John Velazquez rides Animal Kingdom to victory during the 2011 Kentucky Derby. Will there be another big surprise this year? (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Yesterday, we looked at the Cinco de Mayo celebrations; today, it’s all about seersucker, big hats and mint juleps: Our guide to the area’s best places to watch the Kentucky Derby, from fancy spreads to rooftop soirees (with julep-flavored snowcones) to parties that raise money for charity.

Where will you be watching the race? Tell us about your favorite mint julep — and any tips for the winner — in the comments below.