Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Shanghai Race Club - 75th Anniversary


The one thing most people know about old Shanghai is that there was a race club and it was massively popular. A friend and another long-term Shanghailander Byron Constable has started to really get moving on his long awaited Shanghai Race Club board game. It’s a game where you can bet on the races at the old Shanghai club. I played a very early prototype version of the game and had fun as did the 7 year old with us – so ‘fun for all the family’ as they say though I’m sure there are purists who will argue with me – “you let a 7 year old gamble!!”


Anyway, Byron’s also organising Shanghai Race Club Champagne Brunch on Sunday the 17th May (like many modern day Shanghailanders the concept of the Champagne Brunch seems to have an especial appeal – can there by anywhere else where people obsess and get excited about such a thing as Shanghai – I fear not). A bit of promotion for the board game but also to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the Shanghai Race Club (building and grandstand as seen left). It should be interesting as Peter Hibbard, author of The Bund and éminence grise of Shanghai’s Royal Asiatic Society will give a short talk on the history of the old race club and I’m told a few words will be said by Danny Du, great-grandson of Shanghai gangster Du Yue Sheng.


Anyway – details of the brunch here – which is being held at Kathleen’s 5 which is on the roof of the old Race Club building (now the Shanghai Art Museum though those with longer memories will remember it as the library and only those with really old memories will now remember it as the Race Club!). Kathleen’s 5 is a rooftop place so you get a view over what was the Race Course, now the morass of People’s Square.


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