— For more than two decades, Sports Creek Raceway has provided race lovers of all ages with the thrill and entertainment of horse racing. Now in its 25th year of racing, Sports Creek Raceway is still going strong.
Run by General Manager Chris Locking, Sports Creek Raceway, located at 4290 Morrish Rd., is open year-round and truly offers something for all members of the family — young and old.
One of the main draws is the live harness racing. Locking said there is 20 days left of live harness racing, which runs 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday nights and 1:30 p.m. Sundays. Due to the Christmas weekend, there will be an added day of racing on Monday, Dec. 27 at 7 p.m. All ages are welcome to view the live harness racing.
“Kids enjoy it too,” Locking said. “We get a fair number of kids on Sunday afternoons.”
Along with its live harness racing, Sports Creek Raceway offers Simulcasting seven days a week from noon until midnight. Individuals interested in Simulcasting are able to wager on the 16 tracks of thoroughbred and harness racing from all over the world. Those who participate in Simulcasting must be at least 18 years old.
As with many entertainment venues, Sports Creek Raceway finds itself servicing more than 1,000 people on New Year’s Eve. “A nice crowd is 800-1,000 people,” Locking said. “For the Kentucky Derby, it’s our biggest day. We get more than 3,000 people.”
In addition to the wagering options, Sports Creek Raceway offers drawings everyday for various prizes, including Tshirts, sweatshirts, mugs, 2011 calendars, pens “and all kinds of things,” Locking said.
While many entertainment venues have taken a hit with the declining economy, Locking said the raceway experienced a slight decline in betting, but not in those people coming out for entertainment. “It’s a place that people can come and not spend a lot of money. It’s a pretty affordable spot,” he said.
Sports Creek Raceway still sees people coming from all over Michigan and beyond, including Bancroft, Clarkston, Flint, Fenton, Flushing, Wixom, Swartz Creek, Davison, Lansing, Bay City and the Upper Peninsula.
“It’s really amazing to see where all these people come from. I’m amazed that we draw so widely,” he said. “It’s just amazing, and usually there are a few from out of state. On Sundays, we see people from Canada, Ohio and Indiana.”
When customers get hungry, they can peruse the full-service menu of the raceway’s 480-seat Clubhouse Restaurant, which features a buffet. Concessions also are available.
“People can be here for four or five hours, hit the buffet, watch the racing and then go back to the buffet,” Locking said. Individuals who sit in the clubhouse enjoy the racing from their own table, complete with a TV for viewing. In addition to TVs for customers, Sports Creek Raceway also has its own TV station where it broadcasts its races to viewers.
Admission is $4 for the clubhouse, $2 for the grandstand. As a special event, Happy Horse, Sports Creek’s mascot, will be making its appearance at the raceway this Sunday, Dec. 26, so attendees are encouraged to bring their children and cameras. In addition to its admission prices, Sports Creek Raceway offers packages for group parties, including retirement parties, fundraising and business meetings. There also is a Sky Box which seats 12 and features a suite with panoramic views of the track.