I have been a horse lover all of my life. Like many young kids I fell for them when I was young and asked Santa for a pony every year until I turned 30, at which point I realized it probably wasn't going to happen.

Regardless, the Kentucky Derby was something we watched every year with our mom who must have also loved horses, although she never really gave that indication one way or another. Or possibly, I never noticed because I was too busy whining about the fact that I couldn't understand why living on the third floor of an apartment building was an impediment to horse ownership.

Perhaps it was the pageantry associated with the Kentucky Derby that captivated her. Outrageously big hats were something that truly appealed to mom and I still possess a box of hers. Whatever the reason, as long as she lived she never missed it.

Now, you have the opportunity to get into the spirit and fun of the Kentucky Derby and support Big Brothers, Big Sisters of the Sioux Empire. They are having their 2017 Kentucky Derby Gala on Saturday, May 6, 2017 at the Sioux Falls Convention Center.

You can begin sipping frosty mint juleps and noshing on race day cuisine at 3:30 PM, all while dressed to impress. Women are encouraged to don their best race day dresses and hats. Gentlemen may find this is the perfect occasion to whip out that plaid or seersucker blazer and bow tie.

There will be live and silent auctions, a best hat contest, of course the viewing of the Kentucky Derby and other activities that will keep you entertained until 7:30 PM.

All funds raised will support Big Brothers, Big Sisters of the Sioux Empire in their efforts to help more children in the Sioux Falls area. BBBS of the Sioux Empire "gives children facing adversity a better foundation for life success by providing educational and life guidance."

You can buy tickets online and get more information at their website and on Facebook.

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