Tickets for Arlington's final season on sale April 15

Tickets for the start of what's expected to be Arlington International Racecourse's final season will go on sale online at noon April 15, officials announced Monday.

That includes popular days like Opening Day on Friday, April 30, Kentucky Derby Day on Saturday, May 1, and Mother's Day on Sunday, May 8.

Officials said tickets will only be sold a month in advance at a time, to ensure the track is following the most current state COVID-19 regulations.

According to the ticket sale schedule released Monday, races through May 29 will go on sale April 15, races June 3-26 are on sale May 12, races July 2-31 are on sale June 9, races Aug. 1-28 are on sale July 7, and races Sept. 4-25 are on sale Aug. 11.

They're sure to be among the hottest tickets in town, after track owner Churchill Downs Inc. announced last month it is putting the historic Arlington Heights oval up for sale.

In order to limit person-to-person contact, tickets will only be sold online, and won't be available at the box office or will call. Based on availability, day of tickets can be purchased on mobile devices, officials said.

The track is offering a range of reserved seating options, from apron benches and tables for up to four people near the homestretch, to indoor dining for up to six in the Million Room and Turf Club. Prices weren't yet posted online Monday.

With the possibility of loosened restrictions, Arlington on Monday also released a request for proposal link for those interested in hosting group outings of 16 or more. That includes group events in the prestigious Governor's Room and suites, where a dress code is enforced.

But much like the pandemic-shortened 2020 racing season, the 2021 season - at least to begin - is sure to look different than normal.

All patrons will be required to wear face coverings, unless seated and consuming food or beverages, according to the track's health and safety regulations. Capacity will be limited, and attendees will be asked to stay in their ticketed section unless in line for concessions, restrooms or wagering.

As live mutuel clerks will be limited, Arlington officials will encourage bettors to use self-service machines or mobile apps.

Access to the paddock and certain areas of the grandstand building will be off limits for now. Coolers with outside food and beverage won't be permitted. And there also won't be live music, family days or other promotional events, officials said.

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  Jim Smedley of Glen Ellyn, from left, Jeff Koehl of Schaumburg, and Dan Deprey of Cary pick their horses during the final day of Arlington Park's 2020 season. Similar reserved seating options will be available for the track's final season in 2021. Joe Lewnard/, 2020
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