A world-renowned racecourse commemorating Henry Churchill, the Churchill Downs is the holy grail for aficionados of horse racing. Spread across more than 140 acres (56 hectares), the track rekindled Louisville's hope for horse racing after two of the city's favorite venues were shut down. Since its inception in 1875, the Kentucky Derby has prospered on this track garnering many raves from jockeys and equestrian sports lovers from across the globe. Featuring more than 70 luxury suites, the interior of the site is decorated with murals of Kentucky Derby winners thus celebrating the augustness and exclusivity of the sport. A museum, stables and a clubhouse are also a part of the Thoroughbred racetrack's extensive layout.
Home to the Louisville Bats (the Cincinnati Reds AAA minor league affiliate), Louisville Slugger Field was built in 2000 and has a capacity of over 13,000. This retro-classic venue houses 32 private suites, children's play areas as well as the team and administrative offices. The groundskeepers conduct field tours during the Louisville Bats season, and the diamond is also occasionally rented out for wedding receptions, proms, dances, trade shows, rehearsal dinners, private holiday parties and fund raisers.
Since it was established in 1964, the Actors Theatre of Louisville has received numerous accolades and awards as an outstanding non-profit resident theater. The stage hosts performances throughout the year and in addition to these creative theatrics, the troupes offer apprentice and internships programs, workshops and tours to the general public. The productions range from lighthearted themes and subjects to more avant-garde and political ones. Productions here definitely offer something for everyone.
Built for an estimated $238 million dollars, the KFC Yum! Center is one of the most expensive properties in the entire state. It's a multi-purpose venue that primarily hosts University of Louisville athletics such as men and women's basketball, but it consistently holds other comedy, performance art, dance, drama, etc. The arena holds more than 20,000 spectators and it's a great spot to catch a show, whether it's hoops, music or anything in-between.
This theater, officially known as the W.L. Lyons Brown Theater, is adjacent to the Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts and it's one of the last "Grand Dames" of yesteryear in the downtown Louisville vaudeville district. It holds at least 1,400 patrons comfortably and the shows vary from Disney productions to comedy and holiday specials. In addition to the Louisville Palace Theatre, the Brown is an architectural marvel with its ornate details inside and outside, something hardly seen in theaters constructed today.
Renaissance Fun Park is the spot to go for hi-octane entertainment. It's comprised of three main attractions: the go-karts, laser tag center and mini-golf. The center is spread over four acres (1.6 hectares) and it's a great place to host all kinds of events, from corporate team building parties to other group functions. Needless to say, its a perfect spot to bring the kids on their birthday. The park is located in the suburb of Middletown, about 20 minutes east of downtown Louisville.
This multi-media exhibit features the history of America's 15th state. From its entrance in 1792 to the present-day, native born Ashley Judd narrates the history of this interesting region. KentuckyShow! is the brainchild of Sharon Potter, a Kentucky transplant who became fascinated with the people, customs, cities, towns and everything else here. After some fundraising and years of work, she and her team produced this 30-minute show as an homage to the state. It plays every day at the Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts, just ask the information desk for directions to the screening room.