Bowling Green is home to a variety of sports, mainly due to the location of Western Kentucky University, home of the Hilltoppers. The stadiums include football, basketball and hockey games and are some of the most attended games in the state. Both baseball and basketball scoreboards at the highlight of every game as points are made and crowds cheer on.
The history of Bowling Green, Kentucky is varied and reaches back to the late 1700’s when the first settlements were established. Originally a quiet rural town that relied heavily on agriculture; everything changed when the railroad came through.
The origins of the name of Bowling Green are most commonly agreed upon that it is a derivative of the name Bolin Green. This particular name was in honor of those with patriotic intentions in New York that removed a statue of then King of England, King George III. The lead in the statue was used for the production of bullets.
The particular location of Bowling Green has given it a precarious position in political and logistic life. The Barren River offered the area as an excellent source for commerce and trade. With the building of locks and canals, Bowling Green enhanced its importance with the advent of what is known as portage railways. Mules transported everything from supplies to people up and down the pathways. The prime area boasted excellence in the local crops and this brought a level of prosperity to the little town. They used the actual railroad to enhance their important location.
The Civil War created a dichotomy for Bowling Green. While they declared themselves as a neutral state, the sentiments favored the Confederate side. They allowed their town to be occupied by the Confederates as well as being announced as the Capital City for the Confederate government. At the ending of the war, the Confederates were not kind to Bowling Green for their courtesies and hospitality. The Confederates destroyed buildings, the depot for the railroad and a majority of the important architecture that gave Bowling Green their survival.
The post war era offered expansion for the city. A variety of businesses were developed and Bowling Green began to be viewed as a change from a town to a city. Mules were slowly replaced by the automobile and the area focused on the building of schools that would eventually become some of the best colleges and universities in the state. The colleges and universities also contributed much of their sports talent and this led to an increased fan base. The building of the railroad system brought more attention and industry to Bowling Green, with the development of factories. Bowling Green’s physical location became the springboard that offered the area a chance to continue its growth. More land was donated for additional educational institutions, including a nursing school and a college for women. Sports fields, stadiums and scoreboards were built to give the fans a place to come together. The expansion of the university was a major contributing factor and as the university grew, so did the loyalty of the citizens for their sports teams. They take special pride in the Western Kentucky University Hilltoppers and Lady Toppers that include seventeen varsity teams covering eleven different sports.
Bowling Green took full advantage of the exploding growth of their city with a focus on the retail environment. The addition of interstate highways opened the doors to Bowling Green for an all-in-one shopping experience. Automotive plants built plants in the area, which expanded both the economy and job opportunities.
The Bowling Green of today has revitalized the architecture of its passed while embracing the needs of the twenty first century. The enlightened attitude about their history offers a variety of museums as well as parks to enjoy the natural beauty of the area. Residents take pride in the many events and festivals held each year to celebrate their city. The topic of sports is paramount, as they have added new electronic basketball scoreboards for the ever increasing game attendance for the many sports venues.