McCarthy Autogroup Kid’s Night! Lots of behind the scenes action led to this great night of racing. First and foremost, the call went out two weeks ago requesting anyone who wanted to participate in donating items for Kid’s Night to please bring their items or money to the office. Last weekend we left the track with the back seat of my truck full of school supplies. Then during the week, Diana Green, Stacy Kline, and Randy Reber were working behind the scenes collecting even more school supplies. Friday night at Green Rolling Farms, they met to put together the backpacks with the school supplies, what a chore! My part, fix BLT sandwiches and cucumber and onions, and a load the truck Saturday morning!

We must thank everyone who donated, Ainsworth Racing, Amy Hill – Gladstone Great Clips, Bobby Lopez Racing/2 Tech Carburetors, Brianna Erickson and Family, Bud Wilson Souvenir Shack, Chris Kline Racing/Precision Illustrations, Cosentinos Price Chopper in Kearney, Connie Stevenson – Mary Kay Beauty Consultant, Crist Racing, Days Inn Cameron, Green Rolling Farms, El Sombrero Claycomo, Hill Racing, HM Photos, I-35 Speedway, Johnson Racing, Mama Kay Kline, McDonald’s Cameron, Michele Hoover and Hoover Racing, Oskvig Accounting, Patrick Royalty Racing, Stacy and Bubba Kline, Steven Bunton Racing, Sue and Ed Carlton, Team #417, Reber Family, and Trash and Treasure Kearney.

So, anyone want to own and operate a race track, there are new challenges every week. Let’s look at the challenges thrown at I-35 Speedway this week. You find out on Saturday morning, the county is without water and they do not have an estimate of when it will return, what are you going to do? Well you need to get potable water in for your concessions and you need to get portapotties in for restrooms because toilets do not flush without water. Then like any business with workers people experience illness and cannot make it to work. Of course, what are the odds you have two announcers, and both are sick on the same day! Fortunately, I have experience from announcing the Platte County Fair, so I stepped into that role (more on this in the next paragraph). Finally, and Kyle and I talked about this on Thursday, you have the weekly weather challenge. On Thursday the forecast was a high of 88 and sunny all day, no chance of rain! At 3 P.M. on Saturday you look to the west and the sky is dark, you check your radar and see something not predicted is headed your way. You have been watering the track all day and now it looks like you might get help, what are you going to do? Those are the decisions behind the scenes you must make.

Now about that announcer gig! We learn when we are challenged! What makes a great sports team is a team always challenging themselves. Announcers don’t just call the races, they have responsibility to track sponsors, responsibility to track owners, remind what concessions are available, know the drivers and their sponsors, know the upcoming schedule, 50/50, kids drawings, post-race interviews, have a music playlist, work with the officials, and I-35 Speedway is the track which started the post-race Facebook Live recap. The recap I did not get completed due to my other duties. Announcers write the post-race press release and distribute the results, which I got done at 4 a.m. on Sunday morning. Working with the media outlets I learned a better way to distribute our race result spreadsheets and I also discovered what race program most prefer. Always enjoy learning, never quit learning! We might have fun with the wireless microphone in the future, stopped by a couple of folks in the grandstands and suddenly they would not talk to me with the wireless microphone in my hand. Of course, I stopped by a couple of people and it was best the microphone was not on. Remember we try our best to be family rated!

This week BBQ and Racing, ATVs on Friday Night, racecars on Saturday, more fun, fun, fun!