Tuesday, February 28, 2006 12:00 AM
Prime seats on raceday nearly sold out
FLORENCE, KY . . . February 28, 2006 . . . Only one horse can win the $500,000 Lane’s End Stakes at Turfway Park on March 25, but several local charities are already winners from their connection to the Grade II race. Altogether, about $100,000 is expected to be raised for charity across the two weeks leading up to the race.
Third Maker’s Mark bottle honors The Big O
For the third straight year, renowned Kentucky bourbon distillery Maker’s Mark will produce a limited edition bottle commemorating the Lane’s End Stakes, with a portion of the proceeds this year going to the Oscar and Yvonne Robertson Family Fund of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation. Only 2,000 bottles will be produced, each specially labeled and dipped in black over red wax. The bottles go on sale at retail outlets on March 17.
The bottle will be unveiled March 14 at a 5:45 p.m. press conference at Mike and Jimmy’s Chophouse Grill in the new Crestview Hills Town Center, Crestview Hills, Kentucky. The public is invited to join the event at 6:00 p.m. following the press conference.
In addition to $20,000 from the sale of the bottles, Maker’s Mark will also donate $1 for every Maker’s Mark drink sold at the unveiling, and Mike and Jimmy’s Chophouse Grill will donate 10 percent of the day’s total sales. Proceeds from a silent auction at the unveiling also go to the fund.
The Oscar and Yvonne Robertson Family Fund of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation awards college scholarships to students at the University of Cincinnati through three programs. The Founders Scholarship is awarded to the winner of the university’s Cincinnati Scholarship Competition. The Urban Education Scholarship is awarded to an undergraduate student from the College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services who is preparing to teach in urban schools. The Incentive Scholarship is awarded to an incoming student in any U.C. program who has demonstrated financial need.
Charity Night moves up to VIP Tent
Six Northern Kentucky charities are the winners at the fifth annual Charity Night at the Tables, set this year for Saturday, March 18. Sponsored by Fifth Third Bank and the Yearlings, Charity Night is annually held at Turfway Park and moves this year to the Maker’s Mark VIP Tent on the track grounds. Doors open at 7 p.m.
This year’s charities, three returning based on last year’s ticket sales and three chosen from applications, are Dinsmore Homestead Foundation, Family Nurturing Center, The Parish Kitchen, Senior Services of Northern Kentucky, Special Olympics, and The Steinford Toy Foundation.
Players at Charity Night at the Tables designate play-money “winnings” to one or more of the participating charities. The charity with the highest total then gets first pick of the horses running in the Lane’s End Stakes. The charity whose horse finishes first (or best) receives $10,000. The remaining five charities receive $2,000 each. An additional $1,000 goes to the charity designated by the winner of Charity Night’s Turfway Texas Hold ‘em Tournament.
Tickets to Charity Night at the Tables are $60 and include a grazing buffet, beer, wine, and soft drinks, and chips for the tables. The Turfway Texas Hold ‘em Tournament is limited to 60 players and is an additional $15. Tickets are available from the participating charities or by calling (859) 578-6388.
Net proceeds from Charity Night at the Tables benefit the Northern Kentucky Leadership Foundation. Founded in 1992, the foundation promotes three leadership development programs for the Northern Kentucky/Greater Cincinnati area: Regional Youth Leadership, sponsored by Toyota, US Bank, and Ohio National Financial Services; Teacher Leadership Northern Kentucky, sponsored by Staples; and Leadership Northern Kentucky.
Call to the Post Luncheon open to the public
Representatives from the Charity Night charities will make their picks at the Call to the Post Luncheon on Thursday, March 23. Post positions for the Lane’s End Stakes are drawn and morning line odds are set at the luncheon, which is open to the public and draws community leaders, media, horsemen, and fans. The luncheon begins at noon in the Maker’s Mark VIP Tent at Turfway. Tickets are $35 and are available at (859) 371-0200.
Hospice to benefit from art auction
A racing-themed original painting by Mary Bunning will be auctioned in the Maker’s Mark VIP Tent on Lane’s End Stakes Day, with proceeds going to the St. Elizabeth Hospice Program. Bunning is the wife of U.S. Senator Jim Bunning. She designed the commemorative wooden egg and poster for the 2004 White House Easter Egg Roll and her work has been featured on program covers for the First Lady's Luncheon and the Congressional Club Cookbook.
Racetrackers have a night of their own
Earlier in the week before raceday, racetrackers have a lively night of their own, the 16th annual Crawfish Boil. Proceeds from the event benefit Turfway Park charities.
Maker’s Mark VIP Tent expanded to meet demand
A seat in the Maker’s Mark VIP Tent is the hottest ticket on raceday. With 93 percent of tent tickets sold, Turfway Park has expanded the tent to accommodate additional tables. Some reserved areas in the grandstand already have sold out but tickets remain for dining and seating options ranging from $15 to $150. General admission on raceday is $10. Valet parking is $5; general parking is free. Tickets to the Lane’s End Stakes are available by calling 859-371-0200.