It looks like Mother Nature is going do her part to make sure Martinsville Speedway's weekend of helping area youngsters is successful. The weather forecast for the track's two-day toy and fund drive is superb, with clear skies and comfortable temperatures.
Martinsville Speedway President Clay Campbell appreciates the weather forecast. He will be kicking the weekend off early Friday morning when he is lifted some 30 feet into the air above the Martinsville Speedway entrance sign. That is where he will stay until he raises at least $20,000 for the Martinsville Speedway Children's Foundation.
Temperatures will be a bit nippy, in the high 20s, when Campbell goes up on the sign at 8 a.m., but will warm up quite a bit through the day.
Campbell and the entire Martinsville Speedway staff will spend Saturday hosting the 15th Annual Martinsville Speedway Toy Drive with all toys and cash donations going to the Grace Network to help needy children in the Martinsville and Henry County area have a happy Christmas. The toy drive will run from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
Donations to rescue Campbell may be made in several ways. There will be a collection point directly under him on Friday. Checks should be made out to the Martinsville Speedway Children's Foundation. Donations can also be mailed to: Martinsville Speedway, PO Box 3311, Martinsville, VA, 24115.
The Martinsville Speedway Children's Foundation helps year-round with various medical needs of children in the Martinsville and Henry County area.
The toy drive is a fun-filled day for everyone, from staff to volunteers to the many folks who turn out to enjoy the day and help make sure every tree has a present under it.
During the toy drive, fans will get to drive their personal vehicles around Martinsville Speedway's famous half-mile track if they donate a toy or make a $10 donation. Volunteers from the Grace Network will be at the pit gate to collect the donations.
Fans will also be able to walk into the infield via the pedestrian tunnel and drop off toys and monetary donations at a table set up close to the infield concession stand.
Martinsville Speedway staff members will be making and selling the Famous Martinsville Speedway Hot DogTM and Pepsi products for $1 each, with proceeds going to the Grace Network.
For those who want to make a little quicker trip around the track than they can in their personal vehicle, Campbell will give them five hot laps in one of Martinsville Speedway's pace cars for a $25 donation. Participants will receive a certificate of completion from Campbell.
Anyone unable to make it to the toy drive Saturday can drop off toys or donations at the Speedway office from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Santa Claus will be making his annual appearance at the track from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. and will listen to the wishes of boys and girls.
The Grace Network, a local group comprised of almost 100 churches, will distribute the collected toys to families in need. The monetary donations from Saturday will be used to purchase additional toys. All of the toys will remain in the Martinsville and Henry County area.