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BMS and Buffalo Wild Wings host Daytona 500 watch parties in the Tri-Cities

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The green flag dropped at the Daytona 500 on Sunday to kick off the 2017 NASCAR season. Here in the Tri-Cities, race fans couldn't wait to watch their favorite drivers battle it out on the track.

"We're here today to watch the race and watch Dale Earnhardt Jr. win it all," said race fan Butch Franks.

Bristol Motor Speedway and Buffalo Wild Wings teamed up to host Daytona 500 watch parties at their restaurants across the Tri-Cities.

In Bristol, Virginia, the tables were full of eager fans ready to watch the big race. Butch Franks said he wasn't always a race fan but now he can't get enough.

"I moved here 24 years ago and I didn't believe watching cars go round and round, but now I'm a big fan," said Franks.

The event was also a fundraiser for Speedway Children's Charities, an organization that helps support hundreds of children in our region.

"With every purchase that people are making, and are mentioning that they're here for the watch party, 10 percent of the check is going to go Speedway Children's Charities," said Christopher Perrin, from Bristol Motor Speedway.

Now that race season has started, Perrin said the watch party is a chance to get fans excited about the upcoming races in Bristol. Officials from the speedway even gave out some free race tickets as prizes.

"We're actually less than two months away from the 25th anniversary of the Food City 500," said Perrin. "It's going be here before you know it."

Vickie and Mike Taylor said now they can't wait for racing to kick off in Bristol.

"We've been to several races and Bristol's always the most exciting race around," said Mike Taylor.

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