Saturday, May 07, 2011

My trip to Churchill Downs

Back during my nascent wanderlust in college, I convinced a couple of friends to head down to Louisville with me, just because it was close and I was a senior who had yet to cross the Ohio into the adjacent state to our south.
So we went, me and my roommate Shawn and our friend Joel. It was only about a 2 hour drive, I think, from West Lafayette to Louisville, so we were able to spend the better part of a day in Kentucky's largest city. The city of Louisville, but the way, is rather majestic coming in from the north. During the day, we saw everything that one would expect in Louisville. We saw the Louisville slugger museum, downtown and the University of Louisville, all leaving us with a pretty good impression of the city. The last stop was Churchill Downs (mostly because I thought it was in Lexington, and didn't try to find it until the last minute), but we got there around 530, after the track had closed for the day. We were going to be content taking out picture out front and head back to school.
As we were resigning ourselves to the fact that our time in Louisville was nearly at an end, we sought one a security guard to take a group picture for us. She did more than that. "Hey, do you guys want to see the track?" she asked. We sure did! She led us through the facility and eventually down into the bleachers and right next to the dirt that is being raced upon today.
The impression I got was that everyone there loves the Derby, loves the track and mostly loves the tradition. Going into the race, most Kentuckians don't really care who wins the race, but are just proud to host it. Afterwards, at the track anyways, the hosts will cheer for whichever steed won the race. My brief time there, and the courteousness of the guard as well as the evident pride have left me with a soft spot for the race from that point forward. I probably won't get a chance to catch it, but I hope everyone has fun.

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Blogger Steve said...

C'mon Ryan, this post is a re-run of the 7th post ever written for the site!

10:14 AM  

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