The Board of Public Works unanimously approved a Maryland Department of Natural Resources item that will authorize $1 million for design improvement services at Fair Hill Natural Resources Management Area in anticipation of the Cecil County site hosting a newly-designated, international equestrian event.
The venue is slated to become only one of seven sites to host a premier 4-star or 5-star three-day eventing competition.
“The state is committed to bringing this world-renowned equestrian eventing competition to Cecil County and Fair Hill,” Maryland Natural Resources Secretary Mark Belton said. “Working together with our friends and partners in the private and public sectors, we will make Maryland the premier destination for equestrian and equine events, and add yet another chapter to our storied horse racing history and legacy.”
The proposed improvements at Fair Hill, which will likely be phased in over the next few years, will update and upgrade the state park’s facilities, infrastructure and related needs. The investments are essential for the site to host major equine events and other recreational opportunities, and necessary for Maryland to maintain its unique status as an equestrian epicenter.
The Board of Public Works approved transferring $1 million in Program Open Space Natural Resources Development Funds from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources to the Maryland Stadium Authority. The authority estimates the design phase of the project to cost about $2 million. In addition to the state’s investment, another $1 million is being pledged in private money through the Fair Hill Foundation, Inc.
The 84th Running of the Fair Hill Races will be held May 26, 2018. Purchase tickets at fairhillraces.com. Gates open at 10 a.m. with the first race slated for 1 p.m.