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Beginners luck at the Talladega car race

My fantasy football buddies talked me into going to the NASCAR race in Alabama this past weekend. They have been going to the race for the past 12 years.

This was my first NASCAR race ever. The track at Talladega is humongous.

The more than two-mile-long track can seat up to 160,000 people. It has been about five years since they were near that figure. The attendance this last week was 88,000 people.

It is kind of like the Iowa State Fair only with cars!

There was all kinds of entertainment going on around the grounds.

I wandered up to the Duck Dynasty booth, which if you are not familiar, is a show on A & E on Wednesday nights. It's about a family of millionaires that lives down in Louisiana. It's kind of a "Beverly Hillbillys meet the swamp!" The Robinson family was at the booth signing autographs and having a great time meeting with the long lines of people.

Every car company was there and the amount of free things you could get was pretty amazing — everything from shirts to caps. Of course, if you want a souvenir from one of your favorite race car drivers you had to come up with $25 or so. Almost every driver at the race had a semi truck full of things you could buy.

The SPEED channel was also broadcasting live from the race, so I wandered over and watched a few segments of their show. It was quite the production.

I even had a chance to have my picture taken with the Cup Series trophy. Not that I could ever win one!

The race was pretty void of crashes until the last lap, then I got to see one of the best pile ups of all time in NASCAR. Twenty-five cars bit the dust in one big crash on the last lap.

My understanding is the total damages to cars being carted off the track (some burned to the ground) was more than $5 million. It's not everyday you get to see an accident like that. The good thing is no one got hurt.

The other good thing is we all chose two drivers and put a $20 bill in the pot with the winner to take all. What I know about NASCAR you could write on a car key, so with my beginners luck, I won the pot and bested all my buddies who know all about racing. They thought!

After a long walk back to the car, I was exhausted. I think we must have walked 20 miles looking at all the sites.

If you ever get the chance to take in a race at Talladega it's one of those things you should see before getting too old.

Boss's Day

Next Tuesday is National Boss's Day. So if you want to stay on the right side of your boss don't forget to remember him or her on that day. I'm not quite sure when Employee Day is, but I'm sure there is one sometime!

Highway 34

I run up and down Highway 34 between here and Osceola. The work on the highway sure seems to be taking a long time to get completed. Those extra 20 minutes it takes to get to Osceola now sure add up. Let's hope they get the road resurfaced before winter sets in.

YMCA

The annual wine tasting/auction fundraiser for Southern Prairie YMCA will be held Oct.20. The event will be held at the Supertel Inn with tickets only $10 and available at the YMCA.

Thought for the week: It's time for America to get right. — Fannie Lou Hamer

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