Thunder Over Louisville


Thunder Over Louisville is the kickoff event of the Kentucky Derby, an airshow and firework display in Louisville, KY. It started in 1984 and is now one of Louisville’s biggest events. It is the largest firework display in Northern America and attracts people from all over the world. The event also has a huge carnival downtown with rides, games, and food. Eight 400-foot barges launch the fireworks from the George Rogers Clark Memorial Bridge (Second Street Bridge), and more fireworks are launched from the actual bridge. Thunder will be held on April 22nd, two weeks before Derby Day this year with a theme of  “Through the Decades.”  The event has been approximated to attract five times as many people as the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, which many see as the main attraction. About 625,000 people attend Thunder each year, with the largest attendance being 850,000. People watch from numerous locations, particularly from the Ohio River in Louisville and across the river in Jefferson and Clarksville, Indiana. Some even watch the show from boats on the river. The firework display is also broadcasted on TV on local news channels and has been a tradition everyone looks forward to. In 2020, during the pandemic, there was no show or festival for the first time ever, and many were devastated. We are excited that Thunder is now back in full swing, and can’t wait to see the show!