ELMONT, N.Y. - The spotlight will again shine on the Empire State this Saturday, with eight stakes races worth $1.75 million in purses exclusively for New York-breds, along with a host of fall-themed activities and a special giveaway for Empire Showcase Day.
Highlighted by the 40th running of the $300,000 Empire Classic, Empire Showcase Day at Belmont Park is an opportunity for racing fans and families to experience the best of everything New York from top-class racing to a host of family-centric activities, including a haunted house, hay rides, magic show, carnival booths, a mechanical bull ride and more in Belmont's spacious backyard.
Empire Showcase Day also marks the return of Taste New York to Belmont Park. An initiative launched by Governor Cuomo in 2013 and overseen by the state Department of Agriculture and Markets, the Taste NY program promotes New York's food and beverage industries creating opportunities for local producers to showcase their goods at large public events.
Following a successful weekly series at Saratoga Race Course this summer, Taste NY vendors such as Bosco Family Foods, Albany Distilling Company, IM2Handmade Items, and many more will be on hand Saturday featuring a variety of New York region made products including wines, spirits, foods, and crafts available for purchase on the first floor of the grandstand from noon to 4 p.m.
The day begins with the return of the Breakfast at Belmont program from 8:00 - 9:30 a.m., where for free admission and parking, racing fans will have the opportunity to watch thoroughbreds train in the morning with a starting gate demonstration and pony show. An optional Breakfast buffet is also offered for a nominal fee before gates close at the conclusion of the program.
Additionally, fans will also have the opportunity to pick up an exclusive NYRA Bets travel mug giveaway on Empire Showcase Day free with paid admission beginning at 10:30 a.m. while supplies last.
The thrill of live-money tournament play also continues on Showcase Day, as guests will be able to compete in the "low-roller" challenge.
For just a $40 entry fee, horseplayers can test their skills, with $30 for live money wagers and $10 towards the prize pool. All entrants must make five $2 across-the-board bets on five different races at Belmont, with the top finishers splitting 100 percent of the prize pool. The first-place finisher will be awarded 60 percent, 30 percent to the second, and 10 percent to third. Registration for the "low-roller" challenge will take place on the first floor of the grandstand by the customer service booth.
Dining reservations can be made in advance of Empire Showcase Day for a buffet lunch in the Garden Terrace for $35 for adults and $18 for children, plus a $3.50 seating charge per person, by calling by calling 1-888-516-NYRA (6972).
For more information and details about Empire Showcase Day, please visit NYRA.com
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