Because I turned 30 about 2 weeks ago, and because when I told people I was moving to Kentucky the first thing everybody said was, “OH MY GOD I’m coming out to visit you for the Kentucky Derby!” my sister (above) decided to throw a big derby party for me.  Because she is great.

People started arriving Wednesday night (Derby is on Saturday) and I dropped the last guest off at the airport Monday morning at 4:15am before I went to coach practice, and we basically didn’t stop at all in between.

First up: trip to the Woodford Reserve Bourbon Distillery:

It was here we learned that bourbon only has 5 ingredients, and that it does not, in fact, have to be made in Bourbon county (but it does have to be made in the US).

At the end of the tour we had a free tasting and got to hang out on the back porch of the farm.

That night we went to a favorite local hangout, and then out to another bar, where things got a little dicey.

The next morning, after getting home around 3am, I had to get up at 4:45 to coach practice.  Deciding to coach that Friday morning and not have someone cover for me may have been the worst idea I’ve ever had.  Ever.

The rest of the group was a little slow to get rolling.   Throughout the day more friends arrived, people got hats, and those that were already here went shopping for supplies and food…

…which they then cooked up into an AMAZING Friday night BBQ.  Best friends ever.

Saturday morning the big blue school bus arrived to take us to Louisville.

It was supposed to rain, hence the galoshes.

An hour and a half later we arrived…

…and walked under the tunnel…

…into the infield.

Everyone wore hats…

…and buttons…

…and drank mint juleps…

…and bet on the race…

view from the infield

…and lost (except for Molly, who wasn’t even sure which horse she bet on.)

The next day about half the group had to leave early, the other half took a trip out to Glencrest Farms (where Andrea lives)…

…to get a little tour and see the baby thoroughbreds…

…and then I slept 12 hours straight.

No tornados, no injuries or hospital visits.  Success!  SO great to see old friends, thank you to everyone who made the trip out here, to Molly and Andrea for organizing, to Paul’s parents for giving up their home for our visitors, to everyone who fronted money on food or tickets and may or may not have been fully refunded, and to my parents for financing our transportation.  It was a really wonderful weekend.

Update: I was wrong, Kristin also won $7.

7 thoughts on “Derby.

  1. i see jenny draxl! i may invite myself to next years’ derby, as my 30th is riiiight around then. whatcha think?

    1. yes, jenny d drove down from michigan. and of course! i am more than happy to host anyone who is willing to make the trek out to kentucky.

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