This Thursday, May 1st, Churchill Downs is hosting the first-ever Kentucky "Thurby". What is Thurby, you ask? The Thursday before Derby, which is likely to become as popular in Louisvillian's vocabulary as Oaks and Derby. Here are a list of five reasons why you should attend the first annual Kentucky Thurby.
1) It's the local thing to do.
For years, Oaks has been known as the day for Louisville locals to enjoy the races. But, the Kentucky Oaks attendance has reached nearly 100,000 people in past years and is becoming particularly popular for tourists and out-of-towners. So, Thurby will allow Louisville to take back what is rightfully ours, so to speak.
2) It's not as expensive.
General admission for Thurby is only $10 and substantially less expensive than Oaks and Derby. It is likely to be less crowded, so general admission will still allow visitors to get a good view at the races other than just on the large televisions. You won't have to spend an absurd amount of money and still get a taste of Derby.
3) It's less crowded.
Oaks has brought as many as 100,000 people to Churchill Downs and Churchill Downs is hoping to attract about 50,000 for Thurby. If the attraction brings as many participants as they are hoping, this number is still substantially smaller than Oaks traffic. This makes for more parking, less crowds, and just an all around less crowded experience. It will be easier to get dinner near Churchill Downs after the races. This is great for people who want to experience Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Derby, but not the crowds and traffic that Oaks and Derby bring.
4) It's more casual.
Unlike Oaks and Derby, there is no basis of comparison to dress code to Thurby. I would suggest business casual, like no jeans, but not as dressed up as if you were going to Oaks or Derby. Thurby gives a much more relaxed and casual vibe, but you can never be overdressed (or overeducated), as Oscar Wilde said.
5) There will be bourbon.
And lots of it. There will be bourbon tasting and a demonstration by Brown-Forman on how to make a new drink called a “New Fashioned” will be shown on the screens and these cocktails will be sold around the track and infield.
So, cancel your plans for Thursday, tell work you're sick (just kidding) and go to Churchill Downs for what may be the new locals day!
Do you think Thurby become as large as Oaks and Derby?