Despite living in a small town there is never a shortage of interesting things to do around here, especially during the summer months.
Two weeks ago was the 33rd Annual 'Threshing Festival', which while paying tribute to the agricultural history of the area is really just a big excuse for a piss-up. I'll never forget when we first moved to town, it was only a few weeks before the festival that year and I remember someone trying to convince me to go to the beer garden with the argument "No matter how drunk you get they never cut you off". I'll give you more details about this event in a separate post.
Another fun summer activity is heading into Dresden, which is about 15 minutes away, to spend a Saturday afternoon at the track. When I was younger I would stick to the slot machines and stay away from the horses. I probably was trying to convince myself that horse racing was for old men or something, but in truth I was most likely just scared and unsure about strategy, placing bets, etc.
That all changed one afternoon after placing a $6 bet. It was one of the first times I had bet on horses and I almost hit the Trifecta (correctly guessing the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place horse). I correctly guessed #2 and #3. I don't remember how much money I won, it was not very much, but the adrenaline rush of excitement I had when those horses came thundering around the final turn was WAY better then the flashing lights and ringing bells of a slot machine.
The Dresden area is no newcomer to the world of harness racing, with the first organized races run in 1889 under the banner of The Dresden Driving Club. Horseracing has come a long way since the days when my Grandfather hung out at the track. In those days it was almost a private men's club. These days horse racing, and especially harness racing is being rebranded as a hip and happening sport for both the young and young at heart.
Part of this re-branding can be seen in the new GETSULKY website that is being promoted by the Ontario Harness Horse Association. The site even features a cool little flash animation harness racing game, hopefully to get you over the fear of placing that first bet.
Internet gambing is a huge industry and I'll admit to playing a little poker online every now and then. The problem of course is that no matter what, you are still sitting on your ass indoors. Our Canadian summers are short enough as it is, so why not get outside and get some sun and fresh air as part of your entertainment dollar?