Saratoga Springs businesses, police prepare for horse racing season

July 20, 2017 06:50 PM

SARATOGA SPRINGS - As many as one million people visit Saratoga Race Course every summer, but the horse racing is just part of what they come for.

The Saratoga experience usually includes shopping and dining and drinking.

At a new Broadway beverage center and bar called Pint Sized, the appeal of plus-sized business had them racing to open before racing season.

"The owner, August, was waiting on a location to open up and he got this place up and running in less than a month."

There are other businesses who also beat the clock to open their doors to tired, hungry or thirsty customers.

"A million people likely to be here and you want to be able to serve every one of those million people so you've got to be up and running by opening day."

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Police have also spent the last several weeks updating their incident plans in preparation for another busy season.

"It's not just about planning for the race track. We have road races, horse sales. We have a nightlife where people feel compelled to stay out until 4 or 5 o'clock in the morning," said Assistant Police Chief John Catone.

As far as NYRA is concerned, it's business as usual.

Visitors might notice a new slate roof on the 115-year-old pari-mutuel building.

And there's an upgraded playground complete with a miniature starting gate for children to play on.

"Having this kind of playground is going to be a place where kids, when they're brought to the track by their parents and grandparents will say, 'I had fun. I'm going go back,'" said Chris Kay, president and CEO of NYRA.

NYRA is also pushing their new app, NYRA XP, which allows fans to use their phones to buy tickets, place bets and even watch the live stream of cameras from around the track.

Gates open at 11:00 Friday morning. Post time for the first race is 1 p.m.


Mark Mulholland

Copyright 2017 - WNYT-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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