Canterbury Park in Shakopee, Minnesota, has confirmed that live thoroughbred and quarter horse racing season at Canterbury Park will begin on June 10, following unanimous approval from the Minnesota Racing Commission.
Pursuant to an Emergency Executive Order issued on Friday, June 8 by Minnesota Governor Tim Walz, Canterbury Park will be able to accommodate a limited number of spectators during live racing and resume simulcast wagering operations on June 10. The MRC also approved an amendment to the existing cooperative marketing and purse agreement between Canterbury Park and the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community in support of the upcoming race meet. In addition, the Company anticipates all table games in the Company’s Card Casino will resume Monday, June 15 with initial capacity limitations.
“We are delighted to announce the initial reopening of operations at Canterbury Park beginning with the start of our live racing season and the resumption of simulcast operations this Wednesday as we continue our longstanding support of horse racing in Minnesota,” said Randy Sampson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Canterbury Park. “We are appreciative of Governor Walz’ recent Executive Action which allows for a limited number of spectators for our live racing and simulcast operations and also paves the way for the anticipated partial resumption of our Card Casino operations early next week. Our team has worked diligently with state officials, the MRC and the Minnesota Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association to prepare for the 2020 meet, which will feature 52 days of live racing Monday through Thursday between June 10 and September 16.
“We are also pleased to have entered into an amendment to our cooperative marketing and purse agreement with SMSC which provides support for the live race meet that is critical to the horsemen and the Minnesota racing industry,” Mr. Sampson said. “Live racing and pari-mutuel wagering, which will be closely followed by our Card Casino, are the first steps in our phased reopening of Canterbury Park following the state-mandated shutdown in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We plan to approach all of our re-opened operations with a measured, safety-first approach as we implement a variety of sanitation and social distancing protocols designed to promote the safety of our team members, customers and patrons, the horsemen and the horses.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors and the entire leadership team, I look forward to welcoming our team members, horsemen and guests back to the property this week. Canterbury Park is an economic engine for the greater Shakopee area. The return of live racing with limited spectators and the resumption of activities, although limited, in our race book and Card Casino are but the first steps in releasing the full power of that engine. We are committed to safely resuming our role in the growth of the community through our unique brand of entertainment as well as through our ongoing development of Canterbury Commons.”