The Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet announced May 29 that four parks previously designated as part of the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic will also soon reopen.

The four parks — Lake Cumberland, Lake Barkley, Blue Licks and Buckhorn — were originally scheduled to provide temporary housing for low acuity COVID-19 patients. However, Gov. Andy Beshear announced May 29 that the parks will reopen June 8, joining all other state parks, which will reopen June 1.

Kentucky has made great strides in our battle against the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a statement from the Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet. As we continue to see a decline in cases, the statement said, the governor and public health officials have determined that additional lodging provided by Kentucky State Parks is no longer necessary for our COVID-19 response efforts.

“We are making every effort to safely reopen tourism attractions across the commonwealth and offer in-state travel opportunities for Kentuckians to enjoy,” the governor said. “The revenue generated from in-state travel will foster economic growth in local communities and help Kentucky rebound with a healthy economy.”

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Even as facilities reopen, Kentucky health officials continue to stress the need for everyone to follow social distancing guidelines and wear masks to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

The Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet will also reopen the Kentucky Horse Park (KHP) on June 11, in accordance with Healthy at Work guidelines. This follows the Governor’s announcement that the Horse Park campground will open at limited capacity on June 11 to self-contained campers and RVs.

To prevent the spread of COVID-19, all scheduled events at the Kentucky Horse Park were canceled through June 10. KHP will host its first competitive horse show event without spectators, the Split Rock Horse Show, from June 17 to 21, in accordance with the United States Equestrian Federation.

“The reopening of the campground and the reintroduction of competitive horse shows are positive steps ahead in our phased approach to reopening tourism,” said Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet Secretary Mike Berry. “This strategic approach to reopening allows us to be best equipped to protect the health and safety of our guests and staff as we transition into a new way of how tourism is delivered to guests.”

Kentucky Horse Park attractions will open on a limited basis Wednesday through Sunday beginning June 11 at a discounted admission rate of $12 for adults and $6 for children. Parade of Breeds and Hall of Champions shows will be available at limited capacity to ensure social distancing.

Horseback riding will be available Monday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., for groups of 10 or fewer. Daily schedules are subject to change. Visitors are encouraged to call ahead or visit the park’s website at for updates.

Due to public health restrictions, the reopening of the Horse Park will not include Alltech Arena. Park attractions including horse drawn trolleys, access to barns, the International Museum of the Horse also will remain closed. The Iron Works Café will remain closed. Grab and go food items will be available in the park’s gift shop.

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