Winterthur Museum’s annual Point-to-Point horse race proves that Kentucky isn’t the only state who knows how to party with the ponies.
It just so happened that this year Delaware’s most elite horse race and Cinco de Mayo fell on the same day. Though seemingly unrelated, it was an excellent excuse to celebrate two traditions at once. (It is quite the sight watching genteel, nattily dressed partygoers throwing back margaritas in the tailgating area.)
For the uninitiated, there’s nothing like Point-to-Point–well, with the exception of the Kentucky Derby. Acres upon acres of Winterthur Museum’s grounds are dotted with hospitality tents (often hosted by major corporations like Mercedes-Benz and Capital One) and various activities, ladies don extravagant hats while the most dapper among the men sport their finest pastels, and vintage car owners don’t hesitate to unveil the best of their collections. The entire day is a wild commingling of fashion, food and, of course, horse racing.
Steeped in tradition, this year’s proceedings included a pipes and drums performance by the Delaware State Police, a foxhound showing, an antique carriage parade as well as the presentation of the award for the top tailgate picnic. A series of horse races followed as eager spectators gathered along the track to cheer on their favorite jockey; the day was capped off with the presenting of the trophies.
Certainly to some the idea of a day dedicated solely to such pomp may seem frivolous, even silly but the preservation of tradition and the fact that money raised from the event supports various local charities are excellent reasons to attend. Besides, where else are you going to wear pastel-colored plaid pants or over-the-top head gear?
Images: Iris McCarthy
Iris McCarthy is a freelance food writer and blogger in the Greater Philadelphia region with a passion for writing and food culture. Iris lives in the Philadelphia suburbs, but spends much of her time eating, working and playing in the city. When she’s not attending local food events, scoping out new ice cream spots to satiate her sweet tooth, or covering the Philly food scene, Iris can be found checking out the latest community theaters and museums. Follow Iris as she dines around Philadelphia and the surrounding suburbs on her popular food blog The Palate Princess and via Twitter @PalatePrincess.