The Kentucky Derby Museum will commemorate its 30th anniversary on April 11th. The celebration will last all year long with a series of special events and festivities. In addition to the fun of being 30 and just hitting our stride, the Museum bids farewell to longtime President Lynn Ashton, who will retire this upcoming September.
Guests will have an opportunity to take a trip back in time, as the Museum will host a special “Rollback Day” April 11. Price of admission will be dropped to $2.50, equaling the cost when the doors originally opened in 1985. Along with the discounted entrance fee, visitors will be treated to two exclusive unveilings: a 30th anniversary commemorative bourbon bottle of Woodford Reserve Distiller Select and the 30th anniversary commemorative Louisville Stoneware Collection, which consists of a platter, bowl, mug and mint julep cup. Other happenings include a build-your-own Derby hat activity for children and membership event.
Also opening April 11 is the Museum’s newest temporary showcase, “Stars of the Stands.” The two-year exhibit will be broken into different eras to show how fame and celebrity transformed the Kentucky Derby into an iconic event. The first season will highlight the celebrities who were involved in horse racing and attended the Derby from its infancy to 1974, while the second will feature a more current flavor of Hollywood’s biggest stars visiting Churchill Downs from 1975 to present day.
The Kentucky Derby Museum consists of two floors of exhibit space, including a 360-degree theater that shows the HD video The Greatest Race. Through the film and exhibits, visitors can learn what goes into the breeding and training of a young foal and the path it takes to the Kentucky Derby’s winner circle. Every Kentucky Derby win is honored in the Warner L. Jones Time Machine, where visitors can watch any Kentucky Derby from 1918 to the present day. Exhibits highlight the stories of owners, trainers and jockeys as well as the importance of African American jockeys and trainers to the race and the Thoroughbred industry. Guided tours of Churchill Downs’ barn and infield areas, jockeys’ quarters, “millionaire row” and press box are also offered.