April 25, 2024. Louisville, KY. – The event that started the Kentucky Derby Festival – the 69th annual Zoeller Pump Company Pegasus Parade – steps off THIS SUNDAY, April 28, at 3 p.m. The parade will march West on Broadway from Campbell to 9th Street. This is the third year the parade has been held on a Sunday to kick off Derby Week. The theme of this year’s parade is “Celebrating Derby 150,” in honor of the 150th running of the Kentucky Derby next weekend.

“The Zoeller Pump Company Pegasus Parade started nearly 70 years ago to celebrate the Derby season and we’re proud that tradition continues as we commemorate Derby 150 this year,” said Matt Gibson, President and CEO of the Kentucky Derby Festival. “From participants to Festival fans, the march down Broadway brings our community together every spring and has become a special kick-off to Derby week.”

In anticipation of Derby 150, this year’s Parade will celebrate the people, places and events who play a key role in making Derby season a special time of year in Louisville and throughout the Commonwealth.

Zoeller Pump Company has been the Title Sponsor of the Pegasus Parade since 2020. “The Kentucky Derby Festival is 69 years young this year, Zoeller Pump Company is 85, and the Derby is 150. All of these add up to an amazing time,” said Dwight C. Newton, Chief People Officer of Zoeller Pump Company. “We love our people and want to support the city where we live. We are proud to sponsor and partner along with the Derby Festival to give back to our great community.”

VIPs scheduled to appear in the Parade include Mayor Craig Greenberg, Miss Kentucky Mallory Hudson, Jockeys Pat Day, Brian Hernandez and Julien Leparoux, Teddy Abrams (Music Director of the Louisville Orchestra), Pat Armstrong (President & CEO of the Kentucky Derby Museum), Alan Rupp (President of Kern’s Kitchen Derby-Pie®), Gus the Pegasus, Sacred Heart Girls’ Basketball Team, Simmons College of Kentucky Women’s Basketball Team, and more.

Floats from 9 sponsoring organizations will be featured: Brightside Foundation and Louisville Tourism – Gallopalooza Black Jockeys Float, Central High School Alumni Association, City of St. Matthews Festival of Stars – JCPS Justice Now, Norton Healthcare, Louisville Parks and Recreation, Second Chance @ Life, The Fillies, Inc., & the 2024 Royal Court, Thoughts Out Loud Mental Health and Violence Prevention Barber Shop, and Zoeller Pump Company – Goldie.

The parade will also feature: 11 equestrian units, 9 marching bands, and more than 40 specialty units.

7 Inflatable characters scheduled to participate include: Festival Pegasus (Zoeller Pump Company – the Pegasus is the Derby Festival’s mascot and has been a signature part of the Parade since the 1980s), Cardinal Bird (UofL Health), Mountain (Waystar), Alex the Astronaut, Derby Dog, Electric Elephant, and Festival Frog.

Churchill Downs is sponsoring all general admission bleacher seating for the 2024 Zoeller Pump Company Pegasus Parade. More than 3,000 seats along the route from Jackson to 9th streets will be free to attendees on a first come, first served basis.

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 Pegasus Parade. Contributing Sponsors: Churchill Downs and Kentucky Venues. Official Health Care Partner: UofL Health. Official Hotel: The Galt House Hotel. Official Cookie Sponsor: Tiff’s Treats. Media Partner: WAVE.

June 21 - June 21