20593
Kentucky
Make “A Run for the Roses” at the Kentucky Derby and the Oaks
Fulfill a dream and come to Churchill Downs for the Kentucky Derby! Plus, go beyond the race at a horse breeding farm and enjoy tastings at a local bourbon distillery.
Rating (5)
Program No. 20593RJ
Length
7 days
Starts at
4,999
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7 days
6 nights
17 meals
6 B 5 L 6 D
DAY
1
Registration, Orientation, Dinner, and Welcome
Berea, KY
D
Boone Tavern Hotel

Afternoon: Hotel check-in after 3:00PM. Road Scholar orientation session in the hotel conference room at 4:30PM. Your arrival packet will contain an updated schedule of program activities and your name badge. Start off your Kentucky Derby experience with an informative overview of the week to come and a chance to meet our staff and your fellow participants. The site coordinator will provide contact names and phone numbers of program leaders; address responsibilities, questions and concerns; review safety guidelines and emergency procedures; orient you to the hotel location on maps; and discuss the program schedule and what will be included on the field trips. Begin getting to know the program staff and your fellow participants with a get-acquainted session to introduce each member of the group. If you arrive late, be sure to pick up your packet at the front desk. Breakfast each day is in the hotel; lunch and dinner at the hotel or restaurants in the Lexington/Louisville areas. This Road Scholar program offers the opportunity to study, explore, and attend Oaks Day and the Kentucky Derby and enjoy presentations by local experts, field trips to Keeneland Race Park, the Kentucky Horse Park, Thoroughbred Center, Churchill Downs, and Old Friends, a facility for retired thoroughbreds.

Dinner: Welcome dinner at the Historic Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant in the main dining room, allows time to become acquainted with your fellow participants and program staff.

Evening: Free time

DAY
2
Kentucky Horse Park, Old Friends Rescue/Retirement Facility, History of the Derby Presentation
Berea, KY
B,L,D
Boone Tavern Hotel

Activity note: Walking and standing in museum at Kentucky Horse Park; walking outdoors through pastures at Old Friends

Breakfast: Hot breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Begin your exploration of all things horses with a visit to the Kentucky Horse Park. This 1,200 acre working horse farm is surrounded by 30 miles of white plank fencing. The park features two museums, two theaters, and nearly 50 different breeds of horses. Here you'll find the gravesite of Man o' War, one of the greatest racehorses of all time. Ride a horse-drawn trolley around the facility. Attend the "Horses of the World" show, which highlights the unique characteristics of selected breeds, while authentically costumed handlers put the horses through their paces. After the show, pet your favorite horses and take photos, if you like. Stop by the barn, farrier shop, and the tack and harness shop to get an up-close look all the equipment used in horse racing. Visit the Hall of Champions to pay your respects to previous race winners, alive and dead.

Lunch: Lunch is provided on the grounds of the Horse Park.

Afternoon: FIELD TRIP to Old Friends - A Kentucky facility for retired thoroughbreds. The Old Friends facility gives a dignified retirement to thoroughbreds whose racing and breeding careers have come to an end. You'll walk through pastures visiting the retired and rescued animals. Feed or pet them, if you wish. Continue your visit to the Kentucky Horse Park. Get a taste of the exotic in the Al-Marah Arabian Horse gallery. Top off your experience with the International Museum of the Horse, the largest and most comprehensive museum dedicated to the history of the horse and its impact on civilization. Exhibits will increase your understanding of the importance of the horse in different cultures throughout time.

Dinner: Dinner at the Historic Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant.

Evening: PRESENTATION: The history of the Kentucky Derby. Find out how horse racing in the area evolved to become the most exciting two minutes in sports. A professor will share the history of horse racing and the development of the Kentucky Derby and other thoroughbred races around the country. You'll have a new understanding of how horses qualify for the Derby and the difficulty of selecting and training a horse that can qualify for the top-tier races.

DAY
3
Thoroughbred Center, Bourbon Distillery, Lecture
Berea, KY
B,L,D
Boone Tavern Hotel

Activity note: Some walking around thoroughbred facility to view tracks and race barns. Standing and walking through distillery with guide.

Breakfast: Hot breakfast served daily at the hotel.

Morning: FIELD TRIP: Go behind the scenes at the Thoroughbred Center, a working thoroughbred training facility. Learn about a normal working day in the lives of thoroughbreds, trainers, and grooms. You may catch your first glimpse of horses training during their morning workouts. Closer inspection of thoroughbreds at the center will reveal the power and massive size of the magnificent animals. At the Welcome Center, take a peek inside the sales pavilion, where high-stakes purchases are made by owners trying to pick the next Derby winner.

Lunch: Lunch provided at distillery.

Afternoon: FIELD TRIP: Head out to Woodford Reserve, America's oldest operating bourbon distillery. Docents reveal how the final produce is carefully hand-crafted and painstakingly selected by the Master Distiller from only the finest maturing bourbon.

Dinner: Dinner at the Historic Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant.

Evening: PRESENTATION: From the Executive Director of Equine Programming for the North American Racing Academy at Bluegrass Community and Technical College, hear about hot topics in the horse racing industry. An amatuer rider and jockey, Remi Bellocq, will talk about what it takes to be a jockey and bring silks, saddles and weights to demonstrate how weight and load requirements are met. Remi is the son of the noted Daily Racing Form cartoonist Peb, and will discuss both the Associaton and the Derby.

DAY
4
Keeneland Racing Facility, Derby Prep Course, Music
Berea, KY
B,L,D
Boone Tavern Hotel

Activity note: Walking through Keeneland race track, around grounds

Breakfast: Hot breakfast served daily at the hotel.

Morning: FIELD TRIP: Expert-led exploration of Keeneland, a combination Thoroughbred race course and sales company in the heart of Kentucky's famed Bluegrass Region. Walk through the track and its beautiful grounds. Your guide will explain track operations and management. See why Keeneland is the world's premier thoroughbred auction house, selling more champions and winners than anyone else. Find out why horse buyers from around the world come to Keeneland to shop for winners.

Lunch: Enjoy lunch on the Keeneland grounds, at the Track Kitchen amoungst the trainers and jockeys.

Afternoon: FIELD TRIP to a Well known Breeding Facility. At your behind-the-scenes exploration of the farm, you'll get to inspect the breeding barns and find out more about the importance of thoroughbred blood lines and the high dollar process used to try to breed future winners. PRESENTATION: The odds will be in your favor after our expert teaches you the ins and outs of horse race betting. Learn the difference between a quinella, an exacta and a trifecta, as our expert walks you through the step-by-step process used to bet on the horses. He'll provide a useful handout you can use to help ensure you are placing your bet correctly and in an informed manner. Find out how the odds are calculated, and why some experts place bets based on jockeys, instead of the horses.

Dinner: Dinner at the Historic Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant.

Evening: Enjoy local musicians, Al, Alice, and Ruth who will perform a mix of bluegrass, gospel, and folk music. This evening entertainment is sure to make you clap or tap your feet along with the music and will no doubt bring a smile to your face.

DAY
5
The Kentucky Oaks Races at Churchill Downs
Louisville, KY
B,L,D
Comfort Suites Airport

Activity note: Travel to Louisville and spend the day at the races

Breakfast: Hot breakfast served daily at the hotel.

Morning: Off to the races! Check out of the Berea Hotel and travel to Louisville. Go to Churchill Downs for Oaks Day. The first running of the Longines Kentucky Oaks was on May 19, 1875 when Churchill Downs was known as the Louisville Jockey Club. The race was founded by Meriwether Lewis Clark, Jr. along with the Kentucky Derby. The Oaks and the Derby are the oldest continuously contested sporting events in history, and the only horse races to be held at their original site since its conception. The Longines Kentucky Oaks was modeled after the British Epsom Oaks.

Lunch: Lunch at Churchill Downs. Your two-day pass to the Downs includes all-day access to an air conditioned lounge, with an all-you-can-eat lunch buffet, complimentary beer, wine and sodas, private restrooms, and simulcast TV coverage.

Afternoon: Get your first taste of the real thing as you watch races all afternoon, culminating in the Oaks race at the end of the day. The Oaks is a Grade I stakes race for three-year-old fillies. The winner is awarded a garland of lillies. Don't forget to wear pink in honor of breast cancer awareness.

Dinner: Meet our bus and retire to the hotel to relax with a catered dinner at the end of an exciting day.

DAY
6
The Kentucky Derby- The Run for the Roses
Louisville, KY
B,L,D
Comfort Suites Airport

Activity note: Depart to Churchill Downs for a day of racing and the main event The Kentucky Derby.

Breakfast: Hot breakfast served at the hotel daily.

Morning: Once our bus arrives, we will head up to the lounge or your grandstand seat for the day, as the tension and excitement builds up to the Derby race! Try your hand picking winners in some early races if you want. Watch the races from your third floor grandstand seat or on the TV simulcast in the air conditioned lounge.

Lunch: Lunch is served on an all-you-can eat buffet in the lounge, along with beer, wine and sodas. Cocktails are available at a cash bar. The lounge has private restrooms, and TV simulcast of all races.

Afternoon: Racing continues at Churchill Downs featuring the grand finale "The Run for the Roses" and ceremony following. Find out if your pick wins during the Derby race, and watch as a garland of roses is draped on the winner.

Dinner: Meet the bus and bid farewell to Churchill Downs as you enjoy a going away dinner with your new Road Scholar friends. Find out who picked the winners as you reflect on your week of fun and discovery.

Evening: Free time to wind-down after a day at the races.

DAY
7
Breakfast/departures.
Louisville, KY
B

Breakfast: Breakfast/departures. Hotel offers complimentary shuttle service to Louisville Airport. Please call in advance to reserve shuttle time.