ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara made the ceremonial first bet at the newly renovated Club Hawthorne OTB in Don Carter Lanes.

If the Mayor wins, proceeds will go to the Greg Lindmark Foundation.

Club Hawthorne is located at 4007 E State Street, and was formerly known as Trackside Rockford.

The newly upgraded horse race betting parlor includes more TV screens, state-of-the-art tote machines, and new lighting and decor.

The club is affiliated with Hawthorne Race Course in Stickney, Illinois.

“When we looked at Rockford, we said ‘It’s been there so long, I think there’s a big market for horse racing.’ Once we get into it and figure out what we can do here, I figure a place like this is nothing but growth for us. So, for us, this is a great location,” said assistant general manager, John Walsh.

Hawthorne Race Course was founded in 1891 and is Illinois’ oldest sporting venue.