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The Julep was a fun party held at the Galt House as a fundraiser for the James Graham Brown Cancer Center. The star studded gala had many celebrity guests and entertainment to please. Although it wasn’t as glamorously decorated as I expected, it was adequate. Since it is a fundraiser, I guess it is fair to say they need not splurge on excess luxuries. Although ice sculptures and acrobats are always cool. I would say the cocktail reception area definitely could have used more décor. There were a few small tables setup, the Mint Julep fountain, and the red carpet, but there were no extra decorations here. Some more ambient lighting would have made the cocktail lounge more extravagant. The red carpet was long and in a great location allowing the media, including Tom Fischer with BourbonBlog (a blog site dedicated to Bourbon), to get great pictures of all the celebrities.   

The party was delayed a little past 7pm due to the Oaks starting late because of the bad weather (which we got stuck in walking back to our car at the Oaks and had to run home to freshen up). Guests were able to line up behind the media line to watch all the stars enter. In case you didn’t recognize any of the celebrities The Julep had someone manning a white board writing down names of who was walking in. The Julep program also had a bio and picture of each celebrity.  There were a few celebrities who were not in the program, but still attended.

The first celebrity down the red carpet was Gabriel Amar, hat designer for Von Maur.  He was one of the friendliest celebrities and when we asked him what he thought about all the Derby hats he said, “I’ve seen a lot of great hats so far.” Mr. Amar also said he is currently undecided on his Kentucky Derby horse.  A little later in the party we ran into Gabriel Amar again and he commented, “I like your tattoo. You all have very nice hats, but come see me before next Derby to get a hat.”

After Gabriel Amar we spoke briefly to Charlie Strong, UofL’s football coach, and his wife Vicki Strong who said he was also undecided on his Kentucky Derby horse. Vicki Strong had on a gorgeous, long pink gown that definitely stood out from the rest.

Conrad Bachmann, famous actor, was the next celebrity we spoke with.  Conrad is actually from Louisville, KY and was appointed to the Commonwealth of Kentucky’s Film Commission by Governor Beshear. Bachmann was also undecided on his Kentucky Derby horse although he did joke that he was betting on, “My own horse.” I must have looked like I was taking him seriously, which I was unsure if he had a horse in the derby or not, he reassured me he really didn’t have a horse in the derby.  A little later at the Mint Julep fountain he jokingly told me, “It has a way of checking ID’s.” I guess that could be a compliment that I look under 21. I’ll take that. I did find out at the Oaks that the Mint Julep is over rated. I about gagged on my Mint Julep, my first one ever. It tasted like mouth wash. The Oaks Lily is way better. Maybe The Julep should have had an Oaks Lily fountain instead since a) it was the day of the Oaks and b) it would have been pink for cancer awareness.

Next Jeff Walz, UofL’s head coach of the women's basketball team, and his girl friend went down the red carpet followed by ‘hero mom’ Stephanie Decker, who saved her children in the Henryville tornado causing her to lose parts of both legs, and her husband Joe Decker. We expressed our admiration for what Stephanie did and told her we were glad to see them there. Stephanie looked elegant in a black dress.

Slideshow: 
Gabriel Amar
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Conrad Bachmann
Jeff Walz, girl friend, & Vicki Strong
Conrad Bachmann
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Charlie & Vicki Strong
Joe & Stephanie Decker
Max Adler
Angie Johnson & Husband
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Max Adler
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Miss Kentucky
Gunnar Deatherage & Jessica Rizzo
Zach Bryan & Mark Hapka
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Mark Hapka
AJ Hawk
Doris Roberts
Jonathan Kite
Rodney Atkins & band
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Ambassador Shabazz
Linsey Godfrey
Vanessa Bell Calloway & Star Jones
Star Jones
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Shohreh Aghdashloo
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Christian Siriano
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David Arquette
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Fred Willard
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Fred Willard's shoes
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Corey Miller
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Pat Patrick Band
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Mint Julep Fountain
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Auction Lounge
Rodney Atkins' concert
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Jenna with Rodney Atkin's guitar pick
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Angie Johnson
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Coco's Confectionz
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White Castles

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About Anna Blanton

Anna Blanton holds a Bachelors of Arts in Music (violin) and a Minor in Marketing from the University of Louisville. Anna currently plays with the Paducah Symphony, folk rock band- Field of Kings, and fuzz/folk rock band- Jack Holiday and the Westerners. From 9-5 she is the Development Information Manager at the Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts. She is also a Production Assistant for the Beatles festival, Abbey Road on the River.

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