Hinchman Heritage Society 2015 Conference Summary

Hinchman Heritage Society 2015 Conference Summary

Hinchman Heritage Society 2015 Conference Summary
Submitted by Cheri Hinchman Widzowski

The 2015 HHS Conference, held in Lexington, Kentucky in early July, was a hit, despite the reduced attendance at this year’s reunion, which was co-hosted by newlyweds Kevin and Elise Hinchman, and Mary and Joe Hinchman. HHS attendees enjoyed visiting Lexington, a city of approximately 350,000 in the heart of Bluegrass Country, known as the “The Horse Capital of the World”.

Members of the extended Hinchman/Henchman clan partook of Lexington’s cultural and recreational offerings – distilleries, wineries, shopping, fine dining, and of course, horse-related points of interest such as the Kentucky Horse Park (and it’s Horse Museum). Local historical attractions, such as the homes of Mary Todd Lincoln, noted abolitionist Cassius Marcellus Clay, and his cousin, famed statesman Henry Clay, were also popular. Shaker Village and Mammoth Cave were other nearby destinations. HHS members toured Old Kentucky Chocolates (and got some delicious samples!), Alltech Town Brewery & Distillery, and Keeneland, the racetrack famous for its annual thoroughbred sales and premier horse racing. The Bluegrass region’s famous Bourbon Trail of distilleries offering tours and tastings was popular as well.

The Keeneland tour was a “behind-the-scenes” affair led by Kevin Hinchman, who works in the Keeneland IT department. Highlights of this tour included seeing trainers and jockeys exercising multi-million dollar horses, visiting Keeneland’s upscale gift shop, and having a delicious down-home Kentucky breakfast in Keeneland’s Track Kitchen.

Nature lovers visited McConnell Springs – a unique jewel of a nature preserve and historic site hidden within Lexington’s city limits. Known as the site of Lexington’s founding, McConnell Springs features a wonderful nature center and picnic area, woods, wildflowers, ravines, streams, a pond filled with turtles and dragonflies, and the namesake natural springs, all along easy-to-stroll paths.

The HHS business meeting was well attended and productive (it had been agreed at the 2014 annual meeting that those who attended the 2015 business meeting would have the costs of the banquet refunded if they participated in the business meeting) with several interesting presentations including the Hinchman website administrator Kevin Hinchman’s demonstration of new genealogical searches on the site and the Internet. The banquet was delicious and the annual Silent Auction was very competitive, with lots of wonderful items donated (included handmade quilts from Esther and Nedra). A fun game of Hinchman Bingo was also played (you had to see it to believe it!). One of the highlights of the Reunion was celebrating Esther Hinchman’s 100 and 1/2 birthday at Malone’s restaurant (the staff there brought out an enormous cake for Esther, complete with candles, which she handily blew out on her own). Everyone had a good time catching up with their Hinchman kin, whether near or distant in relation or geography, and we are all excited about attending the 2016 HHS Conference in Charlotte, NC, and Branson, MO, in 2017.