Before the Prairie State Festival

Saturday June 16th is Prairie State Festival Day, the second of three days celebrating Illinois racing. On track, Arlington Park will host six stakes races (three for each gender) devoted to the best equine stars bred in the state. Don’t worry; there will be a full-fledged handicapping preview later this week.

Two other events also are taking place on June 16 before the Prairie State Festival Card; this post is about both of them.

The first of them is the return of the “Breakfast at Arlington” program.

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This program allows fans the chance to attend morning workouts and get to see many of the day-to-day, behind the scenes events that take place before a track puts out the first live race of a day. You’ll also receive fun and educational tidbits from Arlington’s on-air television personalities.

Additional information, and VIP ticket packages, are available through the Breakfast at Arlington website.  Do note that the Breakfast at Arlington program is only offered three times this  year, the other two days being Million Preview Day (July 14) and the morning before Arlington Million Day (August 17).

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The second of them is the  Galloping Out fundraiser. Galloping Out is a not-for-profit group whose mission is “providing funding for the rescue, care, rehabilitation, and retraining of off the track thoroughbreds.”

According to a June 2 Arlington Park press release, highlights of the Galloping Out fundraiser include:

  • “Prior to the races from 11:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m., there will be a jockey autograph session where for a nominal donation fans can get an autograph from their favorite Arlington Park jockeys.”
  • “During the race card, fans will have an opportunity to purchase a Galloping Out T-shirt and participate in a silent auction for special racing-related items like “dinner with a jockey” and “a day with a trainer” as well as other racing experiences.”
  • “Following the races, Arlington Park will host the Galloping Out 2012 Charity Fundraiser in the track’s Park area where there will be a live auction, a wine raffle, live entertainment by singer-songwriter-musician Peter Guerin and a chance to mingle with trainers and jockeys.”
  • “Tickets for the event are $50 which will include a dinner buffet and one drink ticket. For more information, contact Mary Stout in the ITHA office at 847-577-6464.”

If you can’t attend the fundraiser, Galloping Out also welcomes donations as well. They’re a registered 501(c)3 charity, and donations may be tax-deductible.  Donations can be sent to:

ITHA
Attn: Galloping Out
7301 West 25th Street, Suite 321
North Riverside, IL 60546

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Two events, both before any races happen on the Prairie State Festival card. One lets takes you backstage; the other to a stage beyond the racing stage. A nice prelude to the big statebred stage of Prairie State Festival Day.

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