At age 7, Jung Oh Hwang began practicing martial arts in a small village in South Korea. As a young man he represented his home country at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, where he earned a silver medal in judo. At Hwang's Martial Arts, Grandmaster Hwang and his staff pass on decades of martial-arts wisdom to the next generation, instilling technical combat knowledge and imparting valuable life lessons on self-discipline, perseverance, and teamwork.
Since opening the doors in 1986, Grandmaster Hwang has dedicated both time and money to bettering the lives of others. Hwang's has raised more than $750,000 for the local community and has a named playroom in the new St. Matthews Kosair Children's hospital.
Amid the hustle and bustle of the city, Louisville Nature Center offers a tranquil escape from urban sprawl. At its 41-acre Beargrass Creek State Nature Preserve, more than 2 miles of hiking trails wind past a verdant forest populated by 180 species of tree, shrub, and wildflower. The latter blooms in a native pond and garden, and dragonflies and 30 butterfly species in other gardens pay homage to Lord of the Flies by trying to collectively lift a conch. More creatures soar skyward inside one of Louisville's only bird blinds, where visitors can watch 150 species of resident and migratory birds fluttering about.
After exploring on their own, guests can relax on one the picnic tables or beneath the covered gazebo before joining in on special events such as owl hikes. Youngsters, meanwhile, can discover more nature factoids at summer camps, educational programs, or birthday parties, which include guided hikes and live animal presentations.
Jump!Zone is an inflatable indoor play center packed with moonwalks, bouncers, and giant slides for children ages 2 to 12. With a pass to six open play sessions, mini-humans can slip on a pair of socks and experience all nine of the facility's bouncy attractions. An 18-foot fire truck makes a great slide and provides an excellent career idea for kids who still haven't decided what they want to be, while the playplace's giant alligator and the Jurassic Adventure Combo help grade-schoolers explore the softer side of everyday predators. Children who prefer stationary entertainment can dominate the air hockey table, leaving their adult counterparts free to recite the periodic table of elements backward in peace.
Mud oozes through fingers, toes, and other places mud should never ooze through during Mudathlon, a challenge that puts 3 miles and more than 40 obstacles between racers and the finish line. With multiple stops across the country, Mudathlon transforms its destinations into messy, muck-riddled swamplands, where participants ascend walls, zip down slides, and always end up in the same place—back in the mud. Course marshals stationed along each route keep feet moving in the right direction, and at the finish line, the top three male and female competitors receive Top Mudder awards for finishing fastest while ingesting the government’s daily recommended serving of mud. After the race, individuals and teams gather to celebrate at a country-themed party, which continues the festivities with live music, costume contests, and an abundance of food and beer.