History of the Kentucky Derby Party

Are you looking for Kentucky Derby party ideas because you are throwing one this year? Since the very beginning, the Kentucky Derby has been associated with an extravagant spread. Along the way, the rich and the poor alike have perfected the history of the Kentucky Derby party. To get an idea of how to make your Kentucky Derby party more authentic, take a look at this trivia from the past. Also, do not forget that this is a great way to show your friends how to sign up for a Kentucky Derby betting account online.

Historic horse racing parties

Kentucky Derby PartyAristides won the first Kentucky Derby in 1875, and the stud farm he descended from was known for its legendary parties. Called McGrathiana, it was owned by a wealthy Lexington man named Price McGrath. Now called Coldstream, ESPN described McGrathiana parties as having, “lavish burgoo feasts … under a grove of locust trees at half-past one … with burgundy followed by roast dishes of mutton, goat and pig while the champagne and bourbon flowed.” As far as the fashion of 1875, the rich wore silk hats and the women carried parasols while working class men donned shirtsleeves and straw hats.

The first Infield party

The Kentucky Derby has a history of focusing on luxury and high class living. Regardless, the working class have always had presence at the Kentucky Derby. For example, at the first Kentucky Derby, working class people that could not afford the grandstands paid $2 for a badge to be able to stand at the rail and see the race. Since this time, the Infield party that takes place at Churchill Downs has evolved significantly. Over the past decade, it has been referred to as a frat party, but critics say that it has a history of being a space for roughhousing. This is not necessarily the case today, and you can expect law enforcement to be on hand for any partying in the Infield during the 2013 Kentucky Derby.

The first Kentucky Derby Festival event

Many people assume that the organizers of the Kentucky Derby own the large citywide party known as the Kentucky Derby Festival. Others assume that the City of Louisville must be the ones behind the scenes of events like the Balloon Glow, the Pegasus Parade, and Thunder over Louisville. The truth is that the Kentucky Derby Festival is a separate entity that has a history that began in 1935. After a couple of years, the festival shut down, but it was restarted in 1956.

Interestingly, the idea behind the first festival-oriented Kentucky Derby party in 1956 was to create an elaborate event for people that were too poor to afford to go to the Kentucky Derby. According to the Kentucky Derby Festival website, these 1950s originators came up with the idea to create a pageant of the people. In order to capture a spirit of magic, excitement and energy, the winged horse of Greek mythology, Pegasus, was chosen.

How important are Kentucky Derby parties in the end?

Is it just a silly idea to throw a Kentucky Derby party each year? The answer to this question is an absolute no. Although it seems like Churchill Downs comes up with all the good ideas, the truth is that regular horse racing fans and their parties are where many Kentucky Derby traditions start. A good example is the red roses that are presented to the winning horse after the Kentucky Derby. The red rose became the official flower due to an after-party tradition started by a New York only socialite named E. Berry Wall.

When ladies showed up at his Kentucky Derby party, Wall would always give them a red rose. One of those parties was attended by Churchill Downs founder Meriwether Lewis Clark, and the red rose soon found its way to the Kentucky Derby. Starting in 1896, red roses were presented at the conclusion of each Kentucky Derby for the rest of the history of this race. In other words, be sure to take your ideas for Kentucky Derby parties seriously because your style could be the next big official trend.

Published On Apr 20, 2013