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Bristol Motor Speedway, Food City team up for Gatlinburg relief efforts

Wildfires Rage Through Tennessee Resort Town Of Gatlinburg

GATLINBURG, TN - NOVEMBER 29: Trevor Cates, walks through the smoldering remains of the fellowship hall of his church, the Banner Missionary Baptist Church as he inspects damage after a widfire November 29, 2016 in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Thousands of people have been evacuated from the area and over 100 houses and businesses were damaged or destroyed. Drought conditions and high winds helped the fire spread through the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)

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Earlier this week, thousands of people were evacuated from Sevier County in East Tennessee and three people were killed as wildfires ravaged the areas around the resort towns of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge.

Now Bristol Motor Speedway, located about 126 miles northeast of Gatlinburg, is teaming up with long-time sponsor Food City to help in relief efforts while opening one of its campground to those displaced by the wildfires.

On Tuesday the track and grocery store chain announced at a Food City location in Bristol, Virginia, details of their plans to lend a helping hand.

  • This Thursday through next Wednesday (Dec. 7), Food City will accept cash donations for fundraising efforts at participating locations in Kentucky, Virginia and East Tennessee. Customers wishing to make a monetary donation will be invited to do so at the checkout, with the contribution conveniently added to their order total. 100 percent of the funds raised will benefit the Gatlinburg/Sevier County Relief Fund.
  • Food City kicks off the efforts with a $50,000 contribution to the Sevier Co. Relief Fund and delivered a tractor-trailer full of beverages to relief workers and those in need.
  • The Pinnacle Speedway in Lights will have red buckets available for monetary donations at the ticket booths beginning this Thursday. BMS will match all proceeds from Thursday’s Speedway in Lights towards the relief efforts.
  • BMS’ Medallion campground will be open free of charge to displaced RV residents and campers from the Sevier County wildfires. The lot offers complimentary camping spaces with full water and electrical hook-up at no charge. Those interested should call 423-BRISTOL.
  • Anyone interested in making a monetary donation via Bristol Motor Speedway can call or visit the main ticket office at the O. Bruton Smith Building during normal business hours. (Monday -Thursday: 9 a.m.- 8 p.m. ET, Friday: 9 a.m.- 7 p.m. ET and Saturday. 10 a.m.- 5 p.m ET).

“While we can’t undo the damage from wildfires, we can all play a major role in relief efforts by donating money,” said Jerry Caldwell, executive vice president and general manager at Bristol Motor Speedway at ht emedia event. “Gatlinburg and Sevier County hold a special place in the hearts of NASCAR fans, Food City and all of us at Bristol Motor Speedway and Dragway. When you visit the Speedway this holiday season, we encourage you to bring along a little something extra to help our neighbors in need.”

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