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Lexington/Richmond

Old Frankfort Pike carries National Scenic Byway designation

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Stu Johnson
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The Bluegrass region, known for its picturesque rural landscape, now has garnered additional federal attention. Government officials believe it has educational and tourism implications.

The Bluegrass region, known for its picturesque rural landscape, now has garnered additional federal attention. Government officials believe it has educational and tourism implications.

With the bronze statue of Secretariat in the background, state, and local leaders from three counties Wednesday recognized Old Frankfort Pike as a National Scenic Byway. The 3800-pound likeness of the legendary racehorse sits at the center of the traffic roundabout.

Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton urged attendees to look around to see green fields and the bronze Triple Crown winner representing the Thoroughbred industry. “This is why we fight so hard to protect our beautiful countryside and the industry that sets us apart from the rest of the world,” said Gorton.

The ribbon cutting also served as a time to officially open the Visitor Viewing Area, complete with several informational placards. Funding for the viewing site came from public and private sources. Also participating in the event was Franklin County Judge-Executive Huston Wells. “About two miles from here, down on the right as I was coming in, there was a family that was in a van, and they pulled off the side of the road. And they were out. There was six of them and they had set up a camera to take a picture of their family with the horses in the background and the farm in the background. To me, that’s personification of what this is all about,” explained Wells.

Mayor Gorton said this represents the first national scenic byway designation in Fayette County.

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