When I told the Space Gal that I was taking her up on her ideas to head down the thruway to Erie PA, which has a wonderful waterfront and decent row of bars along State Street...the reply was "Really? Dreary Erie?" At least expectations were set low. She had suggested the overnight trip to break up the holiday weekend and check out the new Presque Isle Downs racetrack, just five miles south of downtown Erie. After a nice lunch on the lakefront and a walk down around Dobbins Landing (very picturesque, if you've never been there), I think I opened her eyes to the fact that it's not so dreary in Erie after all. There were tons of boats out on the water, people fishing off the pier and the weather was picture-perfect. There was a cool waterfront bar called Rum Runners that was packed and it couldn't have been scripted better.
Overall, we had a good time, and everyone there was very friendly. There was a pretty good crowd by the time the fifth race went off and totaled around 3,200, and on-track handle amounted to around $62K. Lessons learned: keep a closer eye out for class drops when at a smaller track, they tended to be the ones in the money and winning consistently and stay small when betting the synthetics (I did) which are still a handicapping novelty for me. Thank God it's only 17 more days til Saratoga!