Lexington, Kentucky

Lexington, Kentucky

Overview
Lexington is the second-largest city in Kentucky
Kentucky
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. As classified by the United States Census Bureau, Kentucky is a Southern state, more specifically in the East South Central region. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth...

 and the 63rd largest in the US. Known as the "Thoroughbred City" and the "Horse Capital of the World", it is located in the heart of Kentucky's Bluegrass region
Bluegrass region
The Bluegrass Region is a geographic region in the state of Kentucky, United States. It occupies the northern part of the state and since European settlement has contained a majority of the state's population and its largest cities....

. In the 2010 Census the city's population was 295,803, anchoring a metropolitan area
Lexington-Fayette, KY Metropolitan Statistical Area
The Lexington-Fayette, KY Metropolitan Statistical Area is the 106th largest Metropolitan Statistical Area in the United States. It was originally formed by the United States Census Bureau in 1950 and consisted solely of Fayette County until 1980 when surrounding counties saw increases in their...

 of 472,099 people and a Combined Statistical Area
Lexington-Fayette-Frankfort-Richmond, KY Combined Statistical Area
The Lexington-Fayette-Frankfort-Richmond, KY Combined Statistical Area, created by the United States Bureau of the Census in 2000, is the 76th largest Combined Statistical Area of the United States...

 of 687,173 people.

Lexington ranks tenth among US cities in college education rate, with 39.5% of residents having at least a bachelor's degree.
Discussion
Ask a question about 'Lexington, Kentucky'
Start a new discussion about 'Lexington, Kentucky'
Answer questions from other users
Full Discussion Forum
 
Unanswered Questions
Encyclopedia
Lexington is the second-largest city in Kentucky
Kentucky
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. As classified by the United States Census Bureau, Kentucky is a Southern state, more specifically in the East South Central region. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth...

 and the 63rd largest in the US. Known as the "Thoroughbred City" and the "Horse Capital of the World", it is located in the heart of Kentucky's Bluegrass region
Bluegrass region
The Bluegrass Region is a geographic region in the state of Kentucky, United States. It occupies the northern part of the state and since European settlement has contained a majority of the state's population and its largest cities....

. In the 2010 Census the city's population was 295,803, anchoring a metropolitan area
Lexington-Fayette, KY Metropolitan Statistical Area
The Lexington-Fayette, KY Metropolitan Statistical Area is the 106th largest Metropolitan Statistical Area in the United States. It was originally formed by the United States Census Bureau in 1950 and consisted solely of Fayette County until 1980 when surrounding counties saw increases in their...

 of 472,099 people and a Combined Statistical Area
Lexington-Fayette-Frankfort-Richmond, KY Combined Statistical Area
The Lexington-Fayette-Frankfort-Richmond, KY Combined Statistical Area, created by the United States Bureau of the Census in 2000, is the 76th largest Combined Statistical Area of the United States...

 of 687,173 people.

Lexington ranks tenth among US cities in college education rate, with 39.5% of residents having at least a bachelor's degree. It is home to the headquarters of Tempur-Pedic, International
Tempur-Pedic
Tempur-Pedic International, Inc. is a manufacturer and distributor of mattresses and pillows made from viscoelastic memory foam. The company's headquarters is located in Lexington, Kentucky.- History :...

, Lexmark International
Lexmark
Lexmark International, Inc. is an American corporation which develops and manufactures printing and imaging products, including laser and inkjet printers, multifunction products, printing supplies, and services for business and individual consumers...

, the Kentucky Horse Park
Kentucky Horse Park
Kentucky Horse Park is a working horse farm and an educational theme park opened in 1978 in Lexington, Kentucky. It is located off Kentucky State Highway 1973 and Interstate 75 in northern Fayette County in the United States...

, Keeneland
Keeneland
Keeneland is a Thoroughbred horse racing facility and sales complex in Lexington, Kentucky, USA. Operated by the Keeneland Association, Inc., it is also known for its reference library on the sport, which contains more than 10,000 volumes, an extensive videocassette collection, and a substantial...

 race course, Red Mile race course
The Red Mile (track)
The Red Mile is a horse racing track located in Lexington, KY. The track hosts harness racing, a type of horse racing in which the horses must pull two-wheeled carts called sulkies while racing...

, Transylvania University
Transylvania University
Transylvania University is a private, undergraduate liberal arts college in Lexington, Kentucky, United States, affiliated with the Christian Church . The school was founded in 1780. It offers 38 majors, and pre-professional degrees in engineering and accounting...

, the University of Kentucky
University of Kentucky
The University of Kentucky, also known as UK, is a public co-educational university and is one of the state's two land-grant universities, located in Lexington, Kentucky...

 and Bluegrass Community & Technical College.

Lexington was selected as the site of the 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games
2010 FEI World Equestrian Games
The 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games were held at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky from September 25 to October 10, 2010. This was the sixth edition of the games, which are held every four years and run by the International Federation for Equestrian Sports...

.

History


Lexington was founded in June 1775 in what was then Virginia (17 years before Kentucky
Kentucky
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. As classified by the United States Census Bureau, Kentucky is a Southern state, more specifically in the East South Central region. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth...

 became a state in 1792). A party of frontiersmen, led by William McConnell, camped on the Middle Fork of Elkhorn Creek
Elkhorn Creek
Elkhorn Creek is an stream running through several counties in central Kentucky in the United States. It derives its name from the shape, as seen on a map, of its main stem with its two primary forks....

 (today called Town Branch and rerouted under Vine Street) at the location known today as McConnell Springs
McConnell Springs (springs)
McConnell Springs is a hydrologic springs system located in northwest Lexington, Kentucky....

. Upon hearing of the colonists' victory in the Battles of Lexington and Concord
Battles of Lexington and Concord
The Battles of Lexington and Concord were the first military engagements of the American Revolutionary War. They were fought on April 19, 1775, in Middlesex County, Province of Massachusetts Bay, within the towns of Lexington, Concord, Lincoln, Menotomy , and Cambridge, near Boston...

, on April 19, 1775, they named their campsite Lexington after Lexington, Massachusetts
Lexington, Massachusetts
Lexington is a town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 31,399 at the 2010 census. This town is famous for being the site of the first shot of the American Revolution, in the Battle of Lexington on April 19, 1775.- History :...

. Due to the danger of Indian attacks, permanent settlement was delayed for four years. In 1779, Colonel Robert Patterson and 25 companions came from Fort Harrod and erected a blockhouse
Blockhouse
In military science, a blockhouse is a small, isolated fort in the form of a single building. It serves as a defensive strong point against any enemy that does not possess siege equipment or, in modern times, artillery...

. Cabins and a stockade were soon built, making the fort, known as Bryan Station
Bryan Station
Bryan Station was an early fortified settlement in Lexington, Kentucky...

, a place of importance. Colonists defended it against a British and American Indian attack in 1782, during the last part of the American Revolution
American Revolution
The American Revolution was the political upheaval during the last half of the 18th century in which thirteen colonies in North America joined together to break free from the British Empire, combining to become the United States of America...

.

The town of Lexington was established on May 6, 1782, by an act of the Virginia General Assembly
Virginia General Assembly
The Virginia General Assembly is the legislative body of the Commonwealth of Virginia, and the oldest legislative body in the Western Hemisphere, established on July 30, 1619. The General Assembly is a bicameral body consisting of a lower house, the Virginia House of Delegates, with 100 members,...

. The First African Baptist Church
First African Baptist Church (Lexington, Kentucky)
First African Baptist Church is a historic church at 264-272 E. Short Street in Lexington, Kentucky. The congregation was founded c. 1790 by Peter Durrett and his wife, slaves who came to Kentucky with their master, Rev...

 was founded c. 1790 by Peter Durrett
Peter Durrett
Peter Durrett was a Baptist preacher and slave, who with his wife founded the First African Baptist Church of Lexington, Kentucky by 1790. By his death, the congregation reached nearly 300 persons...

, a Baptist preacher and slave held by Rev. Joseph Craig. Durrett helped guide "The Traveling Church", a group migration of several hundred pioneers led by the preacher Lewis Craig
Lewis Craig
Sir Lewis Craig, Lord Wrightslands , was a Scottish judge.Craig was the eldest son of Sir Thomas Craig of Riccarton, by Helen, daughter of Heriot of Traboun. He was educated at Edinburgh University, where he graduated M.A. in 1597...

 and Captain William Ellis from Virginia to Kentucky in 1781. It is the oldest black Baptist congregation in Kentucky and the third oldest in the United States.

By 1820, Lexington was one of the largest and wealthiest towns west of the Allegheny Mountains
Allegheny Mountains
The Allegheny Mountain Range , also spelled Alleghany, Allegany and, informally, the Alleghenies, is part of the vast Appalachian Mountain Range of the eastern United States and Canada...

. So cultured was its lifestyle that the city gained the nickname "Athens of the West". One early prominent citizen, John Wesley Hunt
John Wesley Hunt
John Wesley Hunt was a prominent businessman and early civic leader in Lexington, Kentucky. He was one of the first millionaires west of the Allegheny Mountains....

, became the first millionaire west of the Alleghenies. The growing town was devastated by a cholera
Cholera
Cholera is an infection of the small intestine that is caused by the bacterium Vibrio cholerae. The main symptoms are profuse watery diarrhea and vomiting. Transmission occurs primarily by drinking or eating water or food that has been contaminated by the diarrhea of an infected person or the feces...

 epidemic in 1833: 500 of 7,000 residents died within two months, including nearly one-third of the congregation of Christ Church Episcopal
Christ Church Episcopal (Lexington Kentucky)
Christ Church Episcopal is a historic church at Church and Market Streets in Lexington, Kentucky.It was built in 1845 and added to the National Register in 1976.-External links:*...

. London Ferrill
London Ferrill
London Ferrill, also spelled Ferrell, was a former slave who became the second preacher of the First African Baptist Church in Lexington, Kentucky, serving from 1823–1854. During his 31 years of service, Ferrill attracted and baptized many new members in the growing region; by 1850 the church had...

, second preacher of First African Baptist, was one of three clergy who stayed in the city to serve the suffering. Additional cholera outbreaks occurred in 1848–49 and the early 1850s. Cholera was spread by people using contaminated water supplies, but its transmission was not understood in those years. Often the wealthier people would flee town for outlying areas to try to avoid the spread of disease.


Planters held slaves for use as field hands, laborers, artisans, and domestic servants. In the city, slaves worked primarily as domestic servants and artisans, although they also worked with merchants, shippers, and in a wide variety of trades. In 1850, one-fifth of the state's population were slaves, and Lexington had the highest concentration of slaves in the state. It also had a population of free blacks. By 1850, First African Baptist Church, led by London Ferrill
London Ferrill
London Ferrill, also spelled Ferrell, was a former slave who became the second preacher of the First African Baptist Church in Lexington, Kentucky, serving from 1823–1854. During his 31 years of service, Ferrill attracted and baptized many new members in the growing region; by 1850 the church had...

, a free black, had a congregation of 1820, the largest of any, black or white, in the state.

Many of 19th-century America's most important people spent part of their lives in the city, including U.S. President Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the United States, serving from March 1861 until his assassination in April 1865. He successfully led his country through a great constitutional, military and moral crisis – the American Civil War – preserving the Union, while ending slavery, and...

 and Confederate President
President of the Confederate States of America
The President of the Confederate States of America was the Head of State and Head of Government of the Confederate States of America, which was formed from the states which declared their secession from the United States, thus precipitating the American Civil War. The only person to hold the...

 Jefferson Davis
Jefferson Davis
Jefferson Finis Davis , also known as Jeff Davis, was an American statesman and leader of the Confederacy during the American Civil War, serving as President for its entire history. He was born in Kentucky to Samuel and Jane Davis...

 (who attended Transylvania University
Transylvania University
Transylvania University is a private, undergraduate liberal arts college in Lexington, Kentucky, United States, affiliated with the Christian Church . The school was founded in 1780. It offers 38 majors, and pre-professional degrees in engineering and accounting...

 in 1823 and 1824); Confederate general John Hunt Morgan
John Hunt Morgan
John Hunt Morgan was a Confederate general and cavalry officer in the American Civil War.Morgan is best known for Morgan's Raid when, in 1863, he and his men rode over 1,000 miles covering a region from Tennessee, up through Kentucky, into Indiana and on to southern Ohio...

; U.S. Senator
United States Senate
The United States Senate is the upper house of the bicameral legislature of the United States, and together with the United States House of Representatives comprises the United States Congress. The composition and powers of the Senate are established in Article One of the U.S. Constitution. Each...

 and Vice President
Vice President of the United States
The Vice President of the United States is the holder of a public office created by the United States Constitution. The Vice President, together with the President of the United States, is indirectly elected by the people, through the Electoral College, to a four-year term...

 John C. Breckinridge
John C. Breckinridge
John Cabell Breckinridge was an American lawyer and politician. He served as a U.S. Representative and U.S. Senator from Kentucky and was the 14th Vice President of the United States , to date the youngest vice president in U.S...

; and Speaker of the House
Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
The Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, or Speaker of the House, is the presiding officer of the United States House of Representatives...

, U.S. Senator, and Secretary of State
United States Secretary of State
The United States Secretary of State is the head of the United States Department of State, concerned with foreign affairs. The Secretary is a member of the Cabinet and the highest-ranking cabinet secretary both in line of succession and order of precedence...

 Henry Clay
Henry Clay
Henry Clay, Sr. , was a lawyer, politician and skilled orator who represented Kentucky separately in both the Senate and in the House of Representatives...

, who had a plantation
Plantation
A plantation is a long artificially established forest, farm or estate, where crops are grown for sale, often in distant markets rather than for local on-site consumption...

 nearby. Lincoln's wife Mary Todd Lincoln
Mary Todd Lincoln
Mary Ann Lincoln was the wife of the 16th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln, and was First Lady of the United States from 1861 to 1865.-Life before the White House:...

 was born and raised in Lexington, and the couple visited the city several times after their marriage in 1842.

In 1935 Lexington founded one of the first drug rehabilitation clinics, known as the "Addiction Research Center". Expanded as the first alcohol and drug rehabilitation hospital in the United States, it was known as "Narco" of Lexington. The hospital was later converted into a federal prison
Federal prison
Federal prisons are run by national governments in countries where subdivisions of the country also operate prisons.In the United States federal prisons are operated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons. In Canada the Correctional Service of Canada operates federal prisons. Prison sentences in these...

.

Geography


Lexington, which includes all Fayette County
Fayette County, Kentucky
Fayette County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. The population was 295,083 in the 2010 Census. Its territory, population and government are coextensive with the city of Lexington, which also serves as county seat....

, consists of 285.5 square miles (739.4 km²), mostly gently rolling plateau, in the center of the inner Bluegrass
Bluegrass region
The Bluegrass Region is a geographic region in the state of Kentucky, United States. It occupies the northern part of the state and since European settlement has contained a majority of the state's population and its largest cities....

 Region. The area is noted for its fertile soil, excellent pastureland, and horse and stock farms. Poa pratensis
Smooth Meadow-grass
Poa pratensis, commonly known as Kentucky Bluegrass, Smooth Meadow-grass, or Common Meadow-grass, is a perennial species of grass native to Europe, Asia, and northern Africa.-General description:...

(bluegrass) thrives on the limestone beneath the soil's surface, playing a major role in the area's scenic beauty and in the development of champion horses. Numerous small creeks rise and flow into the Kentucky River
Kentucky River
The Kentucky River is a tributary of the Ohio River, long, in the U.S. state of Kentucky. The river and its tributaries drain much of the central region of the state, with its upper course passing through the coal-mining regions of the Cumberland Mountains, and its lower course passing through the...

.

The Lexington-Fayette Metro area is home to five counties: Clark
Clark County, Kentucky
Clark County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. It was formed in 1793. The population was 35,613 in the 2010 Census. Its county seat is Winchester, Kentucky...

, Jessamine
Jessamine County, Kentucky
Jessamine County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. It is within the Inner Blue Grass region, which was the center of farming and blooded stock raising, including thoroughbred horses. It was formed in 1799. The population was 48,586 in the 2010 Census...

, Bourbon
Bourbon County, Kentucky
Bourbon County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. It is the remnant of what was previously a much larger Bourbon County, established as part of Virginia in 1785, and comprising what are now thirty-four modern Kentucky counties...

, Woodford
Woodford County, Kentucky
Woodford County is a county located in the heart of the Bluegrass region of the U.S. state of Kentucky. As of 2000, the population was 23,208. Its county seat is Versailles. The county is named for General William Woodford, who was with General George Washington at Valley Forge...

, and Scott
Scott County, Kentucky
Scott County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. The population was 47,173 in the 2010 Census. Its county seat is Georgetown.Scott County is part of the Lexington–Fayette Metropolitan Statistical Area.-Geography:...

, . This is the second largest metro area in the Ohio Valley and in Kentucky. According to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

, the city has a total area of 285.5 square miles (739.4 km²). 284.5 square miles (736.9 km²) of it is land and 1 square miles (2.6 km²) of it (0.35%) is water.

Climate


Lexington is in the humid subtropical climate
Humid subtropical climate
A humid subtropical climate is a climate zone characterized by hot, humid summers and mild to cool winters...

, although nearing the humid continental climate
Humid continental climate
A humid continental climate is a climatic region typified by large seasonal temperature differences, with warm to hot summers and cold winters....

. Summers are hot and humid, and winters are cool with mild periods.

The average temperature in Lexington is 54.9 °F (12.7 °C). Annual precipitation is 45.68 inches (1,160.3 mm). Lexington and the Bluegrass have four distinct seasons that include cool plateau breezes, moderate nights in the summer, and no prolonged periods of heat, cold, rain, wind, or snow.

Lexington is recognized as a high allergy area by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America
Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America
The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America is a non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure for and controlling asthma, food allergies, nasal allergies and other allergic diseases. AAFA's mission is also to educate the public about these diseases...

. The results for the spring of 2008 rank Lexington at first.

Cityscape


Lexington features a diverse cityscape. From its vibrant downtown, which supports infill and historic preservation projects, to its famed horse farms, the city prides itself in featuring an urban growth boundary
Urban growth boundary
An urban growth boundary, or UGB, is a regional boundary, set in an attempt to control urban sprawl by mandating that the area inside the boundary be used for higher density urban development and the area outside be used for lower density development.An urban growth boundary circumscribes an...

 that includes greenbelts and strict zoning definitions. This has been done not only to protect the Bluegrass landscape from further development but to protect thoroughbred horse farms, the trademark industry of the region.

Forbes
Forbes
Forbes is an American publishing and media company. Its flagship publication, the Forbes magazine, is published biweekly. Its primary competitors in the national business magazine category are Fortune, which is also published biweekly, and Business Week...

 has named Lexington as one of the world's seventeen cleanest cities.
mage:Lexington Downtown Area Panorama .jpg|thumb|800px|center|Panoramic view of downtown Lexington area.]

Planning



Lexington faces a rare challenge among American cities in that it must manage a rapidly growing population while maintaining the character of the surrounding horse farms that give the region its identity. To do so Lexington enacted the nation's first Urban Growth Boundary
Urban growth boundary
An urban growth boundary, or UGB, is a regional boundary, set in an attempt to control urban sprawl by mandating that the area inside the boundary be used for higher density urban development and the area outside be used for lower density development.An urban growth boundary circumscribes an...

 in 1958, where new development could only occur in the Urban Service Area. It set a strict minimum area requirement, currently 40 acres (161,874.4 m²), to maintain open space in the Rural Service Area. A historic District Zoning Overlay was adopted as well to protect the historic character
Historic preservation
Historic preservation is an endeavor that seeks to preserve, conserve and protect buildings, objects, landscapes or other artifacts of historical significance...

 of the surrounding neighborhoods. Two years later, a comprehensive Design Plan for the downtown was completed, which called for the removal of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway
Chesapeake and Ohio Railway
The Chesapeake and Ohio Railway was a Class I railroad formed in 1869 in Virginia from several smaller Virginia railroads begun in the 19th century. Led by industrialist Collis P...

 lines on what is today's Vine Street. In 1967, the Urban Service Area was decreased in area; various zoning regulations were also amended from the original 1958 issue. Several years later, in 1973, the first Lexington Comprehensive Plan was completed.

In 1980, the Comprehensive Plan was updated and the Urban Service Area was modified to include Urban Activity Centers and Rural Activity Centers. The Urban Activity Centers were commercial and light-industrial districts in urbanized areas, while Rural Activity Centers were retail trade and light-industrial centers clustered around the Interstate 64
Interstate 64
Interstate 64 is an Interstate Highway in the Midwestern and Southeastern United States. Its western terminus is at I-70, U.S. 40, and U.S. 61 in Wentzville, Missouri. Its eastern terminus is at an interchange with I-264 and I-664 at Bowers Hill in Chesapeake, Virginia. As I-64 is concurrent with...

/Interstate 75
Interstate 75
Interstate 75 is a major north–south Interstate Highway in the Great Lakes and Southeastern regions of the United States. It travels from State Road 826 and State Road 924 in Hialeah, Florida to Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, at the Ontario, Canada, border...

 interchanges. In 1996, the Urban Service Area was expanded when 5300 acres (21 km²) of the Rural Service Area was acquired through the Expansion Area Master Plan. This was not without controversy; the first major update to the Comprehensive Plan in over a decade was accompanied by arguments about the future of Lexington and the thoroughbred farms. The Expansion Area Master Plan included impact fees, assessment districts, neighborhood design concepts, design overlays, mandatory greenways, major roadway improvements, stormwater management and open space mitigation for the first time; it also included a draft of the Rural Land Management Plan, which included large-lot zoning and traffic impact controls. A pre-zoning of the entire expansion area was refuted in the Plan. A 50 acres (202,343 m²) minimum proposal was also defeated, although discussion of the proposal led to a deluge of 10 acres (40,468.6 m²) subdivisions in the Rural Service Areas.

Three years after the expansion was initiated, the Rural Service Area Land Management Plan was adopted, which increased the minimum lot size in the agricultural rural zones to 40 acres (161,874.4 m²) minimums. In 1998, a moratorium was issued on rural lot creations to curb the development of new rural 10 acres (40,468.6 m²) subdivisions, which were incompatible with the existing agricultural uses. Two years later, the Purchase of Development Rights plan was adopted, which granted the city power to purchase the development rights of existing farms; in 2001, $40 million was allocated to the plan from a $25 million local, $15 million state grant. An Infill and Redevelopment study was also initiated during that time, along with design guidelines for the areas surrounding the new Fayette County
Fayette County, Kentucky
Fayette County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. The population was 295,083 in the 2010 Census. Its territory, population and government are coextensive with the city of Lexington, which also serves as county seat....

 courthouses.

Government and politics


Federally, Lexington is part of Kentucky's 6th congressional district
Kentucky's 6th congressional district
Kentucky's 6th congressional district is a congressional district in the U.S. state of Kentucky. Based in Central Kentucky, the district contains the cities of Lexington , Richmond, and Frankfort, the state capital....

, represented by Democrat Ben Chandler
Ben Chandler
Albert Benjamin "Ben" Chandler III is the U.S. Representative for , serving since a special election in 2004. He is a member of the Democratic Party.-Early life, education and career:...

, elected in 2004.

The state's senior member of the United States Senate
United States Senate
The United States Senate is the upper house of the bicameral legislature of the United States, and together with the United States House of Representatives comprises the United States Congress. The composition and powers of the Senate are established in Article One of the U.S. Constitution. Each...

 is the Republican Floor Leader, Mitch McConnell
Mitch McConnell
Addison Mitchell "Mitch" McConnell, Jr. is the senior United States Senator from Kentucky and the Republican Minority Leader.- Early life, education, and military service :...

, elected in 1984. The state's junior member of the United States Senate is Rand Paul
Rand Paul
Randal Howard "Rand" Paul is the junior United States Senator for Kentucky. He is a member of the Republican Party. A member of the Tea Party movement, he describes himself as a "constitutional conservative" and a libertarian...

, elected in 2010. The Governor of Kentucky
Governor of Kentucky
The Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky is the head of the executive branch of government in the U.S. state of Kentucky. Fifty-six men and one woman have served as Governor of Kentucky. The governor's term is four years in length; since 1992, incumbents have been able to seek re-election once...

 is Democrat Steve Beshear
Steve Beshear
Steven Lynn "Steve" Beshear is an American politician who is the 61st Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. A Democrat, Beshear previously served in the Kentucky House of Representatives from 1974 to 1979, was the state's Attorney General from 1980 to 1983, and was Lieutenant Governor from...

, elected in 2007.

In 1974, the governments of the city of Lexington and Fayette County, Kentucky
Fayette County, Kentucky
Fayette County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. The population was 295,083 in the 2010 Census. Its territory, population and government are coextensive with the city of Lexington, which also serves as county seat....

, combined to create the current Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, often abbreviated LFUCG. Lexington has an elected mayor and city council-style of government.

Mayor


On November 2, 2010, former vice-mayor Jim Gray
Jim Gray (Kentucky politician)
James "Jim" P. Gray II is the current mayor of Lexington, Kentucky . Gray served as the city's vice-mayor from 2006 to 2010 before being elected mayor in November 2010....

 was elected mayor, becoming the city's first openly gay mayor. He was sworn into office on January 2, 2011, by Kentucky Supreme Court
Kentucky Supreme Court
The Kentucky Supreme Court was created by a 1975 constitutional amendment and is the state supreme court of the commonwealth of Kentucky. Prior to that the Kentucky Court of Appeals was the only appellate court in Kentucky...

 justice Mary Noble
Mary C. Noble
Mary C. Noble is the Deputy Chief Justice of the Kentucky Supreme Court. Noble was elected to the court in November 2006 where she represents the 5th Supreme Court District. She defeated appointed Justice John C. Roach. Prior to that election, she served as a circuit judge in Fayette County. Chief...

. Gray was preceded by Mayor Jim Newberry, and the two collaborated on developing improved industrial and agricultural opportunity for the City of Lexington and the State of Kentucky.

Urban County Council


The Urban County Council is a 15-member legislative group. Twelve of the members represent specific districts and serve two-year terms; three are elected city-wide as at-large council members and serve four-year terms. The at-large member receiving the highest number of votes in the general election automatically becomes the Vice Mayor who, in the absence of the Mayor, is the presiding officer of the Council. The current council members are:


  • Linda Gorton: Vice Mayor
  • Chuck Ellinger II: At-Large
  • Steve Kay: At-Large
  • 1st District: Chris Ford
  • 2nd District: Tom Blues
  • 3rd District: Diane Lawless
  • 4th District: Julian Beard
  • 5th District: Bill Farmer, Jr.
  • 6th District: Kevin Stinnett
  • 7th District: K. C. Crosbie
  • 8th District: George Myers
  • 9th District: Jay McChord
  • 10th District: Doug Martin
  • 11th District: Peggy Henson
  • 12th District: Ed Lane
  • Sheila Hupp: Advisor for Performance Managment & Efficiency

The Urban County Council Clerk is Susan Lamb.

Law enforcement


Primary law enforcement duties within Lexington are the responsibility of the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government Division of Police. The Division of Police resulted from the merger of the Lexington Police Department with the Fayette County Patrol in 1974. The Fayette County Sheriff's Office is responsible for court service, including court security, prisoner transport, process and warrant service, and property tax collection. The University of Kentucky
University of Kentucky
The University of Kentucky, also known as UK, is a public co-educational university and is one of the state's two land-grant universities, located in Lexington, Kentucky...

 Police Department, the Transylvania University
Transylvania University
Transylvania University is a private, undergraduate liberal arts college in Lexington, Kentucky, United States, affiliated with the Christian Church . The school was founded in 1780. It offers 38 majors, and pre-professional degrees in engineering and accounting...

 Department of Public Safety, Blue Grass Airport
Blue Grass Airport
Blue Grass Airport is a public airport located in Fayette County, Kentucky, United States, 4 miles west of the central business district of the city of Lexington. The main terminal building was opened in 1977. The airport covers an area of and has two runways. It is also home to the Aviation...

 Public Safety, Fayette County Schools Department of Law Enforcement, the Veterans Affairs Police Department and the Kentucky Horse Park
Kentucky Horse Park
Kentucky Horse Park is a working horse farm and an educational theme park opened in 1978 in Lexington, Kentucky. It is located off Kentucky State Highway 1973 and Interstate 75 in northern Fayette County in the United States...

 Police also have jurisdiction within their geographic areas in Lexington-Fayette County. In addition, the Lexington-Fayette Animal Care & Control exercises law enforcement over animal control issues and the Kentucky State Police
Kentucky State Police
The Kentucky State Police is a department of the Kentucky Justice and Public Safety Cabinet. The department was founded in 1948 and replaced the Kentucky Highway Patrol...

, KSP Division of Commercial Vehicle Enforcement
Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement
The Kentucky State Police Division of Commercial Vehicle Enforcement , commonly known as Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement , is a statewide law enforcement agency for the Commonwealth of Kentucky. The department, which was a stand alone department until a July 14, 2008 executive order from Governor...

 and Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources can be seen performing their respective law enforcement duties within the county.

Demographics


The Lexington-Fayette Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Bourbon
Bourbon County, Kentucky
Bourbon County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. It is the remnant of what was previously a much larger Bourbon County, established as part of Virginia in 1785, and comprising what are now thirty-four modern Kentucky counties...

, Clark
Clark County, Kentucky
Clark County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. It was formed in 1793. The population was 35,613 in the 2010 Census. Its county seat is Winchester, Kentucky...

, Fayette
Fayette County, Kentucky
Fayette County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. The population was 295,083 in the 2010 Census. Its territory, population and government are coextensive with the city of Lexington, which also serves as county seat....

, Jessamine
Jessamine County, Kentucky
Jessamine County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. It is within the Inner Blue Grass region, which was the center of farming and blooded stock raising, including thoroughbred horses. It was formed in 1799. The population was 48,586 in the 2010 Census...

, Scott
Scott County, Kentucky
Scott County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. The population was 47,173 in the 2010 Census. Its county seat is Georgetown.Scott County is part of the Lexington–Fayette Metropolitan Statistical Area.-Geography:...

, and Woodford
Woodford County, Kentucky
Woodford County is a county located in the heart of the Bluegrass region of the U.S. state of Kentucky. As of 2000, the population was 23,208. Its county seat is Versailles. The county is named for General William Woodford, who was with General George Washington at Valley Forge...

 counties. The MSA population in 2006 was estimated at 436,684.
The Lexington-Fayette-Frankfort-Richmond, KY Combined Statistical Area
Lexington-Fayette-Frankfort-Richmond, KY Combined Statistical Area
The Lexington-Fayette-Frankfort-Richmond, KY Combined Statistical Area, created by the United States Bureau of the Census in 2000, is the 76th largest Combined Statistical Area of the United States...

 had an estimated population of 645,006 in 2006. This includes the metro area and an additional seven counties.

As of the census of 2000, there were 260,512 people, 108,288 households, and 62,915 families residing in the city. The population density was 915.6 /sqmi. There were 116,167 housing units at an average density of 408.3 /sqmi. The racial makeup of the city was 81.04% White
White American
White Americans are people of the United States who are considered or consider themselves White. The United States Census Bureau defines White people as those "having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa...

, 13.48% Black or African American
African American
African Americans are citizens or residents of the United States who have at least partial ancestry from any of the native populations of Sub-Saharan Africa and are the direct descendants of enslaved Africans within the boundaries of the present United States...

, 0.19% Native American
Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

, 2.46% Asian
Asian American
Asian Americans are Americans of Asian descent. The U.S. Census Bureau definition of Asians as "Asian” refers to a person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian subcontinent, including, for example, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan,...

, 0.03% Pacific Islander
Pacific Islander American
Pacific Islander Americans, also known as Oceanian Americans, are residents of the United States with original ancestry from Oceania. They represent the smallest racial group counted in the United States census of 2000. They numbered 874,000 people or 0.3 percent of the United States population...

, 1.21% from other races, and 1.58% from two or more races
Multiracial American
Multiracial Americans, US residents who identify themselves as of "two or more races", were numbered at around 9 million, or 2.9% of the population, in the census of 2010. However there is considerable evidence that the real number is far higher. Prior to the mid-20th century many people hid their...

. Hispanics or Latinos
Hispanic and Latino Americans
Hispanic or Latino Americans are Americans with origins in the Hispanic countries of Latin America or in Spain, and in general all persons in the United States who self-identify as Hispanic or Latino.1990 Census of Population and Housing: A self-designated classification for people whose origins...

 of any race were 3.29% of the population.

There were 108,288 households out of which 27.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.5% were married couples living together, 11.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.9% were non-families. 31.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.29 and the average family size was 2.90.

The age distribution was 21.3% under 18, 14.6% from 18 to 24, 33.2% from 25 to 44, 20.9% from 45 to 64, and 10.0% who were 65 or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females there were 96.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.3 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $39,813, and the median income for a family was $53,264. Males had a median income of $36,166 versus $26,964 for females. The per capita income for the city was $23,109. About 8.2% of families and 12.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 14.3% of those under the age of 18 and 8.6% of those ages 65 and older.

Sources:
  • 1790 to 1960 census:
  • 1970 census:
  • 1980 census:
  • 1990 census:
  • 2000 to 2005 census:
  • 2006 census:


Economy


With its abundance of government and technology jobs, Lexington has one of the nation's most stable economies. Economists have referred to Lexington as having "a fortified economy, strong in manufacturing, technology and entrepreneurial support, benefiting from a diverse, balanced business base". The Lexington Metro Area had a July 2008 unemployment rate of only 5.4%. Lexington was named the 5th best city for "Businesses and Careers" in 2008 by Forbes Magazine, and the 5th best city for Young Professionals in 2008 by Kiplinger
Kiplinger
Kiplinger is a Washington, D.C.-based publisher of business forecasts and personal finance advice, available in print, online, audio, video and software products ....

.

As such, the city is home to several large corporations. There are three Fortune 500
Fortune 500
The Fortune 500 is an annual list compiled and published by Fortune magazine that ranks the top 500 U.S. closely held and public corporations as ranked by their gross revenue after adjustments made by Fortune to exclude the impact of excise taxes companies collect. The list includes publicly and...

 companies located within the city, Affiliated Computer Services
Affiliated Computer Services
Affiliated Computer Services Inc. provides information technology services as well as business process outsourcing solutions to businesses, government agencies, and non-profit organizations. ACS is based in Dallas, Texas and the current CEO is Lynn Blodgett. ACS is ranked at number 341 on the 2010...

, Lexmark International and Hewlett Packard, employing 1,200, 3,450, and 250 respectively. United Parcel Service
United Parcel Service
United Parcel Service, Inc. , typically referred to by the acronym UPS, is a package delivery company. Headquartered in Sandy Springs, Georgia, United States, UPS delivers more than 15 million packages a day to 6.1 million customers in more than 220 countries and territories around the...

, Trane
Trane
Trane Inc. is a subsidiary of Ingersoll Rand and is the successor company to the American Standard Companies. It is a global provider of heating, ventilating and air conditioning systems and building management systems and controls under the Trane and American Standard brand names...

, Tempur-Pedic, International
Tempur-Pedic
Tempur-Pedic International, Inc. is a manufacturer and distributor of mattresses and pillows made from viscoelastic memory foam. The company's headquarters is located in Lexington, Kentucky.- History :...

 and Amazon.com, Inc.
Amazon.com
Amazon.com, Inc. is a multinational electronic commerce company headquartered in Seattle, Washington, United States. It is the world's largest online retailer. Amazon has separate websites for the following countries: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Japan, and...

 have a large presence in the city, and Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky
Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky
Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky, Inc. is an automobile manufacturing factory in Georgetown, Kentucky, USA. It is part of Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America , owned by Toyota Motor Company of Japan....

 is within the Lexington CSA in adjoining Georgetown
Georgetown, Kentucky
Georgetown is a city in Scott County, Kentucky, United States. The population was 29,098 at the 2010 census. The original settlement of Lebanon, founded by Rev. Elijah Craig, was renamed in 1790 in honor of President George Washington. It is the home of Georgetown College, a private liberal arts...

. The city is also host to a Jif
Jif (peanut butter)
Jif is a brand of peanut butter made by The J.M. Smucker Co., which purchased the brand from Procter & Gamble in 2001. The original Creamy Jif peanut butter debuted in 1958. In 1974, Extra Crunchy Jif was introduced, followed by Simply Jif in 1991, a peanut butter variant with low-sodium and less...

 peanut butter
Peanut butter
Peanut butter is a food paste made primarily from ground dry roasted peanuts, popular in North America, Netherlands, United Kingdom, and parts of Asia, particularly the Philippines and Indonesia. It is mainly used as a sandwich spread, sometimes in combination as in the peanut butter and jelly...

 plant that produces more peanut butter than any other factory in the world, and to the Forcht Group of Kentucky
Forcht Group of Kentucky
Forcht Group of Kentucky is a group of companies principally owned by Terry E. Forcht, with corporate headquarters in Lexington, Kentucky and Corbin, Kentucky...

, a holding company that employs more than 2,100 people across Kentucky. Forcht Group operates several businesses in Lexington including First Corbin Bancorp, Kentucky National Insurance Company, My Favorite Things, BSC, a bank data services company, and First Lab, among others.

The citys largest employer, the University of Kentucky
University of Kentucky
The University of Kentucky, also known as UK, is a public co-educational university and is one of the state's two land-grant universities, located in Lexington, Kentucky...

, employs 10,668, however, it does not include the College of Agriculture’s Cooperative Extension Service which has a staff of over 900. The University is the ninth largest economic company in the state of Kentucky, with an annual budget of $1.4 billion, and the College of Medicine
University of Kentucky College of Medicine
The University of Kentucky College of Medicine is a medical school found in the University of Kentucky's Chandler Medical Center in Lexington, KY.-History:...

 within the University is the 21st-largest company in the state.

Other sizable employers include the Lexington-Fayette County government and other hospital facilities. This includes the Fayette County Public Schools
Fayette County Public Schools (Kentucky)
Fayette County Public Schools is a school district based in Lexington, Kentucky, United States.The district serves all of Fayette County, which is coextensive with the city of Lexington.-Board of Education:...

, employing 4,651, and the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, employing 3,936. Central Baptist Hospital, Saint Joseph Hospital, Saint Joseph East, and the Veterans Administration Hospital employ 6,206 total.

Education


According to the United States Census
United States Census
The United States Census is a decennial census mandated by the United States Constitution. The population is enumerated every 10 years and the results are used to allocate Congressional seats , electoral votes, and government program funding. The United States Census Bureau The United States Census...

, of Lexington's population over the age of twenty-five, 22.4% hold a bachelor's degree, 11.4% hold a master's degree, and 3.1% hold a professional degree. Just 2.6% hold a doctorate degree. Lexington was ranked 10th in a list of America's most educated cities with a population of more than 250,000, ranked by percentage of bachelor's degrees among residents 25 and older, according to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

. In a report released by Jack Miller, president of Central Connecticut State University
Central Connecticut State University
Central Connecticut State University is a state university in New Britain, Connecticut, United States.The school was moved to its present campus in 1922...

, Lexington ranks 13th in the United States in terms of literacy rate. The index was compiled through six indicators of literacy, including Internet sources, newspaper circulation, the number of bookstores, library resources, education and periodical resources.

The city is served by the Fayette County Public Schools
Fayette County Public Schools (Kentucky)
Fayette County Public Schools is a school district based in Lexington, Kentucky, United States.The district serves all of Fayette County, which is coextensive with the city of Lexington.-Board of Education:...

. The system consists of 5 high schools, 11 middle schools, and 33 elementary schools, along with six private schools. There are also two traditional colleges: the University of Kentucky
University of Kentucky
The University of Kentucky, also known as UK, is a public co-educational university and is one of the state's two land-grant universities, located in Lexington, Kentucky...

, which is the state's flagship public university, and Transylvania University
Transylvania University
Transylvania University is a private, undergraduate liberal arts college in Lexington, Kentucky, United States, affiliated with the Christian Church . The school was founded in 1780. It offers 38 majors, and pre-professional degrees in engineering and accounting...

, which is the states oldest four year university. Other institutions of higher learning include Bluegrass Community and Technical College
Bluegrass Community and Technical College
Bluegrass Community and Technical College , located in Lexington, Kentucky, is one of 16 two-year, open-admissions colleges of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System . It was formed from the consolidation of two separate institutions: Lexington Community College and Central Kentucky...

, Sullivan University
Sullivan University
Sullivan University is a private for-profit university based in Louisville, Kentucky and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Sullivan University currently has physical campuses in Louisville, Lexington, and Fort Knox, and an online Global e-Learning campus. With...

, Spencerian College
Spencerian College
Spencerian College is a career college in Louisville and Lexington, Kentucky. Students may receive a certificate, diploma, or associate degree in a variety of fields of study including Health Sciences, Business, Graphic Design, Computer Aided Design, and others. All of the programs are taught in...

, MedTech College
MedTech College
-History:Medtech, a for-profit medical education facility, was founded in Indianapolis, Indiana, in 2004. Consecutive campuses were opened in Greenwood, Indiana, in 2007; Fort Wayne, Indiana, in 2008; and Lexington, Kentucky, in 2009...

, Strayer University
Strayer University
Strayer University, formerly Strayer College of Baltimore, Maryland, is a private, for-profit educational institution. The Strayer University campuses are owned by Strayer Education, Inc. , headquartered in Herndon, Virginia....

, Commonwealth Baptist College, and a newly opened distance-learning extension of Indiana Wesleyan University
Indiana Wesleyan University
Indiana Wesleyan University is a private, evangelical Christian, liberal arts university located in Marion, Indiana that is affiliated with the Wesleyan Church denomination...

.

Annual cultural events and fairs


Lexington is home to many thriving arts organizations including a professional orchestra, two ballet companies, professional theatre, several museums including a basketball museum, several choral organizations and a highly respected opera program at the University of Kentucky. In addition, there are several events and fairs that draw people from throughout the Bluegrass.

Mayfest Arts Fair is a free outdoor festival that takes place annually over Mother's Day weekend. Held in Gratz Park between the Carnegie Center and Transylvania University, the festival typically features up to 100 art and craft booths, live entertainment throughout the weekend, food, children's activities, adult activities and literary events, free carriage rides, a traditional Morris and Maypole dance and various demonstrations.

Taking part the first full weekend of June is the Festival of the Bluegrass
Festival of the Bluegrass
The Festival of the Bluegrass, located in Lexington, Kentucky, is the oldest bluegrass music festival in the bluegrass region of Kentucky. The festival takes place the first full weekend of June each year...

, Kentucky's oldest bluegrass music festival. It includes three stages for music and a "music camp" that teaches the bluegrass music
Bluegrass music
Bluegrass music is a form of American roots music, and a sub-genre of country music. It has mixed roots in Scottish, English, Welsh and Irish traditional music...

 to school children. Also in June is the popular Broadway review presented by UK Opera Theatre, "It's A Grand Night for Singing!" usually held the 2nd and 3rd weekends.

Later in June, the Gay and Lesbian Service organization hosts the Lexington Pride Festival, currently into the planning phases of its third festival as of 2009, the event is popular among the diverse communities in Lexington.

Lexingtonians gather downtown for the Fourth of July festivities which extend for several days. On July 3, the Gratz Park Historic District
Gratz Park Historic District
The Gratz Park is a neighborhood and historic district located just north of downtown Lexington, Kentucky. It was named after early Lexington businessman Benjamin Gratz whose home stands on the corner of Mill and New streets at the edge of Gratz Park...

 is transformed into an outdoor music hall when the Patriotic Music Concert is held on the steps of Morrison Hall at Transylvania University
Transylvania University
Transylvania University is a private, undergraduate liberal arts college in Lexington, Kentucky, United States, affiliated with the Christian Church . The school was founded in 1780. It offers 38 majors, and pre-professional degrees in engineering and accounting...

. The Lexington Singers and the Lexington Philharmonic Orchestra perform at this event. On the Fourth, annual festivities include a reading of the Declaration of Independence
United States Declaration of Independence
The Declaration of Independence was a statement adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776, which announced that the thirteen American colonies then at war with Great Britain regarded themselves as independent states, and no longer a part of the British Empire. John Adams put forth a...

 on the steps of the Old Courthouse, a waiter's race in Phoenix Park, a parade, a country music concert, and fireworks. Also, throughout the day street vendors sell their wares and food to the downtown visitors. The Fourth of July is considered to be the biggest holiday in Lexington.

"Southern Lights: Spectacular Sights on Holiday Nights", taking place from November 18 to December 31, is held at the Kentucky Horse Park
Kentucky Horse Park
Kentucky Horse Park is a working horse farm and an educational theme park opened in 1978 in Lexington, Kentucky. It is located off Kentucky State Highway 1973 and Interstate 75 in northern Fayette County in the United States...

. It includes a three-mile (5 km) drive through the park, showcasing numerous displays, many in character with the horse industry and history of Lexington. The "Mini-Train Express", an indoor petting exotic animal petting zoo, the International Museum of the Horse, an exhibit showcasing the Bluegrass Railway Club's model train, and Santa Claus
Santa Claus
Santa Claus is a folklore figure in various cultures who distributes gifts to children, normally on Christmas Eve. Each name is a variation of Saint Nicholas, but refers to Santa Claus...

 are other major highlights.

In 2002 Lexington became the first city to launch a Thriller video reenactment as a Halloween festivity. The video’s storyline and dance sequences are faithfully recreated, beginning outside the historic Kentucky Theatre and featuring hundreds of zombies who attend rehearsals at nearby Mecca Live Studio in the weeks leading up to the parade. Lexington’s 10th annual Thriller Parade was sponsored by Lexington Parks and Recreation, Mecca, and WRFL FM 88.1, and took place on October 30, 2011 for an audience of thousands, with Albert Ignacio playing the role of Michael Jackson. Lexington’s March Madness Marching Band also performs in zombie attire.

The Lexington Christmas Parade: Held usually the day after Thanksgiving, the parade route follows Main Street between Midland and Broadway. Festivities include a Holiday Market with over 25 arts and craft vendors, a stage with entertainment, food, and the annual tree lighting ceremony, which occur in Triangle Park.

Other events and fairs include:
  • The Artists Market: A small display of arts and craft booths which is set up concurrently with the Farmer's Market each Saturday from the first weekend in June through the last weekend in August. Located in Cheapside Park adjacent to the Lexington Farmer's Market.
  • Thursday Night Live: An annual summer series of free, public concerts held in Cheapside Park every Thursday evening from 4:30pm – 7:30pm in from May – October.
  • A Midsummer Night's Run: A 5K race in early August.
  • The Woodland Art Fair: An annual event of the Lexington Art League, is held annually in August at Woodland Park and features many local and national artists working in a variety of media.
  • The Roots & Heritage Festival: An event that takes place throughout the month of September and consists of a wide variety of culturally enriching activities including art exhibits, literary readings, film presentations, the Festival Ball and the ever-popular two-day street festival featuring live musical performances from internationally renowned artists.
  • The Lexington Philharmonic Orchestra presents several annual concerts.
  • The Kentucky Women Writers Conference
    Women Writers Conference
    The Kentucky Women Writers Conference had its beginnings in 1979 as a celebration of women writers at the University of Kentucky. That first year featured Maya Angelou, Toni Cade Bambara, Ruth Stone, Alice Walker, and Ruth Whitman...

     which has hosted dozens of the nations foremost women writers.
  • Festival Latino in September
  • Gallery Hop: a seasonal event where the city's art galleries are open to the public on the third Friday of February, April, June, September and November.
  • Beaux Arts Ball: A masquerade ball
    Masquerade ball
    A masquerade ball is an event which the participants attend in costume wearing a mask. - History :...

     hosted by the University of Kentucky's College of Design
    University of Kentucky College of Design
    Located at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, the College of Design encompasses the School of Architecture, the School of Interior Design, and the Department of Historic Preservation.-History:...

     (formerly College of Architecture).
  • Tournament of Champions
    Tournament of Champions (debate)
    The Tournament of Champions is a high school debate tournament held annually at the University of Kentucky on the first weekend of May. It is the most prestigious tournament on the "national circuit," representing some of the most competitively successful debaters from the nation's most prestigious...

    : One of three national high school debate championship tournaments featuring policy debate and Lincoln-Douglas debate
    Lincoln-Douglas debate
    Lincoln–Douglas debate is sometimes also called values debate because it traditionally places a heavy emphasis on logic, ethical values, and philosophy...

    . The best teams in the nation meet after qualifying during the regular season on the first weekend in May annually, hosted by the University of Kentucky Debate Team.
  • Lexington Pride Festival: An annual summer event to celebrate pride
    Gay pride
    LGBT pride or gay pride is the concept that lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people should be proud of their sexual orientation and gender identity...

     in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender
    LGBT
    LGBT is an initialism that collectively refers to "lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender" people. In use since the 1990s, the term "LGBT" is an adaptation of the initialism "LGB", which itself started replacing the phrase "gay community" beginning in the mid-to-late 1980s, which many within the...

     communities. Lexington has one of the highest concentrations of gay and lesbian couples in the United States for a city its size.

Historical structures and museums




Lexington is home to numerous museums and historical structures. One of the most famous is Ashland: The Henry Clay Estate
Ashland (Henry Clay home)
Ashland is the name of the plantation of the nineteenth-century Kentucky statesman Henry Clay, located in Lexington, Kentucky, in the central Bluegrass region of the state...

 along Richmond Road east of downtown. This two-story museum is a National Historic Landmark
National Historic Landmark
A National Historic Landmark is a building, site, structure, object, or district, that is officially recognized by the United States government for its historical significance...

 and was the former home of statesman Henry Clay
Henry Clay
Henry Clay, Sr. , was a lawyer, politician and skilled orator who represented Kentucky separately in both the Senate and in the House of Representatives...

.

Lexington Public Library
Lexington Public Library
The Lexington Public Library opened in 1905 in Lexington, Kentucky. It incorporated the collection of the former Lexington Library Company and the former Transylvania Library . Today the main location of the Lexington Public Library system is Central Library along East Main Street connected to...

, in the Phoenix Park area near the geographic center of Lexington, houses the world's largest ceiling clock, a five-story Foucault pendulum
Foucault pendulum
The Foucault pendulum , or Foucault's pendulum, named after the French physicist Léon Foucault, is a simple device conceived as an experiment to demonstrate the rotation of the Earth. While it had long been known that the Earth rotated, the introduction of the Foucault pendulum in 1851 was the...

 and a frieze depicting the history of the horse in the Bluegrass. The library and its branches also house art galleries and traveling exhibits.

The Pope Villa
Pope Villa
The Pope Villa in Lexington, Kentucky, USA, was designed by Benjamin Henry Latrobe in 1811 for Senator John Pope. It is one of only three extant Latrobe residences in the United States. The Pope Villa in Lexington, Kentucky, USA, was designed by Benjamin Henry Latrobe in 1811 for Senator John Pope....

, built in 1811, is one of the best surviving domestic designs by the architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe. It is being restored by the Bluegrass Trust for Historic Preservation, which also maintains and administers the Hunt-Morgan House.

Another important museum is the Lexington History Center
Lexington History Center
The Lexington History Center in downtown Lexington, Kentucky is located along East Main Street between North Upper and Cheapside. The facility was the Fayette County Courthouse from 1901 to 2001.The Lexington History Center is host to four museums:...

 in the old Fayette County Courthouse in the heart of downtown. It offers two museums, one dedicated to the history of the region and the other dedicated to public safety. A third museum, devoted to the history of pharmaceuticals
Pharmacology
Pharmacology is the branch of medicine and biology concerned with the study of drug action. More specifically, it is the study of the interactions that occur between a living organism and chemicals that affect normal or abnormal biochemical function...

 in the Bluegrass, is under construction. It will also be home to the Isaac Scott Hathaway Museum in 2007 as well. Additional historic sites are the following:
  • Aviation Museum of Kentucky
    Aviation Museum of Kentucky
    The Aviation Museum of Kentucky is an aviation museum located at the Blue Grass Airport in Lexington, Kentucky. Incorporated in April 1995, and opened to the public in August of the same year, it includes of exhibit space, a library, and an aircraft restoration and repair shop.Historic airplanes,...

  • First African Baptist Church
    First African Baptist Church (Lexington, Kentucky)
    First African Baptist Church is a historic church at 264-272 E. Short Street in Lexington, Kentucky. The congregation was founded c. 1790 by Peter Durrett and his wife, slaves who came to Kentucky with their master, Rev...

  • The Headley-Whitney Museum
  • Hunt-Morgan House
    Hunt-Morgan House
    The Hunt-Morgan House, historically known as Hopemont, is a Federal style residence in Lexington, Kentucky built in 1814 by John Wesley Hunt, the first millionaire west of the Alleghenies. The house is included in the Gratz Park Historic District. The Alexander T...

  • Kentucky Theatre
  • Lexington Cemetery
  • Martin Castle
    Martin Castle
    The Martin Castle, also known as Post Castle and Versailles Castle , is a castle in Kentucky, outside Lexington, near the Woodford County line, part of a 50-acre estate. Construction began in 1969 by its original owners, and has since changed hands undergoing a major renovation in 2004. As of 2010...

  • Mary Todd Lincoln House
    Mary Todd Lincoln House
    Mary Todd Lincoln House at 578 West Main Street in Lexington, Kentucky, USA, was the family home of the future first lady and wife of the 16th President, Mary Todd Lincoln. The three story home was the home of Robert S. Todd and his family. The family moved to the home in 1832...

  • Old Morrison, on the Transylvania University
    Transylvania University
    Transylvania University is a private, undergraduate liberal arts college in Lexington, Kentucky, United States, affiliated with the Christian Church . The school was founded in 1780. It offers 38 majors, and pre-professional degrees in engineering and accounting...

     campus
  • Rupp Arena
    Rupp Arena
    Rupp Arena is an arena located in downtown Lexington, Kentucky, U.S. Since its opening in 1976, it has been the centerpiece of Lexington Center, a convention and shopping facility owned by an arm of the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, and serves as home court to the University of...

  • Waveland State Historic Site
    Waveland State Historic Site
    Waveland State Historic Site, also known as the Joseph Bryan House, in Lexington, Kentucky is the site of a Greek Revival home and plantation now maintained and operated as part of the Kentucky state park system...



The University of Kentucky Art Museum is the premier art museum for Lexington and the only accredited museum in the region. Its collection of over 4000 objects ranges from Old Masters to Contemporary, and it also hosts ongoing special exhibitions.

The local Woolworth's
F. W. Woolworth Building (Lexington, Kentucky)
The Woolworth, F.W., Building was a historic department store building located in Lexington, Kentucky, that served as a retail location for the F. W. Woolworth Company from 1946 to 1990. It was designed by Frederick W...

 building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places
National Register of Historic Places
The National Register of Historic Places is the United States government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects deemed worthy of preservation...

 for its significance as a site of civil rights protests against segregation
Racial segregation
Racial segregation is the separation of humans into racial groups in daily life. It may apply to activities such as eating in a restaurant, drinking from a water fountain, using a public toilet, attending school, going to the movies, or in the rental or purchase of a home...

 during the 1960s
1960s
The 1960s was the decade that started on January 1, 1960, and ended on December 31, 1969. It was the seventh decade of the 20th century.The 1960s term also refers to an era more often called The Sixties, denoting the complex of inter-related cultural and political trends across the globe...

. The building was demolished by its owner in 2004 and the area paved for use as a parking lot until further development.

Media


Lexington's largest daily circulating newspaper is the Lexington Herald-Leader
Lexington Herald-Leader
The Lexington Herald-Leader is a newspaper owned by The McClatchy Company and based in the U.S. city of Lexington, Kentucky. According to the 1999 Editor & Publisher International Yearbook, the Herald-Leaders paid circulation is the second largest in the Commonwealth of Kentucky...

. The region is also served by eight primary television stations, including WLEX, WKYT, WDKY, WTVQ, The CW, WKLE, and MyNetworkTV
MyNetworkTV
MyNetworkTV is a television broadcast syndication service in the United States, owned by the Fox Entertainment Group, a division of News Corporation...

, and online news agency KyForward.com. The state's public television network, Kentucky Educational Television
Kentucky Educational Television
Kentucky Educational Television, also known as KET: The Kentucky Network, is Kentucky's non-commercial educational public television state network...

 (KET), is headquartered in Lexington and is one of the nation's largest public networks.

City parks and facilities



Lexington has over 100 parks ranging in size from the 8719 ft2 Smith Street Park to the 659 acres (2.7 km²) Masterson Station Park. There are also six public golf courses at Avon, Kearney Links, Lakeside, Meadowbrook, Tates Creek and Picadome and four dog park
Dog park
A dog park is a facility set aside for dogs to exercise and play off-leash in a controlled environment under the supervision of their owners...

s, at Jacobson, Masterson Station, Coldstream, and Wellington. It also has two public 18-hole disc golf
Disc golf
Disc golf is a disc game in which individual players throw a flying disc into a basket or at a target. According to the Professional Disc Golf Association, "The object of the game is to traverse a course from beginning to end in the fewest number of throws of the disc." Of the more than 3000...

 courses at Shillito Park and at Veterans Park, and a public skate park at Woodland Park, featuring 12000 square feet (1,114.8 m²) of "ramps, platforms, bowls, and pipes".

Lexington Cemetery is on the National Register of Historic Places, not only because of notable people interred there, but because it was founded during the major cholera epidemic of 1848.

Horse racing tracks


Lexington is home to two historic horse racing
Horse racing
Horse racing is an equestrian sport that has a long history. Archaeological records indicate that horse racing occurred in ancient Babylon, Syria, and Egypt. Both chariot and mounted horse racing were events in the ancient Greek Olympics by 648 BC...

 tracks. Keeneland
Keeneland
Keeneland is a Thoroughbred horse racing facility and sales complex in Lexington, Kentucky, USA. Operated by the Keeneland Association, Inc., it is also known for its reference library on the sport, which contains more than 10,000 volumes, an extensive videocassette collection, and a substantial...

, sporting live races in April and October since 1936, is steeped in tradition where much has not changed since the track's opening. The Red Mile Harness Track is the oldest horse racing
Horse racing
Horse racing is an equestrian sport that has a long history. Archaeological records indicate that horse racing occurred in ancient Babylon, Syria, and Egypt. Both chariot and mounted horse racing were events in the ancient Greek Olympics by 648 BC...

 track in the city, and second oldest in the nation. This is where horses pull two-wheeled carts called sulkies while racing, also referred to as harness racing
Harness racing
Harness racing is a form of horse racing in which the horses race at a specific gait . They usually pull a two-wheeled cart called a sulky, although racing under saddle is also conducted in Europe.-Breeds:...

. The Kentucky Horse Park
Kentucky Horse Park
Kentucky Horse Park is a working horse farm and an educational theme park opened in 1978 in Lexington, Kentucky. It is located off Kentucky State Highway 1973 and Interstate 75 in northern Fayette County in the United States...

, located along scenic Iron Works Pike, is a relatively late-comer to Lexington, opening in 1978. It is a working horse farm and an educational theme park, along with holding the distinction of being a retirement home for some of the world's greatest competition horses including Cigar
Cigar (horse)
Cigar , is a retired American Thoroughbred racehorse, who in 1995 and 1996 became the first American racehorse racing against top-class competition to win 16 consecutive races since the Triple Crown winner, Citation did so in 1948 and 1950...

 and 2003 Kentucky Derby winner Funny Cide. Lexington also played host to the 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games
2010 FEI World Equestrian Games
The 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games were held at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky from September 25 to October 10, 2010. This was the sixth edition of the games, which are held every four years and run by the International Federation for Equestrian Sports...

 in September and October 2010.

Natural areas


The city is home to Raven Run Nature Sanctuary, a 734 acres (3 km²) nature preserve along the Kentucky River
Kentucky River
The Kentucky River is a tributary of the Ohio River, long, in the U.S. state of Kentucky. The river and its tributaries drain much of the central region of the state, with its upper course passing through the coal-mining regions of the Cumberland Mountains, and its lower course passing through the...

 Palisades. There are 11 miles (18 km) of back-country hiking trails that range from wheelchair-accessible paved trails to difficult single-track trails. It is common to run across hopeful Appalachian Trail
Appalachian Trail
The Appalachian National Scenic Trail, generally known as the Appalachian Trail or simply the AT, is a marked hiking trail in the eastern United States extending between Springer Mountain in Georgia and Mount Katahdin in Maine. It is approximately long...

 backpackers. The city has recently purchased land adjacent to the park which will make Raven Run the largest park in the city. Raven Run is home to over 56 species of trees, 600 species of plants, 200 species of birds, and other wildlife. Remains of a grist mill, homestead and limekiln remain. The preserve also has a nature center and various educational programs throughout the year. Such programs include seasonal wildflower walks, stargazing during the warmer months, evening insect tours, and historical walks and presentations.

The Arboretum
University of Kentucky Arboretum
The University of Kentucky Arboretum , 40 hectares or , is located at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, Kentucky, USA...

is a 100 acre (0.404686 km²) preserve adjacent to the University of Kentucky
University of Kentucky
The University of Kentucky, also known as UK, is a public co-educational university and is one of the state's two land-grant universities, located in Lexington, Kentucky...

. It features the Arboretum Woods, a small, 16 acres (64,749.8 m²) Bluegrass Woodland patch that is home to eighteen native Kentucky tree species, and more than 50 native Kentucky grasses and herbs. It also has 1,500 varieties of roses in the Rose Garden, a Home Demonstration Garden, and numerous paved paths and trails.

The city also plays host to the historic McConnell Springs, a 26 acres (105,218.4 m²) park within the industrial confines off of Old Frankfort Pike. There are two miles (3 km) of trails that surround the namesake springs, historic dry-laid stone fences, and historical structures.

College athletics



The Kentucky Wildcats
Kentucky Wildcats
The Kentucky Wildcats are the men's and women's intercollegiate athletic squads of the University of Kentucky , a founding member of the Southeastern Conference...

, the athletic program of the University of Kentucky
University of Kentucky
The University of Kentucky, also known as UK, is a public co-educational university and is one of the state's two land-grant universities, located in Lexington, Kentucky...

, is by far Lexington's most popular sports entity. The school fields 22 varsity sports teams, most of which compete in the Southeastern Conference
Southeastern Conference
The Southeastern Conference is an American college athletic conference that operates in the southeastern part of the United States. It is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama...

. The most famous team by far is the men's basketball team
Kentucky Wildcats men's basketball
The Kentucky Wildcats men's basketball team, representing the University of Kentucky, is the winningest in the history of college basketball, both in all-time wins and all-time winning percentage. Kentucky's all-time record currently stands at 2058–647...

, which has won 7 NCAA championships and is the winningest program in college basketball history, being the first to reach 2000 wins. Lexington's only other collegiate team, the Transylvania University Pioneers
Transylvania University
Transylvania University is a private, undergraduate liberal arts college in Lexington, Kentucky, United States, affiliated with the Christian Church . The school was founded in 1780. It offers 38 majors, and pre-professional degrees in engineering and accounting...

, competes in NCAA Division III athletics.

Lexington produced a number a major collegiate and professional athletes. The more well known include World Athletics Championships
IAAF World Championships in Athletics
The World Championships in Athletics is an event organized by the International Association of Athletics Federations . Originally, it was organised every four years, but this changed in 1991, and it has since been organised biennially.-History:...

 multiple gold medal-winning sprinter Tyson Gay
Tyson Gay
Tyson Gay is an American track and field sprinter. His primary events are the 100 meters and 200 meters. His personal bests establish him as the second fastest athlete in the 100 meters and the fifth fastest athlete in the history of the 200 meters, with times of 9.69 and...

; former Tates Creek High School and Louisville Cardinals
Louisville Cardinals football
The Louisville Cardinals football team represents the University of Louisville in college football as a member of the Big East Conference. Howard Schnellenberger started the program's rise to relevancy after winning the Miami Hurricanes' first national championship...

 kicker David Akers
David Akers
David Roy Akers is a left footed American football placekicker for the San Francisco 49ers of the National Football League. He was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Atlanta Falcons in 1997. He played college football at Louisville....

, who is the all-time scoring leader for the Philadelphia Eagles
Philadelphia Eagles
The Philadelphia Eagles are a professional American football team based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. They are members of the East Division of the National Football Conference in the National Football League...

; former Louisville Cardinals football player and Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns
The Cleveland Browns are a professional football team based in Cleveland, Ohio. They are currently members of the North Division of the American Football Conference in the National Football League...

 cornerback Frank Minnifield
Frank Minnifield
Frank Minnifield is a former American football player who played defensive back for the Cleveland Browns from 1984-92.Minnifield attended Henry Clay High School in Lexington...

; New York Yankees
New York Yankees
The New York Yankees are a professional baseball team based in the The Bronx, New York. They compete in Major League Baseball in the American League's East Division...

 outfielder Austin Kearns
Austin Kearns
Austin Ryan Kearns is a Major League Baseball outfielder who is currently a free agent.-Cincinnati Reds:...

; former Kentucky
Kentucky Wildcats football
The Kentucky Wildcats football team is a college football program that competes in the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision and the East Division of the Southeastern Conference.-History:Paul "Bear" Bryant Era...

 and Pittsburgh Steelers
Pittsburgh Steelers
The Pittsburgh Steelers are a professional football team based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The team currently belongs to the North Division of the American Football Conference in the National Football League . Founded in , the Steelers are the oldest franchise in the AFC...

 center
Center (American football)
Center is a position in American football and Canadian football . The center is the innermost lineman of the offensive line on a football team's offense...

 Dermontti Dawson
Dermontti Dawson
Dermontti Farra Dawson is a former American football center in the National Football League. He played his entire career with the Pittsburgh Steelers....

; former Tates Creek High School basketball player Darrin Horn
Darrin Horn
-External links:*...

, now head coach of the South Carolina Gamecocks men's basketball
South Carolina Gamecocks men's basketball
The South Carolina Gamecocks men's basketball team represents the University of South Carolina and competes in the Southeastern Conference. The program attained national prominence under hall of fame coach Frank McGuire, posting a 205-65 record and three NCAA Sweet 16 appearances from 1967-1976...

 team; and NBC Sports
NBC Sports
NBC Sports is the sports division of the NBC television network. Formerly "a service of NBC News," it broadcasts a diverse array of programs, including the Olympic Games, the NFL, the NHL, MLS, Notre Dame football, the PGA Tour, the Triple Crown, and the French Open, among others...

 announcer Tom Hammond
Tom Hammond
Tom Hammond is an American sportscaster for NBC Sports television. Hammond is one of the network's staple on-air presenters, along with Bob Costas and Dan Hicks...

.

Professional sports



Lexington is home to the Lexington Legends
Lexington Legends
The Lexington Legends are a minor league baseball team of the South Atlantic League , and the Class A affiliate of the Houston Astros. They are located in Lexington, Kentucky, and play their home games at Whitaker Bank Ballpark, located in an industrial area on the northeast side of the city just...

, a Class A minor league affiliate of the Houston Astros
Houston Astros
The Houston Astros are a Major League Baseball team located in Houston, Texas. They are a member of the National League Central division. The Astros are expected to join the American League West division in 2013. Since , they have played their home games at Minute Maid Park, known as Enron Field...

. Since its inception in 2001, Lexington has produced numerous major leaguers including: 2009 National League All-Star Hunter Pence
Hunter Pence
Hunter Andrew Pence is a Major League Baseball outfielder with the Philadelphia Phillies. Pence stands tall and weighs . He bats and throws right-handed.-Early life:...

 (Outfielder) of the Philadelphia Phillies
Philadelphia Phillies
The Philadelphia Phillies are a Major League Baseball team. They are the oldest continuous, one-name, one-city franchise in all of professional American sports, dating to 1883. The Phillies are a member of the Eastern Division of Major League Baseball's National League...

, John Buck (Catcher) of the Florida Marlins
Florida Marlins
The Miami Marlins are a professional baseball team based in Miami, Florida, United States. Established in 1993 as an expansion franchise called the Florida Marlins, the Marlins are a member of the Eastern Division of Major League Baseball's National League. The Marlins played their home games at...

, Mike Gallo
Mike Gallo
Michael Dwain Gallo is a Major League Baseball relief pitcher who is currently a free agent.-Biography:...

  (Pitcher), who is currently a free agent, and Josh Anderson
Josh Anderson (baseball)
Joshua Aaron Anderson is an American Major League Baseball outfielder. He bats left-handed and throws right-handed...

, (Right fielder) who is currently a Free Agent. The Legends belong to the South Atlantic League
South Atlantic League
The South Atlantic League is a minor league baseball league based chiefly in the Southeastern United States, with the exception of three teams in the Mid-Atlantic States...

, have one league title (2001) and four playoff appearances since 2001. Roger Clemens
Roger Clemens
William Roger Clemens , nicknamed "Rocket", is a former Major League Baseball pitcher who broke into the league with the Boston Red Sox, whose pitching staff he would help anchor for 12 years. Clemens won seven Cy Young Awards, more than any other pitcher. He played for four different teams over...

 pitched in one game for the Legends in 2006 as part of his preparation to return to the Houston Astros.

Lexington was at one time home to the Lexington Horsemen
Lexington Horsemen
The Kentucky Horsemen were an indoor football team based in Lexington, Kentucky. The team played its home games at Rupp Arena. The organization began as a 2003 expansion member of the National Indoor Football League, where they were successful...

, an arena football team in the arenafootball2 league.

Lexington was at one time home to the Kentucky Thoroughblades
Kentucky Thoroughblades
The Kentucky Thoroughblades were a minor professional ice hockey team in the American Hockey League, who existed from 1996 to 2001. The Thoroughblades were based in Lexington, Kentucky, playing home games at Rupp Arena...

, a minor league (AHL
American Hockey League
The American Hockey League is a 30-team professional ice hockey league based in the United States and Canada that serves as the primary developmental circuit for the National Hockey League...

) hockey team that played between 1996 and 2001. For one season (2002–2003) the ECHL
ECHL
The ECHL is a mid-level professional ice hockey league based in Princeton, New Jersey with teams scattered across the United States...

 Men O' War
Lexington Men O' War
The Lexington Men O' War were a minor league professional ice hockey team and member of the ECHL. The Men O' War played at Rupp Arena in Lexington, Kentucky from 2002-2003. Like Lexington's previous team before them , success on the ice did not bring good attendance figures...

 played minor league hockey in Lexington.

The University of Kentucky Hockey team which competes at club level in the American Collegiate Hockey Association
American Collegiate Hockey Association
The American Collegiate Hockey Association is the national governing body of non-varsity college ice hockey in the U.S. The organization provides structure, regulations, promotes the quality of play, sponsors National Awards and National Tournaments....



For a time the city was home to the Lexington Bluegrass Bandits
Lexington Bluegrass Bandits
Lexington Bluegrass Bandits were an American soccer team that played in Lexington, Kentucky.They joined the USISL in 1994, and moved to the USISL Pro League in 1995. They were relegated to the USISL Premier League the next year.-Year-by-year:...

 who competed in the USL Premier Development League
USL Premier Development League
The USL Premier Development League is the amateur league of the United Soccer Leagues in the United States, Canada, and Bermuda, forming part of the American Soccer Pyramid...



In fall 2009, Lexington's first professional basketball team, the American Basketball Association's Bluegrass Stallions
Bluegrass Stallions
The Bluegrass Stallions are a basketball team in the Premier Basketball League. They debuted in the American Basketball Association in 2009-10...

, tipped off at Kentucky Horse Park
Kentucky Horse Park
Kentucky Horse Park is a working horse farm and an educational theme park opened in 1978 in Lexington, Kentucky. It is located off Kentucky State Highway 1973 and Interstate 75 in northern Fayette County in the United States...

.

Horse racing and equestrian events



Lexington has been known as a major center for Thoroughbred breeding since the late 18th century due to the high calcium content in the soils of the Inner Bluegrass Region
Bluegrass region
The Bluegrass Region is a geographic region in the state of Kentucky, United States. It occupies the northern part of the state and since European settlement has contained a majority of the state's population and its largest cities....

, which leads to stronger bones and greater durability in horses. The city is home to two horse racing tracks, Keeneland
Keeneland
Keeneland is a Thoroughbred horse racing facility and sales complex in Lexington, Kentucky, USA. Operated by the Keeneland Association, Inc., it is also known for its reference library on the sport, which contains more than 10,000 volumes, an extensive videocassette collection, and a substantial...

 and the The Red Mile harness track.

The Kentucky Horse Park in Northern Fayette County hosts the Rolex Kentucky Three Day
Rolex Kentucky Three Day
The Rolex Kentucky Three Day Event is an eventing competition held at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky. The Rolex Kentucky is a CCI**** eventing competition, and the only four-star show in the Western Hemisphere. Four stars is the highest level of competition, the same level of...

 Event, one of the top 3 annual equestrian eventing
Eventing
Eventing is an equestrian event comprising dressage, cross-country, and show jumping. This event has its roots in a comprehensive cavalry test requiring mastery of several types of riding...

 competitions in the world. The city hosted the 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games
2010 FEI World Equestrian Games
The 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games were held at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky from September 25 to October 10, 2010. This was the sixth edition of the games, which are held every four years and run by the International Federation for Equestrian Sports...

 from September 25 to October 10, 2010. Beginning in 2011, the Kentucky Horse Park is also the host to the National Horse Show
National horse show
The National Horse Show was founded in 1883 in New York by a group of affluent sportsmen. By 1887, the National Horse Show Directory, listing directors and 920 members, formed the basis for Louis Keller's first New York Social Register...

.

Highways




Lexington is serviced by both Interstate 64
Interstate 64
Interstate 64 is an Interstate Highway in the Midwestern and Southeastern United States. Its western terminus is at I-70, U.S. 40, and U.S. 61 in Wentzville, Missouri. Its eastern terminus is at an interchange with I-264 and I-664 at Bowers Hill in Chesapeake, Virginia. As I-64 is concurrent with...

 and Interstate 75
Interstate 75
Interstate 75 is a major north–south Interstate Highway in the Great Lakes and Southeastern regions of the United States. It travels from State Road 826 and State Road 924 in Hialeah, Florida to Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, at the Ontario, Canada, border...

, though neither they nor any other freeway run through the city proper. New Circle Road (KY 4) acts as an inner-beltway around the city, Man o' War Boulevard
Man o' War Boulevard
Man o' War Boulevard, named after the racehorse Man o' War, is a 17-mile urban arterial, circling Lexington, Kentucky to its south. Its western terminus is at US 60 Versailles Road at Keeneland Race Course's main entrance, from which the highway heads southeast, intersecting with US 68 , US 27 ,...

 is a semi outer-beltway south of New Circle Road, and numerous U.S. routes and arterial highways radiate out from downtown to provide access to the numerous bedroom communities ringing the metropolitan area. Citation Boulevard is planned to provide some relief to northern New Circle between Leestown Road and Russell Cave Road. Lexington suffers considerable traffic congestion
Traffic congestion
Traffic congestion is a condition on road networks that occurs as use increases, and is characterized by slower speeds, longer trip times, and increased vehicular queueing. The most common example is the physical use of roads by vehicles. When traffic demand is great enough that the interaction...

 for a city of its size due to the lack of out- or inbound freeways, the proximity of the University of Kentucky to downtown, and the substantial number of commuters from outlying towns.

Air


The Blue Grass Airport
Blue Grass Airport
Blue Grass Airport is a public airport located in Fayette County, Kentucky, United States, 4 miles west of the central business district of the city of Lexington. The main terminal building was opened in 1977. The airport covers an area of and has two runways. It is also home to the Aviation...

 is Lexington's primary commercial airport. It provides approximately 65 direct and nonstop flights daily from its two runways. Seven major airlines operate connection service at Blue Grass, including Airtran Airways
AirTran Airways
AirTran Airways, a subsidiary of the Dallas, Texas-based Southwest Airlines, is an American low-cost airline headquartered in Orlando, Florida. AirTran operates over 650 daily flights , primarily in the eastern and midwestern United States...

, Allegiant Air
Allegiant Air
Allegiant Air is an American low-cost airline owned by Allegiant Travel Co. that operates scheduled and charter flights. Allegiant Travel Company is a publicly traded company with 1,300 employees and one billion USD market capitalization...

, American Eagle Airlines
American Eagle Airlines
American Eagle Airlines is a brand name used by American Eagle Airlines, Inc. , based in Fort Worth, Texas, and Executive Airlines based in San Juan, Puerto Rico, in the operation of passenger air service as regional affiliates of American Airlines. All three airlines are wholly owned subsidiaries...

, Continental Express
Continental Express
Continental Express is the operating brand name used by a number of independently owned regional airlines providing regional jet feeder service under agreement with Continental Airlines...

, Delta Air Lines
Delta Air Lines
Delta Air Lines, Inc. is a major airline based in the United States and headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia. The airline operates an extensive domestic and international network serving all continents except Antarctica. Delta and its subsidiaries operate over 4,000 flights every day...

, United Express
United Express
United Express is a brand name under which eight regional airlines operate feeder flights for United Airlines. They primarily connect smaller cities with United's domestic hub airports and “focus cities,” although they offer some point-to-point service such as Sacramento to Eureka.As of Sept...

, and US Airways Express
US Airways Express
US Airways Express is an airline brand name, rather than a fully certified airline, and as such, the US Airways Express name is used by several individually owned airlines or airline holding companies which provide regional airline and commuter service for US Airways.Operations are conducted from...

.

The airport is located four miles (six km) west of the city center, at the intersection of US 60 (Versailles Road)
U.S. Route 60
U.S. Route 60 is an east–west United States highway, running from the Atlantic Ocean on the east coast in Virginia to western Arizona. Despite the final "0" in its number, indicating a transcontinental designation, the 1926 route formerly ended in Springfield, Missouri, at its intersection...

 and Man o' War Boulevard.

In addition to commercial airline service, the airport is also home to several private {general aviation} operators. TACAIR is located on Bluegrass Field, along with a brand new general aviation runway 9-27 dedicated August 4, 2010. In addition to private charter services, there is a student pilot training center and the Aviation Museum of Kentucky.

Public transportation



Lexington is served by LexTran, a public transit bus agency operated by LFUCG and has been in existence since 1972.

Transportation planning


The Lexington Area Metropolitan Planning Organization
Lexington Area MPO
The Lexington Area Metropolitan Planning Organization has been involved with transportation planning in Lexington, Kentucky and its immediate area since being established in 1974...

 is responsible for transportation planning for Fayette and Jessamine Counties. This includes activities such as carpool matching, administering a commuter vanpool program, air quality forecasting, bicycle and pedestrian planning, congestion management, and developing transportation plans and documents.

Sister cities


Deauville
Deauville
Deauville is a commune in the Calvados département in the Basse-Normandie region in northwestern France.With its racecourse, harbour, international film festival, marinas, conference centre, villas, Grand Casino and sumptuous hotels, Deauville is regarded as the "queen of the Norman beaches" and...

, France since 1957 County Kildare
County Kildare
County Kildare is a county in Ireland. It is part of the Mid-East Region and is also located in the province of Leinster. It is named after the town of Kildare. Kildare County Council is the local authority for the county...

, Ireland
Republic of Ireland
Ireland , described as the Republic of Ireland , is a sovereign state in Europe occupying approximately five-sixths of the island of the same name. Its capital is Dublin. Ireland, which had a population of 4.58 million in 2011, is a constitutional republic governed as a parliamentary democracy,...

 since 1984 Newmarket, United Kingdom since 2003 Shinhidaka
Shinhidaka, Hokkaido
is a town located in Hidaka District, Hidaka Subprefecture, Hokkaidō, Japan. Shinhidaka is the most populous town and the economic center of Hidaka Subprefecture.-History:...

, Japan since 2006
    • Shinhidaka was formed by a 2006 local government merger. One of the entities involved in the merger was Shizunai
      Shizunai, Hokkaido
      was a town that was located in Shizunai District, Hidaka, Hokkaidō, Japan.On March 31, 2006 Shizunai was merged with the town of Mitsuishi, from Mitsuishi District, to form the new town of Shinhidaka, in the newly-created Hidaka District....

      , which established a sister city relationship with Lexington in 1988.


All four are, like Lexington, major centers of the Thoroughbred
Thoroughbred
The Thoroughbred is a horse breed best known for its use in horse racing. Although the word thoroughbred is sometimes used to refer to any breed of purebred horse, it technically refers only to the Thoroughbred breed...

 breeding industry in their respective countries.

See also

  • Lexington in the American Civil War
    Lexington in the American Civil War
    thumb|[[John Hunt Morgan Memorial]] in downtown LexingtonLexington, Kentucky was a city of importance during the American Civil War, with notable residents participating on both sides of the conflict. These included John C. Breckinridge, Confederate generals John Hunt Morgan and Basil W...

  • Notable residents of Lexington, Kentucky
    Notable residents of Lexington, Kentucky
    Following are notable people who were either born/raised or have lived for a significant period of time in the Lexington, Kentucky metropolitan area:...


External links


Category:Cities in Kentucky
Category:Consolidated city–counties in the United States
Category:County seats in Kentucky

Category:Populated places established in 1775
Category:Populated places in Fayette County, Kentucky

ar:ليكسينغتون، كنتاكي
an:Lexington (Kentucky)
ast:Lexington
zh-min-nan:Lexington, Kentucky
be-x-old:Лексынгтан (Кентукі)
br:Lexington (Kentucky)
bg:Лексингтън
ca:Lexington (Kentucky)
da:Lexington (Kentucky)
de:Lexington (Kentucky)
es:Lexington (Kentucky)
eo:Leksingtono (Kentukio)
fa:لکزینگتون
fr:Lexington (Kentucky)
ko:렉싱턴 (켄터키 주)
io:Lexington, Kentucky
id:Lexington, Kentucky
ia:Lexington, Kentucky
it:Lexington (Kentucky)
he:לקסינגטון
ht:Lexington, Kentucky
la:Lexintonia
hu:Lexington (Kentucky)
ml:ലെക്സിങ്ടൺ, കെന്റക്കി
nl:Lexington (Kentucky)
ja:レキシントン (ケンタッキー州)
no:Lexington (Kentucky)
pl:Lexington (Kentucky)
pt:Lexington (Kentucky)
ro:Lexington, Kentucky
ru:Лексингтон (Кентукки)
simple:Lexington, Kentucky
sr:Лексингтон
sh:Lexington (Kentucky)
fi:Lexington (Kentucky)
sv:Lexington, Kentucky
tl:Lexington-Fayette, Kentucky
uk:Лексингтон
vi:Lexington, Kentucky
vo:Lexington (Kentucky)
war:Lexington, Kentucky
zh:列克星敦 (肯塔基州)