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Living a College Town Lifestyle in Bowling Green, Kentucky

The picturesque college town of Bowling Green, Kentucky is a lovely Midwestern community. This town of about 55,000 in southwest Kentucky is about an hour’s drive north of Nashville. The city was chosen as one 2006’s Dozen Distinctive Destinations by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Bowling Green is located in Warren County.

Western Kentucky University and its 15,000 students add college town ambiance and cultural opportunities to make this an interesting community in which to live. As the only city that serves alcohol between Louisville and Nashville, it has one of the highest concentrations of restaurants per capita of any city in America. A source of local pride is the General Motors Corvette plant, where these legendary cars have been made for more than 25 years. Just big enough to offer the excitements of a small city, it is small and Midwestern enough to create a happy balance. Another plus is free college tuition provided by the State of Kentucky.

Bowling Green has an active plan to develop itself, with a main focus being Riverwalk Park near the Barren River. There are many recreational activities as well, thanks to the presence of many parks. There are 7 golf courses and 8 disc (Frisbee) golf courses here. Photo of downtown Bowling Green downtown courtesy of Wikipedia and OPMaster.

Where to Retire in Bowling Green and Home Prices

The area is developing rapidly with upscale retirement communities aimed at  active adults looking for vacation homes. There are also nice neighborhoods within and around town to live in. According to the National Association of Realtors, the median selling price of a home in Bowling Green was $260,900 in the 3rd quarter of 2022.

What Is Special about Bowling Green

• College town with a vital university • Riverwalk Park and Circus Square • National Corvette Homecoming event • National Corvette Museum • Capitol Arts Center • Cave Spring Caverns • Eloise B. Houchens Center • Historic Railpark at the L&N Depot • Low cost of living  •  Bowling Green Ballpark minor league baseball • Major economic development projects

What Is Not Special about Bowling Green

It is far from any big city.

Climate and Physical Environment

Bowling Green is located in Southwestern Kentucky on the Barren River. The area looks just like its name; rolling hills and Kentucky bluegrass abound. The climate is mild but one can experience all 4 seasons. The average January temperature is in the mid 30s and the average July temp is in the high 70s.

Restaurants & Cultural Scene

Western Kentucky University provides a big part of the cultural resources in this town. The Capitol Arts Center boasts an 800 seat theatre and 2 art galleries. The Public Theatre of Kentucky/Phoenix Theatre is a 147 seat professional theatre. The Barren River Imaginative Museum of Science is a "hands-on" science museum. The Kentucky Museum and Library is here. The Warren County Public Library has four permanent locations. SKyPAC is the $28 million Southern Kentucky Arts Center (1,800 seats). Hitcents Park Plaza is large new mixed-use development with restaurants, offices, and shops.


Crime is slightly above the national average, but the crime reported is not violent crime.

Medical Facilities

The Medical Center is a large and growing regional hospital. It recently spent 10s of $ millions for new facilities. Western Kentucky U has a new 73,000 sq.ft. Health Sciences Complex.


Bowling Green - Warren County Regional Airport is here. Nashville International Airport is about 1 hour south.

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