Spring stuck? Here are a few ways to enjoy Spring Break in Owensboro, courtesy of the Kipers

April 3, 2024 | 12:07 am

Updated April 2, 2024 | 11:02 pm

Unsure of how to enjoy Spring Break without leaving Owensboro? Take some advice from 6-year-old Rhae Kiper and her mother Jessica. The mother-daughter duo left their Grayson County home for a 2-day adventure in Owensboro, deciding at random what “Big O” features they would enjoy along the way.

Jessica said she let Rhae choose every turn — only 6 turns, to be exact — on their way out of Grayson County. When they rolled onto the U.S. 60 bypass, they saw the different places they could explore throughout the city.

In honor of their adventure, Rhae — Owensboro’s newest travel consultant — and Jessica provided a short list of which places to make a stop for a great spring break experience.

Legion Park

Sitting on Legion Park Drive, Rhae said this park has everything you could enjoy. For starters, the zipline was her favorite attraction. The park also has basketball and futsal courts and a half-mile walking trail. Plus, if you’re looking for a way to cure your dog’s zoomies, they’ll enjoy the Castlen Dog Park on the park’s northeast corner.

Local business scene

After spending the morning at Legion Park, Rhae needed some retail therapy, so they went to the south end of Frederica Street. The area has a mix of several small and big businesses, with Elite Air Owensboro being Rhae’s most anticipated spot. Elite Air Owensboro is a family-owned trampoline park on Salem Drive with ziplines, a ninja warrior course, inflatables, and more, and Rhae’s eyes were aglow the entire time.

Other popular destinations include the bowling alley Diamond Lanes South, the comic book store Big Bang, the music instrument store Upper Room Music, and several locally owned restaurants.

Smothers Park

For light show fans, Rhae said downtown’s nightly “rainbow” light show was a must-see. Even though the Park was great, Rhae said counting and seeing the lights on the Blue Bridge and Overlook was her favorite way to end the day.

During the day, though, downtown’s vibrant locally owned business scene shines best, including restaurants such as Don Mario and apparel stores like Kingdom Chords.

Self-care businesses

Spring Break is a respite from work and school, and Rhae believes a good massage can help. Jessica and Rhae recommended Serene Relief Wellness, which happened to be their first stop in town. If you’re looking for other ways to practice self-care, you can head to locally owned gyms such as Iron Jungle Fitness and OAC, or any of the salons and spas throughout Owensboro.

Practicing self-care also includes reading and getting creative, which led Rhae to the Daviess County Public Library. The building was one of her more breathtaking experiences in town because “I didn’t know a library could have stairs,” she said as she raced upstairs to the children’s section. There, she drew some art, played with the different set pieces, and made new friends in the play section.

Orchards and Agriculture

The storms earlier in the week damaged Rhae’s highly anticipated journey to Trunnell’s Farm Market in Utica. However, they still enjoyed different agricultural spots like Reid’s Orchard and the Western Kentucky Botanical Garden. All three areas focus on the benefits that nature has to offer, whether that be flowers at the Garden or freshly grown produce and greenery at Reid’s and Trunnell’s. Nonetheless, Rhae recommends the play areas at both sites.

Rare amenities

Rhae and Jessica did not get to explore the escape rooms or axe throwing at Escape Today on West 2nd Street, but those aren’t the only ways to try something out of the ordinary. If you want to practice your skating skills, the Edge Ice Center is open throughout the week.

Rhae and Jessica were in town for just under 2 days and were able to fill their time with many activities, all chosen on a whim as they made their way through town. Though they’d been to the city before, Jessica said it had much to offer Rhae.

“Letting her have different experiences is pretty exciting, and she makes friends everywhere she goes,” Jessica said. “Those types of things she’s experiencing, and I get to watch her do, that’s pretty heartwarming.”

April 3, 2024 | 12:07 am

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