Racing through the carnival


Children were let free to play while adults gambled on horses at Santa Anita racetrack on May 28. Santa Anita held its annual Memorial Day Carnival from May 27 through 29.

Children rode unlimited rides for $10.

Kids and adults sit inside the children’s ride Bear Affair on May 28 at Santa Anita Park. Photo By Michael Quintero.

Aside from rides, carnival games and food trucks were located throughout the north side of the race track.

Crowds of friends and family explore, while some ride the thrilling roller coaster Mega Loop on May 28 at the carnival at Santa Anita Park. Photo By Michael Quintero.

However, what I found fascinating was the different cultures who were betting on horses. Baseball had a similar resemblance with each culture that attended. White bikers to Central Americans cheered with each other as they won.

I came for the carnival, but I actually felt more attraction towards horse racing. As I observed, I could hear the crowd screaming as the horses crossed the finish line.

People ripped their tickets in anger, jumped and hugged strangers as their picks won first place.

The energy was similar to a home run at a baseball game or last second three-point shot.

Also, how people dressed caught my eye.

I saw lavish couples dressed in Gucci, but also saw modern people dressed in plain shirts and jeans. Aside from the differences, I saw these people conversing about each race, despite their differences.

Jockeys and their horses race to the finish line on May 28 at Santa Anita Park. Stewart Elliot rode Trap Queen to first place in their debut race. Photo by Michael Quintero.

I took a chance and bet on my first horse race. Ashlyluvssugar was the horse. He held up in fifth the entire race until the final stretch. He bolted, and passed everyone up into first place.

I felt a quick rush as he passed through, and finished first. Then I took my money while I was up, about $70.

Hundres of people gather for the Memorial Day Carnival on May 28 at Santa Anita Park. Attendees took advantage of rides and slides, bet on horse races and spend quality time with on another. Photo By Michael Quintero.

Whether it’s gambling or people watching Santa Anita is a perfect place to spend a Sunday.

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