Here’s your latest Thunder Over Louisville news



Louisville, KY — U.S. Coast Guard Sector Ohio Valley, headquartered in Louisville, KY, has established a Thunder Over Louisville waterway restriction on the Ohio River, from April 12th thru 13th, between mile markers 597.0-607.0.
The following restrictions will be enforced by local law enforcement and U.S. Coast Guard waterside assets:

The Coast Guard has established a special local regulation from mile markers 597 to 607 on the Ohio River from April 12th (11:00 AM – 6:00 PM) and on April 13th (12:00 PM until midnight). During these times, a minimal wake zone will be in effect from mile

markers 597 to 602.7 and a no entry zone will be in effect from 602.7 to 607 (red zone indicated on attached chart). All spectator boats shall stay away from the no entry zone.

Navigable Channel: The navigable channel is designated as the zone between the Kentucky shoreline and the sailing line of the river.

Anchorage: Anchoring is only permitted within the green zone indicated on attached chart. No vessels may anchor or loiter in the channel or between the Big Four Bridge and Towhead Island.

2019 Thunder Poster

Weather conditions and river conditions are predicted to be favorable, all though the U.S. Coast Guard urges boaters to beware of the currents, and the potential for debris such as large logs, as well as congested boating traffic. If you choose to boat in designated open areas of the river, please exercise extreme caution, ensure your vessel’s equipment is operating properly, wear a lifejacket, do not drink and boat, and be aware of your surroundings.

For additional information, mariners can contact channel 16 or 502-779-5424.



 Thunder Officials ran their first sound check of this year’s fireworks soundtrack in a newly named Command Center this morning. The Kentucky Derby Festival announced that Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport is sharing their name with the Command Center as Title Sponsor of the show’s communication hub.

“We are thrilled to be part of Thunder Over Louisville,” said Dan Mann, Executive Director of the Louisville Regional Airport Authority. “We applaud the hard work of the Kentucky Derby Festival staff for this iconic event, and understand how important the Command Center is to its operations. We look forward to celebrating the show’s success with the thousands of others, both on the waterfront and at home.”

This year’s theme – “The Wonderful World of Thunder” – will celebrate 30 years of the show with a soundtrack of songs from everyone’s favorite fairytales from Cinderella and Pocahontas toAladdin and Snow White. The theme helps direct the songs featured in the fireworks soundtrack.

 “The entire show is shaping up to be a magical 30th celebration,” said Mike Berry, Kentucky Derby Festival President and CEO. “It’s a soundtrack for fans of all ages and will bring out the kid in all of us.”

 Thunder fans don’t have to worry about hearing this year’s fireworks soundtrack loud and clear. Logan Lavelle Hunt is returning as the Official Sound Sponsor for Thunder Over Louisville. Their sponsorship helps offset the costs of the sound towers and the sound feed throughout the venue.

 “We know how hard the Kentucky Derby Festival and Thunder Crew have worked to put together an amazing show and soundtrack for the Wonderful World of Thunder,” said Trent Hunt, Partner at Logan Lavelle Hunt. “We’re excited to be part of such an amazing event. We hope everyone enjoys the views, attractions and of course, all of the sounds.”

 With multiple sound tower locations throughout the venue, fans can enjoy the narration of the air show, event announcements and the fireworks soundtrack. Towers are located at the Belvedere, Thunder Chow Wagon, North Great Lawn, South Great Lawn, and Big Four Bridge Lawn.  Plus, on the Southern Indiana side, the Festival provides a sound feed to Rocky’s and Buckhead’s.

 The music won’t stop when the fireworks end. As people are leaving after the show, the fun will continue with more excerpts playing over the sound system, from favorite animated classics.

Thunder’s fireworks show is choreographed to an original soundtrack each year. Over time, those soundtracks have included a broad range of music from Top Ten and country, to urban and contemporary, even rock’n’roll and Broadway show tunes. Anywhere from 25 to 60 different tracks or sound effects are used to build the musical score each year.

 Thunder Over Louisville – the Derby Festival’s Opening Ceremonies – is one of the more than seventy events produced by the Derby


There are other Kentucky Derby Festival activities this weekend in addition to Festival’s Opening Ceremonies: Thunder Over Louisville.


Saturday, April 13

PASSPORT BRIGHTSIDE COMMUNITY-WIDE CLEANUP.  Various locations throughout Louisville. Brightside encourages all residents to take part in the Community-Wide Cleanup. All cleanup teams will receive bags and gloves at no cost, and the first 5,000 volunteers to register will also receive a free t-shirt. Contact Lorri Roberts at to participate.

Thunder Over Louisville planes

Saturday, April 13 – Saturday, April 20

GIVE A DAY:  MAYOR’S WEEK OF SERVICE.  Citywide week of volunteering to help others.  Help make Louisville the most compassionate city in the world.  Individuals, companies and groups can volunteer online at Agencies and organizations that have projects needing volunteers can also add their information to the website.


Saturday, April 13 – Sunday, April 28

KENTUCKY DERBY FESTIVAL VOLLEYBALL CLASSIC. One of the country’s largest outdoor volleyball tournaments. Contributing Sponsors: ASICS and Mikasa. For more information call The Volleyball Connection/Tandem Sports (502) 582-3530.

Sand Divisions at Baxter Jacks:  April 13 and 14: 9 AM – 9 PM and April 27 and 28: 9 AM – 9 PM

Grass Divisions at Seneca Park at the Tennis Courts: April 27 and 28: 9 AM – 6 PM


Since 1956, the Derby Festival has worked to bring the community together in celebration. The Festival is an independent community organization supported by 4,000 volunteers, 400 businesses and civic groups, Pegasus Pin sponsorships and event participation. This involvement has made the Festival the largest single attended event in Kentucky and one of the leading community celebrations in the world.