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Homemade Derby Hat Contest: Full rules

Submit your application by reading and following the instructions below.

Entries are due Wednesday, April 25th. Read the official Contest rules below:

PRELIMINARY INFORMATION:  No purchase necessary. A purchase will not improve your chances of winning. Void where prohibited. The Today’s Homemade Derby Hat Contest (“Contest”) will begin on April 21, 2010 at 10:00 A.M. ET and end on April 25 at 1:00 P.M. ET (“Contest Period”).  All times in the Contest refer to Eastern Time (“ET”). Odds of winning depend upon the number of eligible entries received.  Contest is subject all applicable federal, state and local laws.

ELIGIBILITY: Open only to permanent, legal U.S. residents who are physically residing in one (1) of the fifty (50) United States and the District of Columbia (excluding Puerto Rico, Guam, the Virgin Islands and other United States territories), and who are twenty-one (21) years of age or older as of the start of the Contest Period.  Officers, directors, and employees of Contest Entities (as defined below), members of these persons’ immediate families (spouses and/or parents, children, and siblings, and their spouses, regardless of where they reside), and/or persons living in the same households as these persons (whether or not related thereto) are not eligible to enter or win the Contest.  Contest Entities, as referenced herein, shall include Sponsors (as defined below) and their respective parent, subsidiary, and affiliate companies, and administrative, advertising, and promotion agencies, and any other entity involved in the development, administration, promotion, or implementation of the Contest.

HOW TO ENTER: To enter the Contest, during the Contest Period log on to, (the “Website”) click on the Contest icon, and follow the provided instructions to complete and thereafter submit the entry form, which includes your name, address, telephone number, email address, and date of birth (the “Entry”). As part of the Entry, you will also be required to submit a photo of yourself (and no one else) sporting your ownhomemade derby hat (the “Photo”), which must be your own personal creation. You may submit the Photo online according to the provided instructions on the Website. All entries become the property of the Today Show and NBC Universal, Inc., both located at 30 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10112, and Churchill Downs, 700 Central Avenue Louisville, KY 40208 (collectively, “Sponsors”), and will not be acknowledged or returned.

You must submit the Photo as part of your Entry to enter and be eligible for the Contest.  By entering the Contest, entrants grant Sponsors the non-exclusive, royalty-free, and irrevocable rights to use, reproduce, copy, publish, display, distribute, perform, translate, adapt, modify, and otherwise exploit the Photo (referred to herein as the “Submission”) and to incorporate the Submission in other works in any and all markets and media worldwide in perpetuity.  Entrants warrant that they have the sole and exclusive right to grant such rights to Sponsors and that the Sponsors' reproduction, publishing, displaying, and/or other use of the Submission will not infringe on any rights of third parties, including, without limitation, copyright, trademark, privacy, or publicity, or create claims for defamation, false light, idea misappropriation, intentional or negligent infliction of emotional distress, or breach of contract.  If any Submission contains material that is violent, pornographic, obscene, illegal, inappropriate, or racially or morally offensive or if any Submission does not comply with these Official Rules or meet Sponsors’ standards for any reason, as determined by Sponsors in their sole discretion, such Submission (and the related Entry) may be rejected as ineligible for consideration.  Entries must comply with all applicable laws, rules, and regulations.  Sponsors shall have no obligation to copy, publish, display, or otherwise exploit the Submission.

Entries must be received before April 25, 2010 at 1:00 P.M. ET to be eligible for the Contest. Sponsors’ computer shall be the official timekeeper for all matters related to this Contest.  You may enter once during the Contest Period. Multiple entries received from any person or email address beyond this limit will void all such additional entries. Entries generated by a script, macro, or other automated means will be disqualified.  Entries that are incomplete, garbled, corrupted, or unintelligible for any reason, including, but not limited to, computer or network malfunction or congestion, are void and will not be accepted.  In case of a dispute over the identity of an entrant, the authorized account holder of the email address used to enter will be deemed to be the entrant. “Authorized account holder” is defined as the person who is assigned to an email address by an Internet access provider, online service provider or other organization that is responsible for assigning email addresses for the domain associated with the submitted email address.  Entry constitutes permission (except where prohibited by law) to use entrant’s name, city, state, likeness, image, and/or voice for purposes of advertising, promotion, and publicity in any and all media now or hereafter known, throughout the world in perpetuity, without additional compensation, notification, permission, or approval. 

PRIVACY: Entrants will have the opportunity to receive information from NBC and selected partners by checking the appropriate box(es). If, at any time, you no longer wish to receive materials from NBC or our partners, please go to our privacy policy, located at, or the applicable partner’s privacy policy and follow the procedures indicated.

JUDGING: A panel of qualified judges selected by Sponsors (“Judges”) will review the eligible entries received during the Contest Period and select a potential winner (“Winner”) on or about April 25, 2010 based on the following judging criteria (“Judging Criteria”): Originality (50%) and Creativity (50%). In the event of a tie, the Judges will break the tie by selecting the tied entrant who received the highest points from the Judges for Originality as the potential Winner. In the event a tie remains, the tied entries will be judged by an additional tie-breaking judge, using the Judging Criteria, to determine which of the tied entrants will be the potential Winner.  Decisions of Sponsors and Judges are final and binding with respect to all matters related to the Contest. Winning is subject to verification of eligibility. Potential Winner will be notified by email. PotentialWinner may be required to execute and return an affidavit of eligibility, release of liability, and, except where prohibited, publicity release (collectively, “Contest Documents”) within one (1) day of such notification.  Noncompliance within this time period, with these Official Rules or the return of or inability to deliver any prize/prize notification may result in disqualification and, at Sponsors' discretion, and time permitting, an alternate potential Winner may be selected from among all remaining eligible entries based on the Judging Criteria.           

PRIZE:  There will be one (1) prize awarded (“Prize”), consisting of the following: a trip to Louisville, KY (“Trip”) for Winner and a guest (“Guest”). Trip consists of the following: round-trip, coach-class air transportation for Winner and Guest from a major commercial airport near Winner’s residence, as determined by Sponsors in their sole discretion to an airport near Louisville, KY; ground transportation to/from the airport in Louisville, KY, to/from the Hotel (defined below); standard accommodations (single room/double occupancy) for two (2) nights between April 30, 2010 to May 2, 2010 at a Louisville, KY, area hotel to be determined by Sponsors in their sole discretion (“Hotel”); two (2) tickets to the Kentucky Derby (“Event”) including food and beverage provided at the Event (as determined by Sponsors in their sole discretion).

Estimated Retail Value (“ERV”) of Prize is five thousand dollars ($5,000).

ARV of Prize will vary depending on fare fluctuation for the Trip and location of each Winner’s residence. Any differences between stated ERV and actual ERV will not be awarded. If a Prize element (including, without limitation, Event tickets, Hotel, airfare, food and/or beverage) is not available for any reason, as determined by Sponsors in their sole discretion, the remaining elements of the Prize shall be awarded and shall constitute full satisfaction of Sponsors’ Prize obligation to each Winner and no additional compensation will be awarded. Sponsors shall have no responsibility or liability for cancellations, delays, or any other change by any company or person providing any element of Prize due to reasons beyond Sponsors’ control, and are not responsible or liable for any expenses incurred as a consequence thereof. Date and/or time of Event is subject to change.  Event is further subject to cancellation. If a Winner elects to partake in any or all portions of his/her Prize with no Guest, Prize will be awarded to Winner, the remainder of the Prize will be forfeited and Winner shall not be subject to further or alternative compensation. All elements of each Prize must be redeemed at the same time, and no changes will be permitted after confirmation of any redemption. Specific travel dates and arrangements are subject to availability. Notwithstanding availability, Trip is only valid for the Kentucky Derby, April 30, 2010 to May 2, 2010, and will not be valid for any other dates/times. Prize will otherwise be forfeited. All federal, state, or other taxes including, without limitation, income taxes are the sole responsibility of each Winner. Each Winner will receive an IRS Form 1099 from Sponsors for the total ERV of his/her Prize (stated above) for the calendar year in which his/her Prize was won. Airline and Hotel reservations are subject to availability. Certain blackout periods and travel restrictions may apply. Travel and hotel arrangements will be determined by Sponsors in their sole discretion. Winner and Guest must travel together on the same itinerary.  No other travel elements (including, without limitation, travel to and from the airport near Winner’s residence, additional ground transportation, luggage fees, insurance, gasoline, meals, gratuities, souvenirs, etc.) are included in Prize and all such expenses are the sole responsibility of each Winner. Tickets are non-refundable and are not valid for business-related or group travel. Tickets are valid only for travel on the airline(s) chosen by Sponsors in their sole discretion. Tickets will be issued only to Winner and Guest. Winner is responsible for any travel related tax liability, including applicable departure taxes or fees, inspection charges, security charges and baggage changes. Once issued, tickets are non-transferable and may not be reissued once travel has commenced. Open tickets may not be issued and stopovers are not permitted. Winner and Guest must have valid travel documents (e.g., valid government-issued photo identification and passport) prior to departure. Sponsors are not responsible for airline seat assignments, special meals, check-in procedures, and baggage limitations.  Sponsors have no responsibility for alterations to any travel plans caused by airline delays or for any act, omission or event related thereto. Sponsors shall have no responsibility or liability for cancellations, delays, or any other change by any company or person providing any element of a Prize, and are not responsible or liable for any expenses incurred as a consequence thereof. Winner and Guest specifically release Sponsors from any and all claims for loss or damage to baggage or property, or from personal injuries or death, or from loss or delay, arising out of the acts, omissions, or negligence of any independent contractors, such as air carriers, hotels, restaurateurs, transportation providers, medical personnel or other providers of services or facilities. Once determined, no change, extension, or substitution of travel dates is permitted, except by Sponsors in their sole discretion. All travel will be at the risk of Winners and Guests. Guest, if any (or, if a Guest is a minor, his/her parent/legal guardian), will be required to return completed, signed, and notarized releases of liability and, except where prohibited, publicity releases, which must be returned with each Winner’s Sweepstakes Documents, or Guest portion of such Winner’s Prize will be forfeited. If Guest is a resident of a jurisdiction that deems him/her to be a minor, Winner must be such minor’s parent or legal guardian. 

CONDITIONS: By entering the Contest, each entrant agrees for entrant and for entrant’s heirs, executors, and administrators (a) to release and hold harmless Contest Entities and their respective officers, directors, and employees (collectively, “Released Parties”) from any liability, illness, injury, death, loss, litigation, or damage that may occur, directly or indirectly, whether caused by negligence or not, from such entrant’s participation in the or Contest and/or his/her acceptance, possession, use, or misuse of Prize or any portion thereof (including any travel related thereto); (b) to indemnify Released Parties from any and all liability resulting or arising from the Contest and to hereby acknowledge that Released Parties have neither made nor are in any manner responsible or liable for any warranty, representation, or guarantee, express or implied, in fact or in law, relative to Prize, including express warranties provided exclusively by Prize supplier that are sent along with Prize; (c) if selected as a Winner, to the posting of such entrant’s name on Website and the use by Released Parties of such name, voice, image, and/or likeness for publicity, promotional, and advertising purposes in any and all media now or hereafter known, throughout the world in perpetuity, without additional compensation, notification, permission, or approval, and, upon request, to the giving of consent, in writing, to such use; and (d) to be bound by these Official Rules and to waive any right to claim any ambiguity or error therein or in the Contest itself, and to be bound by all decisions of the Sponsors, which are binding and final.Failure to comply with these conditions may result in disqualification from the Contest at Sponsors’ sole discretion.

ADDITIONAL TERMS: Sponsors reserve the right to permanently disqualify from any promotion any person they believe has intentionally violated these Official Rules.  Any attempt to deliberately damage the Contest or the operation thereof is unlawful and subject to legal action by Sponsors, who may seek damages to the fullest extent permitted by law. The failure of Sponsors to comply with any provision of these Official Rules due to an act of God, hurricane, war, fire, riot, earthquake, terrorism, act of public enemies, actions of governmental authorities outside of the control of Sponsors (excepting compliance with applicable codes and regulations), or other “force majeure” event will not be considered a breach of these Official Rules.  Released Parties assume no responsibility for any injury or damage to entrants’ or to any other person’s computer relating to or resulting from entering or downloading materials or software in connection with the Contest. Released Parties are not responsible for telecommunications, network, electronic, technical, or computer failures of any kind; for inaccurate transcription of entry information; for errors in any promotional or marketing materials or in these Official Rules; for any human or electronic error; or for entries that are stolen, misdirected, garbled, delayed, lost, late, damaged, or returned. Sponsors reserve the right to cancel, modify, or suspend the Contest or any element thereof (including, without limitation, these Official Rules) without notice in any manner and for any reason (including, without limitation, in the event of any unanticipated occurrence that is not fully addressed in these Official Rules).  In the event of cancellation, modification, or suspension, Sponsors reserve the right to select Winners in a random drawing from among all eligible, non-suspect entries received prior to the time of the event warranting such cancellation, modification, or suspension.  Notice of such cancellation, modification, or suspension will be posted at Website.  Sponsors may prohibit any entrant or potential entrant from participating in the Contest, if such entrant or potential entrant shows a disregard for these Official Rules; acts with an intent to annoy, abuse, threaten, or harass any other entrant, Sponsors, or Sponsors’ agents or representatives; or behaves in any other disruptive manner (as determined by Sponsors in their sole discretion).

DISPUTES:  The Contest is governed by, and will be construed in accordance with, the laws of the State of New York, and the forum and venue for any dispute shall be in New York, New York. If THE controversy or claim is not otherwise resolved through direct discussions or mediation, it shall THEN be resolved by FINAL AND binding arbitration administered by JUDICIAL ARBITRATION AND MEDIATION SERVICES, INC., in accordance with its Streamlined Arbitration Rules and Procedures or subsequent versions thereof (“JAMS Rules”).  The JAMS Rules for selection of an arbitrator shall be followed, except that the arbitrator shall be experienced and licensed to practice law in new york.  All proceedings brought pursuant to this paragraph will be conducted in the County of new york.  THE REMEDY FOR ANY CLAIM SHALL BE LIMITED TO ACTUAL DAMAGES, AND IN NO EVENT SHALL ANY PARTY BE ENTITLED TO RECOVER PUNITIVE, EXEMPLARY, CONSEQUENTIAL, OR INCIDENTAL DAMAGES, INCLUDING ATTORNEY’S FEES OR OTHER SUCH RELATED COSTS OF BRINGING A CLAIM, OR TO RESCIND THIS AGREEMENT OR SEEK INJUNCTIVE OR ANY OTHER EQUITABLE RELIEF.

WINNER ANNOUNCEMENT: For the name of the Winner, available after April 28, 2010, visit or send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to be received by June 9, 2010 to: Today’s Homemade Derby Hat Contest, NBC; LINDSAY SOBEL.

2010 NBC Universal, Inc. All rights reserved.  Official Rules may be copied for personal use only and not for any commercial purposes whatsoever.