The annual Kentucky Derby brings a lot of fun things to mind. Big hats, fast horses, and lots of good eating and drinking! I think it’s the perfect occasion to host a Derby-themed gathering, in fact.
You’d be surprised at how easy it is to throw a Kentucky Derby Party. You can make it as over-the-top or as simple as you like. Here at Mr. Food, we’re all about keeping it super-simple, so that’s where we’re going with this idea today. Yep – planning a Kentucky Derby viewing party can be easy-as-pie … if you get your friends and family involved in the cooking and host a potluck!
How to Host a Kentucky Derby Party: Potluck Edition!
- Food: Assign each person a different Kentucky Derby-themed dish to bring. I’ve included my favorites from the Mr. Food Test Kitchen below. As the host, you can whip up a pitcher of mint juleps, and leave the food to the rest of the party-goers. This year, the official whiskey for the Kentucky Derby Mint Julep is Early Times, so be sure to pick up a bottle (or two!) of that.
- Attire: Tell your guests to wear their very best Kentucky Derby get-ups! For ladies, this means a festive Kentucky Derby hat is in order. Tell the ladies coming to the party to unleash their inner Southern Belle! The men should think Southern-preppy, wearing anything from khakis to seersucker.
- Fun: Host your party the same day as the Derby, so that you can tune in and watch it together on TV! And why not add an extra element of fun to the party by adding by making a contest out of it? Have everyone vote on who brought the best dish, and then award the winner a dozen red roses – signifying the 554 red roses the real winner of the Derby is awarded each year.