Racing & Wagering

41,369 Welcome Lee DeWyze Home at Arlington Park

| Churchill Downs Communications | 05/27/2010 #

A throng of 41,369 was on hand at Arlington Park Racecourse Friday to witness an emotional homecoming performance by American Idol finalist Lee DeWyze. Under near perfect weather conditions, the local Idol standout performed 10 songs plus snippets of a couple others with acoustical guitar accompaniment while fans young and old alike showed their support for the area resident who advanced to the Final Three on "American Idol" earlier this week.

Click here for video of Lee's performance at Arlington.

"We couldn't be more pleased with the enthusiastic response Lee received from his legion of fans and it's easy to see why Lee has been successful," said Arlington Park President Roy Arnold. "We hope everyone had a great time at Arlington Park and we'll all be rooting for Lee as he continues on his journey to stardom."

The Mini Concert was the culmination of a day-long blitz of the Chicago area that began in downtown Chicago for an early in the morning appearance on the FOX-32 show "Good Day Chicago" followed by a number of radio station appearances.

Heading North, DeWyze made a stop at an AT&T store in Skokie and then threw out the ceremonial first pitch at Wrigley Field before making two school visits and having a parade in his honor in his hometown of Mount Prospect. After the parade, it was on to Arlington Park for DeWyze and his family.

The event began with a video following DeWyze's rise to fame on this season's "American Idol" and was followed by presentations featuring Mount Prospect Mayor Irvana Wilks and Village of Arlington Heights Mayor Pro-Tem Tom Hayes. After being introduced by the racecourse's traditional Call to Post, the performance climaxed with a stellar and emotional performance by Lee that included several songs he previously performed on "American Idol" and four original compositions.