Belmont Stakes :: A NYC Tradition

Another year in NYC, another trip to Belmont! After our betting lesson at Emerald Downs on Mother’s Day I was ready to hit up the races again! ;-)

It’s been unseasonably rainy in the city the past few weeks. We’ve had days we’ve gotten between 2 and 3 inches of rain.. In one day! Putting that PNW rain to shame, I’m telling you! Luckily the rain held out for Belmont, but it scared most of my friends away from committing to going this year. Chris had lots of friends going though (I guess they’re braver than my friends! lol) so we still ended up having lots of company!

People get pretty dressed up for Belmont. Not totally all-out Kentucky Derby status, but there is quite the crowd of dresses, floppy hats or headpieces, heels and bow ties and seersucker suits for the guys. I skipped the heels (3 years of Belmont, I know better!) and don’t own a floppy hat.. but decided I’d rock a fedora in honor of all of the hat-wearing. Not quite the same.. but I got a lot of complements on my hat, mostly from guys, so I’m going to say it was a hit?

Here’s a picture of the back of the park. No shortage of people or security for that matter! It was comforting to see a high security presence at the event. This year, there were extra bag checks and anything that people brought in had to be put in a clear plastic bag. they also used metal detectors on everyone. It took a little longer to get in that the past few years, but I’m all about safety especially after recent events.

We spent most of our time in the back of the park hanging out with friends, watching the horses walk around the paddock, and snacking on the food options.

Another big draw at Belmont is their cigars. Each year they have a stand of hand-rolled cigars and you’re hard-pressed to find a group of people where someone doesn’t have one. That stand is definitely not hurting for business during the Stakes! I’m not a big fan of any kind of smoke, but it’s kind of hard to avoid at the venue unless you are inside. At least it isn’t cigarette smoke though! 

This year was pretty low-key because no horses were going for the Triple Crown, but it was still a lot of fun! Here’s a look at my one bet of the day too! Good old Unlimited Budget! She didn’t win.. but it was still fun and I only lost $2, compared to our friends, who let’s just say lost a lot more than that! All in good fun though. :)