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What’s Happening Week #6 at Saratoga Race Course

By Mark Bardack | 08/19/2014 03:47 PM ET


WHAT:           (Travers) Week #6 of Saratoga Race Course

WHEN:           Wednesday, August 20 – Monday, August 25




Asian-American Day (International Heritage Series): The New York Racing Association, Inc. will host Asian-American Day at Saratoga Race Course. The event is the fifth installment of the International Heritage Series, a weekly celebration of global culture and heritage during the 2014 summer meet. The day-long festive event will feature Asian music, dance, entertainment, crafts and food from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Saratoga Pavilion.

Dancers from the Chinese Art EDU Dance Team will greet guests at the grandstand and clubhouse entrances throughout the morning before performing trackside at 12:40 p.m.  Demonstrations from Pai’s Tae Kwon Do and Saratoga Kyokushin Mixed Martial Arts will take place at the Pavilion and bandstand throughout the day. Guests will also enjoy Chinese character name translations and Taiwanese folding fans from the Taiwan American Association and Indian henna art by Eve. Asian food samples will be available in the Saratoga Pavilion from Yang’s Asian Bistro of Latham, Duo Modern Japanese Cuisine of Saratoga Springs, and Sushi Thai Garden of Saratoga Springs.


Annual Stewart’s Ice Cream Eating Contest: Racing fans can cool down at the track with the Stewart’s Shops annual Ice Cream Eating Contest. One of the best ways to beat the summer heat, the competition will include categories for kids, teens and adults. Thewinners receive gift certificates for free Stewart’s Shops ice cream. Registration begins at 11 a.m. on the Jockey Silks Room Porch. Contest takes place after the fourth race, approximately 2:10 p.m.


Ed Lewi and Paul Grondahl Book Signing: Longtime Capital Region public relations practitioner Ed Lewi and author Paul Grondahl will sign copies of the new book A Wild Ride – Bears, Babes and Marketing to the Max at the Jockey Silks Room Porch at 2 p.m. The book relates fun stories from Ed’s 55-year career in marketing and public relations which range from saving Caroline Kennedy from the white waters of the Adirondacks to working with Paul Newman on the Double H Ranch and with Marylou Whitney on bringing Saratoga Race Course back to its luster of previous eras.  Full proceeds from the book sales will benefit Double H Ranch for critically ill children. In addition to local retail locations, A Wild Ride is available at www.lulu.com


Travers 1864 Restaurant Week: More than 30 restaurants and eateries throughout the greater Capital Region will offer special pricing and menus in celebration of the crowned jewel of the Spa racing season during the fifth annual Travers 1864 Restaurant Week. Through Thursday, August 21, diners have the opportunity to indulge in a three-course meal at participating restaurants for the prix-fixe cost of $18.64, the year of the inaugural running of the Travers, the nation’s oldest major stakes race for 3-year-olds. For a complete list of participating restaurants and to view the prix-fixe menus, please visit here.



Taste NY: Wine & Cheese:The weekly Taste NY: Wine & Cheese tasting will return to the Saratoga Pavilion with expanded hours from noon to 4:30 p.m. The event allows track patrons the opportunity to sample varietals of wine from numerous New York State wineries. Guests will receive five tastings for $10; 10 tastings for $15; or 20 tastings for $30. This week’s event will feature Heron Hill Winery; Thirsty Owl Saratoga; Swedish Hill Winery; The Saratoga Winery; Lakeland Winery; Thousand Island Winery; and Adirondack Winery.


14th annual Travers Celebration:The 14thannual Travers Celebration at Saratoga Race Course will return this summer to support the Backstretch Employee Service Team and the Times Union Hope Fund at 7 p.m. The official party of the Grade 1, $1.25 million Travers will take place just two days before the 145thedition of the Mid-Summer Derby. This year’s event will honor owner Willis D. Horton; trainer D. Wayne Lukas; and jockey Luis Saez, the connections of 2013 Travers winner Will Take Charge. 

Sponsored by The New York Racing Association, Ketel One Vodka and Coors Light,the event will begin with cocktails circling the famed jockey fountain outside the Clubhouse gates. A formal seated dinner catered by Mazzone Hospitality will be served inside the At the Rail Pavilion at 8 p.m. The evening will also include a silent auction; as well as dancing and music from the Times Square Orchestra. The 2014 Travers Celebration is co-chaired by Mrs. Jo Ann Oreffice, Mr. D. Wayne Lukas, and Mr. George R. Hearst III.  

Cocktail attire is suggested. Tickets are available for $300 per person. A limited number of VIP tables for ten are available for $5,000 each. Tickets may be purchased via email at boxoffice@nyrainc.com or by phone at 718-659-2332.



 “Free Beer and Hot Wings” Morning Show: The nationally syndicated talk radio show “Free Beer and Hot Wings” will take their morning antics trackside with a live broadcast at Saratoga Race Course from 6 to 10 a.m. Show hosts Gregg “Free Beer” Daniels, Chris “Hot Wings” Michaels, Eric Zane, and “Producer Joe” will welcome fans to join them for the morning broadcast on-track next to the Dunkin’ Donuts concession stand. The syndicated show is heard on radio stations in 15 states throughout the Midwest and East Coast. The Free Beer and Hot Wings Show is broadcast locally on Capital Region rock station Q 103 FM, a member of Townsquare Media of Albany.


Taste NY: Craft Beer & Cider: The weekly Taste NY: Craft Beer & Cider tasting will return to the Saratoga Pavilion with expanded hours from noon to 4:30 p.m. The event will allow track patrons the opportunity to sample numerous craft beers produced exclusively by New York State breweries. As many as a dozen breweries from New York State will be featured. Guests receive five tastings for $5. This week’s lead breweries are Olde Saratoga Brewing Company, Brooklyn Brewery, Captain Lawrence Brewery and Keegan Ales.


Annual Red Blazer Ceremony: A new tradition will continue when the New York Racing Association hosts a special ceremony to honor three Saratoga legends: track announcer Tom Durkin and Hall of Fame trainers Allen Jerkens and D. Wayne Lukas. The ceremony will take place in the winner’s circle at 12:15 p.m.



Travers Day:Saratoga’s most anticipated race, the $1.25 million Travers, will return for its 145thrunning. Gates open at 7 a.m.; first post-time is 11:35 a.m. The Travers will go to post at 5:45 p.m. as race number 12.  Travers Day will feature $1.2 million in guaranteed wagers for racing fans, including a $200,000 Guaranteed Pick 6 and a $1 million Guaranteed All Graded Stakes Pick 4, which both end with the Travers. The Travers shares the card with the Grade 1, $500,000 Ketel One King's Bishop, the Grade 1, $500,000 Ballerina, and the Grade 2, $250,000 Ballston Spa.

Breakfast on the Clubhouse porch and backstretch tram tours are not available on Travers Day. Coolers must be no larger than two feet to be permitted on the apron. 


Lord & Taylor Fashion Saturdays: This weekly event is designed to highlight the tradition of style and glamour in thoroughbred racing with a Lord & Taylor pop-up shop at the Saratoga Pavilion each Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Track patrons will be invited to dress their best for the chance to be crowned Most Fashionable at Saratoga. Two winners every week will each receive a $250 Lord & Taylor gift card and have the opportunity to present a trophy in the winner’s circle.



Saratoga Showcase Day: Sunday will be dedicated to New York-breds as Saratoga hosts the inaugural Saratoga Showcase Day, featuring the Albany, West Point presented by Trustco Bank, Yaddo, Fleet Indian, Funny Cide, and Seeking the Ante.


Taste NY: Food and Artisans: Taste NY: Food & Artisans is a lively on-track market of up to 18 food and artisan vendors featuring products made exclusively in New York State. The market is held each Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Saratoga Pavilion.



Berkshire Bank Family Mondays: Monday will be highlighted by Berkshire Bank Family Mondays – a weekly attraction held every Monday from noon to 4 p.m. inside the Saratoga Pavilion. The weekly event features a variety of free family-friendly activities for all ages, including face painting, arts and crafts, mascot appearances and bounce inflatables. The week’s featured activity will take a look to the future with a hands-on robotics demonstration from students at Shenendehowa High School.


Low Rollers Handicapping Contest: Saratoga Race Course will host a live-money Low Rollers Handicapping Contest each Monday of the 2014 summer season. The tournament allows guests the opportunity to experience the thrill of tournament play for $40, with $30 going towards live money and $10 to the prize pool. Participants must select five races on which to place live $2 win, place and show wagers on five different horses in five different races. Only Saratoga races are accepted for contest play. Guests are invited to register on the first floor of the grandstand before post time for the day’s fifth race.