Looking forward to:
1.Opening Day, just before Race # 1: Having the crowd join race caller Tom Durkin with his classic "and They're off" call. Never gets old.
2.Betting that first race at the windows: Even though I have a Smartphone and can bet through my phone via NYRA rewards, or try the new Wi-Fi betting platform at the track, there is something to be said for betting at the windows and holding that piece of paper in your hand.
3.People watching: See # 1 -never gets old
4. Eating: Gambling is not enough for me. Yours truly likes to eat while at the track. A Hattie's Chicken Sandwich (yes I will walk the extra distance to the new spot in the Carousel area) and a Shake Shack Burger are a must.
5. Drinking: Yours truly also likes to drink (responsibly). The Bar at the Post (aka the Paddock bar) serves this purpose nicely, complete with betting machines right on the bar. Also looking forward to checking out the new Beer Garden in front of the Carousel.
6. Post Race Saratoga Dining: Big fan of Maestro's, Wishing Well, One Caroline St. Bistro and Hattie's. Looking forward to trying out new spots including Boca Bistro (on Broadway).
7. Free Parking spots downtown: I have the perfect spot, free and so close to Broadway it's almost comical how many people don't know you can park there. Went to dinner last Saturday night, the town was packed but cruised into my trusty spot with no problems while many drove around in circles looking for a spot.
8. Seeing Friends: It's amazing how many people now bet from home year round via the computer, tablet or Smartphone. Many of us have horse racing friends through Twitter or other social media who we never actually meet or see. But this is one track they do come out for, and Saratoga is often the only time I see these people and it's a treat to socialize with them.