In the Southern tradition, the first Saturday in May means mint juleps, fine attire and the Kentucky Derby. But, of course, not everyone can get to Churchill Downs, so Sam Houston Race Park is offering its own derby day to celebrate the 129th "Run for the Roses." Events include a special Kentucky Derby buffet, hat contests (the more, um, flowery the better) and a seminar on Thoroughbred horse handicapping. Oh, and let's not forget the big prize: $1,000,000 to anyone who predicts the exact order in which the derby's 20 horses will cross the finish line. Feeling lucky?Around 6,000 people came out for last year's derby events at Sam Houston. "It's amazing," says the park's Martha Claussen, "especially because there's no live racing until June." But the park has 1,200 televisions that simulcast races from every track in America and several others worldwide; and you can wager on any of them, including the nine leading up to Saturday's main event. Grandstand opens at 9 a.m.; Kentucky Derby starts at 5 p.m. 7575 North Sam Houston Parkway West. For information, call 281-807-RACE or visit www.shrp.com.-- Eric Norvell
The patrons at Catbirds take their trivia seriously. If you don't have much knowledge of pop culture, science or history, they're not likely to treat you kindly. After all, the National Trivia Network beams the game into bars across the country, which compete for the highest average score. And when Catbirds ranks No. 1 (which happens fairly often), there's free shots all around. 1336 Westheimer. For information, call 713-523-8000. -- Cathy Matusow
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Brave the Bayou
Contrary to popular belief, if you were to fall into a Houston bayou, your skin would not be eaten by radioactive gunk. So don't be afraid to join in the Buffalo Bayou Regatta, Texas's largest canoe and kayak race. Check-in and registration are at 8 a.m. at 7700 San Felipe (at Voss), across from the starting line. Races run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. For information, call 713-752-0314 or visit www.buffalo-bayou.org. $35. -- Cathy Matusow