Seniors Enjoy “Atomic City”

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Paducah (pop. 25,000), the county seat of McCracken County, is located at the confluence of the Ohio and Tennessee Rivers and is often called the Four-Rivers Area due to the proximity of the Ohio, Tennessee, Cumberland, and Mississippi Rivers.

Paducah, about halfway between St. Louis and Nashville, was first settled as Pekin. It began as a mixed community of white settlers and Native Americans in the year 1815. The settlers were attracted by its location and in 1827 was renamed Paducah.

Yes, that is an unusual name and probably why this senior citizen choose to write this travel blog.  Although local lore long connected this to an eponymous Chickasaw chief “Paduke” and his tribe of “Paducahs”, authorities on the Chickasaw have since made clear that there was never any chief or tribe of that name, anything like it, nor any words like them in the Chickasaw tongue.

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Lewis and Clark probably named the town for the Comanches, known at the time as the Padoucas. The city was formally established as a town in 1830. Its growth is credited to the valuable port facility it offered to the steam boats that traveled across the river system. Paducah was incorporated as a city in the year 1856.

 Seniors Drawn to the City of Crafts and Folk Art

Attention quilters! Home to the National Quilt Museum, this historic river town offers an authentic cultural experience for senior visitors from around the globe. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has designated Paducah, Kentucky the world’s seventh City of Crafts and Folk Art.

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The Floodwall Murals are another principal attraction. Senior travelers will want to visit Paducah’s thriving riverfront and take a self-guided tour of portraits from Paducah’s past depicting its rich history in more than 50 life-sized panoramic murals by renowned artist Robert Dafford and the Dafford Murals Team. And just for the Beckers, they have NINE B&Bs in town.

 Senior visitors will find four museums and several art galleries plus the Market House Theater. The Land Between The Lakes is a designated national recreation area under the management of the USDA Forest Service.

Restoration of the town’s beautiful old buildings has allowed a variety of businesses to open shop. The Paducah Renaissance as it is called, has been a huge success both financially and culturally. Twenty blocks of the city’s downtown have been designated an historic district and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

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When people in the Paducah area discuss “yellowcake,” it probably does not involve any sort of baked goods. The confectionery nickname represents uranium’s solid form — a dense yellow powder. Uranium has been part of the Four Rivers region for over 50 years at the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant. This is why Paducah is called “Atomic City.”

The beautifully restored turn-of-the-century architecture and brick-lined sidewalks of the Historic Downtown work to create a romantic, vintage atmosphere that visitors enjoy with a stroll. Enjoy Paducah.  jeb

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