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Kingsport will kick off region-wide race party

Kevin Mays • Jul 11, 2018 at 10:41 PM

BRISTOL — The party is set and the invitations have been sent to race fans throughout the region.

The week of Aug. 13 will be a week-long party across the Tri-Cities, officials with Bristol Motor Speedway and tourism organizations around the area announced Wednesday at BMS.

“We’re blessed to have the support of the chamber/CVB leadership teams who are creating these exciting community lead-up activities to America’s night race,” said BMS Executive Vice President and General Manager Jerry Caldwell.

Shuttles will be provided to week-long events from BMS.

KINGSPORT STARTS THE PARTY

The region-wide race party is slated to start Monday, Aug. 13 in Kingsport with the World Long Drive Competition at Cattails at MeadowView Golf Course from 6-8 p.m.

The event will be televised by the Golf Channel.

“America’s night race in this area is the Tri-Cities’ night race,” Visit Kingsport Executive Director Lara Potter said of the excitement surrounding the event.

Downtown Kingsport will also host the Kingsport Green Flag Party at High Voltage. Potter said music will be provided by local band Hundred Acres. She said three food trucks will also be on hand during the party.

NASCAR and Golf Channel personalities are also scheduled to be in Kingsport for the festivities.

ON TO JOHNSON CITY

The party moves to Johnson City on Tuesday, Aug. 14 with things slowing down a little.

Johnson City Convention and Visitors Bureau Director of Sales Jenna Moore said the city will have a family night of fun with a group bicycle ride throughout the city. Moore said the leisurely 30-minute ride will be led by a pace car.

Other festivities will be taking place at King Commons. At the park, participants can see how slow they can ride around the city landmark sign.

“So, while BMS is the world’s fastest half-mile, I guess we’re vying to be the slowest quarter-block,” Moore said jokingly.

Food trucks, music, kids’ games and stock cars will all be a part of the event, according to Moore.

BRISTOL’S TURN

The celebration continues Wednesday, Aug. 15 with events coordinated by Discover Bristol. Courtney Cacatian, executive director of the organization, said Bristol will be hosting its Red, White and Bristol celebration in the downtown area.

The event will include music throughout the night along State Street, along with games and children’s activities and show cars.

Cacatian said several restaurants on State Street will also have extended service on the street and will have various beer gardens.

“This event really showcases what Bristol does the best, which is racing, music and partnerships,” said Cacatian.

FOOD CITY RACE NIGHT

The annual Food City Race Night will continue the party on Thursday, Aug. 16, but it will have a different venue — BMS.

Race Night activities will be from noon-6 p.m.

Following the Thursday pre-race events, racing action kicks off with the Whelen Modified Series Bush Beans 150 and the Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200.

On Friday, Aug. 17, racing action continues with the NASCAR Xfinity Series Food City 300.

The Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race brings a busy week to a close with the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race.

HEROES TO BE HONORED

Caldwell also announced the track will honor and celebrate individuals who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to make a difference in the lives of others with its new Neighborhood Heroes Program.

“We’re blessed to be able to enjoy what we do because of the efforts of our first responders and military who work tirelessly to protect our freedoms,” said Caldwell.

According to Caldwell, the track will identify individuals to be honored in the weeks leading up to the Aug. 18 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at BMS.

The first individual was announced Wednesday.

Bristol Police Sgt. Matt Cousins was introduced as the Tri-Cities Hometown Hero.

Cousins was the second officer on the scene on July 7, 2016, when an active shooter opened fire on passing cars near the Days Inn on Volunteer Parkway in Bristol. Cousins was shot in the leg during an exchange of gunfire but was able to subdue the shooter.

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