Society / Featured Parties

Kentucky Derby Returns Without the Ridiculously Sublime Hats, But One Houston Tradition Continues Online

A Look Back at the Good "Old" Days

BY // 09.01.20

Like everything else at this time, the fact that the Kentucky Derby takes place this Saturday seems somewhat unreal. We should be watching college football games and cheering on the Houston Astros. But postponed due to COVID-19 from the original Running of the Roses on May 2, we find ourselves checking TV schedules for race times.

Alas, the glamour generally associated with the Derby — the profusion of voluminous hats, everything from the ridiculous to the sublime and the vast consumption of mint juleps — will be missing as this year there will be no fans at Churchill Downs.

And in Houston there will be no traditional  “Hats, Hearts & Horseshoes, A Kentucky Derby Affair” fundraiser on the lavish grounds of the Fertitta family home in River Oaks where Paige Fertitta has graciously hosted the event for several years.

The event, originally set for May 2 and then rescheduled for a Tootsies party on race day, has devolved into an online auction that began August 28 and continues until 7 pm on Saturday. Proceeds benefit Bo’s Place. Chairs Kelli and John Weinzierl are joined by honorary chairs Paige Fertitta, Megan and Luke Hotze, Hannah and Cal McNair and Hallie Vanderhider in encouraging bidding on the must-have items. All are regular supporters of the annual fundraiser.

Bidding has begun in earnest on the items that include a passel of gift cards from some of the city’s most happening eateries, a bay house for a week, design consultations with Laura U and with Courtney Hill Interiors, wine lots and a Zoom cooking class with provisions from Central Market.

Because we simply cannot endure Kentucky Derby days without a look at spectacular hats, we mosey back through the PaperCity archives to share with a look at what the ladies and gents have been wearing to the Hats, Hearts & Horseshoes in recent years. See for yourself in the photo gallery below:

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