Loading Map....

Date(s) - 09/28/2013 - 09/29/2013
All Day

Downtown Lebanon


Ham Days Dished Up in Lebanon, Ky., Sept. 28-29, 2013

Celebrity guests, parade, live music, crafts booths and 6,000 pounds of country ham



LEBANON, KY – JULY 2013 – Spilling over with all the small-town charm and fun you’d expect, Marion County Ham Days will serve up more than 6,000 pounds of country ham to over 50,000 visitors who come with mouths watering. The Sept. 28-29 festival – one of Lebanon’s premier events and a “Kentucky Top-Ten Event” – rocks with special appearances by celebrity “Moonshiner” Tim Smith and Ernie Brown, Jr. – aka the Turtleman – live music, arts and crafts booths, a Car, Truck & Motorcycle Show, children’s activities and, of course, platefuls of tasty country ham. Click to see the full schedule of activities.


Ham Days highlights

From its beginning nearly 40 years ago, Ham Days has grown from serving six hams to a few hungry folks to hosting over 50,000. These days, visitors can chow down on a country ham breakfast, beans and cornbread, pork sandwiches, hot dogs – even brats and steaks. Adding a sweet aftertaste are ice cream, fried Twinkies, gyros, funnel cakes and more.


A highlight of the festival is Ham Days’ famous country ham breakfast, served both Saturday and Sunday mornings. The PIGasus Parade begins at 1. p.m. on Saturday. That evening, three comedians from Nashville – Joey I.L.O., CJ Harlow and a surprise guest opener – will entertain families during Comedy Night at Angelic Hall at Centre Square. Live music and carnival rides begin in advance of the festival on Friday evening.


Celebrity appearances

Ernie Brown Jr., better known as the Turtleman and the star of Animal Planet’s wildly popular series, “Call of the Wildman,” will be in the PIGasus parade on Saturday. Following the parade, Brown will green fans with his famous “Live Action” Indian yell and make a public appearance.


Tim Smith, star of the Discovery Channel’s hit series, “Moonshiners,” will make several appearances during Ham Days weekend. Catch the moonshiner at Limestone Branch Distillery, home of Smith’s own brand of moonshine – Tim Smith’s Climax Moonshine – from 2-5 p.m. on Friday, 3-7 p.m. on Saturday and 1-3 p.m. on Sunday. Smith will also be in the parade.


Festival fun

Throughout the festival, musical groups play on every corner downtown and include Marion County’s own The Honeysuckle Stringband and No Deceit. There is a Karaoke Contest with Elvis Impersonator Caleb Brown; children’s contests like bubble gum blowing, sack races and jump rope; carnival rides; and an Antique Engine & Track Show. Arts and crafts booths and Market Place booths round out the fun.


Ham-related events leading up to the festival include a Treasure Hunt, Slop-the-Hog Ham & Biscuit eating contest, Swine & Dine pub crawl and a Pig Pen relay race, among others.


Stay a spell

Plan to overnight in Lebanon for the weekend. Accommodations include the Hampton Inn, 1833 Myrtledene Bed and Breakfast and the Rosewood Cabins at Rosewood Golf Course, among others.


While in Lebanon, visit the Marion County Heritage Center, home of the world’s only exhibit dedicated to Turtleman, star of Animal Planet’s wildly successful “Call of the Wildman” series. The Heritage Center is also home to the Don Johnson’s Musical Instrument Collection and the newly opened exhibit about country music tribute artist Eddie Miles.


Other Lebanon attractions include Maker’s Mark Distillery, Limestone Branch Distillery, WhiteMoon Winery and the Kentucky Cooperage. A vintage car show and cruise-in takes place every fourth Friday of the month and the new Turtle Trek lets visitors follow in Turtleman’s footsteps through his Lebanon hometown. Visit the Lebanon Tourist & Convention Commission for more information.


Marion County Ham Days, Lebanon, KY

Festival website:


Date                Saturday-Sunday, Sept. 28-29

                        Ham Breakfast 7-11 a.m. Sat.; 8-11 a.m. Sun. 8 a.m. – 1 p.m.

                        PIGasus Parade at 1. p.m. on Saturday. Comedy Night Saturday evening.


Place               Downtown Lebanon, KY 40033


Cost                Free (parking also free)

                        Ham Breakfast tickets: $8/adults, $5/children  in advance; $9/adults, $6/children





Carla Wagner,, 270-692-0021

Lebanon Tourist & Convention Commission




Ham Days

Photo: Lebanon Tourist & Convention Commission


“Moonshiner” Tim Smith

Photo: Discovery Channel


HI- and LOW-RES photos available.


ABOUT LEBANON, KY | Geographically located in the center of the state, Lebanon is the “Heart of the Bourbon Belt,” the epicenter of barrel and bourbon making. Attractions include Maker’s Mark Distillery, Limestone Branch Distillery, the Kentucky Cooperage and WhiteMoon Winery. Incorporated as a city in 1815, Lebanon played a crucial role during the Civil War and is today on the Civil War Discovery Trail. It is also part of Kentucky’s historic Holy Land, with sites including the Sisters of Loretto Motherhouse. Outdoor recreation options include the newly expanded Gorley Naturalist Trail at Fagan Branch Reservoir, Marion County Quilt Trail and several farm tours; indoors there is the Marion County Heritage Center, a stop of the new Turtle Trek and featuring the Turtleman exhibit, and Stillhouse Art Museum. Shop for antiques, collectibles and handmade crafts in Lebanon and dine at your choice of 40 restaurants. Accommodations include the gracious circa 1833 Myrtledene Bed and Breakfast, plus hotels including the Hampton Inn, cabins and an RV Park.