Racing & Wagering

2011 Arlington Park Season Termed “Entertainment Extravaganza"

| Churchill Downs Communications | 03/29/2011 #

Tickets for All Events on Sale April 1

From Days of Wine and Roses, to concerts featuring top acts, to the 29th running of the legendary Arlington Million, to Chicagoland’s Best Fireworks Show, Arlington Park is proud to announce an 86-day racing schedule that features nonstop entertainment features throughout the season.

What’s new and exciting at Arlington Park in 2011? There are special days honoring the Chicago Bears, and Northwestern University, highlighted by appearances by coaches, athletes, celebrities and marching bands. Fans will also love the “Binny’s Taste at the Track” Wine Tasting Event; Military Appreciation Day, with live aerial and ground demonstrations by the military; Illinois Teachers Appreciation Day; Girls Day Out; and the Taste of Arlington.

From Memorial Day through Labor Day weekend, summer fun begins at Arlington Park as Fridays and Saturdays will have a new energy and excitement this year. The Friday Miller Lite Party in the Park features a new roster of popular local bands, highlighted by Rod Tuffcurls & the Bench Press, How Far to Austin, and He Said She Said.

The party rolls into Saturday with the brand new “Saturday Summer Bash,” also featuring live music by top bands such as 7th Heaven, Mike & Joe, and Suburban Cowboys. There will also be food specials, such as $2 hot dogs and $4 burgers.

“I am excited to say that there is definitely something for everyone during this season at Arlington Park,” says Arlington Park General Manager Tony Petrillo.  “We will bring first class Thoroughbred racing to Chicagoland as always, but around that we have put together an entertainment package that is the best in the long history of Arlington Park and fans will want to get online and purchase their tickets early.”

Tickets go on sale on April 1 for the entire Arlington Park season including all of the track’s Big Event Days. Fans are encouraged to go online for Big Event Days tickets early, especially Chicagoland’s Largest Kentucky Derby party and Mother’s Day, because of high demand.

Arlington’s season kicks off with a bang with an Opening Weekend Celebration May 6-8, featuring “Chicagoland’s Largest Kentucky Derby Party” on Saturday, May 7.  There is a special “Derby Day” post time of 12:15 p.m. This is your chance to watch and wager on what is described as “the most exciting 2 minutes in sports,” the Kentucky Derby, presented by Yum! brands.

“Chicagoland’s Largest Kentucky Derby Party” will feature Mint Juleps, bands, prizes, and contests, including the “$1000 Ultimate Derby Bet”, a chance for a lucky fan to win $1,000 to bet on the Kentucky Derby. New for “Derby Day” this year is the exclusive “Arlington Derby Day Zone,” in which guests will walk the red carpet and enjoy fabulous food and drink in one all inclusive package.

Treating Mom and the whole family to Mother’s Day at the races has become an Arlington Park tradition and 2011 will be no exception.  The first 5,000 ladies through the gates on Sunday, May 8, will receive a free rose.  Gates will open at 11:15 a.m. and Mother’s Day post time is 1 p.m. There will be an opportunity to get a free keepsake photo with the whole family taken by one of our roaming photographers, and of course there will also be pony rides and a petting zoo in the Park area to keep the kids happy.

There will be special Mother’s Day Brunch packages in the Million Room and in the International Room for those looking for an upscale day at the races. For a less formal way to spend the Mother’s Day at the track, check out our Marquee Tent package. Reservations are required and can be made by calling 847-385-7410 beginning April 1. There are also a wide variety of other dining options available, and drink specials including Mimosas and Bloody Marys.

The kick off to summer begins Memorial Day weekend, with the start of the Friday Party in the Park, Saturday Summer Bash, and Sunday Family Days. Of course there will be a special Monday card of live racing beginning at 1 p.m. on the Memorial Day holiday itself and a special holiday Family Day.  In keeping with the patriotic theme for the day, the first 3,000 guests will receive a miniature American Flag.  Live music in the Park area will be provided by Red Pop Fury.

Other entertainment highlights this season include our July 2 “Racing, Music and Fireworks Extravaganza,” wine tastings, and Chicago Blackhawks Legends Day featuring an autograph session by legendary Blackhawks players.

Our annual celebration of Latino cuisine, music, and culture, Fiesta in the Park, is July 17, and Military Appreciation Day is July 23, with a special ceremony honoring our heroes, the recipients of the Medal of Honor.

Arlington Million Day will be held on August 13 this year, bringing together top horses from all over the world as the eyes of the racing world are focused on Arlington Park for one of Thoroughbred racing’s greatest single day events. Music, racing, food, drink and party details around Arlington’s biggest day will be announced in the upcoming months.

The Arlington Park season starts Friday, May 6 and runs through Sunday, Sept. 25, with racing four days a week.  In May and June, the track will operate on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, as well as Monday, May 30 for Memorial Day.  Beginning July 1, the schedule will change to Thursday through Sunday (plus Monday, July 4 and Monday, Sept. 5) for the rest of the season.

Stay tuned for a major announcement soon regarding a concert to be held at Arlington Park on October 1.

General admission to Arlington Park is $8 most Fridays, Saturdays and Sunday with special $6 Value Day general admission offered on Wednesdays in May and June and Thursdays in July through the end of the season.

In addition, the popular Seniors Day promotion returns for the 2011 season.  Each Wednesday in May and June and each Thursday from July through the end if the meet, guests aged 55 and older can purchase general admission for just $4.

General admission to Arlington Park for Million Day is $15. Additional upgrade options are available on line.

General admission for other premium dates (Kentucky Derby Day, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and Saturday, July 2) will be $10.  Packages combining general admission with a reserved seat for each of these premium days range from $12-$20, available on line.

Tickets for all 86 days of the 2011 season go on sale on April 1. For a complete rundown of admission prices and available packages, visit our website at

Arlington Park at a Glance
86 Days of Racing (Friday, May 6 through Sunday, Sept. 25)

Racing schedule:
May-June: Arlington Park will operate Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday including Monday, May 30 for Memorial Day

July – September: Arlington Park will operate Thursday through Sunday (plus Monday, July 4 and Monday, Sept. 5)

Fridays: Miller Lite Party in the Park
Saturdays: Saturday Summer Bash
Sundays: Family Day

Key Event Days:
Saturday, May 7: Chicagoland’s Largest Kentucky Derby Party
Sunday, May 8: Mother’s Day at Arlington Park
Monday, May 30: Memorial Day – Special Monday Live Racing/Special Holiday Family Day
Saturday, July 2: Racing, Music and Fireworks Extravaganza
Sunday, July 17: Fiesta in the Park
Saturday, July 23: Military Appreciation Day
Saturday, Aug. 13: Arlington Million

For a complete listing of Arlington Park events, visit