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STARLIGHT RACING

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1751 Gentilly Blvd.,   New Orleans, LA 70119   www.fairgroundsracecourse.com

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 Contact: Brian W. Spencer, Racing Analyst/Racing Communications, 504.948.1233, brian.spencer@fgno.com

           STARLIGHT-STARBRIGHT PROGRAM RETURNS ON OPENING NIGHT WITH STARLIGHT RACING

 NEW ORLEANS (Tuesday, November 11, 2014) – The 143rd thoroughbred racing season at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots begins on Friday, November 21 at 5 p.m.

Starlight Racing, the “dress to impress” event of the racing season, will be offered five times throughout the racing season, including opening night. The first two events, to be held on November 21 and December 26, will include a cosmic twist with theMiller Lite White Out Party in the Starlight tent on the track apron. Glowing drinks and blinking accessories will liven up the atmosphere along with jockette dancers and the addition of neon body painters to allow racing fans to customize their appearance under the black lights. The first 200 racing fans in the Starlight tent at both the November and December dates will receive free t-shirts. Local food truck fare will be present at every Starlight date, with Crepes a la Carte and more slated to offer edibles on the track apron on opening night. Live music will be provided in the clubhouse by The Boogie Men (November 21) and 90 Degrees West (December 26). The Starlight Racing Series is presented by Miller Lite, Blue Moon, Absolut, Jameson, Royal Productions and B97.

“Starlight Racing provides exciting and memorable moments for racing fans every year at the Fair Grounds,” said Fair Grounds Track President Tim Bryant. “The evening racing coupled with popular entertainment options allows us to expose new fans to our racing product in a fun, slightly less traditional racing atmosphere.”

With the return of Starlight Racing comes the renewal of the Starlight-Starbright program. In unison with what has become a favorite local past-time of racing under the lights, Fair Grounds will again provide both non-profit and for-profit entities the ability to raise much needed funds for their own charitable organization or for one that their company supports in its efforts to touch the community.

Last season, several groups took advantage of the program, most notably the St. Benilde’s Men’s Club and Caps for Kids. More about their experiences with Starlight-Starbright can be found at http://www.fairgroundsracecourse.com/news/archives/2014/02/20/news-release-starlight-starbright-provides-fast-benefits.

“Fair Grounds is proud to continue our efforts to support the community,” said Bryant. “We had an excellent response to the Starlight-Starbright program last year and look forward to welcoming even more groups to the initiative this year.”

Following approval and registration with the Fair Grounds, organizations may pre-sell or direct their membership and supporters to purchase tickets to the designated Starlight racing event through the Fair Grounds online ticketing system,www.fgno.com/tickets.  Based on surpassing the minimum of 25 pre-sold tickets per date, the organization then receives 50% of the admission cost ($5.00 per person) back in a rebate.
Companies may register as an official Starlight-Starbright beneficiary by downloading the official information and registration form from www.fairgroundsracecourse.com and emailing it to lindsay.boihem@fgno.com or mark.conner@fgno.com.  Additional information, including clubhouse reservations during fund raising is available by calling the property reservations line at (504)943-2200.

KEY DATES TO KNOW: 143rd THOROUGHBRED RACING SEASON

 NEW ORLEANS (Thursday, November 6, 2014) – The 143rd Thoroughbred Racing season at the Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots is near, with Opening Night and Starlight Racing taking place Nov. 21

Here are some key dates before and during the season to help fans and horsemen plan ahead (all times Central).

November 21– Opening Night of the 143rd Thoroughbred Racing Season presented by East Jefferson General Hospitalwith Starlight Racing with a Cosmic twist and the Miller Lite White Out Party along with live music from The Boogie Menin the clubhouse DJ Kemistry in the Miller Time Beer Garden. Local food truck fare including Crepes a la Carte and drink specials will be available. First post 5 p.m.

 November 22– Racing schedule magnet giveaway to the first 1,500 customers.

November 23– Spirited Sundays (and every Sunday thereafter) with $4 Absolut Bloody Mary & Martinis available at the Tenacious Bar and walk-up bar locations.

 November 27– Thanksgiving Day Handicap. First post 11 a.m. Clubhouse dining reservations are sold out, and a Thanksgiving buffet will be offered for all race fans in the Pan Zareta Room for $34 for adults and $12 for children. Thanksgiving buffet menu details are available at www.fgno.com.

November 29– Veterans Appreciation Day – $1 hot dog and Coca-Cola soft drink for veterans with proper identification.

December 4– Throwback Thursdays (and every Thursday thereafter) with $2 Miller Lite Cans and $2 hot dogs available at all concession stands excluding the Gentilly Grill and the Desaix Deli.

December 5– Weekend Wine’d Up (and every non-Starlight Friday thereafter) with $4 wine from 12pm-5pm available in the clubhouse and at the Tenacious Bar.

December 6– Jockey Trading Card Giveaway: Jockey Robby Albarado

December 13– Louisiana Champions Day presented by Acadian Ambulance Service with 11 stakes races worth $1.1 million.Military Appreciation Day – $1 hot dog and Coca-Cola soft drink for military members with proper identification. First post12 p.m.

December 20– Santa Super Saturday: Coca-Cola Holiday Family Day presented by Coca-Cola. DRF/NTRA National Handicapping Championship Qualifier in the Black Gold Room offers two paid seats into the National Handicapping Championship January 23-25 at Treasure Island Casino in Las Vegas along with hotel stay and a $400 travel voucher. Entry fee is $200 plus a $50 NHC Tour Registration fee if players are not registered.  First post 12 p.m.

December 26 – Starlight Racing with a Cosmic twist and the Miller Lite White Out Party along with live music from 90 Degrees West in the clubhouse and DJ Mig in the Miller Time Beer Garden. Local food truck fare will be offered. First post5 p.m.

December 27– Jockey Trading Card Giveaway: Jockey Florent Geroux

January 3 – Jockey Trading Card Giveaway: Jockey Brian Hernandez, Jr.

January 10 – Stick Pony Racing: Join us before first post for the biggest stick pony race in Louisiana. Details to follow.

 January 16– Starlight Racing with live music by Groovy 7 in the clubhouse. Local food truck fare will be offered. First post 5 p.m.

January 17– Road to the Derby Kickoff Day Presented by Hotel Monteleone. Five stakes worth $560,000 including theGrade III Lecomte Stakes and the Grade III Colonel E. R. Bradley Handicap. Derby coozies for the first 1000 to enter.First post 12:30 p.m.

January 19 – Racing Fan Appreciation Day – $1 Live Racing Programs

January 24– Jockey Trading Card Giveaway: Jockey Jamie Theriot

February 7– Jockey Trading Card Giveaway: Jockey Kerwin Clark

February 8– Teacher Appreciation Day:  $1 hot dog & Coca-Cola soft drink for teachers with proper identification.

February 15– Jockey Trading Card Giveaway: Jockey Richard Eramia

February 17– Mardi Gras Racing highlighted by the Mardi Gras Stakes. First Post 12:00 p.m.

February 21– LA Derby Preview Day Presented by Lamarque Ford. Six stakes worth $945,000 including the Grade II Risen Star Stakes, the Grade III Rachel Alexandra Stakes, the Grade III Mineshaft Handicap, and the Grade III Fair Grounds Handicap. First post 12:30 p.m.

February 22-28: Bark Week presented by Double M Feed

February 22– Jack Russell Racing is added to the schedule this year to complement the massive popularity of Wiener Dog racing last season. See Jack Russells compete for prizes and bragging rights for their owners.

February 27– Starlight Racing with live music by The Top Cats in the clubhouse and DJ Crush  in the Miller Time Beer Garden. Local food truck fare will be offered. First post 5 p.m.

February 28– Wiener Dog Racing returns to the Fair Grounds where one pure-bred Dachshund will be crowned Wiener Dog Racing Champion

March 7– Jockey Trading Card Giveaway: Jockey James Graham

March 8– Family Day: Princesses, Ponies and Superheroes – come together on the track apron for a festive day of family fun.

March 14 – Racing Fan Appreciation Day –  $1 Live Racing Programs

March 20– Starlight Racing with live music by The Mixed Nuts in the clubhouse and DJ San-D in the Miller Time Beer Garden. Local food truck fare will be offered. First post 5 p.m.

March 28– Louisiana Derby Day. Eight stakes races worth $2.12 million highlighted by the Grade II Lousiana Derby and theGrade II Fair Grounds Oaks. Also includes the Grade II Mervin H. Muniz, Jr. Memorial Handicap, and the Grade II New Orleans Handicap. First Post 12:30 p.m.

March 29– Closing Day

About Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots

Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, the nation’s third-oldest racetrack, has been in operation since 1872. Located in New Orleans, Fair Grounds is owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ Global Select Market: CHDN); it also operates a slot-machine gaming facility and 11 off-track betting parlors throughout southeast Louisiana. The 143rd Thoroughbred Racing Season – highlighted by the 102nd running of the Louisiana Derby – will run from November 2014 through March 2015. More information can be found online at www.FairGroundsRaceCourse.com.

 

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