Tuesday, July 30, 2013



      July 18, 2013 was one of two Senior Days at the Del Mar Racetrack which means free admission, free programs and free seats. This was too good of a deal for my husband to pass up. In addition, a free shuttle from the Solana Beach Amtrak Station to the racetrack gate is available throughout the season. We found street parking close to the station and rode on the double decker British bus over to the track and walked right into a not-so-crowded racetrack facility with plenty of free seating.

      This was our first visit to the Del Mar Racetrack, so we spent most of time exploring the facilities, even though our ticket didn't allow access to some of the club areas that required a special entry fee. It was fun to look around and to view the old black and white photos of Hollywood celebrities that line the walls.

Here are some interesting facts about the Del Mar Racetrack:
---Bing Crosby was one of the original owners and personally greeted the fans on     opening day in 1937.
---Races have been held every summer since opening, except during WW II.
---It opened in an era when horse racing ranked second in popularity to Major League Baseball.
---Located on the Pacific Ocean, the track is known for the slogan: "Where the Turf Meets the Surf."
---By 1940, Del Mar was the summer playground for many Hollywood stars.
---The Del Mar racing season runs from July through early September.      
---They have a famous "One and Only Truly Fabulous Hats Contest" on opening day each year.
---Starting in 2014, the racing season may be extended due to the closing of the Hollywood Park Racetrack.

     We left a little early to avoid the crowds and I had to listen to my husband brag

about how he picked the winner in three out of four of the races he bet on. He actually

walked away $10 ahead because he just bets $2 at a time and he had to subtract my

      We left in time to catch a Happy Hour and dinner at one of our favorite Solana Beach establishments, Chief's Burger & Brew, 124 Lomas Santa Fe Drive, it is across the street from the Amtrak terminal. We enjoyed the Thursday night special--spaghetti and meatballs for $9.99.
      Previously we rented a condo in Solana Beach, so we are familiar with the area and have always loved it. It was on our list of possible places to settle in when we came out last fall, but we never made it past the first apartment we looked at in Coronado—overlooking the San Diego Bay. In the past we have been in Minnesota during the race season (July-September).
     After dinner, we to walked down to Fletcher Cove to view the ocean and had the added benefit of a concert at the cove—they are held on Thursday nights during the summer.
                            "Where the Surf Meets the Turf down at Old Del Mar
                                               take a plane, take a car.
                There is a smile on every face and a winner in each race
                                 where the turf meets the surf at Del Mar"                             
Recorded by Bing Crosby on July 5, 1941. You may listen to it here.


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