Talladega Superspeedway officials announced today that race weekend work provided during Talladega Superspeedway's two major event weekends by volunteers from various service groups throughout the region produced a total of more than $560,000 to be shared by the respective organizations.
"We rely very heavily upon the participation of service groups and other organizations to staff various points throughout the facility during our race weekends, and it is largely to their credit that we receive feedback from guests on what a great experience they've had at Talladega Superspeedway," said Talladega Superspeedway Vice President and General Manager Rick Humphrey. "But even more importantly, the volunteers produce a greater impact that extends well beyond our events by raising much-needed funds for their organizations."
Race weekend service group volunteers perform a variety of tasks during race weekends, including stubbing tickets, staffing concession and souvenir stands, catering, parking cars, assisting in security efforts, providing guest information and other duties.
Staff Sergeant Aretha Dix, president of the 42nd Medical Group Booster Club at Maxwell Air Force Base near Montgomery, Ala. said that working race weekends at Talladega Superspeedway enables her group to fund its annual Christmas gathering as well as contributions throughout the year toward various charities. The 42nd Medical Group is the only medical treatment facility at Maxwell AFB and serves as an outpatient facility for all active-duty and retired military members and students on base, SSG Dix explained. This is the second year the booster club has volunteered at Talladega under SSG Dix's leadership, however she said she came across the idea while reviewing club records from years past.
"I saw in our past records that the staff had done this before and saw from the notes that they really enjoyed it. We have a lot of race fans, and it is exciting to come out and be a part of race weekends," SSG Dix said. "It really has been a successful fundraiser for us, and we definitely plan to come back."
The Western Country Club of Birmingham, Ala., a country and western dance club that focuses on charity work, has also found volunteering at Talladega to be a great way to raise funds, however this group takes a unique approach in its fundraising effort by using the funds raised during race weekends to bankroll a larger fundraiser - - a charity dance held each August.
According to club treasurer David Carmichael, the group has worked races here for nearly a decade, and puts the bulk of funds raised toward the annual charity dance. Carmichael explained that the money raised from the dance is then put toward various charitable efforts, such as Magic Moments, an Alabama-based non-profit agency that grants the non-medical wishes of chronically-ill children.
"Our club has been in existence for 12 years, and was founded as a dance and social club. We are a non-profit group and in addition to enjoying and teaching country and western dance, from the beginning we have always done charity work. Working out at the track has benefited us really well in being able to help these organizations out," Carmichael said. "We have our August charity dance each year, and this year we were able to raise over $4,000 for Magic Moments. Our efforts at the track enable us to take care of the logistics of holding the dance, and the dance enables us to make an even bigger difference. We are very glad to have the opportunity."
Organizations interested in providing workers for Talladega Superspeedway's race weekends are encouraged to contact Patrick Barfield, Director of Administration at (256) 761-4709 as soon as possible to arrange volunteer hours for the 2007 Aaron's Dream Weekend April 27-29 and the UAW-Ford 500 event weekend Oct. 5-7.
Talladega Superspeedway officials are preparing for an exciting year of racing here at NASCAR's Most Competitive Track. The 2007
Aaron's Dream Weekend is set for April 27-29, and features the Aaron's 312 NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, April 28 and the Aaron's 499 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race on Sunday, April 29. Kids age 11 and younger are admitted free of charge when accompanied by a ticketed adult on Friday and Saturday. Tickets are available by calling 1-877-Go2-DEGA (462-3342) Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. CDT, or by logging onto www.racetickets.com. For our hearing impaired guests, please call TDD 1-866-ISC-TRAK (1-866-472-8725). You may also purchase tickets in person at Talladega Superspeedway's Ticket Office from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. CDT, Monday-Friday.