Celebrate “the greatest two minutes in sports” with the help of Zoom, DIY decorations, and of course, lots of mint juleps. Bringing the spirit of Kentucky to your virtual team building event is a fun way to make a virtual happy hour feel new again. Plus, most of these ideas can be mixed-and-matched into one event if you’re really looking to do it up. Tell everyone to dust off their best hats because we’re off to the races!
1. Have a hat party & contest
And speak of hats, a virtual Kentucky Derby party wouldn’t be complete without them. Kentucky Derby fashion is refined yet fabulous all in one — the bigger the feather and brighter the colors, the better. Have a hat party and contest for your virtual team building event as you invite everyone to pull out their best looks. Check out this link for some Kentucky Derby fashion inspo.
2. Create DIY Derby Decorations
Prep your Derby decorations ahead of time with your team for a relaxed craft night. Use this guide to make a jockey silk garland, horseshoe, and a paper flower fascinator for your hair. There are even kids activities as well to make this a family friendly event.
3. Make roses the centerpiece of your event
The “Run for the Roses” needs roses, of course! Send your guests some roses so they can spruce up their background or make this “Run for the Roses” horseshoe together. Everyone will feel like a champion with a bouquet of roses on Derby Day.
4. Elevate your mint julep with a mouthwatering twist
Do Derby Day right by concocting the perfect cocktails: a whiskey highball and a mint julep. During this 60-minute Kentucky Derby Sips Experience, an Award-winning Mixologist and Avital Emcee Host will take you through the process of building and balancing two delicious cocktails as well as quiz you on some Derby Day trivia.
5. Play some Kentucky Derby Trivia
For the trivia buffs out there, some good ol’ fashioned Kentucky Derby trivia is easy to put together. Use a pre-made set of questions or take on the challenge of coming up with your own. Feel free to ask your guests to dress up, get some music playing, and pour some bourbon.
6. Watch past races together
Since the races aren’t actually that long, it’s easy to watch more than one together. With 147 years of history, you might even want to catch a documentary about the Derby too. There’s plenty to mine through on YouTube that will help build excitement for race day.
7. Or watch some great horse movies to get you excited
Here’s a list of some of the best horse racing movies out there that you and your team can watch together. With the help of watch party features on most streaming platforms, you can set up a Kentucky Derby movie night. Send popcorn and other snacks for a nice evening.
8. Host a horse-racing party
Make everyone feel like jockeys with the “At the Races” virtual event. You train your horse, sabotage your rivals, back your favorite horse, and try to win in over six races. Instead of spectating, put yourself in the horse’s shoe (sorry, we had to).
9. Visit the horse country
If you’re not much of a racer but still want to spend time with horses, a visit to a farm is in order. Spend time with these majestic animals through Horse Country Virtual Tours to get up close and personal while at home. It will help you appreciate the Derby even more!
10. Stream the Party Up At The Downs Playlist
What’s a Derby party without My Old Kentucky Home playing in the background? This playlist brings the sounds of Churchill Downs to your home with lively folk music and more. If you’d like a night of live music, hire a band for your virtual event for a cool, intimate experience.
11. Try a virtual oyster shucking class
The Derby is all about colorful, luxurious fun, and while you could make some Southern snacks together for your virtual team building event, a virtual oyster shucking class brings that luxury home. Oyster Chef Rifko walks you through how to properly shuck, as well as answering all your questions. Oysters aren’t included, but if you have some extra budget, there are options for getting oysters sent straight home.
12. Do a bourbon tasting
Lastly, for an iconic taste of Kentucky, try a virtual bourbon tasting class. Learn about the notes and nuances that go into making Kentucky bourbon with an expert, and travel to the Bluegrass State together.
13. CHANGE UP THE SCENERY
You need to feel the energy of the Kentucky Derby – so change up that Zoom background to one of the racetracks! You can also add some fun props, like paper prize ribbons, trophies, little flags and mini binoculars. Get creative and have some fun with it – it’s the Derby after all!
14. PLAY DRESS UP
Just because you’re staying home does not mean you don’t dress up. I mean, half the glamour of the Kentucky Derby is in the outfits – not just the hats! I’m talking men in full suits, women in dramatic dresses and printed ensembles. You can even make it a little interesting and have a contest! If you need some ideas, check these out.
15. PIN THE TAIL ON THE….VIRTUAL HORSE
Let’s make things a little interesting, shall we? Place bets on which horse is going to win! Now, I’m not saying to actually bet money, but you can bet fun things. The person who wins gets an extra day off work or can delegate a task to someone else. It can even be something as simple as sending the winner their meal of choice once the Derby is over.
Whether your team likes to celebrate with food and drink, fun games, or some friendly competition, we’ve got an option for you. When it comes to virtual team building to celebrate the Kentucky Derby, horsing around is highly encouraged! We’ll bring the cocktails!
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