For the past decade or so, a thriving underground community of adolescent girls in Finland have been caring for, and competing with, hobby horses — a simple toy made by impaling a stuffed-animal horse head onto a wooden stick.
While Finland’s hobby horse subculture is a serious no-nonsense collective focused on dressage competitions and discussing the intricacies of the various bloodlines and diets of their horses, the American Sign Museum is hosting something similar — with a Cincinnati and Kentucky Derby twist — for its first ever fundraiser.
The Sign Museum is opening its doors after hours from 7-10 p.m. on May 3 to host the appropriately named Hobby Pig; they will be presenting a series of hobby horse races where the horse head has been replaced by a jolly pink pig's head on a broomstick.
In keeping with the Kentucky Derby theme, guests are encouraged to dress in their Derby best — the floppier and more garish your hat, the better.
Teams of four will jockey for a position to win honors for most creative costumes, fastest time, best team name and most authentic pig squeal before one member from each team saddles up for the final race and the ultimate prize: a year’s supply of bacon. The race begins at 8:30 p.m.
Tickets for the fundraiser are $40 ($25 if you’re already a Sign Museum member) and that comes with more than just the honor of witnessing full-grown adults running around imitating pigs while vying for trophies — though that alone is surely worth the price of admission.
The Sign Museum's cash bar will be stocked full of bourbon, Christian Moerlein's Strawberry Banana Pig beer, pig punch and every mint julep will be appropriately served in a copper mug; healthy portions of finger foods promise to be readily available throughout the night as well. There will even be "live" video horse racing for those who know that gambling does not have to be relegated to the track.
Whether you’re into booze, bacon or people watching, this American Sign Museum fundraiser should have everything you need to feel happy as a pig in mud. Or on a stick.
7-10 p.m. May 3. $40; $25 members. American Sign Museum, 1330 Monmouth St., Camp Washington, americansignmuseum.org.