2020 Marion County Country Ham Days Cancelled
Due to the many concerns and risks surrounding the current Covid-19 pandemic, the Marion County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors has made the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 Marion County Country Ham Days scheduled for September 25-27.
The decision was reached after extensive research and discussion about the corona virus and numerous challenges to ensure the health and safety of our volunteers and attendees. An event of this size creates an impossibility for social distancing and required temperature and health checks. In addition, Covid-19 coverage is not included in our liability insurance policy.
Although all events have been cancelled, we are exploring the option of hosting a “virtual” Pokey Pig 5K and an outdoor Central Kentucky Idol and hope to be announcing details soon.
The Chamber Board understands the impact of this decision but, considers the safety of our community the highest priority.
We appreciate the tremendous support from our community and the many Country Ham Days’ sponsors and volunteers over the last 50 years and are already looking forward to 2021!
Ham Days 2020
You are going to want to attend Marion County Country Ham Days 2020. By design, it’s guaranteed there will be something in the three-day schedule of events and activities that you’ll find entertaining and enjoyable. “That just could be the most amazing, wonderful thing about Ham Days,” says Greg Gribbins, executive director of the Marion County Chamber of Commerce. “It has a bit of everything, with plenty to appeal to many people, in addition to the food, tradition and history.”
Ham Days 2020 is set for Friday, Saturday and Sunday—Sept. 25, 26 and 27 in Lebanon, the Heart of Kentucky. (Traditionally, it’s always held on the final full weekend in the month of September.) The 2019 version enjoyed a 50th anniversary celebration. Within days of its conclusion, Gribbins and others in Ham Days’ sponsoring organization began cranking up the 51st edition of what is one of the longest-running, most established festivals in Kentucky.
Ham Days Brochure
“The goal has always been that Ham Days has something for everyone,” said Gribbins. “And this year’s event benefits from building for years upon that concept.” Yes, there’s the marquee event, the Country Store Ham Days Breakfast, where visitors are served one of the best country ham breakfasts that can be purchased. (Last year more than 3,000 pounds of country ham was cooked and served!) But the Ham Days Food Court has also become a marquee event. That’s where a broad variety of food vendors offer lots of options for lunch and dinner, with shaded seating supplied for visitors.
Yep, Marion County Country Ham Days offers so many it’ll make for a busy three-day weekend to take them all in
The Farmers National Bank Pokey Pig 5K
The Farmers National Bank Pokey Pig 5K has grown into a big Ham Days event with around 1,000 runners. The race start is visually spectacular for visitors, in case you don’t want to be like runners of all skill level who participate in this fun event. Ham Days’ 5K one of the largest running events in the state.
The Pigasus Parade
The Pigasus Parade is always a crowd favorite. Thousands of people line the streets to see the many parade participants. “And, we expect see another record number this year,” said Gribbins.
Yellowstone Hot Air Boalloon Glow & Limestone Branch Lift-Off
In less than 5 years, the Yellowstone Hot Air Balloon Glow has become one of the biggest Ham Days events. Thousands of people come to see these giant balloons inflate and light up the fall night. Plus, you can walk right up to the balloons and get a close look. Then on Sunday morning, you can see the balloons take off and fly over Lebanon during the Limestone Branch Lift-Off.
State Farm Agent Erica Barnes Classic Car Show
If you love classic vehicles, don’t miss the State Farm Agent Erica Barnes Classic Car, Truck and Motorcycle Show always held on the Sunday of Ham Days. More than 200 classic vehicles line the streets of downtown Lebanon. Visitors get a close look at these classics and can talk cars with the owners.
The Hey Bale Toss Contesta
Want to work some of those food calories off? Competitions of all sorts are designed for young and older alike. The hay bale toss contest, for instance, draws a huge crowd as contestants from burley country boys to young ladies compete for country ham prizes.
Antique Tractor Show
The Antique Tractor Show entertains in its exhibition zone, as well as when the participants roll in the Ham Days Parade.
A full-fledged carnival operates throughout the event; there’s free musical entertainment throughout the event, as well.
More than 200 Vendors
“We have more than 200 vendors at Ham Days, including a juried Arts & Crafts show,” said Gribbins. “Plus we have vendor areas for Marketplace (or Flea Market), Kentucky Proud and local businesses, school and civic groups. All this within a few blocks for easy walking.”
For the Visitor
Whew! So how do you keep up with all this?
“We encourage everyone to visit our website HamDays.com to get complete information,” said Gribbins. In particular, stay tuned to the website as the event draws closer, and find complete schedules of all events and activities.
And another great source of developing information is the Ham Days Facebook page, found here: www.facebook.com/marioncountycountryhamdays/.
To figure out where you’re going to stay while you’re visiting Marion County Country Ham Days 2020, go to visitlebanonky.com where you’ll find complete listings of options, including campgrounds and Airbnbs.
Also at that website, you’ll discover all the ways you can tour, dine, shop and stay while here. Bourbon-themed experiences are help to enjoy throughout the year: tour Kentucky Cooperage, where the industry’s bourbon barrels are made; Limestone Branch Distillery, home of world-famous Yellowstone; and Maker’s Mark Distillery, a name that all bourbon lovers know.
Vendors and Other
Vendors, businesses or anyone with questions about booths, sponsorship and more…head over to HamDays.com for information, including vendor forms. You can also contact the Marion County Chamber of Commerce office by calling 270.692.9594.