A Kentucky Derby Party Means Hats, People!

Look, I know next to nothing about horse racing, but I’m always up for a good party.
So when my friends at the North Dakota Horse Park asked me to judge a hat contest at the largest Kentucky Derby Party in North Dakota, of course I said yes.

If you’re in the F-M area tomorrow, you should come check it out!


This is an all-ages event (awesome, right?!) so you can bring the little mad hatters too.

The hat contest starts at 3:30 (with prizes for win, place and show) but the party actually starts at 11 a.m. and there’s no charge to check out the festivities and the hats and get betting tips.

The Coors Light VIP Room (complete with private bar, betting, snacks and beer sampling) opens at 1 p.m. and tickets are $10.


The race doesn’t actually start until 5:24 p.m. so that gives us plenty of time to place a few bets, sip a mint julep (which I’ve never actually had, but I love mojitos, so that’s promising, right?) and admire everybody’s hats.

Next year we’ll have a Prairie Style File hat workshop so we can start the party early and have really fabulous headwear! But for this year, it looks like we’re finding or making our own.

I always love looking for pretty hats at the thrift store, but it’s surprisingly easy to make your own. If you have a hot glue gun, some felt or decorations and a needle and thread, you’re already half way there.

If you want to make something easy try this surprisingly impressive-looking Tissue Paper Fascinator.


Need some more hat inspiration?

Check out what we wore to the Plains Art Museum Gala (don’t judge my huge hair, it totally seemed like a good idea at the time) or click here to see what the ladies wore to the North Dakota Horse Park last summer. You’ll find a hat photo gallery and DIY tutorial, too.

And if you love hats, check back tomorrow for the details on a vintage hat auction coming up this weekend!


Kentucky Derby Party
Saturday, May 3
Party at 11 a.m. VIP at 1 p.m.
Howard Johnson
301 3rd Avenue North
Fargo, ND
Bus: Route 11

Hat contest and betting advice are free
VIP Tickets $10
Space is limited, reservations are encouraged
Contact Mike to reserve your spot: 701-527-7868 or Mikes@hrnd.org

Learn more about the shops, people, events, art, parties and food that make the Upper Midwest unique; Follow Prairie Style File on Facebook, on Twitter @PrairieStylFile or subscribe via email on the right side of this page.

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