Opening Day at Colonial Downs

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On Saturday June 2nd, Colonial Downs kicks off its annual summer race season with a combined thoroughbred/steeplechase/tailgating event. The race program itself will consist of the five regular steeplechase races along with 7 flat races for a grand total of 12, the most ever offered on this type of program.

Colonial Downs has introduced walk up general admission tickets this year so more people can enjoy the day. For guests joining friends who already have a vehicle tailgating spot, they can simply purchase one for $12 and bring a cooler, grill, and food to join in. The other option is to simply enjoy the races trackside or from covered grandstand seats where soft sided “Nascar type” coolers are encouraged. Food and beverages will still be available for sale thru the regular concession stands.

An upgraded $20 Infield Party Pass allows attendees to carry picnic and party supplies into an infield spot right along the inner rail. Both Colonial’s Jockey Club and Turf Club dining rooms will be open on Saturday as well. Tailgating areas open at 10 AM; admission gates open at 11 AM and first post is 12:55 PM. Terrier dog races will be held between 11:30 AM – 12 Noon, and skydivers will land on the track before the anthem at 12:20 PM.

General Admission and all tickets except tailgate spots will be available tomorrow at the main building starting at 9 AM.

General Admission tickets are no longer available online

Tailgating Area

About the Event

RacingThe sport of horse racing and the art of tailgating collide on Opening Day at Colonial Downs Racetrack on Saturday, June 2, 2012. Attendees will find the celebratory tailgating atmosphere they expect from the event, along with more affordable pricing, a packed afternoon of racing, and flexible admission options.

Gates open at 10:00 a.m. for reserved tailgate space holders, with general admission beginning at 11:00 a.m. at the front grandstand doors. The first of five steeplechase races begins at 12:55 p.m., interspersed with seven flat races run on the turf and dirt tracks. Because of the increased racing schedule and use of both tracks, the location of reserved tailgating spaces is reconfigured. 2011 space holders are able to select their new spaces during a renewal period prior to general sales. All reserved tailgating spaces are more affordable than last year and must be purchased in advance from Colonial Downs. Outdoor entertaining options for large corporate groups and alumni organizations are available.


Celebrate Opening Day with an 80's Theme!

What’s a tailgate without a theme? Whether you’re a preppy or a punk, Material Girl or Thriller, wore high-tops or Doc Martens, this is your chance to crimp your hair and go back to the future with the decade we cannot forget.

You're, like, totally invited!

Fashion? No decade was quite like the 80s. After all, in what other decade could you get away with wearing baggy “MC Hammer” pants? What other time period could one wear electric neon colored leg warmers, a sweater and a miniskirt all at the same time? Shoulder pads, miniskirts, leg warmers, HUGE earrings, fingerless gloves, parachute pants, stretch-stirrup pants and oversized tops we loved it all. Fur sure!

Round up your posse for a totally awesome time!

You’ll need to set the mood for tailgating with the perfect decorations and party supplies. Here are some fun ideas for taking your party space back a few decades. Look for paper cups and plates in bold and dramatic colors. Consider neon colors, animal prints or black-and-white geometric patterns. Find old records at the thrift store and hang those with fishing line from the inside of your tent. Get a strobe light! Set the theme with 80’s music.

Admission

General Admission and all tickets except tailgate spots will be available tomorrow at the main building starting at 9 AM.

Topside Tent FormReserved Spaces Tailgating Area

$275, $235, $195, $155, $95 (Spaces will accommodate a regular-sized vehicle and enough room to hold 15 to 20 guests). Purchased through Colonial Downs in advance only.

Tailgating Area * Because of the increased racing schedule and use of both tracks, the location of reserved tailgating spaces is reconfigured. Click here to view the new configuration.

New for 2012: There are NO shuttle buses from the Richmond International Raceway.

Top 10 Reasons Why You Should Purchase a Reserved Tailgate Spot in the Backstretch Bash Area:

  1. Easiest tailgating area get in & out of traffic-wise. Start & end your day hassle free!
  2. Best Value – with spots as low as $95 (includes admission for all folks in your vehicle), it is a bargain!
  3. Closest location to beer and ice sales! Our on site convenience store is literally steps away
  4. Three of the 12 horse races that day will start in front of the Backstretch Bash area
  5. Horses from all races that day will walk right past this area going to & from the paddock
  6. Plenty of room in this tailgating area for cornhole, flip cup & ladder ball
  7. Easy access to other party areas in Turns 1 & 2, and on the “Green”
  8. Free WIFI
  9. Access to indoor rest rooms (in the track kitchen)
  10. Backstretch Bash takes place in an elevated area – easy to spy on friends in other areas

Infield Pass

Cars are not allowed in the infield, but ticket holders can carry or roll their picnic supplies out to enjoy the races with this $20 ticket (pop up tent, grill, cooler etc.) This area gives ticketholders a unique view of the races and more importantly, a good sized comfortable space to enjoy their picnic/party. Attendees will be able to cross the track back and forth after each of the 12 horse races during the afternoon.
$20 in advance, upgrade available day-of for General Admission ticket holders
Purchased through TicketstoBuy

Other Seating Options / Pricing

General Parking - Free  •   Preffered Parking - $5 (day of only)


General Admission and all tickets except tailgate spots will be available tomorrow at the main building starting at 9 AM.

General Admission

$12 at the door
Click here for more info

Box Seating

$20 in advance or at the door
Click here for more info

Jockey Club

$40 in advance or at the door (includes buffet)
Click here for more info

Jockey Club Lounge

$15 in advance or at the door
Click here for more info

Turf Club

$50 in advance or at the door (includes buffet)
Click here for more info

Sky Suites

$1,000 plus $35/person (includes buffet)
Click here for more info

Top o' the Tote

Available for group sale
Click here for more info.

Race Day Information

Race Day Hours

  • 10:00 am Gates open for reserved space holders only
  • 11:00 am Front doors at main grandstand open for general admission (including guests of reserved space holders who drive separately, Skysuites, box seats, Jockey Club and Turf Club)
  • 12:55 pm First of 12 races starts (racing schedule subject to change without notice)
  • 7:30 pm Tailgating/Reserved space holder areas close

Pre-Race Festivities

SkydivingSkydivers
A team of 4 skydivers will land on the track during the National Anthem. A Facebook prize winner will tandem jump to fly the starter’s flag onto the track during jump. Sponsored by No Limits Skydiving. Click here to enter the Facebook competition.

SkydivingTerrier Dog Races
Come early to see terrier dog races for the first time ever at Colonial Downs! They’ll compete in front of the winners circle from 11:30 AM-  12 Noon.

Fort Lee Color Guard
Will present colors during national anthem; need to arrange practice section 1 week prior; contact: Nicole Heidelberg, 804-720-8815

 

Race Day Schedule

  • 1st Race: Steeplechase Jump Race
  • 2nd Race: Dirt Race
  • 3rd Race: Steeplechase Jump Race
  • 4th Race: Dirt Race
  • 5th Race: Steeplechase Jump Race
  • 6th Race: Dirt Race
  • 7th Race: Steeplechase Jump Race
  • 8th Race: Turf Race
  • 9th Race: Steeplechase Jump Race
  • 10th Race: Turf Race
  • 11th Race: Turf Race
  • 12th Race: Turf Race

Conduct & Policies

Code of Conduct

Officials at Colonial Downs expect all guests to treat others with common courtesy. Conduct infringing on the rights of neighboring space holders is prohibited.

Indoor Smoking Policy

Colonial Downs is a smoke-free facility pursuant to the Virginia Clean Air Act. (Smoking is permitted in designated outside areas only)

Alcohol

All guests will abide by the laws of the Commonwealth, including those related to alcohol consumption. To encourage an environment inviting to all, The Colonial Downs Management prohibits guests from engaging in drinking games or bringing in devices such as beer bongs, ice luges, or other drinking paraphernalia. Conduct in violation of this code may result in expulsion.

Spaceholder Responsibility

Spaceholders are responsible for all guests in their space. Should infractions or repeated visits by security or police occur, they risk expulsion or revocation of their reserved space.

The use of balloons or Frisbees is discouraged due to the fact that these type of items can “spook” a horse if thrown or drift onto the track area.

Please be prepared to dispose of your own trash, bags are provided at every space. All beverages must be consumed in plastic cups or cans. NO GLASS CONTAINERS ALLOWED.

Decorations must be removed from spaces after the Races.

Grills and other Cooking Equipment

No grills or other meanings of cooking may be used in the grandstand area or apron area.

DirectionsDirectional Map

10515 Colonial Downs Parkway
New Kent VA, 23124


View Colonial Downs in a larger map

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I buy tickets? When do they go on sale?

• Reserved spaces are purchased by calling the Colonial Downs ticket office at 804-966-7223 ext. 1032. Additional information can also be found on our website, www.colonialdowns.com, or by emailing us at reservations1@colonialdowns.com.

How will I get my tickets?

• Reserved Spaceholder Packets and General Admission tickets will be mailed by May 25th.
• After May 25th, tickets and packets may be picked up at Colonial Downs’ Off Track Betting location on Broad St. in Richmond, Va.
• Broad Street OTB address: 4700 W. Broad St, Richmond, VA 23230 (804-342-2211)
• Day of the Event there will be Will Call at Colonial Downs.

Do I have to rent a tent?

• It is not necessary to rent a tent; however, you must follow all applicable regulations set forth by fire department officials. If you would like to rent a tent, please go to www.topsidetentrentals.com or call them at 804.751.0202. Click here to view the personal tent policy.

Where are the bathrooms?

• There will be port-a-potties located at many locations throughout the premises, and the first floor bathrooms in the clubhouse are available to all space holders.

Will I be able to back-up to the rail?

• Yes, you will be able to get as close to the rail as physically possible.

Will I be able to get out early if needed?

• Yes, there will be a 20-foot road between each row.

Have more Questions? Click here to read the complete FAQ.

Sponsors

Blue Knights LogoColonial Downs is proud to partner with the Blue Knights Law Enforcement Motorcycle Club VA XVII (of Colonial Heights/Tri Cities) for Opening Day. A portion of the event proceeds will benefit their chapter, whose purpose is twofold – to assist families of fallen law enforcement officers and to raise funds for the Shriner’s Burn Hospital.



8 WRIC Virginia Nightlife 103.7 the River K95 Country Hot 100.9 96.5 KLR Richmond Times Dispatch

Pasture Logo Comfort Logo

Pasture, and Comfort are the official sponsors of the Colonial Downs Opening Day Tailgate Contest.

SkydivingSkydivers
A team of 4 skydivers will land on the track during the National Anthem. A Facebook prize winner will tandem jump to fly the starter’s flag onto the track during jump. Sponsored by No Limits Skydiving. Click here to enter the Facebook competition.





Guest Services is now open and taking reservations at 804.966.7223 ext. 1033. Hours are Mon. – Fri. 9 AM – 5 PM
.
Any questions can also be sent to reservations1@colonialdowns.com