The Kentucky Arts Council, in conjunction with state of Kentucky, packs 30 years’ worth of experience and excitement into Kentucky Crafted: The Market, and it shows. The weekend festival collects more than 200 exhibitors from all walks of self-expression, be they artists, musicians, artisanal food products, or writers. They populate the expansive halls of the Lexington Convention Center with their handmade artwork, giving the public a chance to interact with them, order custom artworks, or just see and sample some goods. After navigating aisles full of artful sights, sounds, and smells, guests can relax and catch a concert at the Kentucky Stage music festival, a simultaneous event that collects beloved musicians from across the state. With all of this activity, its no wonder that the Southeast Tourism Society has named the festival one of the top 20 events in the region for each of the past 15 years.
The extravagant Fasig-Tipton Pavilion houses this year’s Chamber Music Festival of Lexington, where acclaimed musicians give majestic performances and host master classes. Friday evening reveals a nuanced rendition of Dvořák's Terzetto in C Major, as delivered in part by the festival's artistic director, Nathan Cole, who also holds the position of first associate concertmaster with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Ravel's Trio in A Minor brings together soothing sounds of piano, violin, and cello, ad Schubert's famed Trout Quintet dances between strings, piano, and a trio of opera-singing fish. Saturday evening ushers in Busoni's Sonata no. 2 in E—its ivory, dulcet piano tickled by Alessio Bax, who has appeared as a soloist with more than 85 orchestras worldwide. Bach's Sheep May Safely Graze and a world premiere written by Daniel Kellogg set the sound stage for Dvořák's Quintet in G Major, as two violins, a viola, a cello, and a double bass come together to fight musical crimes wrought by vuvuzelas and Christmas recordings of dogs barking.
Bluegrass Polo Club aims to develop everyday horse lovers into athletes who want to take their golf game to the next level. A friendly instructor draws on more than two decades of experience to craft 60-minute lessons for novices and intermediate players who at least have some horse-riding experience, helping build deep if temporary partnerships with four-legged teammates. After being introduced to polo-appropriate tack and equipment, groups of up to six horse handlers will board practiced polo ponies to learn riding skills, shots, and basic strategy. Trotters seen engaging their horses in deep conversation peppered by such terms as "chukker" and "third man" may join an intermediate group to perfect their mastery of the ball and mallet. This Groupon can also be applied toward a private lesson ($90/hour) for those who'd like to imitate the most genteel of lone bandits.
When Joan Barnes founded Gymboree in 1976, she envisioned a facility where parents and children could play together in a safe and age-appropriate environment. In the following decades, Gymboree spread to more than 30 countries across the globe, helping youngsters from infants to 5 years old develop cognitive, physical, and social skills. The company's instructors lead classes such as Play & Learn, its flagship course, in which parents and kids move through a seven-level program filled with storytelling, play activities, and debates on the merits of sandwich crust. Talented staffers also prep youngsters for school and foster development in areas such as music, art, and sports. Throughout all classes, they make use of custom play equipment designed by acclaimed playground designer and seesaw-tamer Jay Beck.
At the three-day Holly Day Market, presented by and benefiting the Junior League of Lexington, shoppers browse the wares of local and national vendors to get an early start on picking out their holiday gifts. They can grab mouthwatering soup and dip mixes from All of Us, sample fragrances from Scentsy, and pretend to be giant babies while trying on children's clothing from Hopscotch. In addition, children can have their picture taken with Santa and Mrs. Claus on Saturday and Sunday afternoon. The market also features several additional activities for kids, including arts and crafts.
At Bliss Body's open, airy studio, you'll find practitioners bending and stretching in a variety of yoga classes held throughout the week. During vigorous ashtanga sessions and gentler basic yoga—designed to supply beginners with a strong foundation—instructors teach the importance of wellness-prompting activities such as mindfulness, steady breathing, and not starting every morning with a warm cup of gravy. The studio also offers Pilates, a challenging, core-toning regimen that both strengthens and lengthens bodies, available in multiple levels.