The last two weeks in the River City have been spent preparing for the party before the party. That’d be Derby, of course.
I caught up with a few friends who have attended a number of Kentucky Derby’s to find out their top 10 reasons why they love our city’s greatest event.
- Hats! Hats! Hats! The beautiful and the outrageous.
- Enough spray tans to make Patricia Krentcil move to Kentucky.
- Observing out-of-towners that are passed out in their seersuckers by noon that have not learned to respect the “power of the mash” and never make it to the 11th race for the greatest two minutes in sports.
- The smell of fine cigars and Kentucky Bourbon.
- The excitement in sneaking liquor past security successfully.
- Watching the post parade of ponies in the paddock.
- Catching up with old acquaintances you may only see at the Derby.
- Singing My Old Kentucky Home with 165,000 people.
- Feeling your heart pick up the pace when you hear the words, “And they’re off!”
- Observing the crazy infield antics at a safe binocular distance.
- Because you can’t help but cheer in excitement when 165,00 join you.
- To perform a quality assurance check on Kentucky bourbon.
- To fashion friends, fashion fun and well, just fashion.
- To see the world’s widest range of the utterly foolish to the utterly fabulous.
- To see which hats the Brits will be wearing – next year.
- Because it’s on my bucket list – every year.
- To lose money, dammit.
- To hear my favorite song.
- To hear Gary Drake explain “superfecta” to a movie star.
- And among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of the winning ticket.
- Being acutely aware of the skin on the bottom of my feet.
- Wearing sunglasses inside and pretending to be a celebrity.
- Talking to Paris Hilton like we went to grade school together.
- Having a police escort and running red lights until mid-May.
- Falling out of the chair laughing with friends and Sunday during “Derby Download.”
- Joey Fatone.
- My American Express bill.
- Straight men in hats.
- Three solid days in bed afterwards.
- Knowing that there’s no other city on earth that could do it like Louisville does.
- Cashing a Derby winner ticket!
- Standing on the terrace two minutes before race time singing “My Old Kentucky Home.”
- Walking among 100,000 beautiful people and feeling relieved that all the hours of shopping have paid off with the right ensemble!
- The crazy people watching as they stand in line waiting to go into the infield.
- Crossing over the bridge and seeing Twin Spires in all their glory.
- Have a Club House ticket and Turf Club pass in my purse.
- Popping champagne bottles and drinking mimosa’s before 10 a.m. and it’s completely acceptable.
- Waking up and heading straight into the hair and makeup chair, knowing no matter what I’ve done the night before, the artists are going to work a miracle.
- Jack Fry’s and it’s indulgent Shrimp and Grits, Fired Oysters and Pistachio Crusted Salmon.
- Arriving at the Louisville airport and being greeted by beautiful women handing out bourbon balls who act as if they’ve been expecting you for weeks.