The November Sunrise Seminar for the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Milford spotlighted one of the 2014 “10 of the Best” winner Harrington Raceway and Casino who was named “2014 Large Business of the Year.” Jeff Sanders, Sales Manager at Harrington Raceway dispelled some myths about the raceway and casino while explaining some of the things they offer that people may not be aware of.
According to Mr. Sanders, people often get them confused with the Delaware State Fair, which is a completely separate entity from the casino. Mr. Sanders said that harness racing began at the location in 1946 and that that entity, which is connected to the casino, consumes more than 53 acres of the grounds. There is a training center that includes a pool specifically designed for horses, as well as storage and barns. The racing season lasts between 84 and 89 days with post times at 5:30 PM.
In 1996, the casino opened with a legislative requirement that it had to be connected to a track, making the facility a “racino.” The casino offers sports betting and there are many events related to sports, such as Superbowl and playoff parties. There are meeting spaces and a ballroom available for rental as well. Mr. Sanders, there have been many events held at the casino, including weddings, class reunions and concerts.
One attraction the casino is proud of is their steakhouse, Bonz, that offers entertainment and an outdoor patio, weather permitting. In addition, the casino offers off-property catering for events and there is a nightly buffet as well. The casino is privately owned, not a state entity.
One thing that Mr. Sanders mentioned was that they often get questions about children at events held at the casino. Because there is no hotel or common area, special arrangements must be made if children under the age of 21 are attending events. The casino simply asks that they be informed there will be children prior to the event so that they can make arrangements such as having them exit and enter through an outside door or use restrooms that are not on the casino floor. Children may also eat at Bonz, but diners should call ahead to make them aware there will be children in the party. It is illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to be on the casino floor and, because there are often regulators on the floor, the organization must be watchful.
Mr. Sanders said that it is difficult for casinos to cut costs like other industries as 60 percent of all revenue is returned to the state. He explained that the recent “bail out” was not necessarily bailing the casinos out of trouble, but actually a direct transfer to vendor fees in an effort to reduce the casino’s costs.
Mr. Sanders said that it was important for people to remember that Harrington Raceway and Casino was more than slots and harness racing. Residents and businesses should consider the casino when planning special events or for dinner out at Bonz even if they don’t choose to gamble.
CCGM holds a Sunrise Seminar every month and features an interesting guest speaker at each. Members who attend are provided a free breakfast and anyone who arrives prior to 7:45 AM places a business card in a drawing for a five-minute presentation on the products or services their business offers at the start of the meeting. In addition, members who bring guests are given a “goodie” bag of gifts. For more information on promoting your business and networking, or to learn more about Sunrise Seminars, contact CCGM at 302-422-3344.