'Just gets better and better': Preakness Stakes draws crowd to Pimlico for day of racing, fun

'Just gets better and better': Preakness Stakes draws crowd to Pimlico for day of racing, fun

Horses, betting and drinking

Sean Curry, a Pittsburgher, thought that nothing would make his day better than these three things. He got them all at the 148th Preakness Stakes as well as the Preakness Live Festival which takes place on the infield. Curry and Griffin, who grew up with their mother watching horse racing, have come to Preakness every year for the past four years. It is the nearest Triple Crown race from where they live.

Sean Curry stated, "We have made this a tradition."

On Saturday, the annual horse race attracted both newcomers as well as seasoned attendees to North Baltimore’s Pimlico Race Course. A host of vendors also attended. Vendors noted a steady stream of people at the start of the day, and they expected the business to increase as crowds grew ahead of the Preakness Live concert with Bruno Mars.

Hats by Marjae owner Marjae Hicks is a Baltimore native. She has been to Preakness many times. Hicks sells her hats at the Pimlico Clubhouse since a decade. The owner of the business had a wonderful Black-Eyed Susan Day and hopes to have a similar experience for Preakness.

Hicks stated that 'every year, the number of women wearing hats increases.

Stuggy's in Fells Point, a hotdog shop, is also included this year as a clubhouse concession. Stuggy's has been a part of sporting events for many years, including at Orioles Park at Camden Yards as well as M&T Bank Stadium. Matthew Chavis, the manager at Stuggy's, said that so far the crab mac and cheddar dog has been a huge hit. Although Black-Eyed Susan Day wasn't very busy, Matthew Chavis expected Preakness attendees to hit the food stands in the afternoon around 2 pm to 6 pm.

Hoodfellas Bistro & Catering, and Shareef's Grill are both local vendors who returned to the infield for a second consecutive year. Both Baltimore restaurants were excited to return to Preakness, and they expected crowds to increase later in the day.

Sydne Shadne-Bedford is the owner of Shareefs. She noted that the competition this year was "a little less fierce" with fewer vendors. She also said that the restaurant's presence in the infield allowed it to reach out to people from other towns.

Heather Reilly, a U.S. Army officer stationed at Washington, D.C., and who has been to three Preakness Stakes, brought Michelle McDevitt, a friend stationed at Georgia, to Michelle's first Preakness.

The chance to see beautiful horses and be fancy.