New security measures will be in place at Churchill Downs during Derby Week
This year's visitors will be among the first to use the Downs' new expanded entry plaza.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- New security measures will be in place at Churchill Downs during Derby week.
According to a news release from the racetrack, guests visiting the venue from Saturday, April 28, through Saturday, May 5, will be subject to a new parking and traffic plan, and will be among the first to use the Downs' new expanded entry plaza, leading from Central Avenue to the newly constructed Paddock Gate.
The Paddock Gate replaces previous entrances at Gates 1 and 17.
"Churchill Downs has invested heavily to improve the arrival and entry experience for all our guests and employees," said Kevin Flanery, president of Churchill Downs Racetrack, in a statement.
"We want to ensure a safe and secure environment, while helping people get in and out of the venue as efficiently as possible. We encourage everyone joining us for Derby Week to visit KentuckyDerbyParking.com, so you know exactly what to expect before you get to the track."
The entrance gates have been re-named to reflect their locations within the racetrack.
The Paddock Gate has replaced Gate 1 and Gate 17. Gate 10 is now the Clubhouse Gate, and Gate 3 is now the Infield Gate. The Infield Gate will only be available to guests with a General Admission ticket. All others will enter through the Paddock Gate or the Clubhouse Gate.
A new entry process will be for ticket holders once they arrive:
- Anyone entering the track will have to walk through metal detectors. Prohibited items are not allowed past the security screening area.
- Guests entering through the Paddock Gate or the Clubhouse Gate will scan their tickets at self-scanning entry turnstiles. Or, if someone has a General Admission ticket and is entering through the Infield Gate, an attendant will scan their ticket by hand. Once inside the track, guests are not allowed to leave the venue and re-enter.
- After ticket scanning, guests will go through the turnstile and follow new signs and direction from Churchill staff to their seating section or venue.
- An usher will re-scan guests' tickets when they reach their seating section. The usher will also stub the ticket and give the guests official wristbands.
New quick-entry lanes have been added to the security screening areas of all admission gates for guests who are not bringing a bag of any type into the racetrack.
Guests with mobile tickets purchased through the official Ticketmaster Resale Marketplace will follow the same entry process as guests with printed tickets.
"In keeping with tradition, guests on Oaks and Derby Days are permitted to bring in food and box lunches in clear plastic bags smaller than 18 inches by 18 inches," the news release states. "However, these items are prohibited Opening Night (Saturday, April 28) through Thurby (Thursday, May 3)."
Below is a list of prohibited items:
Prohibited Items for Derby Week (Opening Night through Kentucky Derby Day):
- Coolers at any gate - Including the Stable Gate (Styrofoam coolers and ice are available for purchase in the Infield)
- Cans (of any size or type)
- Glass bottles or containers
- Backpacks and Duffel bags
- Tents - No poles or stakes of any kind
- Laptop computers and camcorders
- Cameras with detachable lenses or equipped with a lens that is 6-inches or larger
- Drones and Remote-controlled aircraft
- Purses larger than 12-inches in any dimension
- Fireworks, noisemakers, air horns, laser lights / pointers, pepper sprays
- Animals (with the exception of service animals for guests with special needs)
- Selfie sticks
- Alcoholic beverages
- Illegal substances
- Weapons (including knives)
- Luggage (including briefcases)
- Any items deemed dangerous and / or inappropriate
Permitted Items for Kentucky Derby and Oaks Days:
- Food items in clear plastic bags (maximum size 18-inches by 18-inches -- no trash bags)*
- Box lunches in clear plastic bags or containers (maximum size 18-inches by 18-inches -- no trash bags)
- Water and soft drinks -- plastic bottles only (sealed, clear and unopened)
- Purses, but none larger than 12-inches in any dimension (subject to search)
- Baby/diaper bags -- only if accompanied by a child (subject to search)
- Small cameras -- none equipped with detachable lenses or lenses of 6-inches or more**
- Small personal music systems, radios and televisions**(no boomboxes)***
- Cellular phones, smartphones and tablets**
- Seat cushions smaller than 15-inches by 15-inches -- no metal arms and/or backs, zippers, pockets or flaps
- Strollers (only if carrying a child)
- Sunscreen (non-glass containers only)
- Chairs (permitted through the Infield Gate ONLY and cannot be carried to the frontside)
- Blankets and tarpaulins (Paddock and Infield Gates ONLY)
* Limit of two bags per person
** Patrons could be required to turn on electronic items.
*** Not permitted in hospitality spaces and dining rooms.
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