Meet Lolita Healy, a nationally known celebrations expert offering tips and advice on everyday celebrations. It all started for Lolita with a girls’ night out…and since then Lolita has identified moments large and small that call for celebration—graduation day, bachelorette parties, weddings, divorces, milestone birthdays…even shopping! Today she offers Home and Living readers with the next big thing, a Kentucky Derby party.
Run for the Roses: Throw an Impromptu Derby Watch Party
It’s the first leg of the Triple Crown and a great cause for a celebration: the Kentucky Derby! This is the perfect excuse to gather your friends and enjoy the race without the hefty price of actually attending the derby. Lolita Healy, founder of Designs by Lolita, offers some simple tips to celebrate the “Run for the Roses” with an Impromptu Derby Watch Party.
Décor: Roses and Horseshoes!
- Roses are the classic option. Don’t want to splurge on the real thing? Paper or red tulle roses will work just as well—the kids can help out with making these. Horseshoes are ideal for some added charm. If you don’t want to go the roses route, any spring flower will do (tulips, daisies—whatever your favorite is!)
- Silverware wrapped in linen napkins and tied with a ribbon lends a touch of elegance.
The Menu: It’s All About the Bourbon, Baby!
- No Derby Party is complete without the classic signature drink—the Mint Julep, served in silver cups, a gold trophy or your favorite stemware. A nice Sauvignon Blanc and some high-end beers, such as Sam Adams Pale, are great alternatives.
- Serve Bourbon-inspired recipes such as:
- Bourbon Glazed Chicken Wings
- Mini Bourbon Glazed Ham Biscuits
- Kentucky Hot Browns
- Mini Derby Pies
- Shrimp cocktail also makes an easy appetizer
Other Easy, Elegant Tips:
- Again, this can be totally impromptu, so don’t worry if you don’t have time for fancy invites—just call up your friends and family and invite them to your garden soiree. Chances are, they were going to watch the race anyway. Start the event about an hour before post time, and let it run at least an hour after the race is over. Make sure you have a large TV handy.
- In true Kentucky Derby fashion, have a crazy hat contest! Supply cards for people to place their bets, fun cocktail napkins around the bar and party favors complete the list.
Now that you have your Mint Julep in hand, derby pies in the oven and bets placed, you are ready for some Derby fun!
About Lolita Healy – Celebrations Expert
Lolita has appeared on Today, Good Morning America, MSNBC’s Your Business, CNBC’s How I Made My Millions and several regional broadcast outlets. She and her products have also been featured in a variety of publications and websites including Woman’s World, Working Mother, More.com, SheKnows, Betty Confidential, nextooze.com and Galtime.com.