Get ready for wide-brimmed hats and mint juleps: The Kentucky Derby starts just after 3 p.m. Pacific Time May 3, and Las Vegans can celebrate in refined style at a number of local bars and lounges. Brush up on this year’s contenders in the country’s most high-profile horse race with our betting guide, then relax and enjoy the show at one of these venues.
Hat Parade: If the extravagant hats are your favorite part of race day, then Honey Salt is the place to be. Winners of their “Best Hat Contest” will receive prizes but everyone gets to taste their special Derby Pie. You can wash it down with their $10 Mint Julep special. 2-4 p.m., 1031 S. Rampart Blvd., 702-445-6100.
Bourbon and…More Bourbon: The PBR Rock Bar will serve bourbon flights all day in celebration of this year’s race. Maker’s Mark, Jim Beam, Red Stag and Jack Daniels are the Kentucky spirits of choice. Enjoy them while watching the race on one of the bar’s 105 HD TVs. Inside Planet Hollywood’s Miracle Mile Shops, 702-750-1685.
Downtown Derby: At Commonwealth on Fremont Street, the $25 cover ($20 in advance) includes a betting ticket placed on a random horse. Lucky winners can collect their earnings across the street at El Cortez—and while they’re there, enjoy the casino’s $1 hot dogs, $2 Budweiser drafts and $2 mint juleps. Proceeds for the Commonwealth event will be donated to United Way. Doors open 2 p.m., 525 E. Fremont St., 702-798-7000.
Three-Day Party: Bar Prohibition! offers $6 Mint Juleps Friday through Sunday, so you can get the Derby party started early…and end it late.
Inside the Golden Gate, 702-385-1906.
Race to the Roses: Jerry’s Nugget Casino is offering specials all day, including a Kentucky Derby commemorative glass when you place a $10 Derby wager and a $10 dining card when you place a $25 wager. Don’t miss complimentary coffee and donuts and $2 track sandwiches until 4 p.m.; ladies receive a fresh rose upon arrival. 1821 Las Vegas Blvd., 702-399-3000.
Southern-Style Celebration: Pretend you’re in the grandstands at Churchill Downs while drinking the BLVD Bulleit, Double Barrel Roadhouse’s twist on the classic Mint Julep. Pair it with some of their southern-inspired food, such as Cheddar Cheese Grits and Crispy BBQ Egg Rolls. At Monte Carlo, 702-222-7735.
Inside Intel: The Station Casinos are going all out this year with $4 Mint Juleps, T-shirt giveaways and a $20,000 Twin Q betting contest. Want to learn more about the most exciting two minutes in sports? Some casinos will offer a Kentucky Derby-themed seminar in the week leading up to the race. For more information, visit SCLV.com.