Tour120 to Showcase Kentucky’s Historic Architecture
Preservation Kentucky’s Tour120 is an exciting new statewide event designed to raise awareness of the importance of historic preservation to Kentucky’s communities, and raise funds to help the nonprofits that preserve, manage and showcase them. To be held on Saturday-Sunday, May 18-19, 2019 during National Historic Preservation Month, Tour120 will feature tours of historic commercial, residential and public buildings on the same days throughout the state to make a large impact on the public and provide a cohesive branding, advertising and promotional opportunity for the host committees that participate.
The Tour120 concept is simple: With your participation, Preservation Kentucky will promote historic building tours on the same weekend of the year in as many of the Commonwealth’s 120 counties as possible. The success of Tour120 depends on active participation by Host Committees to showcase private historic homes, commercial buildings and other historic places usually closed to the public.
Kentucky’s historic buildings and landscapes are our greatest amenities and define our sense of place, enhancing our downtowns, Main Streets, neighborhoods, rural and crossroads communities, and contributing to economic development and tourism efforts statewide. The keepers of many of these special places, however – cities, counties, nonprofits, museums and attractions – are challenged with a common problem: striking a balance between fundraising to carry out our mission and actually carrying out our mission.
Tour120 is a great way to attract new visitors – and potentially new residents – and increase tourism and economic development dollars in cities across the state.
Historic Preservation and Tourism are an important intersection. The positive economic and social impact of cultural heritage tourism cannot be overstated. This is especially true for a state like Kentucky, where iconic images have gained international attention and attracted visitors from all over the world. And while bourbon, horses and fried chicken are among our most popular icons, one can argue that it’s our historic architecture that gives us our strong sense of place.
Tour120 is a wonderful way to showcase our historic buildings and sites. We hope the unified branding will appeal to local sites, spark interest in all age groups, and get folks out into their own and neighboring communities to explore the built environment that tells our story.