By Grace Taylor
Summer is without a doubt one of my favorite seasons. The heat of the Summer always brings back memories of playing outside as a kid, chilling at the pool with friends, and hiking with my family on weekends. As fun as all the outdoor summer activities can be, sometimes you need to beat the heat. So, I’ve put together a list of some great outdoor parks, with nearby indoor businesses to visit and help you cool off.
Located at the intersection of Midland Ave and Main Street, Thoroughbred Park shows Lexington’s devotion to the world of all things horses. The park has several statues of horses posed mid-race as well as plaques honoring the men and women who have dedicated their lives to the equestrian world. Thoroughbred Park is 2.5 acres and is the perfect spot for a stroll and to take pictures with some friends. Read on for some of our favorite businesses close by that you can head to while you’re in the area!
A Cup of Common Wealth is the perfect before (or after) treat for your walk outside. During the summer, I’m a big fan of an iced vanilla latte with oat milk. If coffee isn’t for you, check out their delicious Nine Pieces of Eight drink – a delightful mix of a Kentucky favorite, Ale8, and your choice of flavored syrup.
Bicycle Face can help both the beginner and the expert cyclist find their perfect bike and gear. Get outfitted for a ride through Thoroughbred Park or downtown, then stop by at the end of your ride and grab a cold beer with some friends.
For those who may want a little more intense exercise than a walk through a park, head over to CycleYOU. Their Summer Sweat Challenge is here, which is a program dedicated to encouraging members to get their sweat on with prizes like free rides and goodies. They are dedicated to helping you create and find the best version of yourself.
Triangle Park is the perfect place to walk in the park or enjoy the sounds of nature in the middle of downtown — it’s the best of both worlds! Located across from Central Bank Center, Triangle Park always has something going on, whether it’s chess and backgammon in the park or open-air classes, there’s something for everyone.
Food Truck Fridays are the perfect excuse to get out of the office for lunch on Fridays. There is light programming provided by Downtown Lexington Partnership and local food trucks every Friday in Triangle Park from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm.
Located in the Hilton Lexington/downtown lounge, Bigg Blue Martini is the perfect spot for drinks and a great summer hangout. Their patio makes for the perfect spot to cool off with a beverage and enjoy the summer weather overlooking the park.
Located right across the street from Triangle Park, The Square is an excellent place for shopping, dining and exploring the arts.
Originally constructed in the 1880s, The Square has always been at the heart of downtown Lexington. Our favorite place to stop there is the Explorium of Lexington, which is always a great place for family-friendly fun on those days that are too hot to get outside.
If you’re looking for a spot to grab a bite after your time in the park, gooey, cheesy and big-as-your-face pizza slices are just a couple of blocks away from Triangle Park at Goodfella’s pizzeria. Order by the slice, or if you have a large group get a whole pie! Head on over after your time in Triangle Park for a true “New York Style” Pizza in the heart of Downtown Lexington.
I may be biased, but my all-time favorite activity of the summer has got to be Central Bank Thursday Night Live (CBTNL). Free live music every Thursday night until October 13 – need I say more? CBTNL not only has live music, but it also has food trucks, kettle corn and drinks. It’s the perfect kick-off to your weekend, so I’ll see ya next Thursday!