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Drink like you’re there anyway!! Or at least that’s what we did on Saturday. This year due to conflicting schedules, we were not able to go to the Derby and are going to the Preakness next week instead. I’ve got fabulous dresses and hat combos and expect it to be a ton of fun. However, I couldn’t let Derby Day pass by without some type of celebration, so we threw a little party at home and brought the Kentucky Derby to Morgantown.

Starting with the Mint Juleps and Lily’s, we made a pitcher of each using these recipes and pulled out old Derby and Lily glasses that we’ve collected from previous years. We had a bucket of ice and bowl of mint for garnish.

Mint Julep recipe – I double the recipe which gave us about 2 cups + a pitcher full

Lily recipe – Ryan just made individual batches until the pitcher was full

For appetizers, I went simple, shrimp cocktail and a spinach and vidalia dip. I picked up a veggie tray with no dip from Kroger and offered potato chips.

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The original plan was to grill, but rain and cold weather called for Plan B so we went with fried chicken and ham with a dijon parsley sauce. Can’t get much more southern than that! (author’s note: I wasn’t a huge fan of the dijon sauce, but Ryan loved it).

We also had homemade potato salad, bourbon baked beans, deviled eggs, and some store bought dinner rolls.

Potato salad – I subbed the onion with carrots

Bourbon baked beans – the recipe calls for rum but I used bourbon and it was fabulous! I also didn’t have any kidney beans but had a can of generic pork n beans so used that. I just rinsed that can of beans before adding to the mixture.

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For dessert, we had a peach pie and Derby(ish) pie (I used pecans instead of walnuts) with vanilla ice cream.

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I thought about getting some red roses to honor the “run for the roses”, but the gorgeous purple rhododendron was calling my name (and was free)!

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While the purpose of this party was to watch the Kentucky Derby, all of these recipes would work great for your Mother’s Day lunch if you’re still wondering what to do for Mom.

Now it’s on to the next party, for us, that’ll be our home’s Centennial Birthday party in June!! Time to start planning!!

~Emily