Security Information

Read This Before You Head to the Track!

As you plan your trip to Churchill Downs for Kentucky Derby weekend, be sure to review the list of items that are permitted and those that cannot be brought into the racing facility.

All patrons are subject to metal detector scans before entry to the track on all of Derby Week (Opening Night- Derby Day). Oaks and Derby patrons are advised to arrive early to accommodate search procedures at all admission gates. Admission gates (Paddock, Clubhouse & Infield) will be open on Oaks & Derby days at 8 a.m. (all times Eastern). First post is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on both days. Click Here to view gates open information for Derby Week.

Prohibited items and items determined not to be appropriate for entry into Churchill Downs will be the responsibility of the ticketholder and cannot be accepted or checked by Churchill Downs. We urge patrons to secure these items in their vehicles or discard them. Churchill Downs and its security partners will not store prohibited or excluded items for patrons. There is no re-entry after exiting the facility; patrons are not permitted to leave Churchill Downs and return on the same ticket. Re-admittance will be allowed only in case of emergency.

Patrons are reminded: "If you see something, say something." If you see something unusual please immediately call 502-636-4526 to report it.

See below for Oaks & Derby prohibited items and Click Here for Derby Week prohibited items. PLEASE NOTE: Food & Beverage will no longer be permitted for entry outside of Oaks & Derby day. 

Permitted Items on Kentucky Derby and Oaks Days
  • Food items in clear plastic bags (maximum size 18” X 18” - no trash bags)*
  • "Box" lunches in clear plastic bags or containers (maximum size 18" X 18" - no trash bags)
  • Water and soft drinks – plastic bottles only (sealed, clear and unopened)
  • Purses, but none larger than 12” in any dimension (subject to search)
  • Baby/diaper bags – only if accompanied by a child (subject to search)
  • Small cameras – none equipped with detachable lenses or lenses of 6” or more **
  • Binoculars
  • Sunscreen (non-glass containers only)
  • Small personal music systems, radios and televisions** (No boom boxes)
  • Cellular phones, smartphones and tablets**
  • Seat cushions smaller than 15"X15" that do not contain metal arms and/or backs, zippers, pockets or flaps
  • Strollers (ONLY if carrying a child)
  • Chairs (Infield Gate ONLY)
  • Blankets & tarpaulins (Infield and Paddock Gates ONLY)

* Limit of two bags per person
** Patrons could be required to turn on electronic items

Banned Items on Kentucky Derby and Oaks Days
  • Coolers (Styrofoam coolers, ice available at infield purchase points)
  • Cans (any size or type), glass bottles or containers
  • Pop-Up or Patron Tents– no poles or stakes of any kind
  • Laptop Computers and Camcorders
  • Cameras with detachable lenses, or equipped with a lens that is 6” or larger
  • Tripods
  • Selfie Sticks
  • Purses larger than 12" in any dimension
  • Grills
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Illegal Substances
  • Thermoses
  • Backpacks 
  • Luggage (includes briefcases)
  • Duffel bags
  • Wagons
  • Umbrellas (Umbrellas are not allowed during Derby Week: Opening Night- Derby Day)
  • Balloons
  • Weapons (including knives)
  • Fireworks, noisemakers, air horns, laser lights/pointers, mace or pepper sprays
  • Drones and remote controlled aircraft
  • Personal transportation devices (e.g.Hoverboards)
  • Animals (with the exception of service animals for guests with disabilities)
  • Any items deemed dangerous and/or inappropriate
Get the latest visitor and trip information:
Thank you to our sponsor