Friday, June 21, 2013

Hialeah Park and Race Track Fantasy

So let’s say somebody who can decide it decides that no part of Hialeah Park should be redeveloped as anything other than the home of Hialeah Race Track. Hialeah Park is part of Greater Miami. And Greater Miami is the Gringo Capital of Latin America. Well, it would be the Gringo Capital if it were not for the fact that a great part of the population is not Gringo. We’ll call it the North American Capital of Latin America.

And let’s say that somebody who decides such things decides that the developed area surrounding Hialeah Park is going to be redeveloped into something. And let’s say that something is an equine theme park, featuring sophisticated, cosmpolitan shops with a horsey thread running through; and upscale housing for the horsey set to hang out while acting horsey in Greater Miami, the North American capital of Latin America (Sorry, Mexico. This fantasy will not work if we make you the capital).

And let’s say that a ton of thoroughbred race horse breeders from throughout the hemisphere put up a minimum of US $500,000 each to invest in the project of the Hialeah horsey theme park through the EB-5 visa program, and they all get permanent resident visas so they can live here more than half of the year as permanent residents while they watch their horses train at Hialeah Park and race at Hialeah Park.

And let’s say that stakes races are run on the Hialeah Race Track, with horses participating from all over the hemisphere, and rich people who like to hob nob with rich people mingle with rich horsey people, and the whole thing becomes a magnet that attracts birds of a feather from all over the world, people who really don’t care that much about South Beach but enjoy the aroma of a sweaty horse and whatever else goes with it. And Hialeah and the surrounding area are transformed. And the Florida thoroughbred industry has Ocala as its northern base and Hialeah as it s southern base, and north and south find ways to energize and nurture each other.

And in the playgrounds of public parks and on school campuses, little kids learn how to play horseshoes and the small kids who stay small grow up to become jockeys.

There is a hard reality looming over the fantasy: bringing in those horses to the U.S. will require clearance from the USDA. We’ll talk about that in a future blog.

Mount up, Ladies and Dudes.
Gary D. Malfeld

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