Each year in early May, well over 100 thousand spectators enter Louisville for what has been called the most exciting two minutes in sports. Gathered at Churchill Downs, the ladies wear ornate hats. The men dress in crisp suits. They sip mint juleps and watch as a field of horses compete for one cherished title.
The Kentucky Derby is what the Commonwealth is known for. But if you’re unable to attend, don’t fret. You can have just as much fun (maybe even more) celebrating the 142-year-old tradition from Bowling Green. We’ve compiled a list of ways to help.
Wear a Hat
Derby goers are known for their elaborate headwear. You don’t want to skimp out on the tradition, even if you are celebrating from over 100 miles away. You could search Bowling Green’s downtown shops and boutiques for the perfect accessory, or you could just make your own.
Pretend Cars are Horses
Get a group of friends together and go stand around Bowling Green’s roundabout. As cars zip through, give them strange names and place bets on which ones you think will be the fastest. It won’t be quite the same as watching the horses race, but it will do.
Construct Your OwnGarland of Roses
It’s a Kentucky Derby tradition for the winning horse to be decorated with a 40-pound blanket of fresh, red flowers. Get crafty and try to build your own garland of roses.
Eat and Drink Like a True Derby Aficionado
The official Kentucky Derby website list a number of dishes, desserts and drinks that represent the legacy and tradition of the event. Celebrate by attempting to make your own mint julep.
Race Mattresses Down the Hill
Just because the Kentucky Derby’s traditionally been a race between horses that doesn’t mean that’s all it ever has to be. Take a creative twist by lugging your standard, dorm-issued mattress up to the top of the top of the Hill and racing your friends down to the bottom. If you’re really brave, attach a skateboard to the bottom and see how fast you can go.
Hold a Viewing Party
The real run for the roses will be broadcast on NBC from 4-7:30 p.m. Gather some friends together to watch it.