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Bourbon Capital of the World ®
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Our History


The Kentucky Bourbon Festival® promotes Kentucky Bourbon & the Bourbon Capital of the World by hosting a celebration that contributes to the economic and cultural vitality of our communities in Bardstown, Kentucky.


The twenty-eighth annual Kentucky Bourbon Festival®, held the third week of September, was a resounding success in 2019. Approximately 50,000 visitors from 40 states across the U.S. and over 20 countries attended events, activities on the Great Lawn, and our free music concerts.


Bardstown, Kentucky is the Bourbon Capital of the World® and the home of the Kentucky Bourbon Festival®, which draws people to our quaint little town for a week of celebrating the storied history and art of distilling America's native spirit. The Kentucky Bourbon Festival® began in 1991 as a Bourbon tasting and dinner, and has grown tremendously over the past 29 years. Today, it is one of the Commonwealth’s leading community festivals, and is not only a celebration of Bourbon, but also the people and the community that have supported the industry for generations.

Over 200 years ago, as pioneers began settling the wild lands of Kentucky, they found that this was Promised Land for distilling Bourbon. From the ideal climate for aging barrels, to the fertile earth for growing corn, to the immense amount of limestone that makes for the purest of water, it was the perfect storm. From there, the rest is history. Today, Bardstown and Nelson County are home to many distilleries, both large and small.

Between our events, educational opportunities, arts and crafts, music on the lawn and much more, we truly have something for everyone.

We can't wait to see you in Bardstown, KY for the 2020 Kentucky Bourbon Festival®, September 16-20.

The Kentucky Bourbon Festival® is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
Desginated the "Official State Bourbon Festival" by the Kentucky General Assembly.
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