Welcome back friends. Did we get everyone out of the caves? Still missing a few? Eh, it happens. Alright, let’s pop onto the AA and head north for our next stop on this wonderful tour … Kenton County!
Founded in 1840 by land GENEROUSLY donated by my Campbell County, Kenton County is one Kentucky’s only two counties to have two legally recognized county seats in Covington and Independence. Having these two good size cities, along with its proximity to Cincinnati makes Kenton County Kentucky’s third most populous county behind Fayette and Jefferson. Kenton County was named after soldier, frontiersman and all around good guy, Simon Kenton. Simon fought for us in the Revolutionary War and again in the War of 1812 before retiring to his home in Urbana, Ohio. Simon has generously lent his name to many Kentucky landmarks including Simon Kenton High School in Independence, Simon Kenton Memorial Bridge in Maysville and most famously, the Simon Kenton Harvest Festival down in Washington, KY!
Let’s check out both county seats, starting with Independence. Originally known as Crewitt’s Creek, Independence later received its new name after Kenton County received its ‘independence’ from Campbell County. Clever, I know. Now a days, Independence is a city growing faster than most. So fast in fact, Forbes named them the 99th fastest growing city in the nation in 2007. Adding to their accolades, Independence was named the 13th Safest City in Kentucky by Safewise. This makes it the largest community in the top 15. With multiple parks spread out around the city, Independence gives her residents plenty of places to relax. The amphitheater at Memorial Park hosts events throughout the summer including concerts, puppet shows and even a magician. Also, with an abundance of churches, there’s always a festival you can attend. Make sure to catch the Rusty Griswolds at the St. Cecilia tomorrow, the 30th. They’re a northern Kentucky favorite!
Now onto our other county seat which was founded in 1815, Covington. Per the last census, Covington has a little over 40,000 residents making it Kentucky’s 5th most populous city. Situated on the banks of the Ohio, Covington residents and visitors can enjoy many of Covington’s attractions and events. You can catch a show at the Carnegie Visual & Performing Arts Center or the Madison Theater. Or you can check out the many events going on at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center. I’ll be checking out Cincy Comicon September 5-7 this year, so long as my Riddler tights are back from the dry cleaners. Looking for an outdoors event instead? We have you covered. Some of northern Kentucky’s best events are held in Covington, including our two favorite German parties, Maifest and Oktoberfest! Since you missed Maifest, come out after Comicon September 5-7 to Mainstrasse Village for some sauerkraut covered bratwursts and a nice, cold doppelbock. Other exciting Covington events include Mardi Gras, First Friday Art Gallery Hop and THE Original Goetta Festival. If you’re looking for other food options, check out Otto’s in Mainstrasse, Keystone Bar & Grill, Amerasia, and Blinkers Tavern, home of the Best Steak of Northern Kentucky award two years running! In need of a drink? Make sure to educate yourself on bourbon and whiskey at the Old Kentucky Bourbon Bar on Main Street. That way, you have some game to drop on the ladies once you head to Pachinko’s, Cock and bull or Mulligans. And finally, I’d be doing Kenton County a great disservice if I failed to mention the famous Ludlow Bromley Yacht Club. The LBYC sits on the Ohio and sees all sorts of kinds of folks. In one night you’ll see boaters tie up to party with college kids, professional athletes and, per a few emails I received, the occasional cougar or two. So strap on the flip flops and I’ll meet you down there underneath the neon palm trees!
Finally, there are a few famous Kenton County residents we should recognize. While I think we mentioned him in the Campbell County post, our boy Jared Lorenzen was born in Covington. This puts him along the likes of some pretty important, and random folks. Gail Borden, inventor of condensed milk, lived in Covington. Songwriter Haven Gillespie, co-writer of “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town” was born in Covington. Great painter Frank Duveneck was born here. He was the realist. (painting joke) The two Kenton County names most of you will know are baseball great David Justice and owner of Roush Fenway Racing, Jack Roush. While playing for the Braves, Indians, Yankees and A’s, David Justice amassed a Rookie of the Year award, 3 All Star appearances, and 2 World Series Championships. After a stint working for Ford, Jack Roush formed Jack Roush Performance Engineering in 1976 and has seen 7 titles as an owner in NASCAR’s top 3 series, including a back to back Sprint Cup titles in 03 and 04.
Well there ya go ladies and gents. The 12th stop of our tour down, which means we’re officially 10% done. We have a lot of counties. Let’s head out next to our western most tip and see how things are going down in Fulton County!
Remember, if you want your county’s favorite hole-in-the-wall restaurant or cool town event featured, hit me up at [email protected] and we’ll get it on here!