It's going to be a super season at The Colonel's Brainerd International Raceway this summer.
The raceway will host two super weeks of entertainment.
The first will be Bike Week 2000 from July 31 until Aug. 6 (Pre-Sturgis week) following the American Motorcyclist Association Hitching Post Classic.
The second will be Super Week 2000 from Aug. 14-21 for the 19th annual Colonel's Truck Accessories NHRA Nationals. Actress Ann-Margret is the grand marshal for the event.
For the second event, the gates will open at noon on Monday, Aug. 14, allowing campers to camp all week during the nationals. The week ends the following Monday at noon.
CBIR manager Scott Quick said this super week will allow drag racing fans to be at the track when the sportsman and some of the professional racers arrive.
"(Fans) will be able to see some of that activity going on and exactly how we set up for a major national event," Quick said.
He added that CBIR is unique because of its large camping facilities.
"People know there is plenty of room out here to camp and have a good time," Quick said.
Quick said that during that week fans will be treated to local entertainment, including bands and the use of the go-kart track.
During the Pre-Sturgis week, Quick said the track plans to host "old-fashioned" motorcycle races and might even "bring in a carnival."
What about the stereotype of bikers staying in the area for a week? Quick said this clientele "police themselves."
"These are good people," he said. "I would welcome them in here anytime."
The list of actors attending the national event also could increase. The track's owner, Don Williamson, knows many actors, including Burt Reynolds, who has starred in commercials for Williamson's wife's car dealerships in Michigan.
The track also will feature more improvements this season. The other side of the pro pits will be paved with asphalt, and more sponsorship signage will be placed.
But, with all the improvements, ticket prices have also risen.
For example, a four-day advance sales general admission ticket for the nationals, including a pit pass, has increased from $80 to $100. The same ticket at the gate also has increased from $100 to $120.
For the super week, advance ticket sales will be $150 and $200 at the gate.
Quick thinks these prices are acceptable in regard to the quality of entertainment the track offers.
He added that the track's improvements have shown its commitment to the racers and spectators.
"Change is sometimes meant with resistance," Quick said. "(The ticket price increase) is just a cost of doing business too. They are very nominal to what we provide out here as far as entertainment."
Quick said ticket prices at CBIR are comparable to other national event sites and sometimes are lower.
Regarding lower prices, prices for additional camping entry fees -- motor home, camper trailer, golf carts and ATVs -- has actually decreased. For example, at the gate, a motor home entry fee has decreased from $100 to $40.
The first spectator event will be the Colonel's Truck Accessories Federal Mogul Drag Racing Series Division 5 event June 9-11. This is a later date than last year. It was conducted in May last year.
Quick said he requested these dates to increase the event's attendance.
"I'm just confident with that date in there it's going to be a lot better for us," he said.
-- CBIR also has begun offering gold and silver Colonel's Brainerd International Raceway NHRA Nationals commemorative coins.
-- The track already has issued the first of its five racing brochures with the next one due out within the next few weeks.
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