This week we caught up with Kathryn Foley, Manager at Sligo Races, for a whistle stop tour of their entertainment plans for racegoers for the remainder of 2022.
For eight years now Kathryn has been a one-woman-band, although she is quick to point out the unwavering support she gets from Kane O’Connor and his groundstaff team, and her enthusiastic board of directors led by Joe Corcoran.
Kathryn works hard to keep things fresh and deliver the best she possibly can for her racegoers annually.
With two superb fixtures behind her – ‘The Peaky Blinders Day’ supported by Tote Ireland and the ‘Young at Heart’ raceday – both of which attracted great crowds, Kathryn can look forward to as much more as the season picks up a couple of gears.
The meeting on June 21st will have a special “Thank You Frontline Workers” theme. This is a concept which Kathryn is most proud of, as it recognises the tireless work by those at the coalface of the pandemic, and offers those workers a chance to enjoy a day out with free admission and racecards.
July 10th is Family Day, with lots of activities and goodies for all the young racegoers who attend. It is lways a popular day, with northern neighbours traditionally visiting Sligo that week. The family day ticket is a winner for anyone looking for a special day out with something for everyone.
We move on to August 3rd and this is a very sociable evening thanks to title sponsor Diageo. The town really gets behind the evening, with a relaxed vibe that moves on to the popular local hostelries. It is immediately followed by Ladies Day, when Marietta Doran coordinates the fashion element of the competition, and ladies battle it out for the much coveted title of best dressed lady.
The nine finalists will not be left empty handed, each receiving a gorgeous prize to recognise and award them for their style and active participation in the event.
The meeting on August 17th also has a fashionable twist. It’s ‘Hats Off Day’ and the person donning the best piece of millenary will receive a splendid prize. September 14th is Sligo Student Day, where college students from both third level colleges are invited to the racecourse to enjoy all the fun and excitement of a day at the races, before hitting the town for more shenanigans and to get the academic year off to a great start.
Finally, October 21st coincides with the Sligo Live Music Festival. With the first race off at 2pm it ensures that festival lovers can enjoy a full National Hunt card of racing before the live performances take centre-stage in town, and where people can enjoy some après-racing fun and entertainment.
At all meetings, there are options to book online or pay cash at the turnstiles. A hospitality package that caught our eye includes admission, racecard, a two-course meal with a glass of wine or prosecco, and all for €45! This includes a reserved table for an hour and all the elements required to set you up for an enjoyable evening at Sligo Races. This package can be booked online.
Exclusive corporate packages have limited availability for the June and July meetings, with the rest of the season already booked out. With views overlooking the racecourse, a private bar, betting facilities and a choice of menu offerings, it’s little wonder that these are in such demand. Contact the racecourse directly on 071 9162484 for more information.
The Association of Irish Racecourses (AIR) represents all 26 racecourses in Ireland, and for further information please visit www.air.ie
By Leo Powell