May 7 - An early departure has you traveling to eastern Kentucky in the heart of the Appalachians, which is accented by scenic 1,100 acre Dewey Lake. Arrive in Prestonsburg, KY to check into your hotel and freshen up before heading for a Moon Shine Hide-A-Way and Tour. Enjoy a demonstration of how the old timers brewed that famous mountain "white lightnin" as directed by some typical mountain shiners who will also take up their instruments and sing a couple of Moon Shine songs; there is plenty of foot-stompin' dancing. Later, the group finds the hidden trail to an outdoor Bar-B-Q for evening music supplied by the Moon Shine Band.
May 8 - Enjoy a hot buffet breakfast with entertainment, then meet your local guide to depart for Mountain Home Place. Glance back in time to the mid 1800's to a typical rural farm in the mountains of Eastern Kentucky. you will view a short documentary narrated by Richard Thomas (John Boy) of this early mountain life. Characters in period dress will present stories of the log house, barn, blacksmith ship, church and school. Head for Paintsville, KY to enjoy a tour of the US 23 Country Music Highway Museum, which is dedicated to the country music entertainers who were born or lived near US Route 23 in Eastern Kentucky; the featured entertainers include Billy Ray Cyrus, The Judds, Tom T. Hall, Ricky Scaggs, Hylo Brown, Loretta Lynn, Rebecca Lynn Howard, Keith Whitley, Dwight Yoakum, Patty Loveless and Gary Stewart. After your visit, continue to the East Kentucky Science Center & Planetarium where outer space comes alive as you view the most realistic night sky simulation and the laser light shows; a delicious lunch is included. In the afternoon, depart for a visit to Webb's Grocery, owned by Loretta's brother, Herman. The store dates back to 1910. Board shuttles (mini buses) to depart for Loretta Lynn's Butcher Hollow Home Place for a highlight tour. Hear the story of Loretta and her sister Crystal, as you travel along the 2-mile narrow and winding road to the home. Herman will give a first-hand account of his two sisters and will detail what it was like living there 60 years ago. Later in the afternoon, visit the Mayo Methodist Church, which was built by local coal baron, John C. C. Mayo, who donated it to the congregation in 1909. It has massive cut sandstone walls, brillian Italian-made stain-glass windows, oak support beams, and a Pichner pipe organ which was given Mayo by Andrew Carnegie. Return to the lodge to freshen up before departing for a delicious dinner. Your day will end with an evening of entertainment featuring Ron Ramsey Band.
May 9 - Following a hot buffet breakfast, depart with your tour guide for a visit to the Civil War Site, Middle Creek National Battlefield, where you will meet a "Civil War soldier". Union and Southern Forces met here on January 10, 1862 to seek military control of this strategic gateway from Virginia. Two thousand soldiers engaged in a 24-hour struggle with gun firing and cannons blazing to what lead to Union Colonel James Garfield claiming victory, and later becoming President of the United States. Afterwards, tour the Historic Samuel May House where you will meet "Ms. May". The home is the oldest brick house in the Big Sandy Valley. The Federal-style, two-story house was built in 1817 and it sits on a shallow hill, surrounded by 400 acres of timber and pasture land. The house was used by Samuel's son, Colonel Andrew Jackson May as a recruiting station for the Confederacy during the Civil War. May's descendants occupied the property until 1997 when it was deeded to the city as a museum. After the tour you will have some free time to browse the shops in historic downtown Prestonburg. Enjoy lunch at Jenny Wiley State Park, which is followed by a narrated pontoon boat ride on Dewey Lake. This evening enjoy dinner followed by entertainment by the Big Sandy River Boat Band that offer guests a night of country, bludgrass and favorite "Americana" pop music.
May 10 - After a hot breakfast, check out and depart for home with fond memories of Kentucky.
This itinerary is approximate. The exact times, days and destinations may vary due to unforeseen circumstances.
Shillelagh Travel Club located at: 100 East Street, SE #202, Vienna, VA 22180 Phone: (local) 703-242-2204 (toll-free) 800-556-8646Fax: 703-242-2781 E-mail:Info@ShillelaghTravelClub.com