April 25, 2007
We are just days away from a semi-annual tradition in Albemarle County. Thousands of people are expected to attend this year’s Foxfield Races.
If you don't already have a ticket, there is some bad news; 23,500 tickets are already sold out. The director of the races said this is the fastest tickets have ever sold out.
If you're off to the races this weekend, the Foxfield Coalition has a message.
“It’s all about having fun responsibly,” said Benjamin Sojka of the Charlottesville Albemarle Rescue Squad.
And that means not getting out of control. If a few people do, however, hundreds of officers for the second year in a row will be patrolling and cracking down on the unruly.
“Law enforcement is going to be extensive. They are not kidding around,” said Foxfield Races Director W. Patrick Butterfield.
Last year, more than 100 people were arrested at the races. This year, police will be able to process those arrested right on site.
Also onsite, there will be three different medical aid centers and mobile medics in bright yellow T-shirts roving about.
“Don't hesitate to call for medical assistance, and we want everyone to be safe and not request help just because of an increased enforcement effort,” said Medical Management Coordinator Allen Williamson.
911 dispatchers will also be set up in a communications center at the races, so calls will be go directly to staff on site. They want you to know if you get into trouble, maybe drink too much, get overheated, sun burned or have any other medical problems, they are available.
“We are prepared to handle 100 to 150 patients, and as Benjamin alluded to, we hope to watch the races like everybody else and just have a nice day. But we are ready for the worst case scenario or the best case scenario,” said Butterfield.
The doors open Saturday morning at 10:30. The race director warns anyone without a ticket and parking pass will be turned away.