Friday, September 28, 2012

Free Admission to Area Museum on Smithsonian Magazine's 8th Annual Museum Day

On Saturday, September 29, 2012, the Historic Railpark and Train Museum, and the National Corvette Museum will participate in the eighth annual Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day. The Museums will join other participating museums and cultural institutions nationwide to open their doors free of charge to all visitors who download the Museum Day Ticket from A journey to celebrate our world’s dynamic heritage and cultural life, participating Museum Day venues emulate the free admission policy of the Smithsonian Institution’s Washington, D.C.-based facilities.

The Historic RailPark & Train Museum takes a step back in time to the golden era of passenger service. A guided tour of vintage railcars showcases the workings of a Post Office Car, Dining Car and Sleeper Car. The self-guided tour of the two story museum immerses visitors into the cultural story of the railroad including two new exhibits. "Hobo Times explores the life of the Hobo with the secret language interpreted into quilts by Creative Quilters Guild," said Sharon Tabor, Executive Director of the Railpark. "The Civil War and the Railroad includes personal stories, models and antique photography," she added.

Visitors to the National Corvette Museum will enjoy the special "September 11, 2001: A Global Moment" exhibit on loan from the New York State Museum, plus a new 1,000 square foot KidZone. "We are an ever-changing Museum and no two visits with us are the same," said Katie Frassinelli, Corvette Museum Marketing Manager. "We are more than just Corvette, offering a little something for everyone."

The Museum Day Ticket is available to download at Visitors who present the official pass will gain free admission for two people to one participating museum or cultural venue of their choice. One ticket is permitted per household, per email address. Listings and links to participating museums’ and sponsors’ sites can be found at

Monday, September 24, 2012

Hendrick Automotive Group Contributes to NCM Motorsports Park; Track Designer Hired

The National Corvette Museum Motorsports Park project recently got a major boost.  NASCAR great, Rick Hendrick, through the Hendrick Automotive Group, is making a $100,000 contribution to the NCM Motorsports Park. As owner of Hendrick Motorsports, his teams have collected 10 Sprint Cup Series Championships and over 200 NASCAR victories. While Rick knows racing, he is also a great friend to the National Corvette Museum with a real interest in the Motorsports Park as a recreational and educational facility.

“The National Corvette Museum celebrates an American original and one of the most iconic cars ever made,” said Rick Hendrick, chairman of Hendrick Automotive Group and owner of NASCAR’s Hendrick Motorsports. “Racing is in the Corvette DNA, so the addition of the Motorsports Park is an exciting next step for the NCM facility. Being associated with the track’s message of education and safety is something we’re proud of, and we look forward to taking some laps when it’s completed. The Museum is already a very special place for Corvette and racing enthusiasts, and this new project will grow that reputation even more.”

Museum Executive Director, Wendell Strode, is thankful for the support and all that it means.  “We are grateful for this generous contribution and thrilled by what this donation represents. Coming from one of the most successful individuals in NASCAR history, this is a real confirmation that all of our hard work, planning, and fundraising activity is beginning to get the attention of people who understand and appreciate the full potential of the NCM Motorsports Park. As we continue to move forward, we are confident that validations like this one will lead to increased involvement from sponsors, race teams, and motorsports organizations who will want to be a part of this exciting project.”

In other exciting news, Steve Crawford has been selected as the park’s track designer. Steve’s first track opened nearly 40 years ago, and since then he has designed the Thunderhill Motorsports Park in Willows, CA and more recently, The Ridge Motorsports Park in Shelton, WA.

“We were immediately impressed by Steve’s initiative while still in the interview phase,” said Wendell. “He had already started coming up with sketches as soon as he saw the layout of the land that we had to work with. He was on board from the beginning with the idea of working with Corvette Racing to build in features from Le Mans, Watkins Glen and the Nurburgring.”

With the uniqueness of the track and special features recommended by Corvette Racing designed into it, the track can be used as a test facility for all of the American Le Mans and Grand Am teams. The possibility of some NASCAR teams using it for road course practice has also been discussed.

In addition to the track design and facilities, the close proximity to hotels, restaurants, shopping and such is also appealing to motorsports enthusiasts.

Steve plans to have the track design finished by the end of the year. He will then work with the Museum’s local civil engineering firm, DDS Engineering, to prepare bid documents for the track – a process which is expected to take two to three months to complete. Bid packages should be ready by the end of the first quarter of 2013.

“Of course, continued fundraising is the key issue that will influence whether we send those bid packages out and have our ground breaking in time for the Bash,” said Wendell.  “At this point we are still confident that this will happen but need individuals and clubs to keep the momentum going with donations of any amount. We had six new participants step forward to take part in our Buy an Acre Campaign during our last event. Each time someone steps up to do this, whether it is an individual, a club or organization, it not only gives us the ability to move forward financially, but it also shows prospective sponsors something about how much the Corvette community wants this track to happen. You built this world-class Museum, so your support of this track is a powerful endorsement to potential sponsors,” he added.

For more information on the National Corvette Museum’s Motorsports Park and to see a short video on the plans, visit

Monday, September 10, 2012

'Celebrate My Drive' With Free Teen Driving Event Saturday

On Saturday, September 15, 2012, State Farm is hosting Celebrate My Drive events across the U.S. and Canada, creating one special day for communities to rally around new drivers as they explore the road ahead.  One such local community event will be from 10am-3pm at the National Corvette Museum.

“The regional State Farm office approached us early this spring wanting to see how they could partner with us on our teen driving programs,” said Katie Frassinelli, Marketing and Communications Manager at the National Corvette Museum.  “Like us, State Farm has an interest in keeping our teens safe on the roads, and the programs we offer both through the driving simulators and our car care and maintenance seminars were a great fit for their Teen Driving efforts.  State Farm is supporting the Museum with grant funding for this event, the texting while driving virtual reality simulator, and additional resources for our ongoing teen driver classes.”

Activities at Saturday’s event include a golf cart course using Fatal Vision goggles, basic vehicle maintenance seminars, door prize drawings, driving simulator demos every 30 minutes, vendor booths and a mock crash by the Warren County Sheriff’s Office.  The Museum and State Farm have also rented the P.E.E.R.S. Foundation Virtual Reality Simulator – Aware TXT. The simulator is designed to teach students the dangers of texting and driving, the consequences of their actions, how to make the right choice and to provide them with a hands-on demonstration on the simulator.

Families are welcome to drop in for a few activities, or stay for the entire event.  All Celebrate My
Drive activities are free, and reduced rate Museum admission is available for those participating who would also like to tour the exhibit areas.  A complete schedule with more details is available online at:

State Farm’s website also has many resources for teen drivers and their families. Log on to to learn more.