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Carrollton’s ‘Race Fest’

Many Sprint Cup festivities
planned for race fans

Carroll County Chamber
to stage third annual event

CARROLLTON, Ky. (June 2013) – For the last two years, Carroll County has held a unique event to get race fans excited about the June races at Kentucky Motor Speedway. The third annual Race Fest will offer something for all ages and all interests.
“This year’s event will build off of the success of our last two Race Fest events,” said Race Fest event co-chair Mark Smith. The Race Fest committee that organizes the event is part of the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce.

Race Fest Events

Photo provided

Family oriented events and
music will highlight Race Fest.

“We continue to seek ways to get folks here that may be traveling from out of state, but we have been pleasantly surprised at the number of people from our local areas that are showing up,” Smith said. “We had a couple hundred folks from out of town last year, including about half of that from outside the Kentucky and Indiana immediate area.”
From surveys that are conducted, organizers are able to tell that “folks take the opportunity to come out for a mid-week festival,” Smith said. Attendees also like the variety of activities associated with Race Fest.
Race Fest 2013 will be held in downtown Carrollton from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. Wednesday, June 26, the day before the three-day triple-header of NASCAR racing, June 27-29 at the nearby Kentucky Speedway in Sparta.
Activities included in the event are live music, karaoke, Frito Lay racing simulator, a display of Ben Rhodes’ No. 41 race car, classic car cruise in by the Kentucky Kruisers, motorcycle show, corn hole, inflatables, food, vendors and giveaways from area merchants.
“It’s fun for all ages,” said Smith. There will be two different stages set up for music and all events will be “spread throughout the downtown area. People really talk about the variety of things to do.”
Two local bands will perform during Race Fest. The band, 86 West, will perform from 6-10 p.m. on the Main Stage on Main Street. Hailed as “Kentuckiana’s New Premier Music Duo,” Josh Glauber and Holly Jackson teamed in March of 2009 to audition for CMT’s “Can You Duet Reality Show Season 2.”
Over at TKay’s Blues, “3 Percent” will take the stage at approximately 9 p.m. and perform until late. “Last year, they were outstanding,” said committee co-chair John Royse.
Additional entertainment will include beer gardens and karaoke, sponsored by Thunder Productions. Both activities will take place at Down on Main Street Restaurant. Froggy radio, WFKY 104.9, and WIKI FM radio 95.3 will have a live broadcast of Race Fest for fans who cannot attend the event.
Smith said the committee is really excited this year about the inaugural Soap Box Derby competition. Local businesses and organizations are encouraged to build a non-motorized vehicle that will be raced down Fourth Street for bragging rights and prizes.” The competition will take place at 7 p.m.
A free shuttle bus will be available to bring visitors from the Kentucky Speed-way campgrounds to downtown Carrollton from 6-10 p.m. “in an effort to accommodate more folks who would like to experience Race Fest,” said Smith.
This event “was hugely successful last year,” said Royse, who is the general manager of the Carrollton Kroger store, where additional events will take place for Fan Fest from 2-7 p.m. on Friday, June 28.
Royse said that since its inception, Race Fest has “grown significantly. Last year was primarily local folks,” but people did attend from Colorado, Florida, Iowa and New York.
Royse said, “Two-thirds of the Kroger parking lot was taken up last year with activities.” From 2-4 p.m., attendees will have a chance to win several pairs of tickets to the big races at Kentucky Speedway, in addition to lots of giveaways and drawings.
On Thursday, June 27, race-related activities will also be held in the Carrollton Wal-Mart parking lot. Last year, Kroger had 50,000 square feet of parking lot sectioned off on Friday, June 29, with NASCAR race cars, food, and a variety of activities.
Race Fest is sponsored through contributions from the City of Carrollton, Carroll County Fiscal Court, Carroll County Tourism, Carroll County Chamber of Commerce and sponsorships from local businesses. Wal-Mart has provided grant money each year as well.

• For more information, contact the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce at (502) 732-7034.

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