay together, play together
Rustic and rural, Walnut Grove Farm & Lodge is made for small family reunions, with four bedrooms, two bathrooms, dining room, living room, kitchen and loft, plus a ground floor rec room with bar and pool table plus additional kitchen and bathroom and a laundry room.
Chandler Ridge can accommodate up to 25 guests at this large cabin located on a scenic creek bank. Amenities include a fully equipped kitchen, three full bathrooms, book and video library and rec room with air hockey, foosball, pool and poker table.