Last updated: 5/27/2011
Louisville, Kentucky
Street Address
704 Central Ave
Louisville, KY 40208
Mailing Address
P O Box 21177
Louisville, KY 40221
phone: 502-637-1111
March 15- Nov. 30th
Monday - Saturday8 AM - 5 PM
Sunday11 AM - 5 PM
Dec. 1- Mar. 14
Monday - Saturday9 AM - 5 PM
Sunday11 AM - 5 PM
Adults $13.00
Senior Citizens (55+): $12.00
Young Adults (13-18): $11.00
Children (5-12): $5.00
Children (Under 5): FREE
Gift Shop
Online Gift Shop
Special Event Rental
Group Tours
Lynn Ashton, Executive Director
phone: 502-992-5900
Sherry Crose, COO
phone: 502-992-5901
Chris Goodlett, Curator of Collections
phone: 502-992-5917
Brenda Kiefer, Exhibits Designer
phone: 502-271-5337
Wendy Treinen, Director of Communications
phone: 502-992-5910
Erik Brown, Director of Sales
phone: 502-992-5903
Amanda Brown, Design Manager

We have everything you need all in one place at our Finish Line Giftshop. From Derby hats to one-of-a-kind collectables. The Kentucky Derby Museum online store can be accessed at

Featuring more than 10,000 square feet of versatile function space, our exciting venue can be customized to your individual taste and style. From the classic elegance of our Great Hall to the scenic Kentucky Oaks Terrace, our rooms and outdoor options exude the thrills of a day at the races.

The Derby Cafe is open from 11 AM - 3 PM daily serving classic lunch items with Kentucky flair

Take a guided walking tour of historic Churchill Downs. Learn about past Derby winners and the rich history of this location.

The Kentucky Derby Museum, which sits on the front steps of historic Churchill Downs, is a very visible part of our community as one of Louisville’s premiere attractions. Graciously welcoming over 210,000 guests through the doors each year and giving them a first hand look at the event for which Louisville, Kentucky is known worldwide. The Museum aims to provide a lasting impression of tradition, hospitality and pride to our many visitors.

Opening to the public in April 1985, the Kentucky Derby Museum sits on land that Churchill Downs donated to the non-profit corporation. The construction of the facility and seed money for the endowment fund was provided by the J. Graham Brown Foundation and five banks in the community. Although the Museum maintains a strong relationship with Churchill Downs, it functions as an entirely separate entity with self-generating revenue for its non-profit operating budget.

2010 marks the 25th Anniversary of the Kentucky Derby Museum with a 5.5 million dollar renovation which dramatically transforms the museum interior from top to bottom. The museum embraced the renovation project after a severe flash flood devastated the main floor exhibits and lower level offices of the museum in August of 2009. During the 9 months of closure, the museum created all new themes, developed new research and embraced the mission of “sharing the fun of the Kentucky Derby experience”. The Museum has welcomed more than 4 million visitors from all over the world including celebrities Bo Derek, Steven Spielberg, Kate Capshaw, Muhammad Ali, Sigourney Weaver, Gene Simmons, Susan St. James, Dick Eversoll, O.J. Simpson, President Mikhail Gorbachev, and First Minister of Scotland.


Sharing the fun of the Kentucky Derby Experience.


Opened in 1985 with a generous endowment from the J. Graham Brown foundation in an effort to promote, preserve and advance the traditions of the Kentucky Derby. The museum is a 5013c non-profit facility operating off revenue generated by gift shop sales, tourism and rental income.

Artifact Collections

The Kentucky Derby Museum houses over 20,000 items consisting of both artifact and library materials. Artifact collections include items belonging to renowned trainers H.A. “Jimmy” Jones and Woodford C. “Woody” Stephens and world famous jockey Bill Shoemaker.

Research Collections

Library collections consist of books, photos, periodicals, manuscripts and film and video and include written and printed materials documenting the history of Churchill Downs from 1875 to the present day.
One of the Museum’s featured research collections is that of turf and sports writer Jim Bolus. This collection consists of newspaper articles, handwritten notes, photos and audio interviews documenting the history of the Kentucky Derby and Thoroughbred racing from 1875-1995.

Educational Programs

The Kentucky Derby Museum, in addition to preserving the history of the Kentucky Derby, offers so much more to our community. Through our Education Department, we offer a free kids program to all public and parochial schools within the states of Indiana and Kentucky. Our Outreach Program travels to communities within our state to educate Kentucky youth about the economics, history and significance of the Kentucky Derby.



Lecture Halls

Performance Areas


Non-profit Board Members


Access: Scholars

Appointment required: Yes


Museum newsletter is published for members of the museum.

  • Inside Track
  • ADA

    Wheelchair Accessible


    Gift Shop

    Online Gift Shop

    Special Event Rental


    Group Tours

    This information, including business hours, addresses and contact information is provided for general reference purposes only. No representation is made or warranty is given as to its content or the reliability thereof. User assumes all risk of use. Stories USA, Inc. and its content suppliers assume no responsibility for any loss or delay resulting from such use. Please call ahead to verify the dates, the location and directions.
    Richmond, Virginia

    Riggs Ward Design (RWD) is an award-winning experience planning and design studio headquartered in historic Richmond, Virginia. Over the past 24 years, we have provided experience design, strategic master planning, interpretive planning, research, content analysis, and storyline development for museums, universities, corporations, and cultural institutions. RWD’s services also include exhibit ephemera, books, and fundraising campaign materials.

    Saturday, March 5 - Tuesday, March 8, 2022 — Richmond, Virginia
    Virginia Association of Museums Annual Conference 2022
    Richmond, Virginia
    Sunday, March 6 - Thursday, March 10, 2022 — St. Louis, Missouri
    2022 Public Land Alliance Convention and Trade Show
    St. Louis, Missouri
    Wednesday, March 16 - Friday, March 18, 2022 — Kingsport, Tennessee
    Tennessee Association of Museums 2022 Annual Conference
    Kingsport, Tennessee
    Tuesday, March 22 - Friday, March 25, 2022 — Waco, Texas
    Texas Association of Museums 2022 - Growing Together: Tackling The Challenges Of Today & Tomorrow
    Waco, Texas
    Thursday, April 7 - Saturday, April 9, 2022 — Point Pleasant, West Virginia
    West Virginia Association of Museums 2022 Conference
    Point Pleasant, West Virginia
    Sunday, April 24 - Tuesday, April 26, 2022 — Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
    PA Museums’ 2022 Conference
    Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
    Sunday, May 15 - Saturday, May 28, 2022 — Statesboro, Georgia
    Center of Excellence Tick Workshop 2022
    Statesboro, Georgia
    Monday, May 16 - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 — St. Louis, Missouri
    InterActivity 2022: Play The Long Game -Association of Children's Museums
    St. Louis, Missouri
    Thursday, May 19 - Sunday, May 22, 2022 — Slinger, Wisconsin
    2022 Fire Museum Seminar
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    Sunday, June 19 - Wednesday, June 22, 2022 — Golden, Colorado
    2022 Country School Association of America Conference
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    Thursday, June 23 - Tuesday, June 28, 2022 — Tacoma, Washington
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    Monday, August 1 - Friday, August 5, 2022 — Owings Mills, Maryland
    Owings Mills, Maryland
    Wednesday, September 14 - Saturday, September 17, 2022 — Buffalo, New York
    American Association for State and Local History 2022 On-site and Virual Conferences
    Buffalo, New York