Nearly 5,000 fans trackside for opening night at Les Bois
Eric Fink has the all action from the racetrack. Video by IdahoOnYourSide.comvideo
The first post was at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday night, but thousands of racing fans packed inside the gates at Les Bois close to an hour before.
The 36-day Spring-Summer meeting got underway Wednesday to the roar of large crowds, the sites and sounds of dozens of horses and the littering of hundreds of losing tickets.
"Everybody loves to come here and play the ponies," handicapper Bob Grimes said.
The scene Wednesday night was far different from four years when Les Bois closed down. A struggling industry, forced live racing to a lengthy hiatus in 2008.
But, last year a group of local owners brought the ponies back to the track, citing the community's commitment to horse racing as the main reason behind the decision.
"Our first priority was to the community in the Treasure Valley as a whole," the co-owner of Treasure Valley Racing, Jim Grigsby said. "The fan base has been phenomenal."
Live racing at the Garden City racetrack continues Wednesdays and Saturdays through August.
There is a special first postime scheduled for 2 p.m. this Saturday, May 5 for the Kentucky Derby.