Inside the racetrack lies the infield, the center of all the action during the race (and accessible by underground tunnels). The day of the race, one can find over 80,000 revelers enjoying this area of “acceptable excess” that has been likened to Bourbon Street during Mardi Gras. For those looking for a party, the “third turn” area is filled with tailgates, flowing drinks, and lots of fun that never seems to stay G-rated. For those with families, the other end of the infield is a more sedate, grassy region — perfect for watching the race. (The track’s box seats, dubbed “Millionaire’s Row,” are where you will find the ladies and gentlemen dressed to the nines.)
DIY: Capture the spirit of the day and host your own “third turn”-inspired barbecue. Give your guests the option to come in costume and compete for the Best Costume award. Quench their thirst with mint juleps, but supplement the offerings with beer (for the ultimate Derby drinking game) and your favorite bourbon (soda optional). For food, fire up that grill and serve barbecued chicken alongside grill favorites like burgers and hot dogs.