Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Let's Talk Candy - How To Have A Healthier Halloween

Halloween can feel like it is all about candy, but it can also be an opportunity for a teachable moment.  Let's talk about making healthy choices during Halloween.

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Halloween can be scary. Even with ghosts, ghouls and goblins abound, the most frightening part of Halloween might be how many calories our children bring home in their trick-or-treat bags.

The candy in an average trick-or-treat bag can contain as much as 7,000 calories, according to Dr. Donna Arnett at the University of Alabama-Birmingham’s school of public health, and all that candy can lead to tooth decay and a lot of extra pounds for the entire family.

 photo IMG_5565_zpsgpwyvvuh.jpg What’s a health-conscious parent to do without ruining one of the most kid-friendly celebrations of the year?

· As the person handing out candy, opt for healthier or non-food alternatives. Candy is fun, but healthy food can be as well. Making small oranges, popcorn balls or fruit cups with pumpkin faces drawn on them can encourage healthier eating while still getting into the Halloween spirit. Give trick-or-treaters dried fruit, fruit leathers, crackers or trail mix.

Check out this FREE online book CHEAP EATS, by Leanne Brown, on page 74 for a cheap homemade treat that can be assembled for less than .25 a serving.  What is it? Healthier and affordable microwave popcorn. Print out labels to this book's URL to add to the popcorn bags.  Bonus - families will learn about how to eat healthy at home on a budget year round.

Or, if you want to avoid giving out candy or snack foods altogether, give small toys, stickers, temporary tattoos, pencils, Halloween erasers or glow-sticks. Kids receive plenty of candy on Halloween and will enjoy being surprised by the “extras” they gather while trick-or-treating.

 photo IMG_9730_zpsu6ssaejt.jpg· Get out and exercise. Candy consumption certainly increases on and around Halloween, but so does walking. Fitbit recently analyzed its data and found the average user walked an additional 2,750 steps on Halloween. While those extra steps won’t cancel out all those candy bars you ate, the added walking and exercise can help you control your weight and improve your health.
Take family walks around the neighborhood before Halloween to plan your trick-or-treating route. The additional movement can benefit the whole family.

· Fill your little goblins’ tummies with healthy food before they hit their candy stash. Eating a healthy dinner before trick-or-treating will help ensure your kids are properly fueled and less tempted to snack their way around the neighborhood. Plus, for safety, you should save your candy until you get home to screen for anything potentially hazardous.

 photo Gingerbread_zpsd7oidezv.jpg · Encourage candy in moderation.  Set a limit on candy consumption to one day or a week.  Save extra candy for creative projects.  In our family, we save extra candy by freezing it and pulling it out before Christmas for our annual gingerbread house making tradition.  Ditch the gingerbread house making kits at Christmas.  Instead, stock up on your supplies over time. Create a bin for your gingerbread making supplies and save for later.  Graham Crackers, store-bought frosting, Halloween Candy, aluminum foil, stale ice-cream cones, coconut that has been sitting in the back of the freezer.  We use this method for building our houses.

If you return home and your family has more candy than they should eat, search online for a local dentist or other business participating in candy-donation or buy-back programs.  Your school's Youth Service Center would likely appreciate the donations as well. Call first for each location’s program details.

This Halloween, have fun dressing up and eating a few treats but balance the usual indulgence with making healthier choices.

By Dr. Julie Daftari, medical director, UnitedHealthcare of Kentucky
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Wednesday, October 17, 2018

7 Unique Places to Celebrate Halloween in Kentucky

There are so many Halloween events throughout the state - let's focus on events that are doing things a little differently.  Here are 7 awesome Kentucky events where families can enjoy friendly Halloween BOOs and SCARES.

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The World's Largest Halloween Party takes place at the Louisville Zoo. While I am sure that many have heard of the event there are bound to be some who weren't aware of the event! The zoo starts this event in early October and it runs through Halloween. You can find more information here. Just a tip it is pretty popular so going earlier in the season works out better in terms of crowds! Tickets are required but you can grab them here!

Fort Boonesborough State Park, Richmond - They host a Halloween Lights Drive Thru October 27th.  They are sights, sounds and scares of over 1½ miles of Halloween lights and displays - enjoy it all from the comfort of your car. They do it up at the campground also! A $5 donation for the tour will go to the Fort Boonesborough Foundation. For more information call 859-527-3454

Experience Halloween decorations and lights high in the treetops among 60 obstacles at the Treetop Adventure at Levi Jackson State Park.  Hours are typically Friday-Sunday, with extended hours on Thursday, October 18th.  Visit here for more information.

Join in the fun in Winchester at the Halloween Festival, organized by Winchester-Clark County Parks and Recreation on October 19 or 20 from 6:30-10pm.  There is something fun for everyone in your family, no matter their age and scare-tolerance. Activities include a haunted house, inflatables, pumpkin painting and face painting. 

Halloween Walk with the Animals at Salato Wildlife Center is October 27th from 12-4pm. It's a family-friendly Trick-or-Treat event so folks are encouraged to dress up and talk a walk on the wild side. The kids will receive a treat bag to collect candy and a passport which they will take to each of the indoor and outdoor animal booths to receive a treat (or trick!) - fun while learning about the animals. Hay maze, face painting, photo booth, and a fishing booth.

Join the students, staff, and community of Transylvania University for Pumpkin Mania, which will include at least 5,000 uniquely carved pumpkins.  On October 30 at 7pm families can walk among the jack-o-lanturns to trick-or-treat, listen to music and take part other children's activities.

Main Street Wilmore, described as a little Kentucky Mayberry, will be blocked off and businesses and individuals will be handing out treats for Treats on Main on October 31st. There is a costume contest at 7:30pm in the Pavilion - bring your best because the people of Wilmore bring their best creative ideas.  This is a safe and welcoming experience that despite any cold weather, will warm you. 

Click here to see more events in Oldham County
Click here to see more events around the Louisville area
Click here to see more events for the Shelby County area
Click here for Halloween fun around Lexington
Click here for fall fun around Elizabethtown

Check out our Pumpkin Patch list!

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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

The best places in Kentucky to see the fall foliage

If you are like me and fall is your favorite season, chances are you enjoy seeing natures beauty on display in the form of the beautiful fall colors around Kentucky. Enjoy our natural foliage display this time of year. 

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The Kentucky Tourism thinks it is so important they have a whole program devoted to it called ColorFall.

Here are a few ideas that stand out:

 photo IMG_5409_zpslby702e5.jpgBernheim Forest looks to be the place with the most organized event that honors the colors at their ColorFest. It takes place on both October 20-21, complete with food trucks, crafts by various Kentucky artists, a mud pie kitchen, hay maze and a pumpkin launch! You get to tour forest by hay ride and take in all of the fall colors in that unique way. If you are a member admission is free and for everyone else it is $10 per car load.

In the Lake Cumberland area there is the option of going on a train ride with Big South Fork Scenic Railway. This is a great way to take in the colors from a different perspective and, of course, the kids will love the train!

Cave City in the western part of our state is another great area to taken in the colors, there are 5 different caves in the area and a quaint little town with shopping and restaurants. You can take in the colors on a day trip or weekend getaway. There's lots to do around Cave City!

Travel and Leisure says that Middlesboro KY is a great place to take in the sights and if you are up for a little over night trip they even recommend a cute bed and breakfast.

 photo IMG_5435_zps4dynd67u.jpgPick some fall family fun in Louisville and stop in at St. James Court. The homes are so historic and beautiful, add in the changing colors on the trees, the lovely'll have a nice stroll around the area.

And, here are some more ideas from the KY Bed & Breakfast Association.Click here.
Don't forget about the Lexington area, click here.
There's also a fall foliage calendar for the Smoky Mountains so you can plan accordingly if you are headed to that area.

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Thursday, October 11, 2018

Let's Go Camping Kentucky - Cave Run Lake

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Are you thinking about planning a family camping trip before the cold weather settles in?  Maybe you are thinking about next year and want to commit to getting outdoors by blocking off time now before next year's calendar fills up?  If you are looking for a camping destination, we suggest you consider a trip to Cave Run Lake.

Cave Run Lake is about a one and a half hour drive east from Lexington towards Morehead at the foothills of the Eastern Kentucky mountains. The Ziplo Recreation area where you can camp is located on a 355-acre wooded peninsula on Cave Run Lake and is 15 minutes south from I-64 off of Hwy 801.

What will you find there? When the water is not high, you will find a beach along with hiking trails, fishing, boating, and safe wide roads to bike on.  You will also discover that the staff of Cave Run Lake are committed to making your experience safe, relaxing, and well supplied.  There is a store located near the beach and the main parking area which also houses a laundry.

With at least 172 campsites divided between 10 sections, families will likely make new friends while camping at Cave Run Lake.  Despite the number of campsites the wooded acres and changing topography of this campground provide a wide variety of site types making it difficult to choose favorites.  However, if you are comfortable camping beside the water and like quick access to fishing, we recommend the following sites: D - sites 16 and 14, E - sites 9, 10, & 12 or F- sites 19 through 28. 

For those of you who may not like tent camping, consider renting a camper.  Sites like make it easy to plan to stay in a camper.  Businesses like Wild Cat Adventure Rentals, will set up the camper for you and make it easy for those of us who may be less excited about sleeping in a tent.  Shop around for the best deal.  Wild Cat Camping requires a deposit but if the campers are left as they were found, deposits are returned.

As you are preparing for your trip to Cave Run, keep in mind that you should Be Bear Aware.  Although, bears are typically only spotted near the campground once a year.  The last spotting was on September 8, 2018. 

Finally, we recommend that you plan a meal at Pop's Southern Style BBQ.  It is on the sweeter side but still delicious and there are plenty of choices for kids.  For starters, we recommend the cheese sticks or homemade beer cheese with a pretzel.

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Monday, October 8, 2018

Zombie Paintball Hayride

Kentucky's Zombie Paintball Hayride takes place at Thomas Dairy Farm and Market in Cecilia, Kentucky

This is a sponsored post
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 photo paintball3_zpsagssalew.jpg The zombie invasion has begun! Come out for a one of a kind experience on the hayride paintball trailer at Thomas Dairy Farm and Market. This year's theme is the "Wild, Wild West" featuring a new course and even more live zombies. Suitable for all ages. Zombie paintball is a night activity, other activities are also available during the day.

The fee is $15/person including 125 paintballs, Walker T's fun zone, mega slides, animal farm, corn pit, flashlight corn maze, bonfire, and so much fall family fun. 20+ people group rate is available.

Last year, some staff from spent the day at Thomas Dairy Farm and Market participating in a variety of their activities, including the paintball. Check out this post to read more about it. 

 photo paintball 1_zps9eqvetgl.jpgWant a little more?
Mark your calendar for Saturday, October 20th, they will have a DJ and Karaoke free with admission 4 pm- 8 pm.

Hours of Operation:​
Monday-Thursday: 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Friday-Saturday: 10 a.m.-Midnight
Sunday: 12 p.m.- 6 p.m.

Zombie paintball is Now open every Friday and Saturday night in October!
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Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Let's Go Hear Spooky Stories Kentucky

Who’s heard about the haints in the holler or the Grey Lady of Liberty Hall? Kentucky is rich with ghost stories and great storytellers.  We suggest you seek some of them out this October. 
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This is a selection of tours and programs but is by now way comprehensive. 

Central Kentucky

Shaker Village at Pleasant Hill October 5, 6, 12, 13, 20, 21, 27, 28, 5:30 and 7:00pm | Spirit Stroll
The stories told are spooky or uncomfortable tales of the people who called Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill home.
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Spirit Strolls at Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill

My Old Kentucky Home | October 12, 13, 19, 20, 26, 27 and 28, 7-10pm | Shadows of Federal Hill, Ghost Tours of My Old Kentucky Home

Woodford County Libary | October 12, 6-9pm | Cemetery Ghost Walk

Lawrenceburg (Anderson) | October 18, 20, 26, 27, and 31 at 8pm | Lawrenceburg Ghost Walk 

West Point (Hardin County) | October 20, 6-9pm | Ghost Walk Through Haunted West Point

Ashland, The Henry Clay Estate (Fayette County) | October 27, 10-11am |  Stump Stories
Sit on a stump below the old twisted Catalpa to hear Spooky tales.  Appropriate for all ages!

Waveland (Fayette) | October 26, November 2, 8pm | Ghost Hunt at Waveland

Metro Louisville

Downtown LaGrange (Oldham County) | October 4-?, 7:30-9:30pm | Spirits of LaGrange Ghost Tour at Main Street LaGrange

Corn Island Festival, 7:30-9pm (Jefferson County): Corn Island Storytelling Festival

Eastern Kentucky

White Hall (Madison) | October 19 | Ghost Hunt at White Hall

Northern Kentucky

Trimble County Public Library | October 6, 8-11pm | Ghost Walk

Western Kentucky

Kentucky Gateway Museum Center (Maysville) | October 6, 7:30-8:30pm | Maysville Ghost Walk

Market House Theatre (Paducah) | October 6, 13, 20, 26, and 27 | Ghost Tours

For Adults

Liberty Hall Historic Site | October 25, 6-9:30pm | Haint Nothin' but Spirits

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