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Ostriches and Camels at Quarter Horse Races
It’s time to place your bets. The Fair Grounds are preparing for their fifth Annual Quarter Horse race, and they’re making this year extra special by bringing ostriches and camels into the mix . The twelve-day meet opened yesterday, August 15, with over 120 total races planned for the entire event, and admission to bet on the tiny horses is free.
Quarter Horses look like ponies at first glance, but they’re actually unique breed that specializes in sprinting short distances. If you made it to last year’s races, you may remember Ms. Jingles. She’ll be back this year with her trainer, Frank Cavazos, competing against the Fair Grounds’ two-time defending champion Kenny Roberts Sr. All the family fun is free until Saturday.
The only day that organizers ask you to pay up is August 18, the special day when they race the mascots and bring out the new mascots. In addition to the ostriches, Hotel Monteleone’s Monty The Lion has been toying with the idea of making an appearance. “Tails & Ales,” is happening in conjunction with the ostrich racing, with participants such as Abita, Bayou Teche, Blue Moon, Covington Brewhouse, Tin Roof, Lazy Magnolia, and many more. Admission is $10, but children 12 and under get in for free.
The Fair Grounds wants to keep the admission price low, Mulvihill said, so that families can enjoy the races together. “It’s our first time doing it, and it was really conceived as a family-friendly night at the track. We kept the admission prices low so that families could have an affordable night out,” Mulvihill said.
Although track goers are forbidden from betting on the new additions to the track, Fair Grounds Analyst Jim Mulvihill said that people can still have fun from the sidelines. “There’s no wagering on the camel or ostrich races, but friends can make friendly $5 wagers between themselves, the same way they bet on football,” Mulvihill said.
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