Friday, November 14, 2014

NEWS RELEASE: Fair Grounds Premieres "Fair Grounds Memories" From WYES-TV

1751 Gentilly Blvd.,   New Orleans, LA 70119




Contact: Brian W. Spencer, Racing Analyst/Racing Communications, 504.948.1233,

            Mark Conner, Sr. Director of Marketing, 504.948.1203,




NEW ORLEANS (Friday, November 14, 2014) – For 162 years, Fair Grounds Race Course in New Orleans has been a storied staple of the city’s culture, providing entertainment through horse racing, exhibitions, boxing, baseball games and music festivals for generations. On November 19, WYES-TV will premiere “New Orleans Fair Grounds Memories,” a documentary about the Fair Grounds, including rare footage and photos from the track and interviews with former owners, trainers, jockeys and journalists.


“Fair Grounds is woven into the cultural fiber of New Orleans. Almost everyone I come across has a fond memory of Fair Grounds, from their first horse race to a spectacular Jazz Fest performance,” said Tim Bryant, Fair Grounds Track President. “This documentary captures the heart of Fair Grounds – the people – New Orleans characters who have helped this institution endure for over 150 years.”


One “star” in the documentary is Risen Star, the Louisiana thoroughbred that won the Louisiana Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes in 1988. The documentary also explores the racetrack’s challenges through the decades, from wars to fires and hurricanes.


"The Fair Grounds is such an important and fascinating part of New Orleans history,” said WYES President and General Manager Allan Pizzato. “Everyone here at WYES is so proud to bring the Fair Grounds story to the television screen, and no one does that better than Peggy Scott Laborde!" 


“New Orleans Fair Grounds Memories” was produced and narrated by WYES’ Peggy Scott Laborde and edited by Larry Roussarie. Fair Grounds, WYES-TV and guests previewed the film November 13 at the Prytania Theater.

Laborde added, “Chronicling the rich history of the Fair Grounds has underscored what a treasure the track is to New Orleans. Whether for a visit to the track during the racing season or for the Jazz Fest, how fortunate are we to have this historic place in the middle of our city!”


The documentary will air November 19 at 7 p.m., 8:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. on WYES-TV/Channel 12.

[Attached photos: Lou Hodges and Sandra Salmen of Fair Grounds, interviewed for “Fair Grounds Memories;” Fair Grounds Track President Tim Bryant and Producer Peggy Scott Laborde]


About Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots

Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, the nation’s third-oldest racetrack, has been in operation since 1872. Located in New Orleans, Fair Grounds is owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ Global Select Market: CHDN); it also operates a slot-machine gaming facility and 11 off-track betting parlors throughout southeast Louisiana. The 143rd Thoroughbred Racing Season – highlighted by the 102nd running of the Louisiana Derby – will run from November 2014 through March 2015. More information can be found online at




This Churchill Downs Incorporated communication (including any attachments) is intended for the use of the intended recipient(s) only and may contain information that is confidential, privileged or legally protected. Any unauthorized use or dissemination of this communication is strictly prohibited. If you have received this communication in error, please immediately notify the sender by return e-mail message and delete all copies of the original communication. Thank you for your cooperation.