Our Cup Runneth Over
Shirley King | Avenida Primavera
Concept for Countdown Clock to be located at top of Plaza. Source: Del Mar City Council Meeting Agenda 10/17/16,
pages 177 and 178. Click to enlarge.
The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club and the 22nd Agricultural District will host the 33rd Breeder’s Cup World Championship on November 3 and 4, 2017. After spending eight seasons at the Santa Anita Race Track with the magnificent backdrop of Arcadia’s San Gabriel Mountains, the Breeder’s Cup will come to Del Mar next year to an equally picturesque setting on our doorstep to the Pacific Ocean.
Beginning as a one-day affair in 1984 at the now long-gone Hollywood Park, the Breeder’s Cup at Santa Anita 2016 was a two-day, thirteen-race global event with the preeminent $6-million Breeder’s Cup Classic. The attendance this year on Saturday, November 5th at 72,811 was much more than a whisper beyond the previous year at Keeneland. Big-league owners with their finest trainers and their very best mounts attracted upward to $150,000,000.
As beautiful as each host setting is, the City of Del Mar does not have what Arcadia, the home to Santa Anita, possesses - a full service police department, a general public transit system and a Race Track that is owned by a mega entertainment corporation. Regardless of Del Mar’s handicaps our City can use its assets to prepare for the spotlight and to share the rewards. Our maiden race is our audition to the world for repeat performances.
How we roll out the red carpet is under consideration with our Our City Council. City Staff in discussion with Breeder’s Cup representatives, the Del Mar Village Association (DMVA), the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club and San Diego Sports Alliance have presented four concepts - 1) street banners; 2) artistic fiberglass horse sculptures; 3) the Countdown Clock, currently housed at Santa Anita Racetrack, and 4) an events tent at Powerhouse Park covering almost 80% of the park’s turf.
How we go all out to maximize the quality-of-life experiences for our visitors, our business owners and residents is an imperative and putting our best hoof forward usually happens with our citizen involvement. Adding members from our citizen advisory committees such as Parks and Recreation, Traffic and Parking, Business Support, Finance and Sustainability to our City’s planning can increase the local participation. Tasks such as beautifying the City, streamlining transportation options and parking access, redoing the four proposed concepts for community compatibility, evaluating and planning for retail and restaurant sales volumes, ensuring waste and organics recycling and creating a volunteer street ambassador team to greet and educate visitors about the community are skills that are ready set here.
Our City Staff with the DMVA are the pacesetters with our community’s transformation for the Breeder’s Cup, but let’s give them a leg up with more citizen volunteer advisors and a bigger hand in the purse.