More than 15 Arcadia Chamber members who responded quickly a couple of months ago to a first-come, first-serve offer by the Chamber enjoyed a terrific day at the track Friday, Oct. 31, 2014.
“I gave away all the candy I brought to 200-300 kids and their parents and it was a great day,” said Ivan Lai of Cruise Planners. Lai, an Arcadia Chamber Ambassador, was one of the 15 or so members who responded to an offer a couple of months ago to have a free vendor booth on the infield of Santa Anita Park race track on Opening Day of the two-day Breeders’ Cup Championships attended by more than 37,000 fans. (Saturday’s crowd mushroomed to more than 61,000, a four percent increase over 2013, and raising the two-day total attendance four percent higher than last year to 98,319, a Breeders’ Cup record at Santa Anita since the expansion to a two-day event. Wagering was down both days and slipped six percent overall to $151,158,815 and declined six percent for the 13 Breeders’ Cup races over the two days to $128,215,643, in part due to one less BC race on Friday and the three percent decline on Saturday attributed to two races on the Breeders’ Cup under-card being shifted from the turf to the main track due to overnight rains.)
<Story continues below the following photo gallery showing some of the vendor booths at Santa Anita… >[flagallery gid=249]
Vendors on Friday were encouraged to offer treats to about 1,000 kids and their parents at a Hallowe’en Fright Day event hosted by the City of Arcadia‘s Recreation and Community Services Department.
“We expected about 100 people at our booth but it was double or triple that number,” said Sophia McRae of Forest Lawn. “And it was mostly local kids with their parents which was great for us and the community.”
Other Chamber member vendors included Massage Envy spa, T-Neer tea room, Waddell & Reed, Urban Retreat, Costco, Arcadia Association of Realtors, Achieve SMART Goals, Beacon Media News/Arcadia Weekl, Longon Toyota-Scion-Lexus, National University, Verengo Solar, The A Treatment, Santa Anita Dental Group, Dave and Busters and Planet Preschool and Kindergarten.
The Arcadia Chamber also took advantage of a unique opportunity earlier that day when Arcadia Chamber VP Vicki Knight and the Chamber office staff (Scott Hettrick, Bill Hacket and Lisa Ferrick) decided to ride back and forth for several hours on the shuttle buses from Downtown Arcadia hotels to Santa Anita Park with hundreds of visitors going to the Breeders’ Cup Championships.)
The volunteer shuttle hosts introduced more than 500 Breeders’ Cup fans to the Arcadia Chamber’s new Visit Arcadia app and web site, as well as handing out a Chamber brochure designed for the Breeders’ Cup featuring 12 top Arcadia restaurants, all of which are members of the Chamber who also responded quickly to an unexpected offer a couple months ago.
Most hotels reported being sold out for most of the week, and restaurant members enjoyed significant extra business from the visitors who came from dozens of other states and countries, including Ireland, England, Canada, the Caribbean, the Pacific Ocean island of New Caledonia near Australia, as well as Florida, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Kentucky, Montana, Idaho, Georgia, and many others.