Armchair Field Trip: Louisville, Kentucky


We're back from the Idea Festival, and all week long we'll be telling you about some of the cool people we met and things we learned. Let's start with some trivia about the lovely location of Louisville, the home of both the Festival and the Kentucky Derby. Turns out it's also the home of:

  • Diane Sawyer, D. W. Griffith, and Kentucky Fried Chicken. (One of these gets considerably less play from the Louisville Chamber of Commerce than the others.)
  • The Oaks, a race that takes place the day before the Kentucky Derby and only includes female horses, who usually don't run in the Derby.
  • the Louisville Slugger, but only sort of. The famous bat, which has been around since the late 1800s, was actually manufactured across the river in Indiana starting in 1974. Production didn't move back to Louisville until the 1990s. There's an absurdly comprehensive history here.

Finally, according to the city boosters, it's okay to call it "Looavul," "Luhvul," "Loueville," "Looaville," or even "Looeyville," so long as you don't pronounce the "s."