Horse-racing is a significant part of our cultural tradition as Kentuckians. It also provides enormous economic stimulus throughout the year at both Churchill Downs & Keeneland. But, the trainers, owners & jockeys who get most of the attention for the successes of the incredible animals on display are not the ones responsible for the majority of their care.

A farrier fits a horse with new shoes on the backside.

There are approximately 1000 individuals who oversee their needs around the clock on the backside of the track, & an average of 600 also live on the grounds. There is an entire world below the big screen. One that you would never see unless you drove around to investigate.

View of the Twin Spires from the backside.

Many of the men & women working in this world are immigrants who need support to integrate into our community, learn the language, pursue citizenship, & much more. Fortunately for them, the Backside Learning Center exists to do just that. Help them navigate life & become part of the Louisville community while they serve an industry that helps our city shine.

Main entrance of the Backside Learning Center.

We sat down with Sherry Stanley, Executive Director of the Backside Learning Center, to hear about the history of this essential organization, the services it provides, & how we can all better support the people who keep the world of horse-racing alive.

Entertainment room at the Backside Learning Center.

Listen in & consider ways you could get involved! If you have questions about volunteering or want to take a tour to get to know the backside, reach out to the Backside Learning Center team at!

Side of a barn on the backside.

You can also follow them on Instagram, Facebook, & YouTube!

Nathan & Megan, two of the Backside Learning Center staff team.

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