137th Preakness Stakes
Pimlico Race Course
5201 Park Heights Ave.
Baltimore, Md. 21215
Date: InfieldFest Saturday, May 19, 2012
Hours: Gates open 8 a.m., Preakness post time 6:20 p.m.
Price: General Infield Admission $50 in advance, $60 Preakness week; add $20 for bottomless beer mug
The Preakness, the second jewel in horse racing’s Triple Crown, may not be as dignified an event as The Kentucky Derby or the Belmont Stakes, but it certainly has a reputation for being fun. Held at Pimlico Race Course, fondly known as “Old Hilltop,” this race is not in the countryside as some might imagine, but instead on the edge of Baltimore City.
On Preakness Day, May 19, 2012, the racetrack grandstand will be filled with high rollers from the racing and corporate worlds, as well as local politicians and dignitaries, yet it is the infield that attracts the biggest crowds. This is the place for regular folks to party, enjoy live music from nationally-known artists, and maybe even catch a horse race.
The infield at Pimlico Race Course is host to the region’s biggest party with a festival-like atmosphere, aptly named InfieldFest. In addition to food and drink, there will be a bikini contest and games such as cornhole. Throughout the afternoon, two stages will feature five different, big name musical acts sure to appeal to everyone’s taste.
On the Main Stage
Maroon 5 was named “Favorite Band” at the 2012 People’s Choice Awards in January, and they are sure to be a favorite at The Preakness InfieldFest. Currently one of the hottest groups worldwide, the former “garage band” has sold more than 15 million albums. You know them for their recent pop hit “Moves Like Jagger” and because lead vocalist, Adam Levine, serves as a coach on the hit show “The Voice.” A few weeks after their Preakness appearance, Maroon 5 will release their 5th album, Overexposed.
The youngest performer to take the Main Stage at the 2012 Infieldfest is Wiz Khalifa. At only 24 years old, this rapper has been nominated for two Grammy Awards, had a number one hit on the Billboard Hot 100 list and sold three million digital copies of his single “Black & Yellow.” This wiz kid collaborated with Maroon 5 on their upcoming album and he worked with Snoop Dog on his single “Young, Wild & Free,” which recently went platinum.
On the Jägermeister Stage
Little Big Town
Although Nashville-based band Little Big Town is making its Preakness debut, they are no strangers to country music fans in Baltimore. The group, which is currently touring with Rascal Flats, has earned three Grammy nominations and sold more than 1.5 million records. Three of their songs have made it into the top 10 on Billboard’s Country Music Charts: “Boondocks,” “Bring it on Home” and “Little White Church.” Even if country music is not your thing, you’ll certainly enjoy them at the Preakness.
Coming to Baltimore from across the pond, British rockers The Darkness will bring their unique style of pop music to the Preakness infield. The band, which recently reunited, is working on their third album, much to the delight of fans around the world. Not sure if you’ve heard their music? Perhaps their hit single “I Believe in a Thing Called Love,” ranked the 87th Greatest Song of the 2000’s by VH1, will sound familiar.
No stranger to the Preakness InfieldFest, Mr Greengenes will be back for the third year in a row. Based in Westchester, Penn., this popular band has a huge following in the mid-Atlantic region, including beach towns in Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey. This cover band likes to mix it up and has plenty of familiar songs in its repertoire.
Related: Baltimore’s Best Live Music Venues
A Baltimore native, Meredith Bower served as Director of Communications at an area private school for 11 years. Her professional knowledge and personal experience, as a parent of four children who attend/attended private schools, offers a unique perspective on the schools and the students who attend them. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.