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February 24, 2012

For Immediate Release

Evangeline Downs Racetrack & Casino contact:
Mike Howard
Media contact:
Julie Calzone
337.235.2924 ext.18
Calzone Agency Tapped to Promote Horse Racing
(Lafayette, La.) – Evangeline Downs Racetrack & Casino has hired the Louisiana-based firm, Calzone advertising | innovation | public relations, to market its horse racing program.
Calzone will design promotions and marketing activities to increase attendance at the racetrack by creating new fans, increasing lifetime value of current customers and integrating the successful rewards and database marketing systems developed by the Opelousas, Louisiana based facility. The program will be a team effort with the Evangeline Downs racing and marketing staff.
“We want to create more traction and visibility for the racing product,” said Mike Howard, general manager for Evangeline Downs Racetrack & Casino. “Calzone has several years of experience in horse racing and has helped this industry through many changes including off track betting, video poker, slots at the racetrack and our move from Carencro and is experienced with Louisiana’s breeding and racing incentive programs.”
Calzone has served in many capacities for Evangeline Downs as the agency of record and/or the public relations firm for the track. Owner, Julie Calzone, is a well-known horsewoman with many equestrian-related businesses and horses of her own. She is an active rider, trainer and breeder of sport horses.
“We are passionate about horse racing in Louisiana,” said Calzone. “It is great entertainment and we are planning on promoting Evangeline Downs’ Cajun-racing roots. It is what makes Evangeline Downs unique in this business. That is marketable at many levels.”
“Louisiana has the most successful racing and breeding incentive program in North America,” said Steve Darbonne, director of racing operations. “We believe our racing program is one of the best entertainment values and something the whole family can enjoy.”
While bettors must be 18 years of age or older, the racetrack admits people of all ages.
“We want to get people off their mobile devices, tablets and computers and get them to socialize with real people,” said Calzone. “We bet people will have a lot more fun and interesting experiences than any device can provide!”
The 2012 thoroughbred racing season begins on April 18 and runs through Labor Day. Daily post time (start of the first race) is 5:40 p.m Wednesdays through Saturdays. For more information, go to


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