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Maple Grove revved up for 50th anniversary celebration

By Kimberly Davidow, Reporter
Published On: Jun 22 2012 03:09:40 PM CDT
Updated On: Jun 22 2012 04:52:59 PM CDT

A race track in Berks County will be celebrating its 50th anniversary this weekend.

BRECKNOCK TWP., Pa. -

A race track in Berks County will be celebrating its 50th anniversary this weekend.

Maple Grove Raceway will be filled with thousands of fans to witness the weekend unfold.

It has taken a year of preparation for employees and staff at Maple Grove in Brecknock Twp., Berks Co., to plan festivities to celebrate the track's 50th anniversary.

"We've done a lot of work on the actual race surface this week with scrapping the rubber off, prepping the track. A lot of painting, a lot of cleaning," said Lex Dudas, vice president and general manager of Maple Grove Raceway.

Today, Maple Grove Raceway continues to be owned by family members of the raceway's founder, Alfred Staufferd. In 1962, the raceway became a member of the National Hot Rod Association.

As the years have gone by, Dudas said, it has become known for hosting entertaining, exciting drag racing shows as part of the NHRA Full Throttle Series.

On Saturday, gates will open at noon.

"We have jet dragsters. We have jet funny cars. We have a wheel standard of the jet truck, which is a phenomenal show," said Dudas.

Drivers will be drag racing at speeds over 230 miles per hour, said Dudas, along the raceway's 1,320 foot track.

Over the years, the beloved raceway, Dudas said, has brought millions of people to the county. It has also been a constant driver of the local economy.

"We feel that we really support the community with our out-of-towners that come in and eat in local restaurants, go to the convenient stores, stay in hotels," said Dudas.

During the weekend celebration, Dudas said the past, present and future faces of drag racing will witness an event that will rev their engines.

"We're bringing back all of our Walk of Fame Inductees and we'll induct a new class tomorrow evening. We want the fans to come here and have a good time," said Dudas.