Pikeville-Pike County, Kentucky is one of Kentucky’s most beautiful and interesting destinations. Home to the feuding Hatfields and McCoys, visitors can explore the historic feud sites from this storied past, while taking in breathtaking views and tasting some of our region’s unique flavors.
The Pikeville-Pike County Kentucky Visitors Guide includes details on Pike County attractions, annual events and lodging, and is the perfect first step to planning your trip.
Pikeville Hillbilly Days is one of Kentucky’s most attended festivals, being one of the state’s first festivals of the (mostly) warm months of the year. Hillbilly Days is known for its outlandish character, wide assortment of vendor booths, and charm that has endured for over 40 years. Most importantly, Hillbilly Days is also a fundraiser for the Shriners Hospital for Children in Lexington, Kentucky, a hospital that serves disabled children in the Eastern Kentucky region, among many other areas.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has shut down pretty much all festivals in the state of Kentucky for the foreseeable future, it still doesn’t hurt to reminisce on the Hillbilly Days festivals of yesteryear. Let’s take a look at some photos from previous Hillbilly Days festivals.
Pikeville Hillbilly Days Gallery
Buy Hillbilly Days Merch & Support the Children’s Hospital
Despite being cancelled, Hillbilly Days 2020 merchandise is still available. Purchase collectables for the Hillbilly Days that never was by contacting Robert Adkins at 606-899-9030, or message him on facebook. Hillbilly Days Shirts are $12.00, button pins (white) are $1.00, patches, lapel pins and knives are $5.00 each. Shirts available in adult small thru 3x and youth and infant onesies. Don’t allow COVID-19 to prevent you from showing your support for the Shriners Hospital for Children.
More Hillbilly Days Resources
Wanting to keep track of the updates concerning Hillbilly Days? Follow our Pikeville Hillbilly Days facebook page, or visit www.HillbillyDays.com for updates. As of this writing, Hillbilly Days 2020 has been cancelled, and has yet to be rescheduled. However, it doesn’t hurt to check back from time to time to see if things have changed. You never know.
Hotel Anthony was built between 1920 and 1925 and is located on the corner of Grace and Main Street in downtown Pikeville, Kentucky. It is featured on the National Register of Historic Places. Anthony Williams was the original owner of the hotel, which was, at the time, the only four-story brick building within the commercial historic district, and was also the tallest building in Pikeville until the First National Bank was built. Hotel Anthony was constructed with a simplistic design, and is made of enduring brick with decorative stone.
The building houses businesses until this day and is a central feature of Main Street. For better or worse, various remodeling efforts have been made to the building over the years, yet it still stands as one of Pikeville’s notable historic structures.
Pictured here is an interesting old ad for Hotel Anthony. The ad details rates as being a single for $1.25 to $2.50, with a doubles being $1.75 to $4.00. That’s a far cry from today’s prices, yet with inflation and other factors being considered, this is still quite a deal. A quick google search reveals that the average income of the early 1920’s was just over $3000 a year, with income tax dropping from a massive 77% in the mid-to-late teens, to around 25% by the time 1925 rolled around. If my math is correct, one could have purchase a double bed for a couple of hours wage. That’s not bad at all! But times have changed, and hotels feature a lot more amenities, staff, and all of the comforts we’ve come to expect, with a price to match.
The ad also highlights that Hotel Anthony offered elevator service (which is now a given for hotels), and free garage. If you look closely, the ad depicts the old drug store as being another convenience for those staying in the hotel. The great thing about exploring history is that we not only learn from the past, but we can see how things have progressed.
We here at Pike County Tourism CVB are optimistic that, when the COVID-19 pandemic breaks, people are going to be more than ready to get out and travel again. As you probably could imagine, the tourism industry is taking a massive hit due to the coronavirus, and when the tourism industry hurts, everyone hurts. Because of the hard work that Pike County Tourism CVB has done over the past several years, and the partnerships that we have been blessed to be involved in, 2020 was poised to be another record-breaking year for tourist spending in Pike County. But, the world can be unpredictable at times, and we are staying positive during all of this. As our governor says, “we will get through this together”. So, while we are in quarantine, awaiting this day to come, let’s go over some interesting attractions to plan for. What else do you have to do?
When COVID-19 Breaks, Let’s Head for the Breaks
Despite healthcare professionals urging people to go outside for some sunshine and fresh air (but still maintaining social distancing), the fear surrounding this pandemic is keeping many people locked indoors. So, we predict that once COVID-19 breaks, people will flock to one of our many beautiful outdoor attractions. Pike County has no shortage of them, with places like Grants Branch Park in Stone, Kentucky, to the Lick Creek Horse Trail, and one of our most prized gems, Breaks Interstate Park.
Breaks Park features everything an outdoor enthusiast loves, from rustic hiking trails, to biking, rock climbing, and more sight seeing than you can shake a stick at. Known as “the Grand Canyon of the South”, everyone who visits the Breaks should check out their Rhododendron restaurant for dining that overlooks this 5-mile, 1650 feet deep gorge. The Breaks also offers Elk Viewing Tours, and boasts of a 100% success rate in seeing Elk. We’ll all need to reconnect with nature after being cooped up for so long.
Let’s Get Back Together with Pike County Cruise-Ins
Our Pike County commissioners have been very active in supporting tourism in our county, and have provided invaluable support for us to do what we do best. One tourism initiative that has came about over the past year is the establishment of Pike County Cruise-ins. Although independent car clubs have been hosting amazing cruise-ins for years, it was the desire of the commission, as well as Pike County Tourism CVB, to promote a series of Pike County Cruise-ins that bring folks together from different clubs, and to attract car enthusiasts from all over. Cruise-ins give us the opportunity to not only check out killer hot rods and classic cars, but also to reconnect with one another. Each Pike County Cruisers event features food vendors, ice cream, a swap meet (no yard sale items please), and free dash plaques for the first 100 visitors. This event is normally scheduled for the 3rd Sunday of each month, April through September, but as is true with every event, we will have to wait and see when the first Cruisers meet will happen this year.
Catch a Show at our Local Theatres
One thing we all miss is going to the theatre. Whether it’s a movie theatre, or a theatre for the performing arts, being without such experiences is excruciating for many of us. Whenever this thing breaks, our local theatres will be ready to entertain, with a variety of shows for all walks of life to enjoy.
Pike County is blessed to have two amazing theatres for the performing arts, Artists Collaborative Theatre and The Appalachian Center for the Arts, or “The App” for short. Artists Collaborative Theatre has suffered its own setbacks as of late, with their building burning down not too long ago. However, the show must go on, and they will be showcasing productions at the Breaks Interstate Park until a new facility is built.
The App will be hosting several productions later this year, beginning with The Cleverlys, which has been rescheduled from their May 1st date to June 4th. Later this year, more amazing productions are scheduled for the App, such as The Marvelous Wonderettes, The Kevin Prater Band, Sleep in Safety: The Legend of Octavia Hatcher (their highly anticipated October production), and so much more. Check out the Appalachian Center for the Arts page for details.
Let’s not forget the Appalachian Wireless Arena, which has several great shows planned for the second half of the year. Steve Miller Band with special guest Marty Stuart is scheduled for July 22nd, The Price is Right is scheduled for July 26, with Poison performing on August 8th, Toby Keith performing August 14th and Lynyrd Skynyrd performing September 10th.
Hank Williams Jr., a concert that was scheduled to headline the now cancelled (but may be rescheduled) Hillbilly Days, is now scheduled for October 23.
Part of what helps us cope with the current circumstances is knowing that we are doing our part to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to our community, and looking forward to the day that we can again welcome visitors to our beautiful region to enjoy the many great things our community has to offer. Until then, making travel plans is certainly a good way to pass the time. If you have questions, or need help planning your Pike County getaway, feel free to reach out to us here.
Our fourth installment of our photo blog series “Beautiful Pike County, KY” focuses on local favorite, Mary Reed Runyon. Runyon has been a supporter of Pike County Tourism CVB for many years, and has captured some of our most beloved nature and scenic photographs. Runyon’s photographs capture the raw natural beauty of Eastern Kentucky in such a breathtaking way, with fog rolling through the Pike County hills, vibrant green, yellow and red vegetation, and vivid blue skies full of thick clouds.
We here at Pike County Tourism CVB are so appreciative for Runyon, not just for her contributions to our marketing material, but for enriching our lives with her artistic passion, as many of our community members would agree. Check out her gallery below.
Mary Reed Runyon Gallery
Mary Reed Runyon
Check out Mary Reed Runyon’s facebook page below.
Subjects: Nature, Architecture, Scenics, Culture Facebook Page:Click here