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31 Days of Louisville Love: Waterfront Park

Although I don't get there much, I love Waterfront Park. I've lived in a few river cities (St. Louis, New Orleans), and for me, Louisville has the best outdoor space along a river.


It's easily accessible -- you can have brunch at Garage Bar and stroll down to the park. There's lots walking (running/biking) paths. I love the Great Lawn and those bird statues (currently on vacation while they're restored). I love the Lincoln Statue, the swinging benches, and I really love biking through the park, always with the river in view. I love going to concerts at Waterfront Park and watching the sun set over the Ohio. 

When the Big Four Bridge opened, I had a whole new reason to get excited about Waterfront Park. I love that looping approach. I always want to see more when we drive over bridges, and walking the Big Four lets me take my time and see all the river I want. I haven't been since the Indiana side opened, but I'm looking forward to exploring. 

The Charles Rivers is also lovely, and I'm really excited about living close to an ocean. But I will miss Waterfront Park, and I will have to go to all the 2015 Watefront Wednesdays to make up for our time away. 

Climbing Around the Falls of the Ohio

One of my favorite outdoor spots in Louisville is actually in Indiana. 

We tried to visit the Falls of the Ohio a few years ago, in August. The fossil beds can get something like 20 degrees hotter than whatever the temperature is, and on that day, the temperature was already too much. We made it halfway down the banks of the river before we turned around.

But the Falls of the Ohio in November? Perfect. 

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I like this spot because the Ohio is a different river on this side of the McAlpine dam. From Waterfront Park and the Big Four Bridge, the river looks slow and wide, and for whatever reason, I always wonder if I could swim across it (but I wonder that about most bodies of water). Pushed through the dam, the water turns to rapids and becomes powerful, intimidating, banishing all thoughts of swimming. 

Can't swim in that. 

Can't swim in that. 

I like the Falls of the Ohio because the path and guardrails from the interpretive center stop halfway to the river. From there, you can pick your path to the river, scrambling over boulders and climbing over bleached, beached tree trunks. There's nothing and no one (at least on Sunday) stopping you from walking up to the dam. 

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And there's no signage (that I saw) explaining the siren from the dam that sounded at 1 o'clock. 

We took it to mean, "Run away!" which we did until it stopped. None of the fishermen seemed concern, and logically, I figured it didn't mean, "We're opening this and flushing you out." The few results Google has imply that it might actually mean that, but no one seemed to care. Do you know what it is? Because apart from terrifying alarms, the Falls are wonderful. It would be reassuring to know for sure that I don't risk drowning from open floodgates while climbing around.  

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