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You’re 300 miles from Churchill Downs and you never really got the hang of “betting the trifecta.” But that won’t stop you from picking a horse and wearing a hat and eating Kentucky-approved food this Saturday. Here’s how to do the Derby right.

Get Your Mint Juleps Delivered

Derby fail: Hearing the call to the post without a mint julep in hand. This year we’re sipping the Jockey of Norfolk, a citrusy variation you can have delivered to your door from Cocktail Courier.

Never Wear a Beach Hat

That floppy straw number you wore on a cruise last winter? Not for Derby day. If you wanna win a hat contest, you need structure and embellishment, not a brim that blocks the view. Opt for a fascinator--a mini hat with lots of drama--or something like this chic ?20s-inspired hat picked by stylist Suze Solari from HooDoo Headwear. 111 N. Marion St., Oak Park

DIY a Derby Party

Throwing your own race-day bash? For easy decor inspired by the rainbow of jockeys’ silks, print cocktail-straw flags and pennant banners from Chicago event planner Debi Lilly’s website.

Or Go to This Derby Party

Millionaire’s Row at Churchill Downs is where all the VIPs sit--and the Millionaire’s Row party at Chicago Q is where you’ll get a real Southern buffet, the race on a huge projector screen and five cocktail tickets for $60 (the event benefits Ronald McDonald House). We’ve lost more than that before on a single trip to the betting window. 1160 N. Dearborn St.

Take Home a Magnum of Möet

Display your Derby outfit at Public Chicago?s party in The Library Bar and compete to win a huge bottle of top-shelf Champagne. (The $20 entry donation goes to Bear Necessities.) If you don?t win, put on a Blair Waldorf pout and have another mint julep. 1301 N. State St.

Eat Like a Kentuckian

Crawfish boils aren’t really a Kentucky thing, yet so many bars do them on Derby day. Steer clear and reach for this crispy classic instead--in tribute to the Colonel, let’s say--at Frontier’s outdoor bash. 1072 N. Milwaukee Ave.

Set Yourself Up for a Thrill

Sometime this week, stop by Trackside--an OTB operation inside the Lincoln Park bar Joe’s on Weed--and place a real Kentucky Derby bet that’ll get your heart pumping when you watch those horses come down the final stretch. (“Come on, Frosted! Go, go, GO!”) Clueless about the field? Pick a long shot or bet on your favorite colors--winning will be that much more fun. 940 W. Weed St.

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