First Responders Take the Spotlight At Eldora’s Family Fireworks Night May 20

Eldora Speedway

People who don’t know the difference between USAC SpeeD2 Midwest Thunder midgets, DIRTcar modifieds, or Eldora super stocks will still thoroughly enjoy Family Fireworks Night presented by Casey’s General Store this Saturday, May 20 at Eldora Speedway. 

This community event will feature not only those three racing divisions but also a huge fireworks extravaganza that will delight all ages as the rockets burst across the sky, blazing in streams of vivid colors and booming over the Ohio countryside.

At its heart, however, the event showcases very special people — the area’s firefighters and emergency medical services (EMS) personnel, who will provide special displays and demonstrations of their work to the people they protect.

Children will love getting their faces painted and watching clowns twist balloons into animals. They’ll be able to meet Disney characters who will be roaming the grounds. They’ll also enjoy seeing and touching emergency vehicles, and watching them during a parade around the track.

Approximately 65 firefighters and EMS personnel are expected to be on hand. They’ll bring many of the vehicles and specialized equipment they use, and they’ll be glad to explain it all in detail. They plan to bring an interactive semi-tractor trailer that is used for training, fire engines, ambulances, ice rescue equipment, water rescue equipment, and a jaws of life. The latter is used to extricate people trapped in vehicles, and they are even bringing a junk car to cut up to show exactly how that equipment can save lives.

It’ll be exciting for kids of all ages, and those 13 and under will be admitted free. A general admission ticket for those 14 and up is only $10, and a pit pass is $30.

There’s an intriguing behind-the-scenes story regarding this event too, and it involves something seen at most dirt-track events — a 50-50 raffle ticket.

When someone wins a 50-50 raffle ticket, he or she automatically wins half of all the money collected that night. If it’s at Eldora Speedway, the other half is split between the Tony Stewart Foundation and another not-for-profit called Racing for Relief. Volunteers with Racing for Relief sell the actual 50/50 raffle tickets at Eldora, and then use the money raised to purchase emergency equipment and training for 17 different emergency departments in Darke County and two other counties near Eldora Speedway, Mercer and Auglaize Counties.

To date over $500,000 has been raised for Racing for Relief, with every single dollar used for emergency equipment purchases and training.

Equipment purchases have included turnout fire gear, defibrillators, imaging cameras, four-wheel rangers, light towers, training trailers, jaws-of-life equipment, grain bin rescue tubes, water rescue equipment, and much more.

“We get a lot of questions as to what we do with the money we raise, and this night gives us a way to showcase the equipment we’ve purchased with it,”

said Alan Siefring of Racing for Relief, who is a retired volunteer firefighter of more than 17 years himself.

It’s a win-win for the community made possible by fans’ contributions of a dollar or two during programs held over the course of Eldora’s season.

Gates will open at 4:30 p.m., and a drivers autograph session will occur from 4:30-5:30 p.m. Disney characters will interact with the younger crowd and face painters will be available from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Clowns will twist balloons for two hours, from 5-7 p.m. The Jaws of Life demonstration will be at 5:30 p.m. Hot laps for the race cars is set for 6:30 p.m., and the races will start at 7:30 p.m. The opening ceremonies will include a parade of emergency vehicles around the half-mile dirt track. The fireworks spectacular will occur after the final race. It will be synced and choreographed to famous soundtracks used in Disney movies.

Tickets are available to purchase now on or by contacting the box office at (937) 338-3815. They’ll also be available at the gate.

Another Family Fireworks Night will be held at Eldora on Saturday, Aug. 5, when the NRA Sprint Invaders, modifieds, and Eldora super stocks are in action.

Eldora Speedway PR

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