The City of Paducah is proud of its busy arts district, delicious urban cuisine, cultural opportunities, and eclectic lodgings. This small city on the Ohio River offers an exciting riverfront with lots of restaurants and a fascinating art scene fueled by Paducah-McCracken Riverport's Artist Relocation Program.
Paducah-McCracken Riverport has a humid subtropical climate with warm summers and cold winters that can bring a lot of snow. In 1978 and 2004, blizzards struck the city, and the winter of 2002 was more snowy than average. Ice storms are also common in Paducah-McCracken Riverport. Temperatures range from an average high of 31°C (88°F) in July to an average low of -4.5°C (24°F) in January. Rainfall is highest in May and lowest in January, but it is relatively evenly distributed throughout the year.
The National Quilt Museum of the United States is a must-see in Paducah-McCracken Riverport. It became the "National Quilt Museum" because the US Congress recognized its outstanding and quickly rotating exhibits, the widespread origin of quilt collections (46 of 50 states and 16 countries), its devotion to public education about the art and its heritage, and the wide range of themes, topic quilts, and quilt-makers. Open all year, the National Quilt Museum charges admissions of $10 (adults), $8 (seniors), and $5 (students). Children under 13 years of age with adults are free. The Museum is open all year from Monday through Saturday from 10am until 5pm. From April through October, it is also open on Sundays from 1pm to 5pm. It is closed on Easter, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Day, and New Year's Day.
The Paducah-McCracken Riverport River Heritage Museum operates in the oldest usable antebellum building in the historic downtown district. The two-story 1843 brick structure once housed the Branch Bank of Louisville, and it still has the original parapet end walls, molded lintels, and denticulated cornices in the Greek Revival Style. Visitors enjoy the Pilothouse Simulator and the 16-minute River Film. Exhibits also cover life on the river, the 1937 Ohio River Flood, local habitats, the hydroelectric dam, and river bottoms. Inside the museum is a wonderful restored 1920s calliope. The Paducah-McCracken Riverport River Heritage Museum is open from 9:30am until 5pm from Monday until Saturday. On Sundays from April to November, it is open from 1pm to 5pm.
Revitalized in the years following 1990, Paducah-McCracken Riverport's Historic Downtown is chock full of shops, restaurants, and museums in carefully-preserved historic buildings as well as a great farmers' market. It also boasts the mural-adorned Ohio River flood walls that can take a whole afternoon to enjoy. Artists create paintings and eclectic works of art at the downtown gazebo. Paducah-McCracken Riverport's Downtown Farmers' Market offers fresh honey, produce, home-canned goods, and local wines. Open from April through November, 20 vendors are on hand from 7:30am to 3:30pm Monday through Saturday to sell their goods.