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    The first weekend in May is a weekend Louisvillians know all too well, even the little ones. The Kentucky Derby fills the air with excitement, traditions, and tons of festival activities. That’s great and all, but with little tykes running around a track of their own at home, celebrating Derby like everyone else isn’t always same. Here are five great crafts to get you and your kiddos in the Derby spirit. 


    1. Paper Derby Hats

    What You Need:
    paper bowls
    paper plates
    plastic flowers
    scissors/hole punch
    paint and brushes (optional)

    Making a Derby hat is essential and a classic craft for kiddos of all ages. Simply glue or tape the open side of a paper bowl to the backside of a paper plate. Punch a hole on both sides of the plate and string a ribbon through one hole, across the top of the bowl, and through the opposite hole. Voilà! You have a basic Derby hat; now have fun painting your hat and attaching flowers. Remember, the bigger, the better!


    2. Run for the Roses Garland

    What You Need:
    red crepe paper
    green pipe cleaners

    A little more advanced of a craft, but still a lot of fun. Here’s a great tutorial by "The Nest" on how to make a rose. Kids can make as many roses as they want then string them up, wear them like a boa, or attach them to pipe cleaners and make a wreath. The options are endless. You can even hold “Run for the Roses” races in the backyard. Winner of each race gets to wear the roses!  


    3. Button Hot Air Balloons

    Image: Flickr/Megan Young
    What You Need:
    buttons of all colors and sizes
    construction Paper

    This is a great post “BalloonFest” activity, plus you know you have one too many jars full of buttons. Glue buttons onto blue construction paper and draw baskets underneath them. Cut out white cloud shapes and glue around your hot air balloon buttons!


    4. Gallopalooza Horses

    Image: Flickr/Vic Alcazan
    What You Need:
    plastic toy horse
    paint and brushes
    odds and ends

    Look up the locations of the funky, extravagantly designed Gallopalooza horse statutes here. Then, take the kids to see the statues in the community to gather ideas for their own horse. Plastic toy horses are easy and inexpensive to find at craft stores and even dollar stores. The little ones will have fun designing and crafting their very own horse with paint, glitter, sequins, pom poms, and any other odds and ends you have laying around.


    5. Mint Julep

    Image: Flickr/FreshDirect
    What You Need:
    6 mint leaves
    1 ½ c. sugar
    2 c. water
    ¾ c. lemon juice
    4 c. lemon-lime soda
    2 c. ginger ale

    Hold your horses! There’s no alcohol here. This isn’t technically a craft, but it’s a great Derby classic to make. It’s an easy recipe to follow and super simple so the kiddos can help measure and stir. This recipe is by The Farm Girl.


    Cover Image: Flickr/Melissa Goodsell 

    Katie Molck's picture

    About Katie Molck

    Loretta Lynn is the best country music singer of all time and if you don't like pickled foods, you can leave.

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