Racing fans will get to try a few new — and old — things at the fall race meet beginning Friday at Keene land.
On opening day, the track will try a later 2:15 p.m. start time to give fans more time after work to get to the races and add a '30s and '40s-era big-band concert at the end of the day.
Swinging at Sunset — a trackside party complete with the Kentucky Jazz Repertory Orchestra, the HepCats Swing Dance Club, Grey Goose vodka "FallStars Fizz" signature drinks and food — starts immediately after the 10th race, which has a scheduled post time of 6:45 p.m.
Gates open at 11 a.m. as usual. General admission is now $5. The meet continues through Oct. 31. After opening day, the regular start times will be 1:05 p.m.
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Racetrack regulars will notice changes in traffic and parking. Keene land has removed part of the median at Gate 1 to widen the road to five lanes, which might be all one way (going in at the start of the day, going out at the end).
Keeneland also will use a 100- person shuttle with multiple stops to get patrons in and out faster from parking behind the Keene Barn Entertainment Center and fields around the Keeneland library.
"From an operational standpoint, it's our top priority for the fall meeting: to get people in quicker, parked quicker and out quicker," Keeneland president Nick Nicholson said in a news release.
For tailgaters near Gate 2, Keeneland will have a larger betting tent and restroom trailers on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, weather permitting.
For detailed information about where to park, which lane to stay in and where to catch the shuttle, go to www.keeneland.com.