It’s hard to believe that the 2015 Saratoga racing season is coming to a close! Take a look at what’s happening during the final days at the track:
Wednesday, September 2
(NYRA) will pay tribute to the nation’s service members and veterans during Military Appreciation Day at Saratoga Race Course. The day will feature free grandstand admission for all United States military service members and veterans with valid military ID or proof of military service. NYRA will also welcome local service members and veterans to present the trophy for each race throughout the afternoon. NYRA will pay tribute to its service member and veteran employees with a special ceremony in the winner’s circle during the National Anthem, which will be performed by Master Sergeant Mary Kay Messenger of the West Point United States Military Academy at 11:30 AM.
Artwork created by veterans participating in the fine arts program of the Veterans Services Project at Living Resources will be on display at the Saratoga Pavilion. The program provides local military veterans who have been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and/or traumatic brain injuries with an outlet to express their emotions as they transition to civilian life.
NYRA Community Outreach: Toys for Tots Foundation
In conjunction with Military Appreciation Day, the NYRA Community Outreach Booth will host the Toys for Tots Foundation, a national movement organized by the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve to collect new, unwrapped toys to distribute as holiday gifts for less fortunate children in the area. At the Community Outreach Booth, United States Marines volunteering with the Capital Region Toys for Tots program will accept monetary donations and new, unwrapped toys. In return for a $5 donation, guests will receive a Saratoga giveaway item, while supplies last.
NYRA will thank its fans with a series of special events, activities and offers during closing week of the 2015 season at Saratoga Race Course. Through Labor Day, Monday, September 7, fans will have the opportunity to renew or purchase a season admission pass for the 2016 meet at current pricing levels: $35 for Grandstand and $55 for Clubhouse. The offer is available in-person only at the NYRA Box Office at Gate A at Saratoga Race Course. A season pass is valid for each day of the racing season and guarantees admission to the Travers.
Beginning on Wednesday, September 2 through Monday, September 7, NYRA will host an end of summer BBQ in the At the Rail Tent. The buffet lunch includes a selection of barbecue favorites, Clubhouse admission and a Post Parade program. The cost of the end of season BBQ is $38 for adults and $28 for kids ages 12 and under.
Reservations can be made by calling the NYRA Box Office at 844-NYRA-TIX. Season pass holders, season ticket holders and NYRA Wagering Account members will receive a 20% discount off the price of the BBQ beginning Friday, September 4 through Labor Day, Monday, September 7.
Thursday, September 3
Track goers can taste a variety of ciders, wines and spirits from New York State distilleries and wineries at this week’s Taste NY.
Fan Appreciation Days will continue when all Saratoga season pass, season ticket holders and NYRA Wagering Account members receive a 10% discount at Shake Shack.
Fans will have an opportunity to have their photo taken with the Travers trophy from 1 to 3 p.m. for a $5 donation to benefit Siena College Athletics. The winner of Saturday’s 146th edition of the Travers, Keen Ice, will join the select company of thoroughbreds whose names are engraved on the Cup.
At the Post Live: Serling on Saratoga
NYRA broadcast analyst and racing personality, Andy Serling, will host the final in a series of weekly live broadcasts on ESPN Radio 104.5 “The Team” at The Parting Glass in downtown Saratoga Springs from 8:00 PM to 9:00 PM. The broadcast is free and open to the public.
Friday, September 4
The Community Outreach Booth will host the 5K Run for the Horses, an annual fundraiser hosted by the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation to create awareness about racehorse welfare organizations that provide rescue, rehab and retirement services to horses.
Saratoga Fan Appreciation Days
Fan Appreciation Days will continue when all Saratoga season pass, season ticket holders and NYRA Wagering Account members receive a 10% discount at participating vendors in the Artist’s Village.
Saturday, September 5
Woodward Day: Special First Post-Time 12:30 PM
Labor Day weekend will feature a special first post time of 12:30 p.m. Saratoga will celebrate the final Saturday of the 2015 meet with a pair of Grade 1 races and Grade 3 affairs. The historic Grade 1, $600,000 Woodward for older horses and Grade 1, $350,000 Spinaway for fillies will be accompanied on the card by the Grade 3, $300,000 Saranac for 3-year-olds on grass and the Grade 3, $200,000 Glens Falls for fillies and mares on the turf.
NYRA will name the day’s fourth race in honor of trainer and owner, John Nerud, who passed away in August at the age of 102. Nerud was an influential figure in the racing industry who for more than four decades trained a multitude of legendary stakes winners on the NYRA circuit.
Dress to impress on Saturday! Fashion Saturday will highlight local spas and retailers, and also award prizes to the best dressed man and woman.
Final Stretch Music Festival
After the conclusion of the day’s races, fans can make their way downtown for the first night of the two-day Final Stretch Music Festival. A variety of bands will provide free musical entertainment at downtown locations on both Saturday and Sunday. Music will fill the streets of downtown Saratoga from 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM. The festival is presented by the Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce and NYRA.
Sunday, September 6
Featured Stakes Race: Prioress – Special First Post Time 12:30 PM
The day’s feature race is the Grade 2, $300,000 Prioress for 3-year-old fillies.
Fans will receive a commemorative long sleeve Saratoga t-shirt with paid admission, while supplies last.
NYRA will name the day’s seventh race in honor of public relations industry leader, Ed Lewi, who passed away at the age of 81 on Travers Day. Over a communications career that spanned more than six decades, Lewi and his agency helped contribute to today’s success and popularity of major local, regional and national attractions such as the Saratoga Race Course, among others.
Check out the lively on-track market of nearly 20 food and artisan vendors that is Taste NY: Food & Artisans. Browse through jams, honey, baked goods and other items made exclusively in New York.
Labor Day, Monday, September 7
The traditional final feature race, the 111th running of the Grade 1, $350,000 Hopeful for two-year-olds, will afford fans a preview of potential standouts in next year’s Triple Crown series and Travers.
Families can enjoy an array of games, attractions and educational activities at the track as part of Berkshire Bank Family Monday.