Sunday, May 3, 2009

The Kentucky Derby from Millionaire’s Row

For the second time in the last three years, my wife and I had the opportunity to go to the Kentucky Derby – in style! Since my wife works for one of the local media outlets she was able to score a couple of press passes for both of us, meaning we were free to go just about anywhere in Churchill Downs.

After spending a little time near the first turn, we made our way up to the 5th floor of the Skye Terrace, also known as Millionaire’s Row. Obviously we couldn’t pass up an opportunity to rub elbows with the rich and famous.

For anyone familiar with Louisville and the Kentucky Derby, the city goes all out for the biggest event of the year (and one of the biggest in the country). Each year the city kicks-off a two-week celebration with one of the largest fireworks/military aircraft shows in the country. That’s followed by parades, a steamboat race, mini-marathon, balloon race, concerts, festivals, and numerous Derby parties and balls.

The 153,563 fans that attended this year’s Derby dodged a major bullet in terms of the weather. All-day showers were expected, but fortunately the nasty weather passed just to the south of us. Although the sun wasn’t shining, at least it wasn’t raining.

Here are a few pictures of some of the sights from yesterday:

Mint Julep vendor - selling the "official" beverage of the Derby.

Race 7 of the day: coming around the first turn with the famous Twin Spires in the background.

John Calipari - recently named head basketball coach for UK.

The Infield - a lot of crazy stuff goes on here!

My wife and LeAnn Rimes, who sang the Star Spangled Banner.

View from the balcony.

Seth Myers from Saturday Night Live.

Parading the Derby horses before the big race.

Mine That Bird with a surprising victory in the 135th running of the Kentucky Derby. The horse was a 50-1 longshot. A two dollar bet would have won you $103.20 - the second highest in Derby history.

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1 comment:

bernie kasper said...

You would have to show a pic of Calipari !!

Just kidding looks like you had a great time !!