Tighter security doesn't deter infield guests from turning out to Churchill Downs
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- At Churchill Downs' Gate 3 -- the popular infield gate -- security appeared to be going smoothly on Oaks Day. Despite the do's and dont's, most everyone has been taking the new rules in stride.
Lynette Allen has been going to the Oaks and Derby for 30 years, so she knows the routine.
"Uhhh...don't bring anything fun," she quipped.
She knows it, but she doesn't like it. She misses the days when security was much more relaxed.
"We had a friend that used to bring our 25-gallon hooch thing into the infield for us years ago. So that's changed," she said.
But that doesn't stop some from trying. In fact, now security guards are even checking hat- after an incident last year.
"He taped an IV bag right inside here, and was wearing his hat. In just a random check, we asked him to remove his hat and he had an IV bag in there," one security guard explained.
And now there's even more to watch for with Churchill's new ban on drones and selfie sticks.
"I don't think I've heard of anybody who actually owns a drone," one attendee said. "At Thunder we had a lot of fun taking pictures. Kinda weird why they would ban something like that. Oh, yeah that's depressing. You always got to get a little selfie action going."
"Don't care about that one," Allen said of the selfie sticks. "We're older ladies."
But, for the most part, everyone is good-natured about the increased security.
"You have to take precautions, so I think it's fair," another attendee said.
"Times change. But it doesn't keep us from doing what we need to do," Allen said.
All is well at the checkpoint here at Gate 3 and with a record crowd of 123,763, security guards say it was a nice dress rehearsal for Derby Day.
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