10 Ways To Sound Like A Kentuckian

15 things kentuckians do
Image Copyright E.C. , Kropp Co.

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If you’re visiting Kentucky for any reason: Welcome! We’re glad to have you here in the great Bluegrass state. Whether you’re here to see your family for the holidays, see a horse race or watch WKU win the C-USA, we’re so glad to have you stop by.

Here are a few words that only us Kentuckians would understand:

1) Big Red: No, it’s not chewing gum or a cherry flavored soda, it’s actually the best mascot in the state, WKU’s Big Red. Created in 1979 by WKU student Ralph Carey, Big Red was created to symbolize the spirit of WKU students and alumni.

WKU Mascot Big Red

2) Basketball: The only state sanctioned religion in the Commonwealth….and that’s University of Kentucky Wildcat basketball. We eat, sleep and breathe basketball. Mr. Bob Wiggins has seen over 1650 UK basketball games in person.

uk wildcat basketball

3) LOO-A-VUL: Sorry to break it to you, but that’s just how you say it. It’s not LOOEYVILLE or LOUIS-VILLE. It’s LOO-A-VUL or LOO-UH-VUL.

4) Yonder: noun – that road yonder is the one to take. Yes, we say yonder. If you’re trying to find something, it’s always over yonder.

5) Ale-8: Bottled in Winchester, Kentucky, it’s a state favorite if you’re not of age to drink the bourbon. Buy a 6-pack and enjoy some today.

Buy Ale-8 Online

6) Bourbon: Known for making 95% of the world’s bourbon, Kentucky knows how to make it sweet. We use between 65% to 75% corn so our bourbon has the sweetest flavor.

Kentucky Bourbon Barrels

7) Bluegrass: We know it’s a hard concept to grasp, but our grass really is blue. Come by on a spring day and look out into a field of our beautiful bluegrass. Then you’ll know it’s real.

8) Kentucky Fried Chicken: Known all across the globe with almost 19,000 locations, our fried chicken recipe was enough to remove gas pumps and turn the place into a restaurant. That’s what Harland Sanders did.

KFC Chicken Fried Kentucky

9) Buggy: It’s not a shopping cart, it’s a buggy.

10) Derby: The biggest party of the year is a horse race. It doesn’t stop with a 2 minute horse race. The infield at the race is one of the wildest places to be.

Kentucky derby shot

Read More: You know you’re from Bowling Green if…

  • Abbie Crutcher

    what in the hell? i’ve been here since 1972, so, i have some knowledge
    of the state and its inhabitants. jeez louise, you are so insulting. i
    hope you are attempting humor but did you have to scrap the bottom of
    the bourbon barrel? for example: #3. i couldn’t care less about
    basketball regardless of which team; #4. see previous; #7. do you mean
    PIKE-ville?; # 12. not now, nor have i ever worn camouflage; #14. it IS
    called a shopping cart; #13.also, avoid disrespectful, rude, and unfunny
    articles written by the south end of a north facing race horse.

    • wsparkman

      You are a special kind of stupid. If I were you, I’d keep my comments to myself.

    • June Swinford

      Oh sweetie, relax. My Kentucky pedigree is better than yours: I was born and raised here, as were my children and now my grandchildren. My family has lived on the same Kentucky farm since… well, the deed dates back to 1811, but family history says we were here on this land before the state became a state. This article is supposed to be funny and lighthearted.

      You’ll live a happier, more contented life if you stop drinking so much caffeine; it’s making you testy. AND, you might consider seeing a surgeon about getting that stick removed from your backside. Just sayin’….

      • Peace2yaa .

        Amen!! Couldn’t have said it any better. People need too lighten up.

    • MN Morgan

      I have never lived anywhere but KY, and honestly, there is a lot of truth in this article. Even if these things aren’t true for you, they are for many. I don’t wear camo, know all the words to My Old KY Home, etc…but you don’t hear me complaining. Chill.

  • James Caldwell

    I agree this is insulting I have lived here my entire life I still say shopping cart I hate basketball as a sport I wear jeans and a t-shirt when I’m out and about. I would rather baked some of my food than fry it. Yes Jordan Smith won the Voice and it’s nice for him to, but other singers are originally from Kentucky with other famous actors as well George Clooney, Johnny Depp, Nick Lachey, Jennifer Lawrence, and many others. It’s amazing the stereotype people have for my state and its frankly disrespectful.

    • wsparkman

      What is wrong with you idiots? Do you honestly think there is one single description that accurately portrays all people from Kentucky. Get over yourself! It’s meant to be a funny article that “most” people can relate.

      • dmsday

        and the didn’t even get into how people talllk.. T becomes V. or T becomes G. “like gat” “o’ver”

        • wsparkman

          What are you saying? This has nothing to do with my comment. Try again.

          • dmsday

            it’s meant to be funny, get over yourself, anybody from eastern Kentucky can relate. Now piss off. (you get that)?

          • wsparkman

            Hahaha you are still lost. It’s ok move on to the next article.

          • dmsday

            oh, by all means please explain. if you can.

          • wsparkman


          • dmsday

            no, go ahead, explain it to me.

          • wsparkman

            You are missing the point stupid. You didn’t reply to my comment. You need to post a new comment if you are not replying to what I said. Learn how to use the Internet. Also, maybe comment something that makes sense not some incomprehensible jargon that wasn’t even funny. Maybe if you could type properly we could understand what was funny about it.

          • dmsday

            hey, what’s a point stupid? (speaking of things that don’t make sense) You think because YOU don’t understand, It doesn’t make sense? Isn’t funny? Listen, there are smart people who get it, and if you don’t says a lot about you. Learn how to use the internet? What the fuck do you think I’ve been doing? So since you have zero game, and I’ve played you like the fool that you are, just shut the fuck up now.

          • wsparkman


          • dmsday

            That’s right dude, just stay down.

      • Applegate-Clos Dawn And’rea

        How so you give a single description of a state in this short of an article??

        • wsparkman

          Please don’t reply to my comment if you have nothing to say about MY comment! Learn how to use the Internet! By the way your comment is stupid.

    • MN Morgan

      You’re kidding, right? Surely you aren’t insulted by an article that is probably true for the majority of us, but not ALL of us? I sure hope not.

    • Brad Watson

      I bet you drink unsweet tea too. Well aren’t you a la dee dah.

    • Only Me

      I don’t mean to sound hateful, but Nick Lachey is from OHIO, not Kentucky.

      • James Caldwell

        Nick Lachey was born in Harlan Kentucky

        • Only Me

          He says OHIO is his home state!

          • Only Me

            See ya, Hollywood! Nick Lachey andVanessa Minnillo are planning to raise their 7-month-old son Camden in the 98 Degrees singer’s hometown of Cincinnati, Ohio. Lachey, 39, explained that the big move will happen within a few years when he appeared on Access Hollywood Live Apr. 18.

            “I loved growing up in Cincinnati where I’m from. My brother’s there, his kids are there, my parents are there. I really value the effect that family has on child growing up. I want Camden and other future kids we have to be around their cousins and their grandparents. That’s a very important part of growing up,” Lachey said. “I want to try to give him the most normal childhood he can have.”

          • Only Me

            That was in People magazine, and US Magazine. He even said he was from Cincinnati Ohio on the CBS Evening news 3 years ago! He does not claim Kentucky, so he does not count!

  • Digi13

    It’s called it’s called humor people! Please go find a funny bone and learn to not take things so serious!

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  • Daniel Bell

    Really need to lighten up! It is meant in jest, and won’t fit everyone but it doesn’t fit you personally, I bet it fits somebody you know. I am not a die hard Big Blue fan, I also pull for the Cards, and in fact prefer to be in the woods hunting than sitting in front of a TV watching ball. Yep, I generally call it a shopping cart but I know plenty folks who call it a buggy.

  • Josh Shepherd

    Wow. Glad I just got finished reading and chuckling over the article. Why, oh why, must there always be a comments section. Oh, yeah. I’m commenting.

    I would like to make a small correction. If you are in central Kentucky, an Ale 8-1 is preferable to a Mountain Dew. Little Debbie, however, is a temptress and a vixen to whom I owe my heart, if not my soul.
    It is PEYE-K-VUHL. With some emphasis on the EYE. (Also happens to be a helluva great town with a leading medical school and an eye-popping health care facility)

    There is this other section of the state called Western Kentucky that begins at Elizabethtown and Bowling Green and continues to the Mississippi River (right where the Ohio empties into it. Mark Twain wrote about that section in Huckleberry Finn.) It’s near the actual communities of Monkey’s Eyebrow and Lovelaceville (which must have really made people proud during the release of Deep Throat.)

    From around 1939 – 1961, the section of western Kentucky encompassing Muhlenburg and Ohio County and Daviess County (You’re right, we don’t say Central City, Greenville, Rosine, Hartford, or Owensboro) Kentucky was the musical equivalent of Seattle in the 1990s. In that span of time, Bill Monroe invented Bluegrass, The Everly Brothers re-invented rock and roll and country, and Merle Travis invented the Thumbpicking style of guitar playing, all of which has continued to influence modern musicians to this day.(see Avett Brothers and Mumford and Sons – and everybody in country music.)

    Which is just one of the ways that Western Kentucky is the most underrated and awesome areas of the Bluegrass state.

    BTW, if I had my way, Kentucky would dispense with My Old Kentucky Home and adopt Blue Moon of Kentucky as its state song – in the swingova beat pioneered by Ray Charles.


  • Jennifer Hampton

    These negative comments are over the top nasty. People are going way too far using personal insults toward the author to say how insulted they are by the article. This is obviously meant to be a funny stereotype of Kentucky people and as a lifelong Kentuckian, I can say that it is more right than it is wrong. It’s not meant to be your
    personal biography. Everything doesn’t apply to you because it’s not
    about you. Some wear camouflage proudly and push their buggies through
    the store humming “Coal Miner’s Daughter” and you are not better or more
    important or more representative of our state than they are. You will
    only find that generalization personally offensive if you look down on those people
    yourself in some way. I don’t do everything the article says either
    but I know people who do. Incidentally, I wanted to offer some input on one thing that a previous commenter said. I am from Pikeville, Ky and I can’t think of anyone I have ever known from there who pronounces it PIKE-ville. In general, we do not pronounce the long I sound in any word at all. It is part of our eastern Kentucky accent. We do,in fact pronounce it exactly as this article states, and alternatively
    we also say PAHK-VUL. Anyway, I wish y’all the best. No harm meant, no
    names called. Go Cats!!!

    • Josh Shepherd

      I stand corrected. I’ve always heard the long I sound from folks in the region, but its hardly worth a debate. I have long preferred the proper pronunciation of the long “I” over “Aiee” as it is so much prettier and melodic. But I retract my statement with an apology, if necessary.

      • Jennifer Hampton

        None necessary at all, lol. Your comment was perfectly polite. I was actually referring to another post, but thank you for your kind consideration.

    • MN Morgan

      Everyone I know pronounces it with the long i sound, but I am not from Pikeville. I’m from Leslie County, but aside from the pronunciation of Pikeville, I’m sure we sound the same.

      • Jennifer Hampton

        I’m sure you are right. My post was originally a reaction to a particularly nasty comment I read yesterday. It has apparently been taken down, so now my post seems a bit out of context, lol. What I love about Ky people is that we will welcome you no matter who you are or how you talk, so long as you know how to speak to us with good humor and respect, lol.

  • Fred Hale

    Do you know how many jokes there are about KY?

    There’s only one, the rest are true stories.

  • pappawtom

    Heck, up here in northern Kentucky, Maysville, we love to tease the folk in Ohiuh, Ohio, about which is the better state. I always tell them about Kentucky’s new zoo. Yeah, we put a fence around Ohio!!! I love this article but if you are a Kentuckian you know that it mostly applies to central to western Kentucky. I don’t live in a holler but dang near one though. By the way when I am in Ohio and I tell all the folk there that the next time they are down by the river to drop in! Lol lol lol!!!

    • Dr Rob

      Isn’t it pronounced UH-HI-UH?

      • pappawtom

        Actually it is pronounced like Oh Hia.

  • mccky

    I’m sorry – it’s hilarious and true! I moved her six years ago and sorry, but some of ya’ll need to get a grip and realize the truth in this.

  • Morehead is a university.
    Big Bone Lick is a museum.

  • RGW Sr.

    Funny with a seed of truth. All I would add is that Kentucky is one of the most beautiful states in the nation, and its actually 2 states. There is East Kentucky and West Kentucky, very large difference.

    • Terry Goodman

      I agree with you, I love how pretty KY is, don’t care for dead deer season (deer hit by cars) though,but that is because I am a city dwelling Texan

  • Brian Wilkes

    15. We know every word to My Old Kentucky Home.
    And we even remember the politically incorrect lyrics.

    • Derek

      The only words I know to it are just those…”My Old Kentucky Home” and no more. And the only time I ever hear it is before the start of the KY Derby.

  • Derek

    From Florida, but glad to live in Louisville right now. The rest of the state isn’t as good, except for NKY by Cincinnati.

    • Elaine Brown

      For someone who obviously came to Kentucky for a better opportunity than was available to him in his home state, you certainly appear to be biting the hand that is feeding you. I seriously doubt you have taken the time to learn much of anything about Kentucky outside of Louisville. You prefer to believe the old stereotypes you have heard which really does not speak well of you. I have been to several cities in Florida. But I would not presume to judge the rest of that state according to my limited experiences there. You would think it very foolish for people to believe Florida is nothing but a bunch of beer-guzzling, hard-partying, half-naked 18 to 22-year-olds based upon the spring break they once spent there. Yet that is exactly what you are doing here.

  • Buddy Burton

    You know you are from Kentucky if……..

    You call Elizabethtown, “E-Town”.

    • Ashley Easterling


  • ebroadhurst

    The LEW-UH-VUL thing! Yes.Trying to explain that to my husband and then he enunciates Louisvile. Some people just don’t get it.

  • Dan

    Wonderful, more shit to make me look like a redneck idiot.

  • Jim R

    Funny – from Kentucky and Kentucky proud. Only omission was Ale-8-One!

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  • Timber Roberts

    Buggy? Everyone I know in Kentucky has always called them Shopping Carts. Once I heard someone call it a Bass Cart, and we had to ask where they were from, It was Missouri. I know this is a Basketball state but check out Roller Derby, it is going to be the next big sport here. Teams in Louisville, Lexington, Covington, Bowling Green, and Western KY.

  • Lucas Haynes

    Yuppies describing yuppie Kentucky.

    We are all poor.

    Meth is preferable to Mt. Dew.

    Describing everyone you know doesnt describe the majority.

  • Only Me

    I was born and raised in Central Kentucky. Most of us call shopping carts, carts. We also say y’all for a group of people, hey for hello, over yonder for over there, come’ere for come here, git for get, when we say come on, it sounds like come own! We also say ya for you, quite a bit for quite often. Bless your heart can mean you’re stupid, but it can also just mean bless your heart if you are sad, or sick. I love my accent! ROTFL!

  • LandofDave

    Mountain Dew is not preferred nor is Pepsi in Western KY – west of the LBL it’s Sun Drop, Dr Pepper and Coke Cola … then again the folk here in the JP (Jackson Purchase) tend to feel we’re another state anyway.

  • Willow

    At Thanksgiving do you serve dressing or stuffing with the turkey? We have always called it dressing where I am from in KY.

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