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Pellom McDaniels III To Make Appearance At Kentucky Derby Museum

Posted: February 13th, 2015

Pellom McDaniels III
Louisville, KY (February 11, 2015) – Pellom McDaniels III, author of “The Prince of Jockeys: The Life of Isaac Burns Murphy” will be at the Kentucky Derby Museum Feb. 22 from 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. In collaboration with the exhibit of the same name, McDaniels will give a presentation and have an open discussion with Museum Curator of Collections Chris Goodlett, followed by a book signing.

McDaniels is an assistant professor of African American Studies and the faculty curator of African American Collections at Emory University. A former college and professional football player, McDaniels played defensive end for Oregon State University and with the NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs before retiring in 2000. He is a 2015 recipient of the NCAA’s Silver Anniversary Award, presented to former student-athletes for athletic and professional success. Guests can purchase their own version of “Prince of Jockeys” in the Finish Line Gift Shop or online at www.derbymuseum.org.

“By thoroughly examining Murphy, Pellom gives readers an inside look into the remarkable life of one of history’s greatest jockeys through his biography and exhibit,” Goodlett said. “His experiences make him a transcendent persona in today’s culture, and guests will be enlightened to hear from this talented author in person.”

McDaniels’ biography is on Murphy, the three-time winning jockey of the Kentucky Derby. His first victory came aboard Buchanan in 1884, followed by Riley and Kingman in 1890 and 1891, respectively, and won 44 percent of the races he entered overall. Born on Tanner Farm in Kentucky and raised in Lexington, Kentucky, Murphy proved to be an example of African American success and achievement.

A traveling exhibit based on the book is currently on display at the Museum until May 31 in the second floor Pollard Gallery. Using photographs, illustrations and text, the exhibit of 25 didactic panels explores the significance of African Americans to the development of horse racing as a spectator sport, and highlights how Murphy came to be known as the “Prince of Jockeys.”

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About Kentucky Derby Museum
The Kentucky Derby Museum is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit museum in Louisville, KY dedicated to celebrating and sharing the Kentucky Derby experience. www.derbymuseum.org

CONTACT:
Gavin LaPaille
Public Relations Coordinator
(502) 814-3030
Cell (502) 762-8001
glapaille@derbymuseum.org

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Kentucky Derby Museum Commemorates 30th Anniversary With Year-Long Celebration / Longtime President Announces Retirement

Posted: February 4th, 2015


Louisville, KY (February 4, 2015) – The Kentucky Derby Museum will commemorate its 30th anniversary in 2015, and the celebration lasts 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.

Ashton will officially relinquish her position as president Sept. 30, with the Museum Board of Directors overseeing a search for her replacement. Since taking over in 1995, Ashton has directed a 10,000 square foot addition to the Museum’s first floor, managed a $10 million complete overhaul and insurance claim after a 2009 flood destroyed much of the building’s infrastructure and initiated the Backside Learning Center, a learning center for workers on the backside of Churchill Downs.

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About Kentucky Derby Museum
The Kentucky Derby Museum is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit museum in Louisville, KY dedicated to sharing the fun of the Kentucky Derby experience. www.derbymuseum.org

CONTACT:
Greg Keightley
Director of Marketing
(502) 992-5910
Cell (504) 491-3030
gkeightley@derbymuseum.org

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‘Prince of Jockeys: The Life of Isaac Burns Murphy’ comes to Kentucky Derby Museum

Posted: January 29th, 2015

Louisville, KY (January 29, 2015) – The Kentucky Derby Museum will host “The Prince of Jockeys: The Life of Isaac Burns Murphy,” a traveling exhibit dedicated to one of history’s greatest jockeys, in collaboration with Black History Month. The exhibit will be on display in the second floor Pollard Gallery from Feb. 1 to May 31, and is based on Pellom McDaniels’ recently released biography of the same name.

Murphy, the first black jockey to earn enshrinement into the National Museum of Racing’s Hall of Fame, mounted three Kentucky Derby winners in his career. His first victory came aboard Buchanan in 1884, followed by Riley and Kingman in 1890 and 1891, respectively, and won 44 percent of the races he entered overall. Born in Frankfort, Kentucky but raised in Lexington, Kentucky, Murphy proved to be an example of African American success and achievement. Using photographs, illustrations and texts, the exhibit of 25 didactic panels explores the significance of African Americans to the development of horse racing as a spectator sport, and highlights how Murphy came to be known as the “Prince of Jockeys.”

“We are extremely proud to help celebrate the deep history of African American riders in the Kentucky Derby through this exhibit,” Museum President Lynn Ashton said. “Murphy is a legendary figure in Thoroughbred circles, and his career and achievements are delightfully highlighted for a new generation.”

McDaniels, an assistant professor of African American Studies and the faculty curator of African American Collections at Emory University, will be at the Museum Feb. 22 to discuss and autograph copies of “The Prince of Jockeys.” Guests can purchase their own version in the Finish Line Gift Shop. A former college and professional football player, McDaniels played defensive end for Oregon State University and with the NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs before retiring in 2000. He is a 2015 recipient of the NCAA’s Silver Anniversary Award, presented to former student-athletes for athletic and professional success.

The Kentucky Derby Museum is a 501(c)3 non-profit museum in Louisville, Kentucky dedicated to celebrating and sharing the Kentucky Derby experience. Check us out on the web at www.derbymuseum.org or on our social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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CONTACT: Greg Keightley
Director of Marketing
(502) 992-5910
Cell (504) 491-3030
gkeightley@derbymuseum.org

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2015 Student Art Show Winner Surprised With Box Seats to the Kentucky Derby

Posted: January 26th, 2015

“Horsing Around With Art: A Student’s View of the Sport of Kings”
Kentucky Derby Museum to Donate $6,400 to Local School Art Departments

L – Addie Clark, Grand Prize Winner, R – Lynn Ashton, President Kentucky Derby Museum, presenting Grand Prize Award

L – Addie Clark, Grand Prize Winner, R – Lynn Ashton, President Kentucky Derby Museum, presenting Grand Prize Award

(Louisville, KY, January 20, 2015) – The Kentucky Derby Museum annually asks Louisville Metro students in grades 1-12 to illustrate their perspective of “The Greatest Two Minutes in Sports” through our juried competition “Horsing Around with Art: A Student’s View of the Sport of Kings”. “Horsing Around With Art” will be on display in the Matt Winn Gallery, located on the second floor of the Kentucky Derby Museum, from January 19 – February 15, 2015.

On Tuesday, January 20, “Horsing Around with Art” Grand Prize winner Addie Clark was surprised at Our Lady of Lourdes School with a dozen roses and the news that she will receive 6 box seats to this year’s 141st running of the Kentucky Derby provided by Churchill Downs. Along with the box tickets to the upcoming Kentucky Derby the student’s school art department at Our Lady of Lourdes will receive $500. The winning artwork will be framed and displayed at the Kentucky Derby Museum for one year and then returned to the student. The Grand Prize, selected by the President of Churchill Downs, is awarded to the artist whose work is judged to best “capture the spirit” of the Kentucky Derby.

The Kentucky Derby Museum will donate a total of $6,400 to Louisville Metro school art departments in the 2014-15 competition. 59 local students will receive recognition for their artwork as part of this contest. The contest was broken into four divisions, Primary (Gr. 1-3), Intermediate (Gr. 4-5), Middle School (Gr. 6-8) and High School (Gr. 9-12). First place in each division receives $500 for the school’s art department, for second place the school receives $300, and for third place the school receives $200. For the two Sculpture Awards, the Employees’ Choice Award and The Outriders Society Award, each winning school receives $100, and for the Grand Prize, the Thoroughbred Award, the “Green” Turf Award and the Backside Award the schools receive $500. Each of the winners will also receive art supplies for their personal use.

The “Green” Turf Award is a new award in this year’s contest. The award was developed to support the Arts and Cultural Attractions 2015 “YES! Fest”. “ YES! Fest”, is a year-long event promoting a Year of Environment and Sustainability. The artist’s work had to be developed using all recycled material.

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CONTACT:
Greg Keightley
Director of Marketing
Office (502) 992-5910
Cell (504) 491-3030
gkeightley@derbymuseum.org

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Kentucky Derby Museum to Host Buffalo Trace Master Distiller Harlen Wheatley February 5th Legends Series Tasting Event

Posted: January 13th, 2015

Harlen Wheatley

Louisville, KY (January 13, 2014) – With its latest “Legends Series” event, the Kentucky Derby Museum features rare bourbons and Buffalo Trace Master Distiller Harlen Wheatley February 5, 5:30 – 7:30 P.M.

Hosted by the museum’s “Bourbon Authority” and noted whiskey author Fred Minnick, the Legends Series is an ongoing series that celebrates bourbon, its culture, the people, and of course, the liquid gold inside the bottle. Wheatley is the third legend to be honored for the 2014-15 season. Minnick will interview Wheatley in a journalistic talk show style, and lead the audience in a tasting that includes extremely hard-to-find Eagle Rare 17 and George T. Stagg, Buffalo Trace, Eagle Rare, and E.H. Taylor Jr.

Despite his youth, Wheatley is a legend and has created some of the greatest bourbons of the past 25 years.

“I’m looking forward to interviewing Harlen in front of a live audience and asking him questions about his career and Buffalo Trace,” Minnick says. “One thing I plan to ask Harlen: Why does a bourbon master distiller have a vodka named after him? That should be interesting.”

Wheatley’s formal education in chemistry and chemical engineering brought him to Buffalo Trace Distillery, but it’s the on-the-job experience that led him to become the resident Master Distiller in 2005. Wheatley has worked in every aspect of production from raw materials to barrel aging, and as Master Distiller, Harlen has driven many initiatives, including solidifying standards and consistency, quality focus and efficiency gains.

Attendees will also be able to purchase a bottle of Buffalo Trace, E. H. Taylor, Jr. Single Barrel bourbon with an opportunity to have it signed and personalized by Harlen Wheatley.

Tickets include tastings, an informative discussion and appetizers. Purchase tickets at the Kentucky Derby Museum, the website at www.derbymuseum.org or by calling 502-992-5903. Tickets are $50 per person and $45 for Museum Members.

Other Legends Series events include: Bill Samuels, chairman emeritus for Makers Mark, June 4, 2015; and Mike Veach, renowned bourbon historian and author, Aug. 6, 2015.

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About Kentucky Derby Museum
The Kentucky Derby Museum is a 501(c)3 non-profit museum in Louisville, KY dedicated to sharing the fun of the Kentucky Derby experience. www.derbymuseum.org

CONTACT: Greg Keightley
Director of Marketing
Office (502) 992-5910
Cell (504) 491-3030
gkeightley@derbymuseum.org

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Travis Stone Named Churchill Downs Track Announcer

Posted: December 23rd, 2014

Travis StoneLOUISVILLE, Ky. (Friday, Dec. 19, 2014) – Travis Stone, the race-caller at Monmouth Park in 2014 and backup announcer at the New York Racing Association this winter, has been named the new track announcer at Churchill Downs Racetrack and voice of the world-famous Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (Grade I) – America’s greatest race which has been run every year without interruption since 1875.

Stone, 30, will describe the racing action for Churchill Downs’ on- and off-track audiences when racing returns to the legendary Louisville track for the 2015 Spring Meet on Saturday, April 25. He becomes only the eighth announcer in Churchill Downs’ storied history, and will succeed Larry Collmus, who departed after one year for an opportunity to call races at NYRA which offers a significantly larger number of racing dates. Collmus will continue to call the Kentucky Derby for NBC.

“It is truly an honor to become the new voice of Churchill Downs and to join a community that shares my passion and enthusiasm for this wonderful sport,” Stone said. “The opportunity to call the Kentucky Derby and all of the prestigious races at Churchill Downs is a dream come true. I am already counting the days!”

Stone grew up in Schroon Lake, N.Y. spending summers at Saratoga Race Course and greatly admiring the work of legendary announcers Tom Durkin and Dave Johnson. After graduating from SUNY Oneonta with degree in Communication Arts, he landed his first job as a track announcer at Harrah’s Louisiana Downs in 2006 at age 22 and held that post through 2013. When Collmus left Monmouth Park after 20 years to call at Churchill Downs in 2014, Stone was named as his replacement at the New Jersey track. Now he’ll succeed Collmus for the second time in as many years.

“Travis Stone is justly a rising star among the North American announcing ranks,” said Kevin Flanery, Churchill Downs Racetrack President. “To no one’s surprise, numerous race-callers with a wide range of talent and individual style showed interest in our vacant track announcer position. But it became clear to us that Travis’ passion for horse racing and charisma resonated through the microphone and made him the ideal fit for our team and racing at Churchill Downs.

“It’s apparent that Travis works tirelessly to hone his craft with entertaining, colorful and accurate race calls. We believe he’s one of the nation’s premier announcers and will be a fabulous ambassador for Churchill Downs Racetrack in a community and region that loves horse racing like no other for years to come.”

Stone will join an elite fraternity of Churchill Downs track announcers that include Gene Schmidt (1940-60), Chic Anderson (1961-77), Mike Battaglia (1978-96), Kurt Becker (1997-98), Luke Kruytbosch (1999-2008), Mark Johnson (2009-13) and Collmus (2014).

Stone has called races at Churchill Downs on two other occasions. He was a participant in the 2006 All-Star Announcer’s Day on the day prior to the 2006 Breeders’ Cup World Championships, and was part of a select group of five talented guest announcers who each spent one week behind the binoculars and microphone at Churchill Downs during the 2008 Fall Meet. He also has made guest appearances at Suffolk Downs, Calder Race Course and Golden Gate Fields.

Here’s a link to Stone’s call of this year’s Haskell Invitational: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y9dN2_OobTI. A compilation of select race calls can be heard at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K-htUEbNuRI.

Churchill Downs, the world’s most legendary racetrack, has conducted Thoroughbred racing and presented America’s greatest race, the Kentucky Derby, continuously since 1875. Located in Louisville, the flagship racetrack of Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ: CHDN), which offers year-round simulcast wagering at the historic track. Churchill Downs will conduct the 141st running of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands on May 2, 2015. The track’s 2015 Spring Meet is scheduled for April 25-June 27. The track has hosted the Breeders’ Cup World Championships a record eight times. Information about Churchill Downs can be found on the Internet at www.ChurchillDowns.com.

Contact: John Asher
Vice President, Racing Communications
Churchill Downs Racetrack
(502) 636-4586 (office)
(502) 494-3626 (mobile)

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Kentucky Derby Museum to Host Wild Turkey® Master Distiller Jimmy Russell December 4th Legends Series Tasting Event

Posted: November 21st, 2014

Louisville, KY (November 6, 2014) – The second of five 2014-15 Kentucky Derby Museum “Legends Series” events will take place December 4th, 5:30 – 7:30 P.M. in the Museum’s intimate setting. This bourbon Legends Series event will feature Wild Turkey Master Distiller Jimmy Russell and the Kentucky Derby Museum’s Bourbon Authority Fred Minnick.

Master Distiller James C. Russell, or Jimmy to anyone who has ever shaken his hand, has been making bourbon in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky at the Austin, Nichols Distillery for 54 years. Growing up just five miles from the distillery, Jimmy followed in the footsteps of his father and grandfather, learning time-honored traditions and techniques uniquely suited to the heart of bourbon country. He trained under Bill Hughes, Wild Turkey® Bourbon’s second master distiller, and Ernest W. Ripy, Jr., the son of the original owners. It’s a small community of men who have mastered bourbon, and within this brotherhood, Jimmy Russell has gained a reputation as “the master distillers’ master distiller.” From the first selection of grains through the entire distillation and aging process, he has fused experience and wisdom to create the finest examples of America’s spirit.

Minnick and Russell will lead tastings of multiple Wild Turkey Bourbon’s while Minnick interviews Russell, guests will also have the opportunity to ask questions of Russell who is celebrating his 60th anniversary. Attendees will be able to purchase a Limited Edition Wild Turkey Forgiven Bottle with an opportunity to have it signed and personalized by Jimmy Russell.

Tickets for the Legends Series event, which includes tastings, an informative discussion and appetizers, are available on the Kentucky Derby Museum’s Legends Series page or by calling 502-992-5903. Tickets are $50 per person and $45 for Museum Members.

Including the December 4th Russell event the remaining Legends Series will include: Harlen Wheatley, master distiller of Buffalo Trace, Feb. 5, 2015; Bill Samuels, chairman emeritus for Makers Mark, June 4, 2015; and Mike Veach, renowned bourbon historian and author, Aug. 6, 2015.

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About Kentucky Derby Museum
The Kentucky Derby Museum is a 501(c)3 non-profit museum in Louisville, KY dedicated to sharing the fun of the Kentucky Derby experience. www.derbymuseum.org

Contact: Greg Keightley, Director of Marketing
Office (502) 992-5910 | Cell (504) 491-3030 | gkeightley@derbymuseum.org

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Kentucky Derby Museum Awarded Special Recognition From International Sports Heritage Association

Posted: November 21st, 2014

Louisville, KY (November 3, 2014) – The Kentucky Derby Museum received a prestigious 2014 ISHY Trophy at the 44th annual International Sports Heritage Association (ISHA) conference held in Nashville, TN. The 2014 Communications Award recognizes the Kentucky Derby Museum for its communications work on It’s My Derby, in the fundraising category.

It’s My Derby is an annual fundraising event of the Kentucky Derby Museum which brings together some of the biggest names in thoroughbred racing to share their fondest memories of their Kentucky Derby winning experiences with attendees at the event. The event also includes a live auction of unique one-on-one experiences with Derby winners along with other Kentucky Derby related items.

“Every year ISHA member institutions submit examples of their success engaging their sports heritage community and the annual awards earn recognition as some of the best in our industry,” ISHA Awards Committee Chairperson Paula Homan said.

“We are extremely honored to be recognized for our communications work on It’s My Derby and our goal of preserving the history of the Kentucky Derby,” said Sherry Crose, Chief Operating Officer of the Kentucky Derby Museum, who accepted the award on the museum’s behalf. “I am very proud of all our team members who worked so hard to make this award and the tremendous It’s My Derby event possible.

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About Kentucky Derby Museum
The Kentucky Derby Museum is a 501(c)3 non-profit museum in Louisville, KY dedicated to celebrating and sharing the history of the Kentucky Derby experience with everyone. www.derbymuseum.org

About International Sports Heritage Association (ISHA)
ISHA is a non-profit membership organization dedicated to educating, promoting and supporting organizations, institutions, and individuals engaged in the celebration of sports heritage. www.sportsheritage.org

Contact: Greg Keightley, Director of Marketing
Office (502) 992-5910 | Cell (504) 491-3030 | gkeightley@derbymuseum.org

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Kentucky Derby Museum Participation Centennial Festival of Riverboats – Belle’s 100th

Posted: October 9th, 2014

Click here to download a brochure!

What:
As a part of the Centennial Festival of Riverboats the Kentucky Derby Museum will present local actor Kyle Ware performing a one-man interpretive monologue, recreating the unique personality of the late Matt Winn. Matt Winn was an important figure in Louisville’s horse racing history during 1914 when the Belle of Louisville was being launched. Winn was Vice President and General Manager of Churchill Downs during this period and went on to become President of the track in 1938. He used his understanding of marketing to weave the aura of romance into what the Kentucky Derby was and is today. Winn had a unique relationship with the press in Louisville and throughout the country at the time and actor Kyle Ware will portray stories inspired from events detailed in Winn’s autobiography Down the Stretch.

Matt Winn Bio:
Matt J. Winn was born on June 30, 1861 in Louisville. He attended the inaugural running of the Kentucky Derby in 1875 and never missed a running of the Derby during his lifetime. A notable businessman, he was approached in 1902 by his friend and Racing Secretary Charles Price about purchasing financially-troubled Churchill Downs. Although he was reluctant to buy the track he did not want to see it close, so he formed a syndicate that included Louisville Mayor Charles Grainger and hotel magnate Louis Seelbach to purchase the track. Their first year operating the track was the first year Churchill Downs pulled a profit. Under Winn’s management the Kentucky Derby became the internationally noted cultural event that it is today. The singing of “My Old Kentucky Home”, the garland of roses, the Kentucky Derby Gold Cup and the mint julep souvenir glass are only some of the traditions started during his tenure. The purse and attendance for the Derby grew astronomically under his guidance, and he spent many an offseason hosting special events at the track to keep it in the news. Winn served as president of Churchill Downs from 1938 until his death in 1949.

When:
Performances will run during the Centennial Festival of Riverboats October 14 – 19 as the Derby Museum’s contribution to the festival.

There will be two performances in the museum October 14-18 at 10:30am & 2:30pm daily and one performance Sunday, October 19 at 2:30pm.

Where:
Performances will be held in the museum’s Great Hall each day during the Riverboat Festival.

Who:
Kyle Ware is a Louisville-based actor, artist, educator and writer. He most recently appeared in Kentucky Shakespeare’s 2014 summer season and now serves as the Director of Education for the company. He was a Co-Producing Founding Artistic Director of Le Petomane Theatre Ensemble and currently Co-Artistic of Think Tank Theatre, a collaborative ensemble debuting in November.

Contact: Greg Keightley
Director of Marketing
Kentucky Derby Museum
502-992-5910

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Kentucky Derby Museum Joins Smithsonian Magazine’s Tenth Annual Museum Day Live!

Posted: September 8th, 2014

Free Admission for All Participants Presenting a Museum Day Live! Ticket
On September 27, 2014

The Kentucky Derby Museum will open its doors free of charge on Saturday, September 27, 2014, as part of Smithsonian magazine’s tenth annual Museum Day Live! A nationwide event, Museum Day Live! offers free admission to visitors presenting a Museum Day Live! ticket at a participating museum or cultural institution.

Inclusive by design, the event represents Smithsonian’s commitment to make learning and the spread of knowledge accessible to everyone, giving museums across all 50 states the opportunity to emulate the admission policy of the Smithsonian museums in Washington D.C. Last year’s event drew over 400,000 participants, and this year’s event expects record-high participation.

“The one and only Kentucky Derby Museum is proud to participate again in Smithsonian magazine’s Museum Day Live!” said Lynn Ashton, Executive Director at the Derby Museum. “It provides patrons the opportunity to visit our wonderful museum and also provides us an association with Smithsonian magazine.”

The Museum Day Live! ticket is available to download at www.Smithsonian.com/museumdaylive. Visitors who present the Museum Day Live! ticket will gain free entrance for two at participating venues for one day only. One ticket is permitted per household, per email address. For more information about Museum Day Live! 2014 and a list of participating museums and cultural institutions, please visit: www.Smithsonian.com/museumday/venues.

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About Kentucky Derby Museum
The Kentucky Derby Museum is a 501(c)3 non-profit museum in Louisville, KY dedicated to sharing the fun of the Kentucky Derby experience. www.derbymuseum.org

About Smithsonian Media
Smithsonian Media comprises of its flagship publication, Smithsonian magazine, as well as Air & Space, and Smithsonian Media Digital Network. Smithsonian Media is a division of Smithsonian Enterprises, the revenue-generating business unit of the Smithsonian Institution. The Smithsonian Institution is the world’s largest museum and research complex consisting of 19 museums and galleries, the National Zoological Park and nine research facilities. Approximately 30 million people from around the world visit the museums annually.

Contact: Anne Muscarella, High 10 Media, for Smithsonian magazine, anne@high10media.com

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