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April 22, 1994 - Image 74

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1994-04-22

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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T H E D E TRO I T J E WIS H N E W S

Gordon Waterstone
has been
publicity director at
Hazel Park
Harness Raceway
since 1981.

74

he grueling routine is
the same six days a
week, from the first
Monday in April until
mid-October. He works
for three, perhaps 31/2
hours in the morning,
then he returns in the evening
for another shift. This one lasts
for at least five hours, wrapping
up at about midnight.
But you won't find Gordon
Waterstone complaining. The
39-year-old publicity director at
Hazel Park Harness Raceway
says his job is a labor of love.
In many respects, Mr. Wa-
terstone is the "voice" of the
raceway. He's the one quoted as
the track spokesman in news-
paper stories and, at 1:15 each
morning, he reports the night-

ly results on WWJ Radio. The
1972 graduate of Oak Park
High School also predicts the
winners of races for a local pub-
lication.
Through his work, Mr. Wa-
terstone has met sports celebri-
ties like Willie Mays, Billy
Martin, Earl Weaver, the late
Aurelio Lopez, Thomas Hearns
and James Toney.
Those are the more glam-
orous parts of the job. Mr. Wa-
terstone also writes press
releases, does stories for trade
publications, provides informa-
tion for reporters, makes sure
entries and results are trans-
mitted to local media outlets, co-
ordinates activities for the
track's Horse Players Club,
works with his two assistants

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Hazel Park

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Harness

Raceway's

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says he's

been luc ky

at the track.

STEVE STEIN STAFF WRITER

and tries to answer sometimes
off-the-wall questions posed by
callers.
"Because we're a racetrack,
people think we have the an-
swer to every horse-racing ques-
tion," said Mr. Waterstone, who
is single and lives in Roseville.
"For some reason, I also get
asked occasionally for the name
of the party store near the tack
I can't figure that one out."
For a few weeks just after the
Hazel Park season ends, Mr.
Waterstone helps coordinate
publicity for the Breeders
Crown series of harness races.
November and December are
relatively slow, then Mr. Wa-
terstone starts returning to the
office regularly in January be-
cause print and advertising
deadlines are approaching for
the track program and there are
mass mailings to prepare.
"It's a hectic job, but I'm not
complaining," said Mr. Water-
stone, a member of the board of
directors of the North American
Harness Publicists Association.
"I enjoy what Pm doing; I have
a lot of friends at the track and
I never have to struggle with
rush-hour traffic. I even get a
chance to bet on a race occa-
sionally.
"Pm very lucky. When I start-
ed working here in 1979, I was
filling cans and making deliv-
eries for a paint company in De-
troit. I hated that job and I
really didn't know what I want-
ed to do with my life.
"Before I started working full
time for the paint company, I
went to Michigan State for two
years and took just about every
introductory course trying to
find something which interest-
ed me. I ended up being a polit-
ical science major; but even if I
had gotten my degree in poli sci,
I don't know what I would have
done with it."
One thing Mr. Waterstone
E, enjoyed doing in his younger
(5, years was going to Hazel Park.
He loved to bowl — he says the
2 286 game he shot when he was

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