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    How long have you been a Louisvillian? I'm working on 26 years and going. Some people I know have lived here all their life. Some people just moved here a month ago. Wherever you are on the Love Louisville spectrum, you have things you want to check off of your To Do in Louisville Bucket List. Here are some items I would include on that list. I've got a decade or more years to go before I could ever check each one of these off my list. Where are you on this list? And what would you include? When "googling" Louisville, Kentucky, Wikipedia describes its firsts: "Important events occurring in the city have included the first large space lighted by Edison's light bulb which occurred during the Southern Exposition. (At the time, in 1883, the largest such installation to date.) Also, Louisville had the first library open to African Americans in the South, and medical advances including the first human hand transplant and the first self-contained artificial heart transplant." Of course we all know that we have varying ways of pronouncing our beloved city's name, Louisville.

    You can find most of these items with a Facebook search, or go to the site for links to their websites. These are in no particular order (just because it's more fun that way.)

    Acquire a new taste for Louisville on a City Taste Tours of Louisville.
    Answer some Derby trivia questions at Kentucky Derby Museum.
    Capture your sense of adventure at Holiday World and Splashin' Safari.
    Connect with your artsy side at Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft.

    Be mesmerized at a show at The Louisville Palace.
    Cultivate your inner artist at St. James Court Art Show.
    Visit J.B. Speed Art Museum (reopening March 12, 2016 and will be open for 30 straight hours!).
    Customize your own tours of the distinct distilleries around the area - see these links to all the Bourbon news on
    Discover all there is to see at Huber's Orchard and Winery in Starlight, Indiana.
    Entertain your family for hours at Gallrein Farms in Shelbyville.
    Fast forward through all kinds of action at Kentucky Kingdom (in its second year of operation this summer.)
    Immerse yourself in new food and drink pairings along a Louisville Food Tour in NuLu.
    Investigate Fourth Street Live!
    Rediscover why you love being a Louisville native, or how quickly you will if you're a newbie at KentuckyShow!
    Learn about all that happened at Louisville Memorial Auditorium during its hayday.
    Dine and Deduce the culprit at a Dinner Detective Interactive Murder Mystery Show.
    Ride The Thirsty Pedaler.
    Plan to do a very unique event with Yelp Louisville.
    Walk around University of Louisville's beautiful campus.
    Respond to learning about a new culture at the Asia Institute-Crane House.
    Start a new tradition of visits to the Carnegie Center for Art & History.
    Go to a Poetry Slam - some venues that host them are KMAC, Louisville Coffee Company (hosts open mic nights), McQuixote Books in Portland, and Sweet Peaches in the Russell Neighborhood.
    Explore the Edenside Gallery.
    Tackle a spirit with the Louisville Ghost Tours and Ghost Walks.
    Engage your dangerous side on Danger Run.
    Transport back in time at the Old Louisville Visitor Center-Historic Walking Tours.
    Travel through time on a Walking Tour out of Louisville Visitor's Center downtown.
    Uncover fire and safely history and education at the Vintage Fire Museum in Jeffersonville.
    View the surroundings through breathtaking hikes through Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest.
    Withdraw to nature at Jefferson Memorial Forest.
    Play at The Parklands of Floyds Fork.
    Wonder and wander through Waterfront Park.

    Use the Ohio River Greenway as an escape. It sits along the Clarksville/Jeffersonville side of the Ohio River; go on foot or rent a bike from Widow's Walk Ice Creamery.
    Take snapshots of the bridge construction over the Ohio River.
    Troubleshoot your footing on a Louisville Segway Tour.
    Bask in the good old days of summer at a Louisville Bats baseball game.
    Schedule some free family time at a UofL baseball game.
    Take value in being a lifelong learner at so many free opportunities through the Louisville Free Public Library.

    Get in on the action at a UofL men's and women's basketball game at KFC Yum Center.
    Search out new paths around the waterfront with a bike rental from Wheel Fun Rentals.
    Raise your arms down a waterslide at Atlantis Water Park.
    Sample baked goods and pastries from the culinary arts students at Sullivan University.
    Slather on the sunscreen at Hurricane Bay.
    Get out of your comfort zone on a Mint Julep Tour.
    Reminisce back to days of Louisville's founding at Historic Locust Grove.
    Frolic through history at Frazier History Museum.
    Listen to the history of steamboats around the country and our own beloved Belle of Louisville at Howard Steamboat Museum and Mansion.
    Inspire yourself at Little Loomhouse.
    Perplex yourself at Louisville Mega Cavern and experience all it has to offer, in particular the zip lines.
    Attend Oaks or Derby at least once in your life.
    Sample the night racing experience at Churchill Downs.
    Guide yourself through Louisville Water Tower and Park.
    Drum out your own musical beat at Kentucky Reggae Festival+all the festivals throughout the year in Louisville. They are all worth a shot at some point.
    Take a swim at one of the quarries.
    Kentucky State Fair: Just do it, enough said.

    Encourage yourself and others to experience our performing arts in Louisville-we are extremely proud of all we have to offer here.
    Appreciate the sounds of a Louisville Leopard Percussionists show some time soon.
    Focus on the natural beauty at Yew Dell Gardens.

    I also posed this question on my Facebook page and got some varying answers from folks I know. One said (about venturing further out from Louisville), "I would love to go to all the state parks, I would love to explore Mammoth Cave, and I would also love to do a houseboat on Cumberland Lake!"

    Another friend said she'd love to check out some of the restaurants downtown. Just peruse this website for very long and you'll see our love of eateries in this town.
    One other friend said she'd love to "spend all day browsing and eating in the Highlands instead of just driving through to get to one part/destination." A definite.

    One other friend said "Drive around Cave Hill Cemetery (have done) and visit American Printing House for the Blind (haven't done yet.). Go to Conrad-Caldwell House and walk around St. James court."

    Final thoughts from a Library friend and former coworker of mine, who I deem a Louisville Things to Do Connoisseur! She came up with her own itinerary when I asked: What would you say to someone who is new to Louisville? The HAVE TO DO things in the city? Of course experience Oaks or Derby at least once. What else? "I would like to take The Louisville Rowing Club's sculling class and go out rowing with them at dawn on the Ohio when the mist is just coming off the water. I have put this list together many times: Dawn at Downs but go early enough you hear their thundering hooves before you can see them. Morning workouts at Churchill Downs are breathtaking. Eat breakfast at Wagner's by the track then go to Derby Museum. Walk across Big Four bridge, eat on Indiana side. Walk our waterfront from Galt House through the locks. Seeing a barge go through the locks is cool. Bike or kayak Parklands. Take picnic lunch and explore basin at Falls of the Ohio fossil beds. Walk Cherokee Park loop. Walk all of NuLu: Ditto Bardstown Rd. Visit the Reservoir and the Rauch Planetarium. Definitely walk around lake and sculpture garden at Bernheim. Ditto Yew Dell Gardens. Get a hot brown at the Brown and go on tour of the Palace and visit Seelbach Rathskeller. Ditto 21C. Visit our zoo. And schedule a bourbon tour. Take a ride on Belle of Louisville. Have lunch on patio at Captains Quarters in summer. Go to our comedy club. And while it is not our city, a visit to KY Horse Park is essential. And definite tour of beloved Cave Hill. You'll get an understanding of why Frederick Law Olmstead is so important to our beautiful city."

    There you have it. Go explore. Feel free to let us know what you would include. Leave a comment or tweet us @louisvillecom or @loustorygal

    Photos courtesy of Visit Louisville, Facebook page

    Erin Nevitt's picture

    About Erin Nevitt

    Longtime Louisvillian, I am a children's librarian at heart and have a passion for children's lit. I am most recently a stay-at-home mom who is always on the move, searching for family fun in Louisville. If it's free, it's preferable!

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