Soapbox Derby To Roll Into Town

by Staff on March 11, 2011 · 3 comments

in Local

Soapbox Derby

For the first time in 32 years, a soapbox derby will be held on the streets of Mitchell. The Mitchell 500 will be held August 6th on Teke Burton Drive.

A committee comprised of Mitchell residents Eddie McLain, Ron Marsh, Dan Kemple, Kellie Kemple, and Jim Gaddis are organizing the race. This past Monday, Eddie and Dan requested permission from the City Council to block off Teke Burton drive to hold the race.

“We are simply trying to bring back a connection between parents and their children with this event. We’re trying to form some sort of common activity between families again.” –Eddie McLain

The last time Mitchell had a soapbox derby was in 1979, according to McLain, whose brother won back-to-back races in 1978 and 1979. The group hopes to, once again, make the soapbox derby into an annual tradition.

The entry fee for the race — which is open to all ages — will be a canned good. Proceeds from concessions will benefit a local food pantry.

“I wanted this to be available to all kids, regardless of family income. I do not want anyone turned away because they don’t have the money,” said Kemple. “The rules are fairly simple so they can pretty much build whatever they want, as long as it meets our minimum requirements. Basically, no motors and under a stated size. Simple, yet they have the potential to become a real masterpiece.”

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