Friday, April 20, 2012

Dover Announces "Autism Speaks Day at the Races"

Autism Speaks and Dover International Speedway have announced Autism Speaks Day at the Races, a sensory friendly NASCAR event as part of Dover’s June 3, 2012 “FedEx 400 benefiting Autism Speaks” NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race.
The all-inclusive event marks the first-ever autism friendly NASCAR race, giving families an opportunity to experience a NASCAR event in an environment specifically designed for children with autism. Autism Speaks Day at the Races will be held in Dover’s air-conditioned backstretch grandstand, offering a great view of the Monster Mile, and will feature brief presentations by educational speakers in the morning, special appearances by NASCAR personalities, food and drink, and much more.
In addition, the area will offer a dedicated quiet zone, set inside special rooms within the air-conditioned grandstand where parents can bring their children to get away from the crowd, if necessary. The quiet zone will be sensory friendly, with muted lighting and a calm environment, while also featuring video screens to keep up with the action on the track.
Autism Speaks Day at the Races is the latest addition to the ongoing, six-year partnership between Autism Speaks and the Monster Mile. Autism Speaks is the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization, helping to raise funds and awareness for the cause throughout race weekend.
The program will kick off with doors opening at 9:30 a.m., followed by brief presentations on “Living on the Spectrum,” “Autism Speaks in the Community,” a science briefing, a presentation by Autism Delaware and more at 10 a.m. At 11:30 a.m., a hot lunch buffet and non-alcoholic drinks will be served, followed by the green flag for the “FedEx 400 benefiting Autism Speaks” NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at 1 p.m. Additional speakers and NASCAR personalities are being confirmed, and will be announced at
While parental supervision is required, volunteers from Autism Speaks as well as the Alpha Xi Delta sorority at the University of Delaware will be on hand for assistance.
Tickets for Autism Speaks Day at the Races cost $88 for adults and $20 for children ages 14 and younger. The $88 price point is symbolic, as recent studies have shown that one in 88 children are diagnosed with autism by age eight, according to the CDC. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Autism Speaks. To purchase tickets to Autism Speaks Day at the Races, call 800-441-RACE or visit


  1. Anonymous12:39 PM

    As the mother of four sons, two of whom are autistic and all of whom are NASCAR fans, this does sound like the coolest idea ever. My husband and I attend at least one race a year but have never brought the boys, this event could change that. I love it!

  2. The Debster1:40 PM

    only in Nascar Nation would you see something this spectacular
    Great job

  3. What a great idea! Good job NASCAR!

  4. ESPN replayed the feature they did about me(Autistic Racer was the name of the feature-Jeffrey Stanton) from last year. I spend all of my extra time off of the track helping kids with my charity(Jeffreys Toy Closet) and educating others about autism. So much hope exists for kids with autism but so much is still needed to be learned. The connection between the abdominal pain, bowel infections and the connection to the nervous system issues still needs to be identified, though much has been learned. This is so cool what Dover is doing. I hope the other tracks follow. As a youngster I would wear my headsets and flag out at CMS right next to the flaggers stand dreaming of a day when I could race. I was told I couldn't because I have autism. This is where education and God comes into play. I now race legends and soon will be in a modified and LM. Because of NASCAR and INEX and God I have come so far. My parents used these forms of racing as a tool to help my social skills and all the struggles I had with autism. They have literally watched me grow over the years with less and less autism symptoms. My doctors are truly amazed how well I have done! Dover and Autism Speaks needs to be applauded!