Between bites of burgoo and placing bets, visitors at Keeneland’s fall meet have a new shopping destination to explore, with the addition of the Merchandise Pavilion just outside the track’s Grandstand East entrance.
The 4,000-square-foot climate-controlled tent that took two weeks to set up is not your average pop-up shop. The roomy interior features shaded pendant lighting, fitting rooms and more than 30 apparel and accessory vendors, many of them featuring custom designs with the Keeneland brand.
“Pretty much everything here really speaks to the racing fan,” said Kyle Cassin, Keeneland’s director of retail.
The Keeneland Gift Shop, its paneled interior filled with traditional brands such as Barbour and Peter Millar, remains open throughout the year in its spot just inside the track’s South Gate entrance. But Cassin hopes that the Merchandise Pavilion, open only on race days, will give fans a little more elbow room to shop and a chance to see the store’s mix of new custom Keeneland items and locally sourced merchandise.
“We’d love to have you shop in both locations because there are some differences, different products that will only be in the shop or be in the tent,” he said. For example, in the Pavilion, custom merchandise includes Smathers & Branson needlepoint belts featuring Keeneland scenes and racing-inspired tees by Vineyard Vines.
Gift items, such as Keeneland money clips and bag tags, can be engraved in the store. A selection of caps can be personalized at the embroidery station. Locally sourced merchandise includes canvas bags by Henry Dry Goods and candles by Julep Candle Co. One scent features notes of bourbon and orange, inspired by Keeneland’s Kentucky Breeze drink.
Want to keep hands free for wagering, eating and sipping at the track? There’s a complimentary bag check for shoppers. Also, don’t forget to get your hand stamped once you’ve paid admission and are inside the gates. The stamp allows visitors to come and go to the Merchandise Pavilion between races before heading back inside.
More shopping news
▪ L.V. Harkness at 531 West Short Street will celebrate its Bluegrass artisans Thursday and Friday with 20 percent off their work. Items include fine porcelain and crystal by Julie Wear, Dennis Meade jewelry, Pomegranate linens, Al Lawton leather goods, Bryan Marks cutting boards, and John Morris scarves. Lvharkness.com.
▪ The last Burlington Antique Show of the year is Sunday. The event, featuring more than 200 dealers, is held the third Sunday of the month, April through October, at the Boone County Fairgrounds, 5819 Idlewild Road in Burlington.
Early-bird admission, 6 to 8 a.m., is $5. Admission 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. is $3, free for ages 12 and younger. Burlingtonantiqueshow.com.
▪ The Athens Schoolhouse Antiques Show, 6270 Athens-Walnut Hill Pike, is 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $2, free for ages 11 and younger. 859-255-7309. Antiqueskentucky.com.