Summer is the busiest season at Lost River Cave, and we can’t say thank you enough to the staff for their hard work. Lost River Cave recognizes wonderful individuals who keep us afloat, from tour guides to cashiers to maintenance.
Chris Inman is originally from Louisville, and he came to Bowling Green to attend Western Kentucky University. Chris started working for Lost River Cave as a tour guide in January, and he graduated from WKU in May with a degree in communication.
What originally brought you to Lost River Cave? We were on a field trip for my Nonprofit Management Class, and we were pulling invasive plants at Lost River Cave. Naturalist Annie Holt introduced us to the park, and I was interested. What really attracted me were the upcoming plans for the Outdoor Classroom. I wanted to work with kids, and I like the outdoors. I really liked giving third graders tours near the end of the school year; that was great.
How is LRC different from any other employer you’ve ever had?They want to see us excel at what we are good at, and it’s not just an unskilled job.
Have your thoughts on caves or nature changed at all since you’ve been here? Yes, actually I just developed a new hobby I’m pretty excited about: pulling things out of nature, preparing them, cooking them and eating them. I boiled cattail roots from the Wetland (when we were removing them anyway), I’ve had my first crawfish boil with crawfish caught at Boatlanding Park, and I go camping more often.
Have you had any memorable visitors during your time working here? I got to give a tour to Phillip Smith. He has written several books, and he is also a caver. He is the one who discovered the “meat grinder,” a very thin passage that connects two very large cave systems. He actually has two books for sale in our gift shop. He’s also a prominent member of Toastmasters, and he complimented me on my tour which is pretty awesome.
What do you think the WORST corny cave joke is? What’s the difference between a Northern Cave Fish and a Southern Cave Fish? The Southern Cave Fish drinks sugar in its tea.
Have you had much opportunity to travel, if so where to, or where would you like to go?
I’ve been to Washington State; I saw their beaches that had giant whitewashed driftwood; I saw their enormous Redwood trees. I’ve been to Costa Rica and all along everything there is to see in the New England area. I’ve been lots of places. The next place I want to go is probably New Zealand.
For visitors reading this, do you have any recommendation for where to tour/eat/explore in the Bowling Green area or all of Kentucky? Honestly, I think our nature trails are one of the coolest things in Bowling Green.
Any last words of wisdom for your visitors reading this? Get away from the screens that we Americans have become obsessed with: Ipod, TV, computer, etc. Enjoy nature and face-to-face interactions with people.