There was big excitement in the air at the Hemlock “Little World’s” Fair, as harness racing was one of the highlights of Tuesday’s opening day. “We have been racing here for over 120 years and it is a longtime event here in Livingston County,” said Track Superintendent Howard Stillman.

The race at Hemlock Fair – another taking place simultaneously at the Lewis County Fair in Lowville – were the opening dates of the New York County Fair racing season. The fairs host races at the New York Sire Stakes, which culminate Sept. 5 with the New York County Fair Finals. “It is one of the biggest events in Livingston County. It is very important to us because it puts our presence out in the community and it gives us a strong understanding of what we have here and it also shows our history,” said Fair Trustee Audrey Arber.

In the stands, dozens of people came out to watch the races. Some were amazed at just how fast the horse moves around the track. “The speed of the horse and just the excitement of who might win, it all comes down to the finish line and the last stretch. They race around twice and may the best man win,” said Stillman. The races are equally as fun for the jockeys taking part in the races.