Heavy rains on Aug. 4 forced the facility to close until further notice.

Heavy rains on Aug. 4 forced the facility to close until further notice.

Churchill Downs

Work Continues at Flood-Damaged Derby Museum

Fewer than 100 pieces from collection were damaged.

Cleanup crews are continuing the process of cleaning up water damage at the Kentucky Derby Museum, which is closed indefinitely, and items from the museum’s collection that were damaged are being readied for shipment to a conservator in Chicago.

According to an Aug. 10 update from Wendy Treinen, director of communications for the museum located at Churchill Downs in Louisville, more than 2,000 pieces from the museum’s collection of 10,000 pieces were rescued from the Aug. 4 flood and fewer than 100 pieces suffered damage.

The museum has cancelled all education field trips to the museum until the end of December. 

"We will resume field trips in January and schools are welcome to book now through the museum’s education department," Treinen said in an e-mail update.

The museum normally see about 22,000 children during annual field trips. Treinen’s e-mail said the outreach program, in which the outreach coordinator made presentations to about 37,000 school children throughout the state last year, will continue.

Tours and the gift shop continue to operate out of the Churchill Downs store located through Gate 17 of Churchill Downs. Fulfillment for catalog orders will begin again soon.

Treinen said a more definite timeline for when the museum will reopen will be released at the end of August.

"To date, the carpet has been removed from the main floor and lower level. Dryers have been placed all over the museum along with long stretches of forced air hosing and hepa filters. All offices in the basement have been cleaned out and any wooden furniture has been disposed. Staff from those offices have been moved upstairs to share space with their co-workers.

"The main and lower levels will receive a preliminary wash soon and will then analyzed by an industrial hygientist for contamination before the sterilization will take place," Treinen reported.

Treinen said a water probe showed further flood deposits behind walls, so beginning Aug. 11, sections will be cut out and exhibit panels will be removed. On the lower level, offices have been cleaned out and drywall removal has begun. Also Tuesday, further sections of drywall will be cut along the floor removing up to two feet so decontamination can begin. Dryers still snake through the museum with large fans everywhere to continue to dry out the floors.