Friday, February 5, 2016

Vernon Downs to host qualifiers for harness racing championship

Two upcoming opportunities offer entries into main event

Vernon, N.Y. - February 5, 2016 - Vernon Downs will send two lucky contestants to the largest harness handicapping event of its kind, the $50,000 World Harness Handicapping Competition. Qualifying tournaments at Vernon Downs are set for February 20 and March 19, with one seat to the finals up for grabs at each event. Contestants can enter either tournament for a $60 entry
fee. The format of the tournaments requires contestants to make ten $2 win and place wagers on ten designated contest races. Contestants keep any winnings. The grand prize winner will also receive two nights of hotel accommodations and a $100 travel credit to the WHHC Final.

The winner of each contest will earn a spot in the WHHC Final to be held April 30 at the Meadowlands in New Jersey. Contestants there will vie for $50,000 in prizes (payouts to the top ten) and the coveted title of "harness handicapper of the year."

"The World Harness Handicapping Championship is a big event that people look forward to every year," said Vernon Downs owner Jeff Gural. "We are so pleased to be able to offer two highly sought after opportunities at our Tioga and Vernon properties to earn a spot to participate."

Qualifying events are also being held at Tioga Downs, the Meadowlands and numerous other racetracks and online sites.

In addition to its video gaming machines, Vernon Downs offers live harness racing, concerts and other entertainment. Jeff Gural owns Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY and Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY.  In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs. For more information on Vernon Downs, please visit www.vernondowns.com.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Vernon Downs to give away two thousand Powerball tickets tomorrow

Free tickets give the public a chance at the record $1.5 billion jackpot

Vernon, N.Y. - January 12, 2016 - The excitement surrounding the 44 state Powerball frenzy continues as the jackpot, which hasn't been won since early November, continues to swell to a record number.  Experts estimate that the jackpot for tomorrow night's drawing will be upwards of $1.5 billion, making it the largest jackpot in United States history.  To join in the excitement, Jeff Gural has announced that Vernon Downs will be giving a voucher for a free $2 Powerball ticket to the first 2,000 people to visit the Players Club tomorrow between 9 am and 9 pm.  The boca ticket/voucher received at the Player's Club can then be redeemed for a free Powerball ticket at Ring Eyed Pete's Bar at Vernon Downs. This offer is only valid tomorrow, Wednesday January 13, between 9 am and 9 pm at Vernon Downs while supplies last.  Tickets are limited to one per person and each guest must be at least 18 years of age and have a Vernon Downs Your Club card in order to receive the free ticket.  The public is encouraged to come down to Vernon Downs for their free chance to be a part of history.

"This historic Powerball jackpot has taken the country by storm, dominating conversation, news headlines and social media.  We at Vernon Downs are also excited and happy to do our part to give others a chance at history by offering a free Powerball ticket to the first 2,000 guests who come to our Players Club.  Nothing would make me happier than to see someone from our community win this tremendous prize," commented Jeff Gural, CEO of American Racing and Entertainment.

Tioga Downs, the sister property of Vernon Downs, has announced that they will be giving 2,000 free Powerball tickets tomorrow to guests on a first come first serve basis as well.

Powerball is played in 44 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. No players have correctly selected the six numbers required to win the jackpot in the last 19 drawings dating back to Nov. 11.  Retailers say that the demand for tickets to the drawing at 10:59 p.m. ET on Wednesday has been off the charts, raising the possibility that the payoff could climb even higher than the current estimated jackpot of $1.5 billion.

In addition to its video gaming machines, Vernon Downs offers live harness racing, concerts and other entertainment. Jeff Gural owns Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY, and Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY. Tioga Downs was recently recommended for the State's final full gaming license and is in the process of expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs. For more information on Vernon Downs, please visit www.vernondowns.com

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Vernon Downs clarifies position on embattled Lago Casino project

Owner makes official statement on behalf of entertainment complex

Vernon, N.Y. - November 19, 2015 - While the Lago Casino project continues to be debated, Vernon Downs' owner Jeff Gural has released a statement clarifying their official position on the matter. This comes just after a minority owner of Vernon Downs, made a statement to the media earlier this week backing Lago.

"Mr. Greenburg owns an extremely small percentage of Vernon Downs, is not involved in the daily operation of the property and his unsubstantiated statements and opinions do not reflect that of Vernon Downs, Tioga Downs or American Racing and Entertainment, LLC," said owner Jeff Gural. "We want to let the media and public know that we have not taken a position on the matter involving the Lago Casino. We trust that state regulators will determine the appropriate course of action on the project once all factors are considered. Obviously cannibalization is a concern but for the moment our focus is on the Tioga Downs expansion project in anticipation of the full gaming license.  We are continuing to effectively operate Vernon Downs to best position it for the future and as winter sets in we hope the new indoor garage will make it easier for our customers to visit.  Members of the media are welcome to contact me at any time if they would like a comment on American Racing and Entertainment or its associated properties," Gural added.

Tioga Downs recently broken ground on its own expansion in anticipation of receiving the state's final full casino gaming license.  The official gaming licenses are expected to be issued to the four New York State Gaming Facility Location Board recommended locations at the end of this year.

In addition to live harness racing, Vernon Downs offers 767 of the most popular slot machines. A variety of eateries are also part of the entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY, and Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond as well as expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Vernon Downs, please visit www.vernondowns.com.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Vernon Downs prepares for close of live racing season

November 21 event features "war horse" finale, fireworks

Vernon, N.Y. - November 16, 2015 - Another exciting season of racing is coming to a close at Vernon Downs on Saturday, November 21. Fans are invited to cheer on a veteran horse expected to make one last career race on this final night. Fourteen-year-old "My Fella" is required to retire at age 15 and will race against other "war horses" who are at least ten years old and have amassed more than $100,000 in career earnings over at least 200 starts.

Live racing begins with a post time of 6:45 pm. Several special promotions are planned, including a Snow Camouflage Long Sleeve T-Shirt giveaway (while supplies last). A Fall Fever Handicapping Contest will allow guests to enter to win up to $250 by accumulating the largest "mythical bank account." Fans should arrive early to join the contest, as all entries must be received prior to the start of live racing.

Lastly, guests are invited to stay after the end of racing that evening and enjoy a spectacular fireworks display marking the conclusion of the 2015 racing season.

"We want to make the last night of racing something special for our loyal fans," said owner Jeff Gural. "Those who have never been to a race are also more than welcome to join in the special events we have planned to wrap up another exciting season."

In addition to live harness racing, Vernon Downs offers 767 of the most popular slot machines. A variety of eateries are also part of the entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY, and Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY. Tioga Downs is beginning the process of transforming into a full casino gaming resort to serve the Southern Tier and beyond as well as expanding its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs and donated millions to nonprofit organizations. For more information on Vernon Downs, please visit www.vernondowns.com.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Vernon Downs to simulcast final career race for Triple Crown winner

Fans to watch, wager on American Pharoah’s “Grand Slam” attempt

Vernon, N.Y. – October 21, 2015 – Famed racehorse American Pharoah made headlines earlier this year by capturing the coveted Triple Crown title for the first time since 1978. Later this month, Vernon Downs will simulcast the three-year-old horse’s final attempt to make history when he is expected to vie for the Grand Slam title at the Breeders Cup World Thoroughbred Championship. American Pharoah earned the Triple Crown title earlier this year after sweeping the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes.

Fans can watch and wager on American Pharoah Saturday, October 31, as Vernon Downs simulcasts the Breeders Cup Classic live from Keeneland Racecourse in Lexington, KY. The races begin at 11:00 a.m. leading up to the $5 million main event featuring American Pharoah. Post time for the Classic is 5:35 p.m., which is also expected to be the final race of the horse’s career.

“We are so excited to be able to bring this event that could rewrite racing history to our fans, said owner Jeff Gural. “Regardless of the outcome, we know it will be a fun and exciting day for everyone involved.”

Following American Pharoah’s race, Vernon Downs will present live harness racing at a special early post time of 6:00 p.m. The live program will be highlighted by the $500,000 Kindergarten Classic Finals for the top two-year-old trotters in harness racing. Fans can also enter for a chance to win up to $250 in a special Halloween night Ghosts and Goblins game.

Live harness racing at Vernon Downs continues throughout the fall. During October, live racing takes place Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays starting at 6:45 p.m. (except for October 31 as noted above). In November, live racing takes place Friday and Saturday nights starting at 6:45 p.m. through closing night of November 21.


In addition to live harness racing, Vernon Downs offers 767 of the most popular slot machines. A variety of eateries are also part of the entertainment complex. Jeff Gural owns Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY, and Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY. Tioga Downs is the lone bidder for the state’s final full gaming license in the Southern Tier region. Once awarded, Tioga Downs will expand its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs. For more information on Vernon Downs, please visit www.vernondowns.com.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Vernon Down publicizes VLT payback percentage

Invites area casinos to do the same

Vernon, N.Y. – October 2, 2015 – Vernon Downs is proud of its 90% plus year-to-date payback on its video lottery terminals and wants everyone to know about it. The casino is launching an ad campaign to educate the community about the high rate at which its VLTs pay players.

“We want our guests to feel confident that they have excellent odds of winning when they visit Vernon Downs,” said owner Jeff Gural. “In fact, we invite other area casinos to share the payout information for their properties, so people can make an informed decision about the best place for them to gamble.”

In August 2015 alone, Vernon Downs paid more than $40.5 million in winnings on video game machines. This is over 91% of the overall credits wagered, which totaled $44.5 million.

Vernon Downs operates 767 video lottery terminals featuring in-house progressives, Video Poker and hundreds of popular games, ranging in denomination from a penny to $5. Several new games were added just this summer. Guests who visit Vernon Downs can take advantage of special gaming promotions by joining the player’s club. Becoming a “Your Club” member is free and provides access to rewards such as invitations to tournaments, parties and special VIP concerts.


In addition to its video gaming machines, Vernon Downs offers live harness racing, concerts and other entertainment. Jeff Gural owns Vernon Downs in Vernon, NY, and Tioga Downs in Nichols, NY. Tioga Downs is the lone bidder for the state’s final full gaming license in the Southern Tier region. If awarded, Tioga Downs will expand its facility and workforce to accommodate live casino gaming. In the last decade, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs have created more than 700 family-sustaining jobs. For more information on Vernon Downs, please visit www.vernondowns.com.

Friday, May 1, 2015

DERBY FESTIVITIES, TRIO OF OPENS HEADLINE VERNON WEEKEND

While a trio of $10,000 Open events and second-round splits of the Catherine Burton and Anthony Farina late-closing series headline the on-track action this weekend at Vernon Downs, all eyes will be pointed to Louisville, Kentucky for the 141st Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs this Saturday (May 2).
In Central New York, Vernon Downs will carry on many of the same traditions linked with the Run for the Roses, including mint juleps and a Derby hat contest. Fans may register for the hat contest beginning at 3:00 p.m. with judging to take place at 4:30 p.m. The first place prize is $500.
Vernon Downs opens early for simulcasting on Saturday, accommodating Churchill's 10:30 a.m. first post.  Throughout the day, mint juleps will be available in addition to the standard complement of legal beverages, and the wearers of the finest Kentucky Derby hats will win betting vouchers.
The live 13-race card at Vernon Downs will kick off at a special early post time of 5:10 p.m., with a break for the Derby (post time 6:34) after the first few live races.  Prior to the Derby, one fan will be selected to win a $1,000 win bet on a horse of their choosing in the Derby.  Last year, one lucky fan took home $3,500 after California Chrome proved triumphant.

For full details on the Derby Day festivities at Vernon Downs, visit vernondowns.com/racing.