Become a Saratoga know-it-all

saratoga racecourse entrance

There might be one or two things to say about this place.

By Mike Hare

From the Editors: With the return of track season in Saratoga, we figured we'd drop some conversational currency about the Spa City on you. Impress your friends over drinks at the Adelphi! Fill that awkward silence with out-of-town guests! Be a know-it-all! We'll feature a new fact/tidbit/historical note each day about Saratoga from now until September. Here's the first...

Quick, what's the oldest sporting venue in the United States?

The Saratoga Racecourse.

Back in August of 1864, boxer-turned-politician John Morrissey and a handful of investors gambled that the war-weary public would pay to watch thoroughbreds compete. Their hunch paid off.

Thoroughbreds have raced at Saratoga nearly every summer since the Civil War, and the track's world-wide popularity is so great that a few years ago Sports Illustrated listed it as the tenth best sports venue in the world. But Saratoga Racecourse could pull ahead, because Sports Illustrated's winner, Yankee Stadium, will soon be disqualified.

Mike Hare is the author of Saratoga Lives and a Spa City tour guide.

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

The Scoop

Ever wish you had a smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region? You know, the kind of stuff that makes your life just a little bit better? Yeah, we do, too. That's why we created All Over Albany. Find out more.

Recently on All Over Albany

The week ahead

Here are a few things to keep in mind, look forward to, or keep busy with this week, from the weather (wut), to eating and... (more)

A quick recap of the week

Here are a few highlights from the past week on AOA: + We gave away tickets to the Gathering of the Farm Cideries by asking:... (more)

Today's moment of winter

Walking up State Street, for a moment, it was all blue skies, sunshine, and wispy clouds. Then it was February again.... (more)

The untaxed city within the city

The map above depicts parcels in the city of Albany from which, for various reasons, the city doesn't get property taxes. It's from a slide... (more)

"I wish we'd asked, 'What can we do for you?'"

Over at City Lab there's an interesting look at how some of the people involved with the creating the very popular High Line park in... (more)

Recent Comments

Is there a volunteer group of any kind that clears sidewalks, crosswalks, and bus stops after storms for people who can't do it themselves or places that don't have anyone to look after it? I'd be interested and willing to pitch in, provided I'm not giving anyone a free ride on their civic duty.

The untaxed city within the city

...has 4 comments, most recently from Daniel

Examining the forces and maps that redlined the city of Albany

...has 5 comments, most recently from Dave Hochfelder

Volunteer opportunities for helping refugees in the Capital Region

...has 4 comments, most recently from chrisck

New life for buildings in Schenectady's Eastern Ave neighborhood -- and aspirations to lift the whole neighborhood

...has 7 comments, most recently from Nancy Stuart Kelly

Drawing: Tickets for the Gathering of the Farm Cideries 2017 at Nine Pin

...has 63 comments, most recently from Amelia