Grab your hats and get thirsty for mint juleps -- it's Kentucky Derby time.
The 139th annual event is home to outlandish outfits, southern cocktails, and more than a few reasons to forego watching the actual horse race, and instead, watch the crowd. Here are a few parties on our Derby list for May 4 ...
5. The Phoenician For a fancy bash on the lawn, head to The Phoenician in Scottsdale where Woodford Reserve Kentucky Bourbon will be flowing and Mint Juleps come in keepsake copper cups. The party, from 1 to 4 p.m. includes best hat and best Southern gentleman's fashion contests as well as raffle prizes and a full menu of Southern eats. Tickets are $40. Call 480-423-2530 for reservations.
4. Coach House Old Town Scottsdale's Coach House is leaving Cinco de Mayo in the dust this weekend in favor of its favorite horse race. The bar/restaurant is putting up a free BBQ lunch and a shuttle service will be running from the location to Upper Deck, a local off-track betting spot. Prizes will be given out for best hats. Admission is free.
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3. Turf Paradise The North Phoenix venue will host its annual blow-out viewing party in the grandstand. Events include a bonnet contest, race bets, and food and drink passes from the Clubhouse at $38 and Turf Club at $65. Admission to the grandstand is $5 per person.
2. Mabel's on Main Mabel's lounge will be showing a live feed of the big race with prizes and games before and after the gun goes off. Fashionable attire is encouraged, and will be celebrated with derby drinks and food. Admission is free.
1. Searsucker The Scottsdale restaurant got its name (though it's intentionally misplelled) from the traditional suits worn in the South and at derbies for decades, so it's no surprise Searsucker is having a party. Guests are encouraged to sport their best seersucker suits and hats from 1 to 6 p.m. (anyone wearing a seersucker gets a free appetizer). Cocktails will be flowing, as will Southern dishes. Admission is free.