First Posted: 4/22/2012 3:51:03 PM | Last Updated: 4/22/2012 3:51:04 PM
By Andy Furman
Too early to talk Reds – or at least make a prediction where they’ll finish.
As for the Bengals they’ve started voluntary practice – didn’t the season just end.
But it’s not too soon to talk racing – the Kentucky Derby is less than two weeks away. Certainly you don’t expect me to tout here – nope, I won’t.
But I will make a prediction – and I backed it in the local daily press the other day.
If the people at Turfway Park don’t get out and promote that facility soon, it’ll be razed for a business park.
Yes, I care.
I worked there when it was known as Latonia Race Course. And, for reasons unknown I can’t figure why the name was ever changed.
Latonia Race Course, at the original site in Latonia, Ky., staged the Latonia Classic. At the time, it was a race bigger than the Kentucky Derby.
The track closed at that location sometime in the late 1930s, and moved to Florence with an opening in 1959.
The “new”Latonia offered something thoroughbred racing had never seen before—night racing.
But with today’s competition pulling from all sides -- off track wagering as well as casinos – my beloved Latonia, nee Turfway, may have one foot in the proverbial grave.
And that’s a shame.
Turfway is the major league sporting facility in Northern Kentucky. Horse racing in the Commonwealth is a business as well as a sport. To lose the attraction, as well as the economic impact of this facility would be a terrible blow not only to the region, but the Commonwealth as a whole.
What to do?
I suggested the staff get out and speak to groups. Book them for nights at the facility, with, perhaps some monies in the group package for their organization.
I know, speak – groups? Meet people?
This is probably unheard of in today’s society with social media.
The social media crutch is simple. Tweet, or facebook an event and magically crowds appear.
Sorry, it doesn’t work that way. Sales are made through personal contact. Think of purchasing a car. You buy from people you feel a trust and like.
Same with booking groups to a racetrack.
Social media is immediate and a useful tool.
Yet I maintain it ain’t that social.