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The Best Hats of the 2017 Denver DerbyParty

The creative headwear tradition continues



Photos by F4D Studio

When the Kentucky Derby began, women would attend the races dressed to the ninesand in 1875, that included their finest hats. Fast-forward 140 years at this year's 16th annual Denver DerbyParty and you'll see that the tradition has stood the test of time.

Every year, the Denver DerbyParty hosts a Best Hat Contest where partygoers don out-of-this-world, mad-hatter-style headwear. It seems that each year exceeds the previous in creativity and extravagance. In addition to the typical floral-and-feather tendency, every contest also reveals a theme.

2015 Best Hat Contest Winner:

In 2015, the trend was animal-inspired hats.

2016 Best Hat Contest Winner:

In 2016, cupcakes and butterflies were all the rage.

And in 2017...

The trend for 2017 went above and beyond, centering around magic, Alice in Wonderland, and literal interpretations of the Kentucky Derby. The judges definitely had their work cut out for them with year's roundup. Speaking of the judges, here's a breakdown of the panel:

  • Eric Studesville: Denver Bronco's Assistant Head Coach
  • Chris Anthony: Appears in 27 Warren Miller Ski Films and 9 time World Champion Extreme Skiier. Currently the Head of the Chris Anthony Youth Initiative Project and a journalist
  • Greg Condon: Macy's Cherry Creek Store Manager
  • Dayle Cedars: The Denver Channel 7's Morning Anchor
  • Aimee Monihan: Sean Lough Foundation Committee Member and Co-Coordinator/Design Lead for the Denver Derby Party. Owner of Tropical and Mountain Occasions.
  • Kretice Crowson: Sean Lough Foundation Committee Member and Co-Coordinator and Production/Hat Contest Coordinator.
  • Deb Boyle: Fabulous Assistant to the judges and owner of Dazzlin' Designs 

And the Masters of Ceremonies:

  • Emily MacKenzie- of Mix 100- Afternoon Goddess DJ
  • Nick Mystrom- Friend of the Sean Lough Foundation and Long time Derby M.C.

Check out the winning hat (at the end) and the ingenuity of these Derby ladies—and start sketching your hat design for next year’s Denver DerbyParty! 

And the 2017 Best Hat Contest Winner is...

MORE DENVER DERBYPARTY COVERAGE:
Highlight Reel of the 2017 Denver DerbyParty

The Best Hats of the 2016 Denver DerbyParty
The Best Hats of the 2015 Denver DerbyParty
Why the DerbyParty is the Best Bash in Denver
The Denver DerbyParty: A Whole Lot of Fun (and Fundraising)
A Photo Recap of the 2016 Denver
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