Press Release

First Responders Take the Spotlight At Eldora’s Family Fireworks Night May 18

ROSSBURG, Ohio, May 11 — 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 on Saturday, May 18 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.

Children will be able to enjoy getting their faces painted and watching clowns twist balloons into animals. They’ll also be able to meet Disney characters who will be roaming the grounds, jump around in bounce houses, see and touch emergency vehicles, and watch them during a parade around the track.

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.

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, jaws of life, and water rescue equipment.

There’s an intriguing behind-the-scenes story regarding this event too, and it involves something seen at most sporting 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 spanning across Darke, 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.

A live water rescue demonstration will take place at 4:00 p.m. at the pond that’s located between Gates 2 & 3. Spectator gates will open at 4:30 p.m. and a drivers autograph session will occur from 4:30-5:30 p.m. Live music and face painting will be featured in the Fan Zone from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Disney characters will interact with the younger crowd throughout the evening, and clowns will twist balloons for two hours from 5:00-7:00 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 and will be synced and choreographed to famous soundtracks used in popular Disney movies.

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.

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 on race day.

Another Family Fireworks Night will be held at Eldora Speedway on Saturday, Aug. 3, when the Great Lakes Super Sprints, Modifieds, and Eldora Super Stocks are in action.

About Eldora Speedway:
In 1954, renowned bandleader and proprietor of the Eldora Ballroom, Earl Baltes, carved a flat quarter-mile clay oval out of the cornfield that laid in the natural amphitheater between Ohio S.R. 118 and the Wabash River. Over the next 50 years, the enterprising Baltes, and wife Berneice, grew Eldora Speedway from its humble roots to national prominence by promoting events no other promoter dared fathom on the half-mile high-banked clay oval.

As dirt racing’s popularity surged in the late 1990s, along came new multi-million-dollar facilities, and corporate entities began to pepper Baltes about purchasing Eldora. However, in Baltes’ mind, there was only one choice – and in true Earl Baltes fashion – in the spring of 2004, he contacted a brash young racer who had tamed Eldora’s high-banks as a driver on his way to national championships in USAC and IndyCar, the 2002 NASCAR Cup Series champion, Tony Stewart. As Stewart’s on-track career skyrocketed, he passionately reinvested into entrepreneurial endeavors involving his beloved dirt racing, beginning with race teams in 2001. Somehow, the two high-profile figures who always drew a crowd of well-wishers at Eldora, managed to keep their talks quiet and the celebrated-promotor and superstar driver announced the transition of ownership in November 2004.

Now entering its 20th year under the ownership of Tony Stewart, Eldora Speedway will play host to its 71st season of racing in 2024. The full event calendar, including ticket and campsite information, will be posted when available at Race fans can join a community of over 1,000,000 people from around the world who enjoy behind-the-scenes access by following @EldoraSpeedway on social channels Facebook, X, Instagram, & Snapchat. Exclusive video content posted on has over 8.5-million views.

Every event at Eldora Speedway is available live. Race fans can tune into the World 100®, the Dirt Late Model Dream®, the 4-Crown Nationals®, and more on or on their favorite screen via the FloSports app. FloRacing is Eldora Speedway’s official livestream partner. Additionally, World of Outlaws sprint car-sanctioned events can be seen on