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Community Relations

“Working Hand in Hand with Our Communities”

Through a hands-on approach, Churchill Downs Incorporated and Calder Casino and Race Course are committed to providing the resources to improve the quality of life and economic vitality in the communities that we call home.

Calder is involved in many ongoing projects with its South Florida neighbors, including the United Way, The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital, and St. Thomas University, as well as the University of Florida’s College of Veterinary Medicine. 

Highlights of Calder’s Involvement in the Community

Annual Jeff Conine All-Star Golf Classic
For the third year in a row, Calder in 2012 was the proud title sponsor of this prestigious golf tournament benefiting the Conine Clubhouse, a residence located close to Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital in Hollywood, designed to make it easier for parents to be near their child while he or she is being cared for at the hospital. This “home away from home” for parents and siblings has served over 6,000 families since opening in 1997. The theme of the 2012 tournament, held in January, was gaming-inspired - “All in to Win” – with poker and casino-themed activities held at the event.

Boys and Girls Club “Ranch Roam”
Calder is in its tenth year as a sponsor of this annual event held at the Bergeron Ranch in west Broward County. The Boys and Girls Clubs provide thousands of at-risk youth with a safe and positive alternative to the streets.

Our Miami-Dade County School Partners
Several years ago, Calder ‘adopted’ the Robert Renick Educational Center, a middle school just south of Calder where at-risk teens are taught with special care and consideration. The longstanding relationship between Calder and the Renick Center has been very rewarding and has been recognized by the Miami-Dade Public Schools system with the Dade Partners Exemplary Award. Calder's newest partner is Parkway Middle School, also located in Miami Gardens.

Family Festival Events
Calder partners with neighboring Sun Life Stadium to host numerous community events, including an Easter Party and the annual Fall Family Festival, offering a safe and fun environment for local children and families to enjoy. Calder also partners with the local Antioch Baptist Church, the City of Miami Gardens, and WEDR-FM, one of the top local urban radio stations, to provide these festival events to thousands of participants.

Thoroughbred Retirement
Calder and its horsemen are the leaders in Florida after-race life care initiatives, including the pioneering of the TRAC (Thoroughbred Retirement and Adoptive Care) Fund and support of the Pure Thoughts Horse Rescue & Rehabilitation center in Loxahatchee, Fla. Calder was also a co-founder of the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation’s Florida Farm Division at the Marion County Correctional Institution in Ocala. In 2010, Calder allocated nearly $100,000 to these initiatives. At the corporate level, Churchill Downs established the “Green Pastures” program and Calder participates by educating horsemen about racehorse adoption and sponsorship programs; facilitating the donations of retired racehorses to non-profit organizations associated with CDI racetracks; raising funds to support retirement, retraining, and adoption organizations associated with CDI racetracks; and raising awareness of the equine retraining and retirement non-profit organizations servicing the CDI racetracks.

“Helping Hands”
Churchill Downs Incorporated has also instituted the "Helping Hands" program, a company best practice where employees and corporate officers participate in volunteer activities in their respective communities. Hundreds of employees from CDI's racetrack operations and off-track betting facilities participate in the Helping Hands program, volunteering thousands of hours each year on behalf of such organizations as Habitat for Humanity, Big Brothers / Big Sisters, Junior Achievement, Special Olympics, and others. Calder's team members volunteer their time and energy in many ways. They support the H.O.R.S.E. program, which helps CDI employees at times of emergency financial crisis. Other projects include the annual holiday food drive and the Community Blood Centers blood drive.