I live in one of the cities where NASCAR is like a god. Not far from my house here is the Dale Earnhardt Memorial Trail. It's where he lived for a good portion of his life. I live about 10 minutes from the Lowe's Motor Speedway and our church has a building down almost literally right next door to the speedway (imagine the backyard bar b que's we could have w/ them...). And yet, through all of this, I wouldn't spend probably more than a day at this place. I'm just not a big NASCAR fan at all! Then again, i'm not a big pro sports fan at all. I'm pro salary caps at $50 annually. I'm sorry, but i don't see the justification in paying someone millions of dollar a year to drive a car around a track or get a ball through a hoop... i just have a hard time w/ the justification of it. To me, NASCAR truly is a Non Athletic Sport Centered Around Rednecks. That isn't to say anything bad about 'rednecks'. Not even sure where that term originated from....
But at least twice a year, here in Concord, NC, thousands of people descend upon the town here to watch a race. The speedway holds around 200,000 people and the grounds around the speedway are filled with visitors. And i've been in there about 2 times thus far. And you can hear the race from miles away. And since i used to work at Wal-Mart, during the time of the race, our beer sales would sky rocket.
Now, in their defense, i would like to mention that most of the race fans were actually some of the most enjoyable people to be around. They were laid back and just out to have a good time. So in that, i did somewhat like having them in town. They came in with their RV's and gave our town business.
But i was talking w/ a buddy of mine on the phone yesterday and he and his family were invited to a race at the nearby dirt track. (The dirt track and the actual speedway are two separate tracks. the speedway itself is where the major races take place and the dirt track are where some of the small ones are at.) But i know from experience that during the times of the race, you don't want to be driving anywhere near the speedway. Now, i will say this: during this time, FIRE does sell parking spots to race fans. so we do capitalize off of it. I'm not talking about $2-3 per spot, i'm talking like a minimum of $15 per spot. I told some of the guys in our church here who are from Canada and technically, they can't officially work. but i told them they should go and buy bottled water and resell it. You could buy a 12 pack of water and then resell it for $1/bottle. And trust me, people will pay it. (not to make a slant against some of the race fans, but some of them might be a little too drunk to know whats going.) ((As i mentioned earlier, these weeks aren't know for their times of when alcohol sales are down, but up.))
Throughout all of this, part of me would love to go and just walk around at the camp grounds down there and get to know people. My heart does break for them. Probably a good portion of them are folks w/o a Savior. This wouldn't be a time when i would just send a group of girls down there to minister, but go with a bunch of folks and just reach out to them. See what types of needs they have. All in all, it would be a great time to go check out the scene and see how we can be the more pro-active as far as Christendom goes.