Sunday, September 14, 2008

Kentucky Roadtrip Part II

When we arrived at the Kentucky Horse Park we began with a horse-drawn tour around the park where we saw the third largest barn in North America. This park has stables to accommodate hundreds and hundreds of horses for horse events throughout the year. But sometimes they need to set up tents because they sometimes have 15,000 horses at this park for some event. Amazing! Have you ever wondered why sometimes the horse pastures have double fences in close proximity? Those double fences are to keep the love minded stallions from running off on a love chase. It is also why stallion pastures don't have right angle corners but round corners. The stallions can hurt themselves running into a tight right corner.
Clip-clop, clip-clop, here we go. Some nice views I'm giving you bloggers today.
This was a sweet statue of three horses leaping over a tree branch.
There were many activities going on at the same time at the horse park.
This was a lady in her carriage getting ready for the carriage parade that we were able to watch later. This was a miniature horse.

When we started our roadtrip on Friday, September 5'th we drove thru wet and wild West Virginia on interstate #64 which has very little traffic in comparison to other major interstates. We spent the night in Morehead, Kentucky east of Lexington. We got an early start Saturday morning because we wanted to be at the Kentucky Horse Park for the 11:00 A.M. Parade of Breeds. From March 15 - October 31, the Parade of Breeds Show is held twice daily at 11:00 A.M. and 2:00 P.M. In this photo is a breed from Whales called I believe a cob horse and the rider is in Welsh dress.
Here is a famous Spanish Andalusian horse sporting lots of silver horse gear while the rider has a Spanish flamenco outfit. Behind them is an American quarter horse with the rider in American western wear.
Here is an American Paint breed with rider in Native American attire. Notice the Native American saddle blanket. Beautiful.
In addition the Parade of Breeds Show features each day other participants. The day Jack and I were in attendance there was a parade of horse carriages and riders.
And guess what? Right in the middle of the Parade of Breeds Show I got up close and personal with a little hummingbird that I found at my feet in the bleacher stands. It couldn't fly. It was ill. I don't know if it hurt its wings or it was dehydrated from lack of nectar. Anyway, I almost stepped on it! So I picked it up and moved it out of the traffic flow and told the horse park authorities to get a horse vet quick for a hummingbird! Everyone near us started taking pictures of the poor thing so we did too. I hope the vet helped save the poor thing. It was the very first time I had ever touched a hummingbird.

I knew when we went to the Kentucky Horse Park that we would see info on the most famous and greatest race horse, Man o' War. The first time I saw this statue was in 1972 and it was on a road outside Lexington on a horse farm. The Kentucky Horse Park was created in 1978 from the old Walnut Hill Thoroughbred Breeding Farm which is where I think I saw the statue of Man o' War. Anyway everyone in the state of Kentucky knows about Man o' War.
Here is the statue of Man o' War in the early Saturday morning mist. He is standing tall and proud.
This is another view of the Man o' War statue area. The white chairs were being set up for a wedding ceremony. Horse lovers like to come here to get married by the Man o' War statue. Interesting, huh?
This was a place to measure your stride against some famous horse's strides. It took my Jack 12 steps to match Man o' War's famous 28 foot stride. Next is John Henry at 25 feet and Secretariat at 23 feet.
This was a memorial to Isaac Burns Murphy who lived in Lexington from 1860 to 1896. I believe he was the first black jockey in Kentucky and he had 628 winning races.

The Kentucky Horse Park, the only place in America where you can experience all the horse breeds of the world in one place. The Kentucky Horse Park is at 4089 Irons Works Parkway in Lexington, Kentucky. All you folks in Ohio need to drive down #75 and visit this very interesting horse place.
Around the entrance gates to the park are many beautiful horse statues. Here you can see statues of some foals romping. Jack told me that when he was romping around on his Missouri farm that he had a five-gaited horse named Pet. Jack could make Pet do a walk, trot, rack, cantor and gallop. Jack said he always liked the rack the best because it was the smoothest ride. Jack said his folks had bought the horse at an auction and were unaware that it was a former show horse until their neighbor one day exclaimed "Oh, there is that show horse, Cherie'!"
At the cross way of the entrance path are statues of two very famous horses, Man o' War and Secretariat. In this photo you see Secretariat, the last triple crown winner.
Here is another view of the same statue: Secretariat, jockey and stableman.
These statues are life size so are really realistic and powerful. Look how the artist has portrayed the horses muscles and look how the stableman is trying to control the horse. Very lifelike.
The thoroughbred strides. This plaque explains that winning horses have gigantic strides or a large heart. Secretariat's stride was substantial but Man of War's was the longest at 28 feet. And John Henry had a very, very large heart. Now take a long stride down to the next photo.

This statue of the horse and rider jumping a hurdle near the creek was so realistic that I had to look twice to see if it was a statue or a real horse and rider.
There are two large museums at the Kentucky Horse Park. Here is the entrance lobby to the American Saddlebred Museum. The other large museum is the International Museum of the Horse.
This is the show ring next door to the Hall of Champions Barn where you can get up and personal with former winning racing horses and see many breeds of horses from around the world.
Whew, I'm finally finished writing this blog post. I think this is the longest blog post with the most photos that I have ever done. Hope I didn't bore you but hope you enjoyed your virtual tour of the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky. It definitely is worth a drive to go visit this horse park.
Now I need to go grab a cup of coffee. See ya tomorrow for more info on Kentucky and the NARFE Convention that we attended at the Galt House in Louisville.


DragonQuilter said...

What beautiful pictures! I almost feel like I got to go too. Though would have probably liked it more if I had been there in person. Thanks!

The Texican said...

That's quite an impressive collection of horse flesh and the such like. Good to have you drop by this morning. Cranky Pants

fishing guy said...

Joann: What great photos from the home of the great race, nicely done.