On the surface, the Kentucky Derby party scene looks as glittery as ever, with a celebrity guest list that includes Tito, Marlon and Jackie Jackson from the Jackson 5; skier Bode Miller, who won a gold medal at the Vancouver Olympics; actress Jaime Pressly; and baseball legend Barry Bonds. But behind the scenes is a much different story in this deeply troubled economy.
Two Derby events were canceled this year, and the economy was said to be the culprit in both cases. Organizers who will host parties in Lexington, Louisville and elsewhere say they placed a special emphasis on holding down costs this year while producing quality events.
"Every move we made was with a real budget in mind," said Charla Young, Louisville event planner for The Gala, a new party. It will raise money for the Jefferson County Public School Education Foundation, the University of Louisville and Kentucky State University.
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