The Unique Culture Of The Kentucky Derby To Be The Focus Of New Derby Museum Exhibit

Nov 2, 2021 at 1:36 pm
The infield of the Kentucky Derby, 2019.
The infield of the Kentucky Derby, 2019.

The Kentucky Derby Museum is adding a new exhibit, and in the process, expanding the footprint of its permanent exhibit space. The new “Welcome to Derbyville” exhibit will chronicle the experience of Derby as it is and what Churchill Downs becomes during its transformation into the third largest city in the state despite only being 147 acres. 

In the Matt Winn Theatre, the space that is typically used for rotating exhibits, the exhibit will highlight the culture of Derby including the fashion, the people-watching, and, of course, the horses. The exhibit will contain pictures, videos, artwork and several artifacts from the many years of Derby celebrating. 

Anyone who's lived in the city for more than five minutes knows many tales of Derby both on the track, nearby and in other places in the city. This exhibit aims to capture and share these alongside the images and artifacts. 

The exhibit will also take a deep look at the famous work of writer/journalist Hunter S. Thompson and his artist companion Ralph Steadman, “The Kentucky Derby is Decadent and Depraved,” and will feature some artifacts from their trip to the event. 

The exhibit hopes to show visitor items that have never been put on display including a bedazzled suit by Jeff Ruby.

The new Welcome to Derbyville exhibit will open on Nov. 19.

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