09 May 2017

Burgoo, Bourbon and Bow Ties

This past weekend we celebrated the 143rd Run for the Roses in our back yard and it was a blast! Perfect weather for a backyard party and our friends really know how to derby it up!

My First Mint Julep
That cool, refreshing drink!
Under the Tent
Under the Big Top
Before the party, we hauled the decorations outside and set up the tent and a couple of umbrellas.

Prepping for the Party

We used burlap to dress up our various garage sale tables enough for a yard party.  And for a makeshift bar, we stapled some burlap onto a big piece of scrap plywood and put it on top of some very old sawhorses that have been in the shed since we moved in (11 years ago) to make our bar.

Baby Girl

The prizes were Mint Julep cups from Walmart with mini bottles of bourbon. We had hoped to get mini bottles of Woodford Reserve but they don't make them that small. There were prizes for the top 3 Win-Place-Show bettors, Luck of the Draw and Best Hat.

Almost Derby Party Time

Here's the recycled banner and the garage sale running horses...


Here's a portion of the table with the upcycled tablecloth that I made with a couple of large Amazon gift bags and some duct tape.

No longer with us is the big bottle of Woodford Reserve (plus another smaller bottle) and part of the Maker's Mark...
We had burgoo (of course!) and this time I used lima beans and okra.  So good! It was even better the next day with creamy grits.


We also had:
Note: I didn't make biscuits from scratch this year, but I did add the mustard butter to go with and I think that made up for my laziness. I also have a new favorite condiment for sandwiches. The recipe I used consisted of softened butter, minced red onion and spicy brown mustard. I DO declare!

Mint Julep Cookies (yum!)
Mint Julep Cookies
Derby Pie Bars
Derby Pie Bars
Ketiesha co-hosted again (Thank you, Ketiesha!) and brought these wonderful cupcakes!

Mint Julep Cupcakes
Mint Julep Cupcakes
To make things easier this year, we used homemade mint syrup (vice muddling mint) and we made up a tray of juleps so no one would have to wait on one. When guests arrived, we directed them to grab a mint julep,

Mint Juleps at the Ready

...then grab some nosh and pick their Win-Place-Show choices and/or just draw a horse from the hat.


A friend of mine brought us some 14 Hands Red Blend wine, Woodford Reserve bourbon and these really cool coasters that her daughter made to commemorate the event. Love that she got into the race and the party!


The horse and jockey silks yard art were strategically placed around the yard to add pops of color and derby here and there.



And soon it was time for the "The Most Exciting Two Minutes In Sports".


Always Dreaming for the Win

After the race, we had a small group of us vying for Best Hat.

Derby Hats

Next year we might up the ante for hats and bow ties just to get more participation. Some of our regulars - 4 bow tie wearers and 3 hat wearers - were really missed this year! This party was one for the books anyway, and I hope it continues to grow!


  1. Nolita, your Derby parties set the bar high (pun intended!) for backyard entertaining. Spectacular! Loved those custom coasters, too, and the Burgoo. And bourbon. And... :)

    1. I cannot believe I am just now getting to this, Kim. I hope next year you and your man will attend!


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