There is simply not a more exciting way to spend an evening in South Louisiana. A night with the ponies. An evening of live thoroughbred racing at Acadiana's home track, Evangeline Downs. This season marks the 50th season of racing at the Opelousas facility.

This year's thoroughbred season promises to give horse players and casual fans alike a lot of different reasons to come out to the track. The 84 day meet at Evangeline Downs will feature 21 stakes races with purse totaling $1.9 million dollars. The highlight of the meet will come on May 30th with the Evangeline Downs Turf Sprint. This race will feature 3 year olds and up traveling 5 furlongs on the pristine turf course at Evangeline Downs in hopes of claiming their share of the $300,000.00 purse.

Louisiana Legends night, a fan favorite at the track, will take place on July 4th. This marks the biggest single night of racing at the track with 8 stakes races and purses totaling over $700,000.00.

Race fans will notice some improvements at the track since the end of the quarter horse meet. In order to bring about a better racing surface the principles at Evangeline Downs have added 2,000 tons of fine sand to aid in compaction of the racing surface. There have also been major improvements in stables and the backside of the property.

“I truly believe that our continued improvements, not only in racing but across the property as a whole, coupled with our exciting entertainment and promotions schedule, will create a fun and inviting environment where all of Acadiana can join us to celebrate this big milestone in our rich history.”

Those are the words of Vice President and General Manager Brett Cox. He and his staff have been working hard to bring bigger purses, better racing, and even more fun to Acadiana's home track. Don't forget in addition to live racing, there is a casino, great restaurants, and a fabulous hotel at the track facility.

By the way in celebration of Evangeline Downs 50 years of racing fans will receive a treat on Wednesday and Thursday nights. There will be .50 cent buffet's on Wednesday nights and .50 cent live racing programs offered on Thursdays. Friday's will feature a chance to win up to $50,000.00 in the Horseshoe Challenge and Saturday's will feature the chance to win commemorative t-shirts and $50,000.00 in cash.