Augusta is the home of the actor George Clooney, television journalist Nick Clooney and family, former home of singer Rosemary Clooney, and birthplace of Miss America 2000, Heather Renee French Henry. In the last quarter century, Augusta has been best known as the site of three major films: Michner’s Centennial, PBS’ Huckleberry Finn, and Neil Simon’s Lost in Yonkers.
42 miles southeast of Cincinnati in Bracken County, Augusta sits at the convergence of the Ohio River and Bracken Creek. The Ohio River forms the northern border of the city; the river flows in a straight westerly direction for nine miles without the obstruction of a floodwall. Riverside Drive offers an incredible long-range view of this picturesque river valley. Many people believe it is the most beautiful view of the valley in the entire state of Kentucky. Its earliest history in 1781 showed Augusta as a popular shipping port. During the mid 1800’s, European immigrants helped establish a thriving wine industry in Augusta. Today, the surrounding hillsides are still terraced, much the way they are in the famous Rhine Valley in Germany. Augusta and the surrounding area played a crucial role in the Underground Railroad with many sites marked by historical markers.
The river has always played a major role in Augusta’s development. A devastating flood in 1997 caused the permanent removal of some homes; it has also enabled the town to develop green spaces and parks. The construction of the O’Neill Riverwalk, along with the boat docking facility provides access for large pleasure and entertainment boats to dock in the town’s center. City and County leaders expect the tourism industry to become a major contributor to the economy in the future, but agricultural remains as the primary occupation for most of the 1200 residents.
A ferry service crossing the Ohio River at Augusta has been in continuous operation since 1798. Currently the Jenny Ann remains in daily operation under the auspices of the Augusta Ferry Authority and provides a short ride to Ohio’s scenic U.S. 52 along the Ohio River. Kentucky Rt. 8 and 9 (better known as the AA Highway) link Augusta with the rest of Bracken County. Greater Cincinnati International Airport is a 45-minute drive, with Brown County Airport 12 miles away. Amtrak passes through the area with a stop 18 miles away at Maysville.
Residents have their choice of crossing the Ohio River to reach Brown County Hospital 16 miles away in Georgetown, Ohio or heading 18 miles downriver to Meadowview Regional Medical Center in Maysville, Kentucky. Augusta Fire and EMS provide service to the city.
Most daily needs can be met in Augusta, but most residents shop in Maysville or drive into Cincinnati for major shopping trips. August has quite a few local boutique-style shops as well as local cafes and restaurants.
The Augusta Riverpark public boat launching facility offers easy access to the Ohio River and all of its recreational offerings. Artists and thespians will find an active art guild and theater group. The Augusta Heritage Days River Regatta is a highlight of summer and nearly monthly festivals contribute to an active yearlong entertainment calendar. Residents enjoy a White Christmas Parade, fall Ghost Tour, Fireman's Fourth of July, Turning of the Leaves festival, Swingtime on the River, Art in the Garden among other annual events.