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   Nags Head Software

Kentucky Derby Party Suggestions



    Copies of Horse Information - Make copies of articles from USA Today and your local paper that will help your guests pick a horse. Make enough for about one third of the people attending.

    Bet Sheet - Guests fill out a pre-printed sheet from our betting software that lists all their bets. The sheet makes it easy for our computer person to enter bets into the computer. Encourage guests to start betting early.

    Betting Software  - We have progressed from drawing horse names from a basket to using a spreadsheet to a pretty neat program available on the web at Nags Head Software. The program tracks bets by individual bettor, displays odds based on the bets at your party, calculates payoffs, and lists payoff amounts for all the winners.

    Cashier - The cashier takes each bet sheet and the money, checks the totals and money, makes change, and gives the bet sheets to the computer person.

     Computer Data Entry - Use a second person to do the data entry to minimize distractions during the data entry process.

     Payoff - Win, place, and show winners are entered into the program and a list of winning bettors is displayed. Party guests are called up one at a time to collect their winnings. Announce the biggest winner last.


   Include a brief writeup on Kentucky Derby history or the history of your party

        (check Churchill Downs web site Churchill Downs | Home of the Kentucky Derby | Horse Racing for ideas)

   Start your party at least 2-3 hours before the race

    Microsoft Publisher is a great tool to create your own invitations

    Include directions to the party


Traditionally, women wear big hats on Derby Day. To add some real spice to the fun, be sure to include hats as suggested attire for ladies in your invitation.


    Kentucky Burgoo (adapted from Southern Living Recipe)

   1 (4-5 lb.) hen

    2 lbs beef or veal stew meat

    11/2 to 2 lbs beef or veal bones

    1 stalk celery with leaves cut into 1 inch pieces

    1 carrot cut into 1 inch pieces

    1 small onion quartered

    1 (6 oz) can tomato paste

    3 quarts water

    1 red pepper pod

    1 to 1 1/2 tablespoon salt

    1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons black pepper

    1/2 teaspoon red pepper

    2 tablespoons lemon juice

    1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce


    6 onions finely chopped

    6 14 1/2 oz cans chopped tomatoes

    1 turnip peeled and finely chopped

    2 green peppers finely chopped

    2 cups fresh butterbeans

    2 cups thinly sliced celery

    2 cups finely chopped cabbage

    2 cups sliced frozen okra

    2 cups frozen cut corn

Combine first 14 ingredients in a large dutch oven. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour. Cool, strain meat mixture, reserving meat and liquid; discard vegetables. Remove bone, skin, gristle from meat; finely chop meat. Return meat to liquid, and refrigerate 8 hours or overnight.

Remove fat layer on mixture and add remaining ingredients and a piece of fat back. Bring mixture to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, uncovered 3 hours or to desired consistency, stirring mixture frequently to prevent sticking. Remove the piece of fat back before serving Serve with tabasco. Yield: 30 cups. Can be prepared ahead and frozen

    Kentucky Pie

    1 cup sugar

    4 eggs

    1 cup white Karo syrup

    1 tsp vanilla

    1 stick butter (no substitutes)

    1 cup pecans or english walnuts chopped

    1 6-oz package mini chocolate chips

Mix first four ingredients and blend well. Melt butter and add to first mixture along with remaining ingredients. Pour into two 9 inch unbaked pie shells. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes or until set.

       Cucumber Sandwiches

1 medium burp-less cucumber peeled

1 (3 oz) package cream cheese softened

1/4 cup minced onion

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon white pepper

1/8 teaspoon hot sauce

Coarsely shred enough cucumber to make 1 cup. Press shredded cucumber between paper towels to remove excess moisture (this is very important). Beat cream cheese until fluffy. Stir prepared cucumber and remaining ingredients into cream cheese.

Cut crusts off thin sliced Pepperidge Farm white bread

Spread mixture between two slices of of bread

Cut sandwiches into quarters

Store in a container lined with a moist towel covered with wax paper. Put single layers of sandwiches in container between sheets of wax paper - refrigerate over night or a couple of days.

    Chili We keep a large pot of our favorite chili on the stove with some shredded cheese, sour cream, and chopped onions on the side


    Mint Juleps (adapted from Southern Living recipe)

   1/2 cup sugar

    1 cup water (prefer distilled or bottled)

    use only the leaves from 8 fresh mint sprigs finely chopped (no stems)

    1 quart bourbon (prefer Jim Beam)

    fresh mint sprigs

    Combine water, sugar, chopped mint leaves and bourbon in a glass container, stir until sugar dissolves. Cover and let stand 4 -6 hours.

    Strain mixture into a large pitcher, discarding chopped mint. To serve, fill glasses with cracked ice; add bourbon mixture, and garnish with mint sprigs. Silver julep cups are nice if you can afford them. Plastic cups work just as well especially after the first drink.

    Bourbon Slush

        1    12 oz can frozen orange juice - thawed

          1    12 oz can frozen lemonade - thawed

          1 1/2 cups sugar

          1 1/2 cups bourbon (we like Jim Beam)

          2 cups boiling water with 4 tea bags steeped in it for 5 minutes (remove tea bags)

          7 cups boiling water

          Mix all ingredients in a plastic gallon bowl type container.

          Place in freezer for 48 hours to insure that it is completely frozen.

          Scoop out with ice cream scoop or large spoon into glasses.


    Signs - Use your Word Processing software to make up signs for a Betting Window, Paddock, Cashier, Winners Circle, Owners Box, Jockey Club, Feedbag, Watering Trough, Grandstand, etc

    Flag - Check all those mail order catalogs or an equestrian supply store for a "horsey" flag to hang somewhere outside the house


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