LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The Kentucky Derby Museum reopened its stable to visitors with the help of its new hooved mini ambassador.

The mini-horse moved into the museum Monday, and officials asked the public for help naming him

When reopening the stable Friday, museum officials revealed his name: Mighty Aristides, or, "Ari" for short. He was adopted after a six-month search by officials. During that time, the museum created a partnership with the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation and spruced up the stable.

Patrick Armstrong, president and CEO of the museum, said Ari is "loaded with personality. He's kind, playful, and is very curious." Armstrong said there were hundreds of name submissions, and Mighty Aristides is a combination of a few of the 1,400 names submitted.

"We love that the 'Mighty' part of his name reflects his playful personality, and 'Aristides' pays homage to the first-ever winner of the Kentucky Derby in 1875," Armstrong said.

The 2-year-old, 30-inch tall horse was rescued by Meaningful Menagerie Animal Therapy in Louisville when he was 5 months old. He now holds the ambassador spot once held by Winston for 22 years before his retirement and passing in 2018. Winston was known for his public appearances to help with fundraisers, meetings with people, including Kentucky governors, on Millionaire's Row and "throwing" the first pitch at Louisville Bats games.

Ari is housed at the museum's stable with Rita's Partner, a retired Thoroughbred Racehorse. Ari will live there full-time, but staff rotates the resident Thoroughbred "every few months," museum officials said in a news release.

"Our Thoroughbred is Rita's Partner, he comes to us from the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation. He's 24 years old and he raced a while back when he was a younger horse," said Kaitlynn West, development and partnerships manager for the museum. "And then we've got our mini-horse and his name, that we just announced today, is Mighty Aristides and he's a 2-year-old roan mini-horse that we took in from Meaningful Menagerie Animal Assisted Therapy, they rescued him a couple of years ago and wanted him to have a great permanent home and now he's gonna be our ambassador here at the museum."

The horses have spent the week bonding over frozen watermelon and two daily strolls on the grounds of Churchill Downs to munch on "fresh, uncut and untreated grass."

Museum officials hope the addition of Ari and the resident Thoroughbred at the stable will help them "continue to fulfill its mission to engage, educate and excite everyone about the extraordinary experience" of the Kentucky Derby.

"This stable and these beautiful animals help us do that and deliver our mission each day to our guests," Armstrong said. 

The stable, which has been part of the museum since its opening in 1985, was reopened to the public for the first time in two years after being closed because of the coronavirus pandemic. 

"We want to teach people all about the care of Thoroughbreds, all about the Thoroughbred industry, and what better way to do it than to have two horses on site," West said. "So, we've got a retired Thoroughbred, we've also got a mini-horse companion to keep him company."

Visits at the museum's stable are free every day during normal hours and guests are not required to purchase an admission ticket to visit the stable.

For more information about the museum stable, click here.

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