The Wacky Races. It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World. And, what do you know, The Great Race.

Respectively, they are a cartoon from my youth, a madcap all-star comedy adventure from 1963, and a madcap all-star comedy adventure from 1965. And, I am reminded of all of them--particularly that last one for obvious reasons--when news of the annual Great Race appears before my eyes.

The Great Race 2024 Will Begin in Owensboro

And this time, when it appeared, I learned that the 40-year-old event will return to downtown Owensboro, but this time, the city will be the starting point. The 2,300-mile long race will end near Augusta ME. I've driven it in three days. The racers will have nine. By the way, you will hear from David Kirk that, as a starting location, Owensboro is some good company.

The organizers of the event were so impressed with the city when it was chosen as the 2021 kickoff point that they have brought their Great Race back to town. Incredibly exciting news.

The History of the Great Race

If you are not familiar with the Great Race, then let's get you that way. It actually began way back in 1982 as the Great American Race from Los Angeles to Indianapolis for a $250,000 purse. Two friends, Tom McRae and Curtis Graf, signed up for the race and learned that they were the only two who had. So McRae pulled in a third party, Norman Miller, and in a partnership transaction purchased the race from the original promoter. The first Great Race ran in 1983.

The Great Race -- Different Courses Through the Years

The 1984 race was also from L.A. to Indy, but over the years, the routes changed. Participants found themselves on courses from Norfolk to Seattle, Anaheim to Orlando (Disney to Disney), an even Ottawa to Mexico City.

In 2021, the Great Race began in San Antonio TX and finished in Greenville SC. And along the way, the drivers came through Owensboro.

And in 2024, Owensboro will prepare for its first time hosting the start of the Great Race.

I can't wait.


The long-awaited musical lineup is taking shape, as Friday After 5 prepares for a great 27th season with amazing bands, a couple of historic announcements, along with new community and tourism partnerships.
To keep up to date, visit and download the free app to follow the full lineup of events times, and stages for this wonderful family fun-filled “Art of Music” season from May 19, 2023 – Sept 1, 2023.



Kentucky is home to the world's largest outdoor go-kart track in the world and a huge arcade and it is within driving distance from the Tri-State called Kart Kountry

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