Race fans already camping outside of Bristol Motor Speedway
The night race at Bristol Motor Speedway is still 19 days away, but die hard Bristol fans already starting to flock here to get ready.
News 5's Jessica Griffith talks to the first fan here about how his friends are planning to do some good, in honor of the late Earhart campground owner.
In less than three weeks, the sights and sounds of NASCAR will be back in Bristol. But right now, the campgrounds are quiet expect for a few diehard fans, like Jim "Fuzzy" Holden, who spends about a month camped out side the speedway. "It's like a second home," Fuzzy said. He's been coming from Iowa to Bristol for 22 years. Driving down Volunteer Parkway, you'll see him and his grandson set up across the track.
"We just kind of hang out here all day. The traffic goes by and they honk at us all the time waving," he said. His friends from all over the country will be holding dinners at Earhart Campground during race week. While there isn't a cost to attend, donations are accepted. Money will be going to Speedway Children's Charities in honor of Charles Earhart, the owner of Earhart Campgrounds who died in June. "Charles was a great friend of ours, he's done a lot for us in the years. We really are shocked at what happened," Holden said. Earhart's family members are touched by the group's idea. "That means a whole lot. It helps ease the pain for all of us. It helps recognize him," Aaron Earhart said. It's a way for Holden to honor a man whose been a part of so many of his Bristol memories. "I got a lot of friends I've made down here through the race in 22 years," Holden said. You may be wondering why is he down here weeks before race week even begins. "Cause it's like a great place to be i said the people are just friendly as heck and I love it down here," he said. He's been to tracks across the U.S.. But it's the people here that keeps him coming back. "They're more friendly and they're like family," Holden said. He loves it so much, he's even looking to move here. "That just shows the dedication of Bristol fans and the dedication of what they have for the area itself. because there's no race going on right now. they're here for Bristol," Earhart said.