Island Gravity Challenge Race Aug. 29

Fans of soapbox derby-type racing should be sure to attend the 17th annual Whidbey Island Challenge Series Race set for Saturday, Aug. 29, beginning at 10 a.m. on SE Barrington Drive.

For the past 17 years, the Rotary Club of North Whidbey Island Sunrise has sponsored the race which gives kids with disabilities the opportunity to experience the thrill of downhill racing.

Two youngsters are seated in a sleek, bright, shiny soapbox derby-style car. The children participating will co-drive the car with a peer who has been trained to steer and stop the derby car.

Drivers and parents should check in at the Puget Sound Energy building at 9 a.m.

The Challenge Series is a community service project of Sunrise Rotary, and many other groups will be present to lend a helping hand.

Assistance is coming from the City of Oak Harbor, Oak Harbor Public Works, Oak Harbor Fire and Police Departments, Oak Harbor School District, Kathy and Butch Laurion and the Leo Finnegan Family.

The Oak Harbor cheerleaders, NJROTC Color Guard and Jus’ Wally the Clown will provide a cheering section for this annual spectacle. Friends and family are encouraged to join the fun, and cheer for the racers in the grandstand on SE Barrington by the post office. Eat some hot dogs, laugh at Jus’ Wally the clown and watch the awards ceremony.

Everyone get ready for a day of clowns, food, fun and miles of smiles.

For information, contact Sandra Crank Mulkey at 675-5347, 675-3755, or email

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