Feb. 19, 2014. Louisville, KY.   – Start thinking spring this week with the Kentucky Derby Festival.  The first official event of 2014 – Festival Unveiled – kicks off at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 20th at The Ice House in Downtown Louisville.  The Festival is teaming up with Citizens Union Bank and Four Roses Bourbon as presenting sponsors of this pre-Festival party.

“Festival Unveiled” will showcase several elements of the upcoming Festival.  In addition to rolling out the 2014 Official Poster and Merchandise line for the first time, guests will also receive the 2014 Official Program with complete details of the upcoming Festival, as well as the roll out of the new KDF app.  Interactive photo booths will be set up at the event, allowing guests to have their photos taken at Festival events like Thunder Over Louisville and the finish line of the Marathon/miniMarathon before they happen.

A special treat, Four Roses Bourbon, will also hold the 11th Annual Rose Julep Recipe Contest in conjunction with Festival Unveiled.  The Rose Julep Contest challenges Louisville-area mixologists to showcase their skills in front of a panel of local celebrity and beverage industry judges evaluating each Julep based on taste, presentation and creativity.  Event attendees will also have a chance to sample the 5 Rose Julep finalist recipes and vote for the “People’s Choice” Rose Julep.

While enjoying the evening, guests also have an opportunity to bid on a silent auction of framed posters.  A special limited edition poster called “The Pegasus Edition” will be available only at this event for $40. The 2014 Poster Artists – Jeaneen Barnhart and Doreen Barnhart DeHart – will be on hand to sign copies of their image. The siblings also collaborated on artwork for the Festival’s Official Poster in 1994, 1997 and 2009.

The event begins at 5:30 p.m.,featuring cocktails and hors d’oeuvres by Crushed Ice Events, as well as a special dessert area with Cellar Door Chocolates, Kern’s Kitchen Derby-Pie® and wine from Old 502 Winery. Tickets are $35 at the door.  For more information call the Derby Festival Office at (502) 584-FEST.  All guests receive a complimentary goodie bag.

Citizens Union Bank and Four Roses Bourbon are Presenting Sponsors of the new event.  Contributing Sponsors are Clark & Riggs Printing, Crushed Ice Events, LEO Weekly and New Country Q103.1.

Since 1956, the Derby Festival has worked to bring the community together in celebration. The Festival is an independent community organization supported by 4,000 volunteers, 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.