Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Aqueduct Racetrack Receives Accreditation by NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance Inspection Team

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) announced today that Aqueduct Racetrack has been fully accredited by the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance following a complete review of all racing operations. Belmont Park received accreditation in May and Saratoga Race Course received accreditation in August.

Friday, December 18, 2009

NYRA President and CEO, Charles Hayward, honored at GYO Holiday Party

Charles E. Hayward, NYRA President and CEO, was honored at the Gateway Youth Outreach Annual Holiday Party on December 16th. Over 400 children attended the festive party and NYRA received a special Thank You from GYO for the financial support that we provided to them during this difficult economic year. NYRA was also acknowledged by GYO for our work in establishing the after school program at Belmont Park with Kiaran McLaughlin Racing which has received regional attention. Dave Smukler, NYRA Senior Vice President, and I were invited to join in the presentation to Charles Hayward.

It's Post Time at Albany International Airport!

Last week, NYRA's bugler, Sam Grossman, played the Call to the Post at Albany International Airport as many local officials turned out for the ribbon-cutting of SILKS Saratoga Bistro. Busy travelers viewed the video screens for the scratches (flight cancellations) and enjoyed delicious meals in the ambiance of the Race Course Clubhouse. In attendance from left to right: David E. Langdon, Chairman, Albany County Airport Authority; Paula Mahan, Supervisor, Town of Colonie; Micheal Jones, HMS Host; Charles Houghtaling, Chairman, Albany County Legislature; Michael Breslin, Albany County Executive; Robert Scholz, Office of Congressman Scott Murphy; Charles Wheeler, NYRA; Dennis Fitzgerald, Board Member, Albany County Airport Authority; John A. O'Donnell, CEO, Albany County Airport Authority, and Richard Kinley, HMS Host.

Monday, December 14, 2009

NYRA’s 2009 Charitable Contributions Benefit Local Community Groups and Service Organizations

Industry Organizations

Backstretch Employee Services Team
Belmont Child Care Association
Columbia Greene Humane Society
Equine Industry Career and College Fair
Exceller Fund
Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation
Jockey Club Foundation
New York Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association
Old Friends, Lexington, KY
Oklahoma Thoroughbred Retirement Program
Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund
Race for Education
Race Track Chaplaincy of America
Race Track Chaplaincy of New York
Racing Medication and Testing Consortium
Racing Surfaces Testing Laboratory
Suffolk OTB
Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation

Aqueduct Race Track and Belmont Park

Autism United

106th Precinct Community Council

Jamaica Hospital Medical Center

Ozone Howard Little League

St. Mary’s Foundation for Children

Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith Basketball Tournament

Abbey Lane Elementary School, Levittown

Alex’s Lemonade Stand, Phoenixville, PA

Anthony T. Dwyer Memorial Foundation, Elmont

American Cancer Society, Syosset

American Cancer Society Relay for Life

American Lung Association, NYC

Assemblyman Tom Alfano’s 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament

Association for Hunterdon Development Center, Inc.

Auction Wishes, Toronto, Canada


Bob Flynn – Preakness Day Fundraiser

Brain Injury Association of NYS

Breast Cancer Research Foundation

Casting for Recovery Long Island Chapter

Central/Memorial PTSA, Valley Stream

Chaminade High School, Mineola*

Chicago Children’s Charities

Child Abuse Prevention Services, Garden City

Child Care Council of Nassau Inc., Franklin Square

Church of St. Christopher, Baldwin

Association for Children with Down Syndrome, Plainview

Columbiettes of Memorare Council

CYO-Nassau and Suffolk, Hicksville

Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Melville

East Rockaway High School

Elmont Chamber of Commerce

Elmont Fire Department

Elmont Senior Center, Elmont

Eve Fenton Love All Foundation, Inc., NYC

Richard Ferrette Trust, Island Park

Floral Park Chamber of Commerce

Floral Park Fire Dept.

Floral Park Lions Club

Friends of the Queens Library, Woodhaven

Garden City Chamber of Commerce

Garden City PBA

Garden City P.T.A., Garden City

Gateway Youth Outreach, Elmont

Girl Scouts of Suffolk County

Greek Orthodox Cathedral of St. Paul, Hempstead

Green Chimneys, Brewster

Harvest Houses Residence for Well-Elders, Syosset

Hempstead Boys & Girls Club

Hilsdorf Fund, Bayside

The INN, Hempstead

Institute for Student Achievement, NYC

Little Gospel Lights Preschool, Bethpage

Kellenberg Memorial High School, Uniondale

Kidney & Urology Foundation of America, NYC

Knights of Columbus, Valley Stream

Long Island Toy Lending Center, Point Lookout

Love and Hope International, Coram

Lutheran Counseling Center, Mineola

Martin Luther High School, Maspeth

Matthew Ryan Memorial Scholarship Fund

The Mauer Foundation, Mineola

McGuire Air Force Base, NJ

Mental Health Association of Nassau County

Multiple Sclerosis Society, NYC

Muscular Dystrophy Association, NYC

Nassau Council of Chambers of Commerce

Neurological Institute of Long Island

New York Families for Autistic Children, Howard Beach

New York State Recreation and Park Society, Inc.

North Shore Child & Family Guidance Center, Roslyn Heights

Notre Dame P.A.V.E., New Hyde Park

NYC Firefighters

Olde Suffolk Pony Club

Otsego PTA, Dix Hills

Pal-O-Mine Equestrians

Paul J. Bellow Elementary School, West Islip

Positively PINK Packages

Queens Theatre in the Park, Flushing Meadow

Rainforest Alliance, NYC

Saint Athanasius, Brooklyn

Saint Joseph School, New Jersey

Saint Joseph High School, Metuchen, New Jersey

Saint Mark School, Brooklyn

Sarah Anderson School – P.S. 9

Saw Mill Road School, North Bellmore

Science Museum of Long Island

Seaford Harbor PTA, Seaford

Smithtown Historical Scoiety

Suffolk OTB

Temple Avodah, Oceanside

Thomas Hartman Parkinson’s Foundation, East Islip

St. Joseph’s School, Garden City

U.S. Open Golf Championship 2009

U.S. Merchant Marine Academy

Wakefield School, The Plains, Virginia

Walt Whitman Birthplace Association, West Hills

West End School, Lynbrook

West Hempstead Elementary PTA, West Hempstead

West Side YMCA Co-op Nursery School, NYC

Winthrop University Hospital, Mineola

Dr. Z/Nothing is Impossible Foundation, Rockaway

Elmont Little League

Valley Stream Little League

Garden City Little League

Floral Park Little League

Anthony T. Dwyer Memorial Foundation

American Diabetes Association

Assembly Tom Alfano’s 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament

Bellerose Terrace Ladies Auxiliary

Boom Boom Classic

Cheryl Relyea Memorial Cancer Foundation

Ditmas Educational Programs

Franklin Square Fire Department

Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation WALK, Howard Beach

Kidney & Urology Foundation

Martin Avenue Elementary School, Bellmore

Queens Children’s Day Parade

St. Bonifice Church, Elmont

St. John’s University

St. Joseph’s Sisters

St. Kevin’s School, Flushing

UPS United Way

Saratoga Race Course

Adirondack Mountain Club, Lake George

Adirondack School of Northeastern New York, Greenwich

The Albany Academies

Albany Medical Center – Chris DiNapoli Parkinson’s Research Endowment Fund

American Cancer Society

American Red Cross – Saratoga Chapter

Arthritis Foundation, Albany

A Miracle for Annie

Addictions Care Center

Bethlehem Children’s School, Slingerlands

Brookside Museum, Ballston Spa

Capital District YMCA, Albany

Capital District Spinal Cord Society, Albany

Center for Donation and Transplant, Albany

Center for Early Learning, Glens Falls

Coach Bob Smith Social, Troy

Cohoes Music Hall, Cohoes

Colonie Senior Service Centers, Inc., Albany

Columbia-Greene Humane Society

Daniel Canary Cancer Benefit, Saratoga


Finger Lakes Thoroughbred Adoption Program

Foothills Theatre Company, Worcester, MA

Fulton-Montgomery Community College

Hyde Collection, Glens Falls

Interfaith Partnership for the Homeless, Albany

Kids Wish Network, Florida

Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Albany

Little Red Schoolhouse, Clifton Park

Living Resources Foundation, Albany

Make A Wish – Northeast New York Chapter, Cohoes

Maryland Horse Industry Foundation

Medical Missions for Children

Mental Health Foundation

Multiple Sclerosis Society, Ballston Spa

National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, Saratoga

National Racing Museum and Hall of Fame, Saratoga

New York Oncology Hematology

Newmeadow School

NFL Alumni Upstate New York Chapter

Northeastern Association of the Blind, Albany

Northeast Parent and Child Society

Parsons Child and Family Center, Albany

Peaceful Acres

Police Benevolent Association-NYS Troopers

Romancing the Grape

Rotary Club, Saratoga Springs

Rotary International, Saratoga Springs

Saratoga Academy of Arts and Sciences

Saratoga Automobile Museum

Saratoga Bridges

Saratoga Center for the Family

Saratoga Children’s Museum

Saratoga County Citizens Committee for Mental Health

Saratoga County EOC

Saratoga Prevention Council

Saratoga Spinal Cord Society

Saratoga Springs History Museum

Saratoga Hospital Foundation

Saratoga Preservation Foundation

Saratoga Wine and Food Festival

Schoharie County ARC, Schoharie

Shelters of Saratoga

Skidmore College Palamountain Scholarship

Slingerlands Elementary PTA

Saratoga Offers Relief & Aid (SOAR)

Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation

Visiting Nurses Foundation, Albany

Wilton Youth Baseball

WMHT Auctions, Troy

Loudonville Christian School

New York State Council on Leadership and Student Activities

Saratoga BOCES

Special Olympics New York

Annual WALKS

American Heart Association Walk – Saratoga

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Walk – Saratoga

Saratoga Hospital Run - Saratoga

Mercy Walk – Saratoga

New York Breeders Sales – Horse Auction - Saratoga

St. Mary’s Hospital for Children – Belmont Park

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Hal Handel, NYRA's Exec. V.P. and COO, Speaks at Mercer County Sports and Entertainment Commission's Holiday Derby Luncheon

Hal Handel, NYRA Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, was the guest speaker at the Mercer County Sports and Entertainment Commission's Holiday Derby Luncheon on December 8th at the Mercer Oaks Clubhouse in West Windsor, New Jersey. Hal's experience in thoroughbred racing spans over 23 years operating race tracks in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and New York including Monmouth Park, the Meadowlands, Philadelphia Park, Aqueduct Race Track, Belmont Park and Saratoga Race Course. He is the past President of Thoroughbred Racing Associations of North America and former Executive Director of the New Jersey Racing Commission. Hal was pleased to speak at this sold out event and '"wowed" the crowd! He spoke about the history of thoroughbred racing with emphasis on Belmont Park. In addition, he showed footage of Triple Crown races which received cheers from the audience!

Jamaica Hospital Medical Center honors NYRA

Charles Hayward, NYRA President and CEO, Dave Smukler, NYRA Senior Vice President, and I recently visited Jamaica Hospital Medical Center ("JHMC") for a plaque unveiling ceremony acknowledging NYRA's financial support. Dr. Geoffery Doughlin, JHMC Chairman of Emergency Medicine and Ole Pedersen, JHMC Vice President of Emergency Medicine and Public Affairs welcomed us and gave us a tour of the Emergency Department. NYRA is proud to partner with JHMC and their outstanding staff.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

NYRA and NYTHA Match Funds for Annual Toys for Tots Campaign at Aqueduct

NYRA President and CEO, Charles Hayward, was proud to welcome back Major Chuck Kilbride and the United States Marines as they returned to Aqueduct for their Annual Toys for Tots campaign. Mr. Hayward announced that NYRA would match all financial donations made by our owners and trainers to the United States Marines Toys for Tots drive this weekend. In the same spirit of giving, Jim Gallager, Executive Director of the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, was pleased to announce that NYTHA would match NYRA's contribution!

With New York's leading trainer, Gary Contessa, donating 10 percent of whatever purse money his horses earn today for a minimum of $1500, as well as owner Harold Lerner's contribution of $5000, NYRA and NYTHA have each pledged at least $6500 to the Toys for Tots program which collects and distributes new, unwrapped toys for children in need during the holiday season. "Collecting for Toys for Tots has long been a holiday tradition at Aqueduct and we believe the Foundation's work is especially important during these uncertain economic times and we want to do everything we can to help provide toys to local children during the holidays. " said NYRA President and CEO, Charles E. Hayward.

NYRA Stocking Stuffer Giveaway Benefits Jamaica Hospital Medical Center

Charles E. Hayward, NYRA President and CEO, was proud to donate the proceeds of the Annual Stocking Stuffer Giveaway to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center ("JHMC".) NYRA contributed additional funds and we would like to thank all of our fans for their contributions! Roberta Goro, JHMC Director of Development, joined us for an afternoon of great racing at Aqueduct and she accepted the check on behalf of the hospital. I was pleased to join Mr. Hayward and Ms. Goro for the presentation. NYRA is pleased to partner with JHMC and recognizes their commitment to emergency care medicine.