Kentucky : Safety by City
- Bowling Green
- Cave City
- Cumberland Falls
- Harlan Tri-Cities
- La Grange
- St. Matthews
While Louisville, Kentucky, might be the home of some of the best baseball bats, Hopkinsville is the Batter Capital of the World in a way that has nothing to do with baseball.
Hoptown, as it’s frequently called, produces many of the cake, biscuit, and brownie batters used in the world today.
If you haven’t heard of that title yet, it’s no surprise.
The city was just awarded the Batter Capital moniker in August of 2021.
It’s a great testament to the agriculture and milling industries here.
A Kentucky city will rarely get me chair dancing to electric dance music from the 90s, but Hoptown is the hometown of Lane McCray of “La Bouche.”
You’ve heard of them, but here’s a quick reminder to get the song stuck in your head, “🎼Sweet dreams of rhythm and dancing.
Sweet dreams of passion through the night. 🎼”
Hoptown is also where 1955 reported “Alien Sighting” made national headlines.
Most cynics wrote this off as a bunch of drunk people seeing horned owls and catching a glimpse of a meteor, but the event has prompted the popular Kelly Little Green Men Days festival in the city.
Fort Campbell is just south of Hoptown at the Kentucky/Tennessee state line, but it does have a Kentucky address.
Warnings & Dangers in Hopkinsville
OVERALL RISK : LOW
There's a low, albeit average, risk in Hopkinsville, with violent crimes being average compared to the state and the nation, and property crimes skew higher.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW
Hopkinsville has a transit system of buses along three routes that run weekdays until 6:00 pm. Taxis and rideshares are available. Having your own car is ideal, so you can explore more of the city and Christian County.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : LOW
From 2018 through 2020, there was just one report of purse snatching and no pickpockets. There's a low risk it will happen to you, and the largest percentage of thefts here are shoplifting.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : MEDIUM
Tornadoes are the most dangerous threat, with several in the past two decades that made headlines. Flooding, severe thunderstorms, extreme temperatures, and winter storms are also possible. There's a small risk of an earthquake. Because of this mix of potential threats, there's medium risk.
MUGGING RISK : LOW
The robbery rate here is slightly higher than the national average, but crime data shows just 21% of those robberies were in public. That's a low risk, but you should still keep your guard out because there are more robbers in this city on average.
TERRORISM RISK : MEDIUM
With Fort Campbell so close by, that's the only reason this city gets a medium risk. Military installations will always be a potential target, but they also come with an incredible amount of security. Just wait until you hear what you must go through to visit the base!
SCAMS RISK : LOW
The run-of-the-mill scams happen here, like IRS or utility scams, but you can sign up for scam alerts in the state by texting KYOAG Scam to GOV311 (468311).
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW
Most violent crimes in Hoptown target men, and the sexual assault rate is slightly higher than the national average. While there's still a low risk, you should stay aware of your surroundings and follow basic advice, like avoiding walking alone at night.
TAP WATER RISK : LOW
Not only do all water tests meet or exceed the requirements, according to the 2021 Annual Water Quality Report, but the city has also been awarded a goal seal for water treatment and decontamination every year since 2017.
Safest Places to Visit in Hopkinsville
To get familiar with the area, you can start with the Downtown Renaissance Walk.
There are nearly 30 stops along the way, from historic buildings to grand architecture.
You’ll pass eclectic shops and unique food options as you stroll.
Plan a full day for this because you’ll want to make several stops along the way:
- Pennyroyal Area Museum: The oldest museum in the city, telling historical tales like the Black Patch Tobacco War and honoring war heroes over the years.
- Woody Winfree Fire-Transportation Museum: You shouldn’t miss this location because of the unique red and white pagoda-style roof on the clock tower above. The original building was destroyed by fire in 1924, but the current location is the “new” building, even though it’s almost 100 years old.
- Alhambra Theatre: Standing since the end of the silent film era, this theater is worth a tour or taking in a show.
The Hopkinsville Greenway System is a great way to get around on foot or by bicycle.
It goes from downtown to the convention center along an old military rail line.
Gander Memorial Park should be on the to-do list for all visitors to pay tribute to one of the worst disasters in Army history.
Nearly 250 soldiers were coming back from a peacekeeping mission in the Middle East when their plane went down shortly after taking off.
Nobody survived, and the crowd waiting at the “Welcome Home” celebration was instead given the horrible news.
You can scuba dive at Pennyroyal Scuba Blue Springs Resort.
This scuba school and the dive site are in a 22-acre rock quarry inside the city limits, so you don’t have to travel far to go underwater.
There are nearly a dozen scuba certifications you can earn here as well.
About 30 minutes northwest of Hoptown, you can visit Pennyrile Forest State Resort Park.
This lake has a lot of basic amenities, like boat rentals and fishing, and the resort is full of activities for the whole family.
If you are traveling with horses, this is a really great option with horse campsites available.
Places to Avoid in Hopkinsville
The east side of the area has the higher crime rates, mostly east of I-169.
While there aren’t neighborhoods that are too dangerous to visit, it’s always best to stay on highways and surface streets when traveling between locations.
Don’t assume all locations, especially outdoor attractions, and agrotourism locations, are open throughout the year.
Many places here have seasonal hours, so check before you get too excited about one of the listings.
There are many cool things to do here, but the season will determine how much you can see.
The website VisitHopkinsville.com lists a bunch of farms you can tour, from tobacco farms to a Western town, but many of the links aren’t working correctly.
I would suggest reaching out to the tourism bureau to ask what farm tours are happening in the year and month you visit because I don’t want to suggest places that will send you to a spam link.
I just had to stop writing this article for a few minutes to clear out some spam it added to my computer.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Hopkinsville
- Download the Hopkinsville app that was created just for tourists. You’ll get information in the palm of your hand about all the great things to see and do here.
- You can only visit Fort Campbell if you have a reason to get a visitor’s pass, and you’ll need to sign up for that pass ahead of your visit. A full background check will be done by the Department of Defense. All the requirements and restrictions are listed in the Visitor’s section of the Fort Campbell website.
- The Hopkinsville Police Department has a crime mapping tool on its website. You can navigate the map by location and search by crime categories during your preferred date range. It’s a valuable tool to see what crime trends are happening closer to your visit since the latest data we can provide is the 2020 FBI UCR report.
- You can text 911 in Hopkinsville, but it should only be used if you cannot speak when you need to call 911. This could be during an active shooter or domestic situation, for example. You won’t be able to send pictures or videos, so be as descriptive as possible with your text.
- You can also text crime tip information to the police. You’ll enter CRIMES (274637) in the “TO” section and then type “hpdtip” with the crime information.
- The Hopkinsville Police Department’s Facebook page (@HopkinsvillePD) is great at posting crime information and requests for help to catch criminals. You should consider following the page during your visit to get a better idea of what’s going on in the community.
- You’ll need a fishing license if you’re going to one of the rivers or lakes in the region. You can purchase it online through the Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife. You can’t use your license from home here.
- There have been reports of credit card skimming devices on some gas station pumps in Hoptown. To lessen your chance of being a victim, always use the pump closest to the front door and avoid the pumps that are farther away. You can also pay for your gas inside. Yes, it takes more time, but it will also take a lot of time to handle a fraud charge on your card.
- Sign up for Christian County Alerts through the Hopkinsville or Christian County website. This is done through a program called Smart 911, which also allows you the option to enter emergency information of your own. The service is free, and you’ll get a heads-up about weather concerns or other countywide emergencies.
- Five of the city’s parks have free WiFi for guests. This is a great benefit, but using public WiFi isn’t the time to check your bank account or log into your credit card account, since it’s not a private system.
So... How Safe Is Hopkinsville Really?
Hopkinsville has its fair share of crime.
A recent concerning story for a tourist was an assault and rape that happened at the Rails to Trails park at 5:30 pm.
The suspect has been arrested, but it punctuates the importance of being aware of your surroundings and that you should always have a buddy with you.
Another recent crime left 20 shell casings on the street of a neighborhood.
Here’s how the risks break down in Hoptown:
- Violent Crime: 1 in 271
- Robbery: 1 in 1,075
- Theft: 1 in 38
Shoplifting was the largest crime category outside of “Other Thefts”, accounting for 31% of theft crimes.
There’s a 21% rate of car break-ins too, so lock up your car and remove ALL personal belongings.
The average value stolen from cars was $727.
A study was done by the police department to see how safe residents felt in the city.
Here’s a snippet of how safe residents feel during the day:
- 93% felt safe shopping
- 88% felt safe at community events
- 82% felt safe walking in neighborhoods
- 82% felt safe downtown
The results conveniently left out how safe people felt at night.
However, you know the general guidance is to avoid walking around alone at night and never try to walk back to your hotel if you’ve been drinking or if the route isn’t well lit.
How Does Hopkinsville Compare?
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- Visas - You'll need a U.S. Visa if you're visiting from outside the country. That will take a few months to process and cost less than $200, depending on the type of visa you need.
- Currency - The U.S. Dollar is the only option here, and you should avoid carrying a large amount of cash with you because of the high theft rate.
- Weather - Plan for the unexpected because Kentucky weather can be volatile. You'll need a winter coat, but the weather rarely gets bitterly cold here. Bring comfortable and casual layers of clothing as this isn't a place where you'll need to dress up.
- Airports - Clarksville Regional Airport is just across the border in Tennessee, and that's less than a 30-minute drive. You can get to Nashville International Airport in less than 90 minutes.
- Travel Insurance - Travel insurance is just a smart way to travel. The weather here can delay or cancel flights, and it will also protect you from accidents during your travels.
Hopkinsville Weather Averages (Temperatures)
Average High/Low Temperature
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