Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Something for the Whole Family in Frankfort, Kentucky

Historic buildings line downtown Frankfort, Kentucky.

**Disclosure: No compensation was received for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.

Chocolate. Shopping. Bourbon. History. You can find it all in Frankfort, Kentucky! Whenever we are in the area, a stop is a must. So, on our way back to Chicago from North Carolina we had to make a visit! The capital of Kentucky welcomes us with a pleasant downtown, a touch of colonial history and famous Kentucky bourbon!


Rebecca Ruth Candy is a Kentucky staple.

One of our top stops in Frankfort is the Rebecca Ruth Chocolate Factory. Rebecca Ruth was started in 1919 by two substitute teachers better known for their confections than their teaching ability! Of course, their candy was an instant success! Rebecca Ruth Candy is still thriving nearly 100 years later. We have been visiting Rebecca Ruth during our Kentucky adventures over the past 5 years and have seen it grow during that time and even expand to include an additional building!

Rebecca Ruth Candy invented Kentucky's famous bourbon balls!
Rebecca Ruth has expanded into the adjoining building!

Tempting bourbon balls made at Rebecca Ruth in Frankfurt, Kentucky.
Bringing a taste of Kentucky home!

Since founder Ruth Booe invented the bourbon ball, tasting a bourbon ball is a must. However, there are many other confections to savor. If you visit, be sure to give this real piece of Kentucky history a try and even see production on a tour! That's right, Rebecca Ruth offers tours Monday-Saturday 10AM-12PM and 1PM-5PM! A sweet experience for young and old! One of our first candy factory tours was at Rebecca Ruth and we learned a lot! Tours are $4 per person and free for those 5 and under.

Downtown Frankfort, KY
Time to shop downtown!
We also enjoy strolling through the downtown area of Frankfort for a bit including a stop at Completely Kentucky. Completely Kentucky purveys a marvelous cache of products made in Kentucky. An impressive range of artisans creating such wonders including pottery, jewelry, framed art, glass, candles, bath products, woodwork and more. I have to say that this is one of my favorite stores in the country! Everything locally made and a piece of one of my favorite places to visit! (Yes, we buy something on every visit--how could you tell?)

Liberty Hall in Frankfort, KY is a national landmark.

Frankfort was initially established in 1786, so you can imagine it has seen its share of history! Just driving around and seeing some of the buildings can be a treat. On this visit, we toured Liberty Hall which was the home of John Brown (not that John Brown) who was an early Kentucky statesman and Senator. Brown had the home built beginning in 1796 with the family moving in in 1801. There is a tremendous amount of history in the home including the stories of the Brown family and the impressive roster of guests that visited! The tour of the home was very thorough and we enjoyed learning about the Brown family. I was really impressed by how beautiful this house was since it was built on what would have been the frontier at the time!

Liberty Hall in Frankforty, Kentucky was built in 1796 and home to John Brown.

The garden on the grounds is pretty impressive but do spray with bug spray before exploring. You can even spend time exploring the gardens without visiting the home. Bring your camera--it is beautiful and we saw some photographers snapping pics while we were there. The neighboring house is the Orlando Brown House which was built for John's son. The historical complex has many events throughout the year, so check those out. Tours are given Monday-Saturday starting at 1:30PM. Admission fees apply.

Buffalo Trace in Frankfort, Kentucky has been distilling since the late 1700's.

Our trips to Kentucky are never complete without picking up some bourbon. Our favorite distillery is Buffalo Trace in Frankfort which is actually one of the oldest continuously running distilleries in the USA. In fact, distilling began on the site as early as 1773 and was allowed to continue during Prohibition to make whiskey for medicinal purposes. You can take a tour of the distillery, sample in the tasting room and browse the sizable gift shop. For me, I really love to look at the buildings. They have so much character and are fun to photograph. There are various tours available and all are complimentary, so check them out!

Nothing says Kentucky like bourbon and a visit to Buffalo Trace Distillery!

As you can see, there is quite a bit to do in Frankfort! The town is a bit more low key, which we really enjoy. We still have more to uncover in Frankfort, so I am sure that I will be writing about it again!


StumbleUpon

2 comments:

  1. Enjoyed your trip to Ky always wanted to go there so now maybe I will stop by Frankfort We are having our Christmas Open House on Nov 1 2014 come down if you have time.
    Take care

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ann, you would love to visit Frankfort! I think it is up your alley--especially the Completely Kentucky store! I think we may be swinging your way some time in the late spring or summer. Not 100% sure yet but I will let you know. We really feel like everyone we met when we visited are like friends and would love to come back!

      Delete