Registration, tickets for JA Kentucky Derby Weekend underway

Tickets are now on sale for the eighth annual Starkville Junior Auxiliary Kentucky Derby charity event and golf tournament.
Staff Writer

Tickets are now on sale for the eighth annual Starkville Junior Auxiliary Kentucky Derby charity event and golf tournament.

Tickets for the Kentucky Derby are $45 or $40 for a JA alum or golf tournament participant. Registration for the four man scramble tournament is $100. Tickets are available from JA members or online at Registration ends April 15.

The golf tournament will take place May 4 with the Kentucky Derby following on May 5.

This year is the first time the Kentucky Derby weekend will feature a golf tournament, as well as the first time the event will be at the Starkville Country Club.

“Even before changing the venue, we wanted to add an extra element to the weekend that also encourages a different audience to attend,” JA charity event co-chair Caroline Skelton said. “With the partnership with the Starkville Country Club, that allowed us to do a golf tournament, and the winner will be announced at the Kentucky Derby that Saturday.”

Skelton said if any golfers get a hole-in-one during the tournament, they will win a 2017 F-150.

From 4 p.m. until 9 p.m. May 5 at the Starkville Country Club, the Kentucky Derby will feature live entertainment, a silent auction and food and drinks, all with a Cinco de Mayo flair, Skelton said.

“At the event, we will have fun Derby-themed food and drinks,” Skelton said. “We always have bourbon slushies that are always a popular item.”

A variety of items will also be available at the silent auction during the event.

“We’re featuring seven different trips this year, with a variety from Argentina dove hunting to an African safari to St. Thomas and seeing ‘Frozen’ on Broadway,” Skelton said. “We’ve also gotten a lot of our local businesses to participate in the silent auction as well and they’ve donated a lot of items.”

Prior to the Kentucky Derby weekend, LA Green, George Mary’s and Occasions will host a Derby Darling Night Out, featuring Derby attire for sale for the event. Tickets for the event will also be for sale at all three stores.

Skelton said all the money raised during the KentuckyDerby Charity Event will benefit JA’s nine projects throughout the year that help children in Starkville and Oktibbeha County.

“Our big ones are going to the be the backpack program where on Fridays we send home food for students who are on reduced or free lunches so that they have food throughout the weekend,” Skelton said. “Our other big project is with T.K. Martin. We do a monthly activity with the children there, and we raise money to support them with the different activities they do there within their school.”

Money also supports Starkville’s parks and Safety Town, a campaign that teaches safety to children and provides them with bicycle helmets, Skelton said.