Whether you are planning on wearing a sombrero, drinking tequila, putting on your Sunday best, or drinking a refreshing mint julep, Atlanta has an event perfect for you on May 5.  I’m going to share with you where you can go in Atlanta to celebrate Cinco de Mayo and The Kentucky Derby.

Livingston Restaurant & Bar

Race over to Livingston Restaurant & Bar for the 3rd Annual Kentucky Derby Viewing Party on May 5. Enjoy featured cocktails like the Kentucky Derby’s signature mint julep and Cinco de Mayo margaritas. Feeling lucky? Enter the raffle or hat contest for the chance to win amazing prizes. Live music will be provided by DJ Suspense. All proceeds benefit the Sotherly Foundation, which aims to provide significant aid to wounded American veterans. Tickets are $25 per person and include one complimentary drink and appetizers..

The Regent Cocktail Club 

The Regent Cocktail Club, the rooftop cocktail lounge above American Cut in The Shops Buckhead Atlanta, breaks out of the Derby Day herd with an early start at 1 p.m. on May 5. Sip $10 Bulleit mint juleps made at the mint julep bar and tickle noses toasting the horses with glasses of G.H. Mumm Champagne for $13. Live band, mint julep and Champagne specials run on until 7 p.m. when the scene segues into normal Saturday evening hours with DJ Grace running the entertainment from 8 p.m.-1 a.m. Don your Derby hat for the hat contest and vie for thoroughbred-worthy prizes: 1st place – $250 Hermes gift card, 2nd place – $150 American Cut gift card or 3rd place – $50 Shake Shack gift card. No tickets needed, just throw on your silks and trot in.

 The Optimist

For those looking for an alternative Cinco de Mayo fiesta, the Optimist will be hosting “Nate Nelson” from 4 – 7 p.m. for a can’t-miss, patio live music performance on May 5. The Optimist’s happy hour menu will be served on the patio and at the oyster bar from 3 – 5 p.m., with the regular dinner menu starting at 5 p.m

5Church Atlanta

Don some Derby best and join the team at 5Church Atlanta as they celebrate the 144th annual Kentucky Derby with a viewing party on the rooftop patio on May 5 at 3 p.m. The event is free to attend and includes a glass of complimentary Champagne from G.H. Mumm, the official Champagne sponsor for the Kentucky Derby. In addition to toasting to Churchill Downs before the racing action begins at 6:45 p.m., guests can win a bottle of Champagne and a gift basket by participating in contests for the Most Dapper Gentleman, Best Dressed Lady and Best Hat. 5Church Atlanta’s full à la carte menu of modern American favorites is also available for purchase.

 Superica Krog

Head over to Krog Street Market for the ultimate Cinco de Mayo fiesta at Superica. Indulge in an authentic Mexican street food menu, including BBQ pork tacos, cheese quesadillas and chicharons out on the patio, as well as refreshing buckets of Tecate beer (available at the bar), frozen slushee cocktails and Tamarind agua fresca. The full menu will also be available throughout the night with the kitchen open until 12 a.m. and the bar open until 2 a.m. “DJ Rich” will keep the party going from 9 p.m. – 12 a.m.

The Southern Gentleman

The Southern Gentleman, in The Shops Buckhead Atlanta, is chomping at the bit to cut loose and run with Derby Day party plans. Classic mint juleps, traditional Southern fare, giveaways and multiple screen viewing propel every guest into the Winner’s Circle on May 5. Dress to impress for a chance to win prizes in the Ladies Derby Day hat contest and Men’s “best dressed” competition at the 3:30-7 p.m. shindig. Tickets, $35 per person (plus tax, service fee), include a savory buffet, two Kentucky Derby-inspired beverages from Elijah Craig and a branded julep cup to take home. Beverage selections include mint julep, Brown Derby, Old-Fashioned and bourbon punch. Treats jockeying for buffet positions include chef’s signature trail mix; beer, bourbon pimento cheese and house-made kettle-style chips; fig and prosciutto pie with fennel truffle goat cheese ricotta, arugula, tomatoes and smoked cherries; panzanella salad; a “Triple Crown” of mini jalapeño cheddar yeast rolls with shaved Cajun rib, smoked pastrami, smoked Gouda and bacon jam; buttermilk fried chicken sliders; shrimp and rosemary fennel cream cheese grits with whiskey lemon cream sauce and shaved Parmesan; and spiced cheese popcorn. If you’re a betting man or woman, there’ll be “horse betting” with proceeds benefitting April’s Army MS Fund.

Food 101

Derby Days thunder into Food 101 American Kitchen & Bar in Sandy Springs with food and drink specials for all three Triple Crown races. The Kentucky Derby is first out of the gate on May 5 followed by the Preakness on May 19 and the Belmont Stakes on June 9. On May 5, wear your fanciest derby hat and receive a complimentary mint julep. We do declare that’s a spiffy idea.

Superica Buckhead

Superica Buckhead will be grilling up a delicious menu on the patio, including $1 smoked chicken wings accompanied by pickle slaw! Refreshing tommy margaritas, blood orange margaritas and beer (Tecate Lite) will be available at the patio’s cash bar, as well. As the sun sets and the fiesta heats up, friends and families can enjoy “The Fire & The Knife” playing live music on the patio from 5 – 8 p.m. with “DJ Cozy” starting inside from 8 – 10 p.m. The full menu will also be available. While enjoying the festivities, guests can also walk around Buckhead Court to experience the second annual Sidewalk in the Sun Festival from 11 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., filled with street artists, sidewalk displays, family friendly activities, special offers from participating stores and complimentary goodies.