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Open Space Pace returns to Freehold Raceway

Eric Sucar
A rider and a horse warm up during the first day of the Jersey Fresh International held at the Horse Park of New Jersey in Upper Freehold on May 11. The Jersey Fresh International Three-Day Event took place May 11th through 15th, is a premier venue that draws equestrian sports’ top competitors.

The Open Space Pace returns to Freehold Raceway Sept. 17 for its 5th annual Parade and Festival.

The Open Space Pace is a non-profit organization with a mission to celebrate the horse, New Jersey’s official state animal, and to promote open space in our nation’s most densely populated state. The Open Space Pace raises funds in support of non-profit organizations that promote open space in New Jersey.

The scheduled events for the day will begin at 10:30 a.m. with a parade of horses from the Monmouth County Hall of Records to Freehold Raceway. The Grand Marshal for this year’s event is New Jersey State Senator Jennifer Beck. Beck has continuously supported legislation that would expand casino gaming at racetracks that would increase purses for the horse racing industry, resulting in a stronger equine industry and more open space.

The parade features the Freehold Township High School and Middletown High School North marching bands, antique cars and various equine groups. Once at the racetrack, the festival begins with an opening ceremony, followed by a wide variety of entertainment, including a petting zoo, educational exhibits, live harness racing, vendor tables, food trucks and much more.

Throughout the day, the Open Space Pace will have several college scholarship drawings. Any college student in attendance with a valid student ID will be eligible to enter the drawing for a scholarship.

The CentraState Healthcare Foundation will offer health screening and fitness demonstrations on stage throughout the day. A concert featuring The Eddie Testa Band will begin at 1 p.m., followed by Burlap to Cashmere at 4:30pm.

The Open Space Pace has entertainment and activities that cater to all ages.

Anyone wishing to support the Open Space Pace or obtain more information about it should contact Brett Taft at 732-577-4059 or by email at BTaft@umh.com.

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