April 9, 2021. Louisville, KY. – The 2021 Kentucky Derby Festival kicks off this weekend as the Zoeller Pump Company Touring Pegasus Parade makes its way around the community on Saturday and Sunday. With nearly 20 units, the re-imagined parade will travel over 60 miles and through more than 35 neighborhoods around Louisville and in Southern Indiana.
“We’re excited to bring the Derby Festival to the community in new and unique ways this year,” said Matt Gibson, Kentucky Derby Festival President & CEO. “We really want this to be a memorable community-wide event. We hope residents will come outside to watch as the parade goes by.”
The parade will be traveling around the community on Saturday and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. both days (rain or shine). Below are some of the areas and neighborhoods where the parade will travel.
Day 1: Saturday, April 10, 1-5 p.m. – South Louisville, Shively, Algonquin, Park Duvalle, Parkland, Chickasaw, Shawnee, Portland, Russell, Central Business District (Downtown), and across the Clark Memorial (2nd Street) Bridge into Jeffersonville, IN.
Day 2: Sunday, April 11, 1-5 p.m. – Saint Joseph, Merriweather, Schnitzelburg, Germantown, Tyler Park, Deer Park, Belknap, Hayfield Dundee, Bashford manor, West Buechel, Newburg, Buechel, Fern Creek, Jeffersontown, Douglass Hills, Middletown and Lyndon.
Timing of when the parade arrives to each area will be pending traffic and logistics as it moves through the community. It will be traveling at about 15 mph to give residents a chance to see it. A complete list of the streets and areas along the touring parade route will be posted online each day at KDF.org/parade.
The touring parade will feature:
4 Inflatable balloon characters: Zoeller Pump Company (Goldie Pegasus), Caesars Southern Indiana (Caesar), Waystar (Buddy the Dinosaur), AARP (Lady Liberty)
Festival VIPs: 2021 Derby Festival Board Chair, Judy Hess, and the 2021 Royal Court riding the Derby City Express
Specialty Units: Kosair Shriner’s Calliope, WAVE 3 Storm Tracker, United States Marine Corps, U.S. Navy, TARC Design-A-Bus showcasing local student artwork, Meijer 1936 Chevy Stake Rack Antique Truck, LG&E Louie the Lightning Bug, T-Mobile’s Mobile Billboard, and on route music provided by Zoeller Pump Company
Along the route: Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana and League of Mascots
The Festival is calling on residents to decorate their porches, yards and homes in honor of this year’s Derby Festival season. Then, post photos on social media using the hashtag #PegasusPorchParade or #DerbyFestivalSpirit, as part of this year’s festivities.
For those who miss the parade this weekend, there will be a special parade broadcast on WAVE 3 News on Saturday, April 24 at 7 p.m. and again on Thursday, April 29 at 2 p.m.
The Pegasus Parade is the founding event of the Kentucky Derby Festival. The first parade marched in 1956 to create a way for the community to celebrate before the historic horse race. It was organized by just a handful of volunteers on a budget of $640. Since then, the Festival has become a whirlwind of many events.
Zoeller Pump Company is the Title Sponsor of the parade, joining Contributing Sponsors Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana, Kentucky Venues and T-Mobile, and The Official Hotel, The Galt House. Official Television Broadcast Partner is WAVE 3 NEWS.
2021 marks the 66th year for the Kentucky Derby Festival. The Festival is an independent community organization supported by 4,000 volunteers, more than 400 businesses and civic groups, Pegasus Pin sponsorships and event participation. It entertains more than 1.5 million people in a two- week period and has a local economic impact of more than $127 million. This involvement has made the Festival the largest single attended event in Kentucky and one of the leading community celebrations in the world.