The New York State Senate passed a resolution today sponsored by Senator George H. Winner, Jr. (R-C, Elmira), whose legislative district in the Southern Tier-Finger Lakes region includes Watkins Glen International, calling for May 19, 2006 to be declared "NASCAR Day" in New York State.
NASCAR Day has become the signature charitable event of the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) Foundation, which supports a wide range of worthy causes, including: enriching the lives of chronically ill children; expanding literacy; encouraging bone marrow donation; and fighting cancer.
"I'm proud to wave the green flag, so to speak, and start NASCAR Day 2006 in New York State. It's an opportunity for us to draw the attention of NASCAR fans across New York to a worthwhile cause and worthy opportunity to express their spirit and sense of community," said Winner. "We're extremely proud to welcome the NASCAR community to Watkins Glen in August, and we know that their enthusiasm, loyalty and spirit are unmatched."
"We appreciate the support that we continue to receive from the New York State Senate including Senator Winner, and know they understand the impact of NASCAR to the region and on a State level," states Craig Rust, President of Watkins Glen International. "We are thrilled, not only about the resolution, but are looking forward to helping the NASCAR Foundation beginning this Sunday, when we will open our doors to an exciting 2006 racing season in New York State."
The cornerstone of the NASCAR Day celebration is the distribution of collectible NASCAR Day lapel pins, which fans and other supporters can obtain in exchange for a $5 donation to the NASCAR Foundation. Pins will be available at Watkins Glen International, starting this Sunday, TOYOTA Opening Day, from 10:00 am until 4:30 pm. Proceeds from TOYOTA Opening Day will benefit Victory Junction Gang Camp, a designated NASCAR Foundation charity founded by Kyle and Pattie Petty for children with chronic illnesses. Pins will also be available at The Shop, located at 2 North Franklin Street in downtown Watkins Glen, NY.
Winner noted that Watkins Glen International celebrates 20 years of NASCAR NEXTEL Cup racing at The Glen this year. "This region is noted as the home of Watkins Glen International, which over the course of more than a decade has become a national institution - the premiere road racing facility in America. Watkins Glen is a great source of pride to our region, an economic mainstay and a landmark that annually attracts visitors from around the world," said Winner.
Since it was launched in 2004, NASCAR Day has grown into the largest annual charitable event of the NASCAR community. In 2005, more than 240,000 fans and supporters bought NASCAR Day pins, raising $1.2 million. NASCAR officials report that they are expecting their most successful event ever this year with twice as many NASCAR pins already distributed than at this point last year.
Tickets for the entire 2006 season at Watkins Glen International are on sale now, and this Sunday marks the last day to purchase tickets at advanced prices. June 2-4 the IndyCar Series joins the Sahlen's Six Hours of The Glen weekend for the 2nd Annual Watkins Glen Indy Grand Prix and showcases 4 races including the Corning 100 Indy Pro Series race, and the Zippo Historic Grand Prix featuring Formula 1 cars of the storied past.
The NASCAR Busch Series joins the NEXTEL Cup Series once again during the annual NASCAR weekend, August 10-13 to compete in the Zippo 200. For tickets and additional information, please contact the Watkins Glen International ticket office at 866-461-RACE, log on to the official Watkins Glen website at TheGlen.com, buy online at Racetickets.com, or stop by The Shop located at 2 North Franklin Street in downtown Watkins Glen, NY.