SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) will celebrate a historic milestone for the City of Saratoga Springs with free grandstand and clubhouse admission at Saratoga Race Course on Saratoga Centennial Day, Wednesday, August 5.
Saratoga Centennial Day, which celebrates the 100th anniversary of the incorporation of the City of Saratoga Springs in 1915, will feature a variety of activities and entertainment designed to celebrate the history and tradition of the Spa City.
“I would like to thank Chris Kay and the New York Racing Association for commemorating our centennial with a special day at Saratoga Race Course,” said City of Saratoga Springs Mayor Joanne Yepsen. “Saratoga Springs Centennial Day, highlighted by free admission for everyone, is a wonderful tribute in appreciation of our local residents, businesses and the entire City of Saratoga Springs. Not only does our race course generate $240 million of economic activity in our region, but it is of immeasurable importance to our history, traditions, and culture. I’m very happy that we are going to thank our fans on Centennial Day with free admission and a wonderful celebration for all Saratogians and visitors to enjoy. NYRA’s stewardship of our local community, the creation of thousands of local jobs and record tourism numbers, are all critically important to helping ensure our community’s success for another 100 years.”
“We hope all Saratoga Springs residents will take this special opportunity to celebrate their City’s Centennial, and that all those that love to visit Saratoga Springs will come to this great community on August 5 to join in the celebration,” said New York Racing Association CEO and President Chris Kay. “I would like to thank Mayor Yepsen and members of her planning committee for their efforts to make this day possible. The New York Racing Association is pleased to offer free admission to the greatest racing fans in the world as we celebrate 100 years of health, history and horses in Saratoga Springs.”
An array of special activities and events will take place within the Saratoga Pavilion to commemorate the city’s first 100 years, including performances from local arts institutions such as the Saratoga Shakespeare Company; Primrose Lane Barbershop Quartet; Saratoga Children’s Theater; pianist/composer Chuck Lamb and songwriter/vocalist Ria Curly; folksinger Kevin McKrell; and blues band Annie & the Hedonists.
Additionally, guests to the Pavilion will have the opportunity to learn about and taste the waters from several of the natural springs Saratoga is famous for; will enjoy ice cream tastings from locally-owned Stewart’s Shops; samples of the famous Peppermint Pig from Saratoga Sweets; and popcorn from the Saratoga Auto Museum Antique Popcorn Wagon.
A number of prominent Saratoga Springs-based organizations will have interactive and educational exhibits on display in the Saratoga Pavilion, including the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame; Brookside Museum; Saratoga Springs Preservation Foundation; Caffe Lena; Saratoga Springs History Museum; the Children’s Museum at Saratoga; Saratoga Mineral Water; Saratoga Springs Racetrack Memorabilia; and Saratoga Chips.
Saratoga Centennial Day will feature a special performance of the Call to the Post by select members of the Philadelphia Orchestra who are in town for their annual summer residency and will make their seasonal debut later that evening at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. The Call to the Post will take place in the winner’s circle prior to race number three on the day’s card (post time 2:06 p.m.) named in honor of the Saratoga Centennial.
Members of the Saratoga Centennial Committee will present the trophy for the eponymous race followed by the presentation of a three-tiered cake produced by The Bread Basket, a second-generation Saratoga Springs business, in honor of the anniversary.
The NYRA Community Outreach Booth will feature the well-known Saratoga Springs-based men’s acapella group Racing City Chorus. Members of the chorus will raise funds for the organization by performing at the booth throughout the afternoon as it celebrates its own milestone 60-year anniversary.
The track décor and atmosphere will reflect the celebration with the Saratoga Centennial flag on display in the infield and entertainers dressed in Victorian-era costumes strolling the grounds. Select cars from the Saratoga Auto Museum and an antique carriage from Saratoga Horse and Carriage will be on display at the Clubhouse entrance.
Guests who purchased in advance a daily reserved seat for August 5, or a weekly seat package that includes August 5, will receive a $5 refund for admission with each grandstand reserved seat or an $8 refund for admission with each clubhouse reserved seat. All grandstand and clubhouse reserved seats purchased in advance for the 2015 season include the cost of admission.
Saratoga grandstand season pass holders who attend the races on August 5 will receive a $1 refund for admission; clubhouse season pass holders in attendance will be credited with a $2 refund.
Season seat plan holders will receive the same refund as season pass holders. All season seat plans for the 2015 meet include admission based on the equivalent price of a season pass.
Refunds will automatically be issued to the individual’s NYRA account within 30 days of August 5. Guests who purchased their season pass by cash or check may stop by the Saratoga Box Office within 30 days of use on August 5 to receive an admission refund.
Saratoga Centennial Day at Saratoga Race Course is one element of the year-long celebration of the 100th anniversary of the official incorporation of the City of Saratoga Springs, which was signed into law on April 7, 1915. The year-long celebration includes a series of events and activities which highlight the history and culture of the Spa City, including the publication of a book curated by local historian Field Horne; the re-dedication of the restored Spirit of Life statue, a city icon sculpted by Daniel Chester French; and the restoration and re-piping of High Rock Spring.
For more information about the Saratoga Centennial, visit www.saratogacentennial.com.
The 2015 summer meet at historic Saratoga Race Course continues through Labor Day, Monday, September 7. For more information about Saratoga Race Course, call (518) 584-6200 or log onto www.nyra.com.