A new program, Nourish the Backstretch, powered by Keeneland, Nourish Lexington and Blue Grass Farms Charities (BGFC), will provide weekly meals and groceries to stable area workers at Keeneland and The Thoroughbred Center (TTC), Keeneland announced Tuesday. More than 500 people are employed by trainers to care of horses at the two locations. Proceeds from wagers placed through Keeneland Select, Keeneland's online ADW, during May will be donated to Nourish the Backstretch.
“Keeneland is forever grateful to the industry's front-line heroes, the men and women on the backstretch who are out there every day taking care of the horses,” Keeneland President and CEO Bill Thomason said. “We recognize and appreciate your hard work and dedication, and we are committed to support you during this challenging time where resources are scarce. You are vital to this industry and an important part of the Keeneland family.”
Nourish the Backstretch is a further extension of Nourish Lexington, an initiative Keeneland co-founded with VisitLEX, FoodChain and other community partners in April. Nourish Lexington provides complimentary meals five days a week to anyone in the Lexington community who is affected by the COVID-19 crisis. More than 22,000 meals were distributed in the first month of operation.
Keeneland Hospitality, whose staff already has cooked nearly 3,000 meals for Nourish Lexington, will prepare all meals for the Nourish the Backstretch initiative and distribute them every Wednesday at 11 a.m. in May and June at Keeneland and TTC, which is on Paris Pike. At Keeneland, distribution will take place in the parking lot of the Rice Road barn area and in the open-air pavilion near the barns numbered in the 40s in the track's main stable area. At TTC, distribution will be at the parking lot by Building A, which is to the left after you enter the security gate.