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Race Track Update at Fairgrounds Grandstand


By Lucky Kidd


HUTCHINSON, Kan.  — The Kansas State Fair Board Thursday agreed to accept proposals through Oct. 31 on options for the race track at the Fairgrounds Grandstand. Last November the board voted to move forward with a plan to take out the half mile dirt oval as part of an overall master plan for that area. 

Two members of the public addressed the board during the meeting. Van Gimmel said it’s his opinion the historic track still has a lot of potential for the future, noting it was how he and many others were brought to the fair.

Williams Myers of Medora said the people he’s talked to at the fair have said they oppose removal of the track and asked that expanded public input be sought prior to making any final decisions. Myers also said the track was present well before any other development in the area of the fairgrounds.

In July, race car driver and Larned Mayor William Nusser asked the fair board to reconsider that decision, from which a local group to save the track has come together. Last week Wichita auto dealer Phil Nightingale said he is willing to put together a plan to keep a track of some sort at the fairgrounds.

As of now, this item will be back before the Fair Board at their Nov. 14 meeting in Hutchinson. This meeting will be at the fairgrounds, specific time and location will be publicized. 

State Representative Paul Waggoner, who has been working with track supporters, was also at the meeting.