I wondered why I wasn't seeing more restaurants in Baltimore offering Preakness promotions.

It's simple, really. They don't have to. Add commencement exercises at Notre Dame and Loyola into the mid-May mix, and you've got a pretty sweet weekend for the hospitality industry. Hotels are booked heavily (but not fully) this weekend, and restaurant reservation books are bulging -- The Preakness is the kind of event where visitors make reservations at the same places year after year.

(If you want to rub shoulders with racing insiders after the race, by the way, Aldo's in Little Italy has evolved into the race's unofficial post-race 19th hole, a destination for the visiting media, trainers, jockeys and other insiders.)