Louisville starts sprucing up ahead of a much different Derby

Louisville starts sprucing up ahead of a much different Derby

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - This Derby weekend is quite unique compared to previous years. First, the Run for the Roses will be taking place in September after being delayed due to the COVID pandemic.

Fans will have to watch the most exciting 2 minutes in sports from afar as spectators aren’t allowed into Churchill Downs for the Derby.

Plus, driving into downtown Louisville, you’ll see boarded up doors and windows, signs with graffiti on them.

Over the next couple of days, the area will hopefully look different. Streets will be cleaner without any defaced signage; whether travelers are coming into the city from the interstate, or driving through main city roads.

“We are out mowing and picking up litter, getting things ready for this weekend,” Stephanie Caros, spokeswoman for the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet said. “Specifically the interstate, the litter is picked up and get stuff ready for Derby.”

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet has faced some issues during the pandemic.  Caros said employees schedules changed and social distancing guidelines made it tough for work to get done.  All while the world kept turning adjusting to changes. 

“They do stuff for the cabinet all year long,” Caros said.  “There’s definitely been a transition. Our maintenance crews - there’s still stuff that has to get done and they’re working diligently and as hard as ever for us.”

Normally, Kentucky Derby weekend would happen on the first weekend in May. The city would shine bright with colors, and people would dress up to celebrate the Derby all over Louisville.

This year, without fans at Churchill Downs and businesses operating at limited capacity; it will be a Derby no one will forget.

“Right now, everything is different, everything looks different, travel; even being out on the roads,” Caros said.  “Its different than it was six months ago.”

KYTC and its contractors will be cleaning the streets all week long.

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