Will the government shutdown affect my trip to the Gorge?

Many of you have been emailing us to determine if the parks are still open this weekend, so we thought it would be easier to write a post about it. Under our impression, a lot of the trails that you can drive on (i.e., the trails with gravel roads) are shut down.  All of the side gravel roads are shut down, but the main roads are still open.  Chimney Top, Sky Bridge, Rock Bridge, and Indian Creek are all closed, as well as Tunnel Ridge Road.  However, all of the trails that you can walk on are still open to the public.  Glady is closed, but Natural Bridge State Park is still open.  If you have more questions, please feel free to call 606-663-9824.

Have a good weekend!

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Memorial Day

Today you may be camping out of town, grilling out with a neighbor, or just enjoying the three day weekend at home.  Today marks Memorial Day, a national holiday that has been established to remember those who have passed before us.  Many cities and towns claim to be the birthplace of Memorial Day, however, the first state to actually recognize it as a national holiday was New York in 1873.  General John Logan, the commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, officially proclaimed Memorial Day on May 5, 1868, three years after the Civil War had ended.  At first the holiday was called Decoration Day, so that people could decorate the graves of the war dead with flowers.  It was first observed on May 30, 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of both Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.  He picked the date May 30, because the flowers would all be in bloom by then.  In 1890, all of the northern states began to recognize the holiday, but the South refused to recognize it.  However, after World War I, the South had a change of heart.  The holiday itself became a holiday not only honoring those that had fallen in the Civil War, but honoring those who had fought and died in any war. A national holiday was born.
A tradition developed with the wearing of Red Poppies.  This tradition was born from Moina Michael who wrote a poem:
We cherish too, the Poppy red
That grows on fields where valor led,
It seems to signal to the skies
That blood of heroes never dies.
Her inspiration came from the poem “In Flanders Fields.”  She began to wear red poppies on Memorial Day to honor those who had died serving the nation.  She sold these poppies to friends and family members in order to raise money for disabled servicemen.  Madam Guerin from France learned of this custom and took it back to France. She made artificial red poppies to sell to raise money for war orphans of both France and Belgium.
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Reasons to Visit the Gorge

While some of you may only like to go on cruises for a vacation, I would encourage you to explore other alternatives. Red River Gorge is only 2-2 1/2 hours away from Cincinnati. It is a great place to go, especially for a weekend retreat. From the breathtaking cliff edges, to the trickling streams, and the first signs of Spring, I can’t wait to get down there.

A vacation on a cruise ship starts around $2000, without kids.  A trip to the Gorge can cost around $300-$400 for a family, if you stay at a cabin.  If you are looking for a cool place to take your kids, then this is a no brainer. Not only will you and your family enjoy the magnificent beauty around you, but you can let those kids roam free in the wild, as God intended, or take them on a hike, while your wife relaxes at the cabin on the porch.  Then when you’re all tired after a day’s hike, you can make some dinner or eat at one of the local eateries. After that you can make a campfire and roast marshmallows for S’mores.  I’m telling you, these are the times that I look forward to every year.

Whether you’re coming down for a personal retreat, coming down with your family, or coming down to hang out with your best buds, the Gorge is a perfect place for these opportunities. Being in the same cabin with your friends, you will create memories that will last a lifetime. Or if you’re here for a personal retreat, maybe you will discover something that you never knew about yourself. Or if you’re here with family, perhaps you will receive that much needed break from everyday life.

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