As RHC Riding Academy’s head trainer, Erin Reid shares a passion for horses that began when her family founded RHC in 1985. A devotee to all things equine since age 5, Erin quickly caught onto the finer points of riding and has instructed students for the past 19 years. Barn manager Debra Reid, who discovered her life’s passion while growing up in Kentucky, managed 70 horses at a breeding facility in Southern California and unites her experience with Erin's. Together they oversee nine horses, several of which are Arabians—prized for their distinctive beauty and superior intellects.
Students come to the facility from all backgrounds to learn proper saddling and riding techniques. Erin supplements her technical training with lessons in horse psychology, helping students bond with steeds or to get them to open up about complex relationships with their mothers. Horses in need of discipline or a hay-filled couch on which to crash can be boarded and trained at the facility, which boasts box stalls, an indoor riding arena, and a large outdoor arena.
Occupying the former gardens of late nursery and landscape leader Theodore Klein, Yew Dell Botanical Gardens displays graceful garden arrangements and lush foliage while striving to improve the botanical world through research and community-education programs. The Silver Cloud family membership gives you—and family members residing at the same address—free year-long access to the sprawling grounds and their leafy residents that welcome visitors with the friendly stoicism of a granite butler. Espy new varietals of ornamental plants, the hortichildren of Yew Dell's plant development program, wander through the alternately arborial and floral gardens, and practice your standup comedy on the dogwoods, sugar maples, and other plants that flourish throughout the property.
GlenOaks challenges the driving, putting, and chipping skills for golfers of all abilities with an 18-hole bermuda-grass course and expansive driving range. The course's bentgrass greens and well-manicured fairways meander between sphere-snatching hazards, including sand traps, sparkling ponds, and surface-to-air golf-ball missiles. Orb-smashers can visit the driving range to hone distance shots on the 10,000-square-foot chipping green, flanked by two sandy bunkers to simulate the hazards. Afterward, recharge over-oscillated appendages with a tasty hot-dog, bratwurst, or sandwich lunch, complete with a bag of chips and a soft drink.
The avid paddlers at River City Canoe & Kayak draw upon years of experience navigating Kentucky’s waterways to empower budding aquaphiles to do the same. They stock their vast showroom with boats, accessories, and apparel, and happily help paddlers hone in on an ideal vessel for whitewater or sturdy paddle for impromptu jousting. Their expertise extends beyond the showroom: American Canoe Association–certified instructors lead classes in water safety, and rent out a fleet of kayaks, canoes, and standup paddleboards from their Harrods Creek launch site.
There's a more personal way to get to know a zebra than visiting it at the zoo or stalking it on the African plains. At Henry's Ark, visitors can get up close to their favorite striped horse, along with emus, yaks, bison, buffalo, and llamas. All the owners ask: don't feed the animals.