Shelbyville, KY

Dinner and a Show in Shelbyville: Shelby County Community Theatre

JC Phelps

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Hey, y’all! I have shared over the years that Shelby County is a top-tier destination for saddlebred horses, bourbon, and Kentucky culture. But, I also want y’all to know that it’s a wonderful place to experience the arts, for which we are rich here in the Commonwealth! I recently had a perfect evening – a dinner and a show in Shelbyville – and I’m so excited to tell y’all about it today. To understate, the Shelby County Community Theatre is a regional gem!

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Dinner and a Show in Shelbyville: Shelby County Community Theatre

You cannot go to a show or through an evening on an empty stomach. While there are a plethora of fabulous dining options in Shelby County, a favorite of mine is the Red Lion. The best part? It’s located very close to the Shelby County Community Theatre.

The Red Lion at Science Hill

The Red Lion at Science Hill features a chef-led, Kentucky-forward menu. While the menu changes according to what they can locally and sustainably source, one thing is constant: the food quality. Expect to find elevated southern classics on the menu, craft cocktails, and delicious specials.

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The meal started with the pork belly and brussels sprouts appetizer. The pork belly is glazed with a sweet chili sauce that is divine.

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We also split the house-made pimento cheese and warm Bavarian pretzel sticks.

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A seasonal offering that I loved was the heirloom tomato + watermelon salad, which featured shaved cucumber, red onion, fresh basil, and burrata.

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The standout dish was my entree: a pan-seared verlasso salmon with a brussels sprouts hash and a mustard lemon cream sauce.

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My dinner guest had the walking tacos trio: fried chicken with cabbage and wontons, Philly cheesesteak, and a shrimp po’boy.

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Their desserts rotate, but I highly recommend their cakes! You’ll also always find Kern’s Kitchen Derby Pie on the menu, along with farm-fresh ice cream.

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Address: 525 Washington St, Shelbyville, KY 40065 | website

Shelby County Community Theatre

Kentucky is rich with native talent in the arts, and the Shelby County Community Theatre is no exception. The theatre was charted in 1977 and launched in the community with a performance of The Music Man.

The Shelby County Community Theatre boasts various programs to enhance arts and entertainment opportunities for adults and children alike. An award-winning theatre, with regional and state recognition from the Kentucky Theater Association, it’s a flagship location for both Shelby County and the region.

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I attended the season’s first performance, which was a hilarious rendition of Spamalot. The theatre features a wide array of productions throughout the year. Some of the 2022-2023 season highlights include The Lion King Jr., Frankenstein, A Christmas Carol, She Loves Me, The Women of Lockerbie, and As You Like It. You can order tickets for upcoming performances here. 

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Performance times for all shows (unless otherwise noted):

Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 7:30 PM

Sundays at 2:30 PM

Regular Ticket Prices (unless otherwise noted):

Adults: $18

Seniors (ages 62+): $15

Students and Children: $15

Address: 801 Main St, Shelbyville, KY 40065 | website

About Shelby County

Shelby County is the American Saddlebred Capital of the World, a community of small-town charm and world-class equestrian events. Home to 90-plus Saddlebred horse farms and breeding and training facilities, ShelbyKY gives visitors a rare peek into the world of the Saddlebred show horse. Attractions include Kentucky’s only designer outlet mall, The Outlet Shoppes of the Bluegrass; the antique, home accessory, and furniture shops comprising “Design Destination”; Jeptha Creed Distillery; Bulleit Distillery; Talon Winery; and the Shelby County Community Theatre. ShelbyKY’s dining landscape includes culinary icons Science Hill Inn and Claudia Sanders Dinner House; overnight choices range from brand-name chain hotels to downtown lofts; additionally, there are ample outdoor adventures to enjoy.

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JC Phelps is a Kentucky-based food + southern lifestyle writer.

Louisville, KY
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