One Tank Trips: Hodgenville, Ky.

High gas prices may have put a strain on your travel budgets, but you can take a trip in the Bluegrass on just one tank of gas.

Just think one of our greatest presidents was born right up the road. The famous birthplace of Abraham Lincoln is about 75 miles up I 65 and you can get there on one tank of gas.

"We have international visitors and we have visitors from right here up and down 65 and they see the sign Abraham Lincoln's Birthplace," said Sandy Brue, the Chief of Interpretation for the park.

He said guests come here because they want the truth.

"I've had people say, 'no, Abraham Lincoln wasn't born in Kentucky.' We're always having them challenge us saying, 'prove it,' and, 'how do you know he was born here?"

In a world where you have to see it to believe it, the good people of Hodgenville spend their lives trying to prove it. It's here in Hodgenville you can find proof of Lincoln's life. For instance, Brue said marriage certificates, the family Bible and court records show Lincoln's existence.

"So we have all of the primary sources that we need talking to visitors to convince them we know what we're talking about," Brue said.

On down the road to Joel Ray's restaurant we found a man or a "ham" as he called himself serving up mashed potatoes and green beans to his loyal customers.

Perhaps Lincoln didn't eat at the diners native to Hodgenville, but each one honors the Lincoln name just as if he had.

"It's country cooking, but we have a different menu everyday," Ray explained. "This restaurant is so full you can't hardly get in the restaurant - only seats 136."

But beyond the restaurant lies the real deal. For $8 you can get a whole night of fun after eating at Joel Ray's.

"People come in from all over the U.S. on Saturday night," Ray said.

He has been in show business all his life. The Lincoln Jamboree is a source of pride for him, as many singers have been made famous on his stage.

"Jerry Lee Lewis, Oakridge Boys, Patty Lovelace ..." Ray named off just a few.

He said since the 1950s he's spent thousands of Saturday nights listening to his very own version of The Grand Ole Opry. The night isn't complete without a little comedy act from Joel Ray either.

Abraham Lincoln wouldn't have ever thought himself famous, but 200 years after his birth, people from all over are visiting his boyhood home.

"Lincoln in his writings said that was where he remembered the most - in Kentucky. His recollections were of the Knobb Creek Place," Judge Tommy Turner explained.

For more information on Kentucky's One Tank Trips, go to WBKO's website dedicated to it by clicking here.

WBKO 2727 Russellville Road Bowling Green, KY 42101-3976 Phone: 270-781-1313 After Hours Hotline: 270-781-6397 Fax: 270-781-1814
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