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The Journals are the premier publications for high-quality, hyperlocal news and advertising in Monmouth County, New Jersey

Jun 14, 2019

Monmouth Park: We’re Off and Running

Monmouth park racetrack nj 2019

The weather is finally warming up, the days are nice and long, and the 2019 racing season at Monmouth Park Racetrack has begun.

Hello again everyone, I’m Brian Skirka, marketing manager at Monmouth Park Racetrack.

With our season off and running, I thought I’d take you all through the endless entertainment possibilities Monmouth Park has to offer.  Over are the days where all we had was horse racing.

Monmouth Park is now a seven-day-a-week, 12-month-a-year facility.  And during the span of 10 hours during the live racing season (May through October), you and your family can experience an entire vacation worth of excitement.

Here’s what a summer day can look like at beautiful Monmouth Park Racetrack:

11 am – Arrive.  The crowd files in as a buzz of excitement fills the air.

11:30 am – Grab lunch at Max’s Famous Hot Dogs. Those internal butterflies of anticipation resulted in you skipping breakfast this morning. So it’s an early hot dog with cheese fries to start the day.

12 pm – Check out the free Family Fun Day activities (Sundays only). Fresh off scarfing down that hot dog and fries, the kids need an outlet. Every Sunday, plus select event days Memorial Day to Labor Day, is free Family Fun Day at Monmouth Park with clowns, face painters, pony rides and a bounce house.

12:50 pm – Race #1. The horses are in the gate for the day’s first race. The crowd pours out onto the front apron to cheer on their favorite.

12:51 pm – “OMG, my horse is winning! Come on!”

12:52 pm – “I won!”

12:55 pm – Go to a teller to cash your first winning bet of the day.

12:55 pm and 30 seconds – Kids: “Can we get ice cream?”

1 pm – Check out the day’s festival or bands. While putting off/ignoring the kids’ ice cream request, you can walk to see what festival is taking place – or which band is rocking the stage. A full event schedule is posted at This summer, Monmouth Park is home to the Jersey Shore’s biggest events including the June 22 to 23 Wine & Chocolate Festival, the July 13 to 14 Surf & Turf Seafood Festival, and the Aug. 31 to Sept. 2 Boar’s Head BBQ & Craft Beer Festival.

2 pm – Stop in the sportsbook. Located on the first floor the Grandstand, the Monmouth Park Sportsbook by William Hill is the Jersey Shore’s best bet to watch and wager on all the big games. We have more than 100 HDTVs, including a 75-foot video wall. Wager on anything from the night’s baseball game to who will win next year’s pro football championship game.

2:30 pm – Ice cream! You put it off long enough, but the troops want ice cream. Luckily, the Stollo’s Lighthouse Italian Ice stand is right next to the sportsbook on the first floor of the Grandstand.

3 pm – Time for another winner. With ice cream in hand, it’s back to watch another race.

3:02 pm – Another winner! Man, you’re hot!

3:30 pm – A round at Bluegrass Mini Golf. Hopped up on rainbow sprinkles, the kids need another outlet. Thankfully, right outside the entrance to Monmouth Park’s picnic area is Bluegrass Mini Golf. Play one of our two 18-hole courses.

4:30 pm – More races. With your hot streak still intact, there are two or three more races to go. Finish strong!

5:30 pm – Goodnight kids. A friend offers to take the little ones home so you can enjoy your evening.

6 pm – Head to the Beer Garden at Blu Grotto. Located right next to Bluegrass Mini Golf, Blu Grotto Ristorante is the prime spot for an upscale, after-the-races dinner. Enjoy everything from pastas to seafood to steaks. But Blu Grotto is also home to a beer garden. With more than 20 beers on tap, a casual dining menu and live music from 5:30 to 9:30 pm every Wednesday to Sunday, the Beer Garden at Blu Grotto is the Jersey Shore’s hidden gem.

8 pm – Still having fun.

9 pm – Still having fun.

2 am – Asleep. Dreaming about doing it all over again!

At Monmouth Park Racetrack, we’re off and running. Check out the new for our racing schedule and a complete list of events, or like us on Facebook.

We’ll see you soon!