According to the posts in this racing forum, there are several local people who have begun an effort to make the old Benton airstrip into the new Benton dragstrip.
Local racers hopeful for a dragstrip on old Benton airport (City) property.
Meeting at the Benton Airstrip
Drag Strip In Benton Arkansas
RALLY @ BENTON AIRPORT…more info
Local racers hopeful for a dragstrip on old Benton airport (City) property.
Meeting at the Benton Airstrip
Drag Strip In Benton Arkansas
RALLY @ BENTON AIRPORT…more info
I know we have some MySaline members who are interested in racing. What do you guys think? Brad? Donna? Anyone else?
Replies to This Discussion:
- —–Brad Moore on January 18, 2008 at 3:49pm
My world’s are colliding (LOL!).
—–Brad Moore on January 23, 2008 at 11:20am
You know, like nunchuku skills, bow hunting skills, computer hacking skills… Girls only want boyfriends who have great skills.
Oh – wrong thread. Where is “Movie Quote War”?
—–Shelli Poole on January 23, 2008 at 12:09pm
Are you drinking 1% because you think you need to decrease your car weight? I like your fenders – they’re real big. I betcha I can throw this football faster than that Firebird can go 1000 feet.
—–Brad Moore on January 23, 2008 at 1:09pm
Shelli is ruining my life. GOSH!
—–Brad Moore on January 21, 2008 at 10:06am
There is some confusion on what is actually being proposed. When this opportunity was intially discussed with me, I was told a large group of Benton/Central Arkansas street racers wanted to set up their electronic timing equipment and run their cars on a Friday night. All of the cars would be street legal, there would be no lease agreement and there would be no requirement for rezoning.
Now, we insert the words “Drag Strip” and Bentonites have become very nervous. Also, according to the Dema-Zette, a rezoning ordinance and lease agreement would be necessary.
It seems odd that the governing body of the City of Benton is the one group that has the least amount of information concerning this opportunity.
—–Shelly Mann on January 21, 2008 at 10:04pm
As you know; Nathan Mann is the person behind this idea. He had a scheduled meeting with the Benton City Council on Jan. 10th but for some reason it was cancelled. We heard from outside sources that is was cancelled in hopes of the “problem” going away. Nathan was never given the opportunity to present his idea to you or any other council member. So whoever discussed this with you misrepresented themselves as the actual person with the idea. Nothing was ever said about a “local group of Benton/Central Arkansas street racers” wanting to use the strip ocassionaly with their timing equipment. If that was “proposed” to you then that would put the City of Benton at risk for liability if one of those street racers got hurt or killed. Just because the words drag strip are used doesn’t mean the cars that would be ran would be full fledged NHRA dragsters. What would be ran are legal, licensed, registered & insured vehicles. A good example would be your Mayor’s daughters’ car; which she drives to school on a daily basis. The goal we are trying to reach is this: giving people a place to race legally; not on the street. As for the question you asked on another board; “do we know that having this would bring in cars outside of Central Arkansas?” Yes; we do. It is apparent on all the other forums we visit; I will post links so you can check them out yourself; that non-Central Arkansas racers would attend. We have talked to people from Texarkana, Alma, Fayetteville, Fort Smith, Russellville, Pine Bluff, Austin…I could go on but it would take up to much room. I think this covers the area outside of Central Arkansas.
The city of Benton will not incur any expenses if this is approved. Nathan; with a few investors; plan on paying for the entire project out of their pockets. This was said in the first meeting Nathan had with the Mayor on Jan. 8th.
As far as the rezoning issue; why is this such an problem? And the lease agreement; if the City of Benton can make money from having a track plus the revenue coming into the local businesses why would the City of Benton have a problem with it? If the “Bentonites” are concerned about noise, rowdiness (sp?) then we invite them out to our rally this Saturday the 26th to see just what kind of “race cars” that would be coming in. We also invite you & all the council members to come out & see for yourselves just how much interest there is, how much revenue could be brought in and how civil racers are as a group.
We do not want a war with the council or the citizens of Benton. We do not want to cause problems either. We just want the opportunity to prove that this could be a good thing for the CIty Benton, it’s businesses & the racers.
If any one reading this has questions or concerns; please fell free to email me or call.
Links to other forums on this subject: ( there are six links )
—–Shelli Poole on January 21, 2008 at 10:16pm
Hey Shelly, thanks for taking some of the confusion off the matter. When it’s an exciting issue, word gets around fast, even if it might be the wrong word sometimes! Barring disaster, I’ve already told my husband that I want to be there on Saturday January 26th from 10am until??
—–Shelly Mann on January 21, 2008 at 10:28pm
We hope to see you there Shelli. Please come find me when you get there; I’d love to meet you and your family. When word spreads like it has on this issue you can’t always be sure that it’s 100% fact. I’ve always thought it was best to go to the source and find out first hand.
I will be keeping an eye on this post for the next few days; just curious as to what people really think about it.
—–Shelly Mann on January 21, 2008 at 10:24pm
Thank you Cliff. I appreciate that. I try not to get on the defensive about things; I’ve learned from past issues that anger & attitude never sovle anything. All we can do is hope for a fair opportunity to voice our idea & that the outcome is in the favor of the racers.
—–Brad Moore on January 22, 2008 at 9:00am
Thank you for your reply. As you know, I am a huge race fan and will give the proposal every consideration. I am also a member of the Benton Advertising and Promotion Commission and can see the potential of creating multi-day events to drive guests to our restaurants and hotels.
The January 10th meeting you refer to was a committee meeting that included a few members of the City Council. That meeting was not cancelled (I was in a separate meeting in the room next door). Not sure what happened that night but I wonder if the dragstrip issue was on the agenda for that committee? If not, the members of the committee may not have been prepared to discuss the issue. As I said, I was in a different meeting across the hall.
All members of the City Council meet in regular session with The Mayor the second and fourth Monday of the month. The next meeting will be Monday, January 28 – the deadline to place items on the agenda for that meeting is this Thursday, January 24, I believe (not sure because of the MLK holiday).
If the proposal requires rezoning the property (it seems odd that a rezone is required since the property was once a small municipal airport – planes make noise and pollution too), there are multiple steps required to make that happen:
-Notifying all land owners within 300′ – 500′ of the affected property
-Notifying the public via local media outlets
-Submitting your request to the Benton Planning and Zoning Commission
-If approved at P&Z, a public hearing (or hearings) will be held
-If approved at P&Z, the rezone must be approved by the City Council by ordinance on 3 readings
The multiple step process is what I was referring to in a previous post and on a separate message board (“a long row to hoe”). Also, according to some of the chatter on other message boards regarding this issue, there will not be enough space for a 1/4 mile dragstrip which diminishes its appeal (according to other racers).
As a member of the Benton City Council, these are the ADVANTAGES as I seen them:
-The property is in the vicinity of Benton’s industrial park (industry is noisy)
-The property was once an airport (area residents are familiar with the noise)
-The property has quick and convenient access to Interstate 30
-You can tout an increase in tax revenues
-“It’s all about the kids”
-A drag strip would add to Benton’s “uniqueness”
-Racers are good people
-It would be a venue for a racer fundraiser project for Benton charities
-Your concession stand will be a source of revenue for the Benton A&P Commission (offset with the decrease in revenue at our restaurants)
-Racing events draw spectators – we want more spectators
Following is a listing of DISADVANTAGES as I see them:
-The property is adjacent to a church
-The property is adjacent to (2) city parks (lots of traffic on the weekends)
-The property is adjacent to a large residential area
-Hopefully, the property will be adjacent to the Benton Events Center (lots of traffic on the weekends)
-The property is adjacentt to the Saline County Fairgrounds (lots of traffic on the weekends)
-10 acres have been pledged for economic development which has created a lot of interest with the Arkansas Economic Development Commission. All 28.3 acres are touted for economic development (jobs) by the Saline County Economic Development Corporation:
-9 acres have been offered to the Benton Parks Commission
-A drag strip was never a part of the master plan for this 28 acre tract (not to say it couldn’t be)
-The proposal went to the media before it came to Benton P&Z (could be an advantage too)
-Race track owners make money at the concession stand – your concession stand will take revenue away from our restaurants (diminishes one of your advantages). I’m an experienced race fan
—–Brad Moore on January 22, 2008 at 9:43am
Mysaline.com cut me off at the corner!
—–Bud Lidzy on January 21, 2008 at 10:38am
I’m puzzled as to what exactly will take place. I love racing and used to do it at Centerville and then Little Rock. The article in the Courier stated that the church wasn’t too happy and it also stated that all cars would have mufflers. Having a muffler would keep out the serious folks. I raced one with a muffler but loved to watch the “big biys” run. Someday I might build one… BTW, that is my son racing in the Red Camaro
- —–Bud Lidzy on January 27, 2008 at 8:43am
Fantastic article and editorial in the Courier this Sunday am.
—–chad allen on January 27, 2008 at 4:52pm
I saw some great looking cars. That many people has got to help the city of Benton with revnue. Maybe they can fix some of there streets with some of the revnue.
If they don’t let them put that track in Benton people don’t have the level of intelligences I thought.
—–Jeff Williams on January 27, 2008 at 10:58pm
Man. I just wish I still had my eclipse…except in running condition. I’d love to race again or even watch, I’d pay to watch. It’s too far to drive to Centerville or Prescott. Locals could race local and not spend $50 in high octane just to get to the track and back. Besides, I’d rather see street legal rides going at it anyway.
—–KC Jr 54 on January 28, 2008 at 2:01am
Hi, i am Kenneth Collins (aka KC Jr 54) from arrides.com I have been following all this as closely as i can, and am willing to try to help as much as possible. I talk to Nathan a little bit Saturday, and an online petition was disucssed. I have started one, and just wanted to share the link with all of you.
Please if you are for this pass this link around to everyone you know. Thank You !!!
(Also for those who have facebook, search for the petitions app, and then look for the info and invite your friends that way as well!)
—–Shelly Mann on January 28, 2008 at 7:50am
You need to edit your petition. It is the Old Watts Field. Not Mann Field. We don’t own the property the city does. Thank you.
—–Brad Moore on January 28, 2008 at 3:52pm
Arkansas Code Annotated (ACA) 8-10-303
Enviromental Permitting Requirements for the Construction of Motor Vehicle Racing Facilities
8-10-303. Permit requirement.
(a) (1) (A) Due to the noise pollution and air pollution from the racing vehicles and traffic congestion caused by motor vehicle racing facilities, no motor vehicle racing facility shall be constructed in this state after passage of this section without the consent of at least seventy-five percent (75%) of the property owners and seventy-five percent (75%) of the registered voters within three (3) miles of the outside boundary of the proposed facility and without an annual permit issued by the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality.
(B) The consent shall be required for the initial annual permit only.
(2) (A) Consent shall be accomplished by signing petitions which shall be filed with the city clerk if the facility is to be located within the boundaries of any city or town or with the county clerk if the facility is to be located wholly or partially outside the boundaries of any city or town.
(B) The petitions shall indicate:
(i) The name;
(ii) The residence address or, if a nonresident property owner, the address or legal description of the property located within the three-mile area; and
(iii) The date of the signature.
(C) (i) The petitions must be verified pursuant to § 7-9-109.
(ii) Signatures shall become invalid sixty (60) days after signing.
(iii) It shall be the duty of the county clerk or city clerk, as the case may be, to determine the sufficiency of the signatures and to certify the sufficiency or insufficiency of the signatures in writing to the department.
(3) (A) (i) Once the sufficiency of the petitions is determined, the persons or entity proposing and constructing a motor vehicle racing facility after August 1, 1997, shall seek the approval of and issuance of an annual permit from the department. The department’s approval shall be sought by filing a permit application with the department.
(ii) Initial permit applications for new facilities to be constructed shall have attached a written proposal for the motor vehicle facility containing the substance of the proposed facility, including:
(a) A description of the types of motor vehicles proposed for racing at the facility;
(b) The maximum projected noise level of the racing vehicles;
(c) A description of the kinds of races and the types of buildings, stands, or other physical plant proposed for the facility;
(d) Estimates of traffic counts and numbers of spectators; and
(e) Any other relevant permit information as may be determined necessary for the permit application by the department.
(B) For the initial permit application for new facilities to be constructed, the department shall conduct a public hearing on the proposed motor vehicle racing facility. The department shall set a date for the public hearing to be held on the proposed facility permit which shall not be less than thirty (30) days after the filing of the initial permit application. The hearing under subdivision (a)(3)(B) of this section for the initial permit may be adjourned and continued if necessary. In its discretion, the department may hold public hearings for the renewal of any permits as is necessary. Any interested persons may appear and contest the granting of the approval or renewal of the facility permit. Affidavits in support of or against the proposed facility or a permit renewal, which may be prepared and submitted, shall be examined by the department.
(C) After the hearing for the initial permit or upon application for the renewal of its annual permit, if the department shall be satisfied that the benefits of the motor vehicle racing facility are sustained by proof and outweigh its impact by the noise, air pollution, and traffic congestion caused by motor vehicle racing facilities, then the department shall grant the initial permit approving the proposed facility or shall renew approval to the permitted or existing facility. Renewal of an annual permit may also be denied if:
(i) The racing facility is determined to be in violation of any standards under which the permit was issued;
(ii) The racing facility is constructed or is being operated in a manner that is materially different than was represented during the petition process; or
(iii) Fraud, misrepresentation, or false statement of facts was used to obtain signatures for the petition process.
(D) If any material changes, additions, or improvements are made to the motor vehicle racing facility, the permit shall be amended accordingly, and the department may reconsider the approval of the permit.
(E) The Arkansas Pollution Control and Ecology Commission shall have the authority to promulgate all necessary rules and regulations to implement this section, including the authority to set a permit fee to recover the cost of issuing the permit.
(b) As used in this section, “motor vehicle racing facility” means any facility designed and used for competitive racing by automobiles or trucks that are modified for racing.
(c) Within one (1) year of August 1, 1999, each motor vehicle racing facility constructed in Arkansas after January 1, 1995, shall apply for and shall receive an initial annual permit to operate its motor vehicle racing facility. Thereafter, upon the annual renewal date for its permit, the motor vehicle racing facility constructed after January 1, 1995, shall apply annually for renewal of its permit.
History. Acts 1997, No. 551, § 1; 1999, No. 674, § 2; 1999, No. 1164, §§ 117, 118; 2005, No. 1409, § 2.
—–Shelli Poole on January 28, 2008 at 4:31pm
he he he he!
—–chad allen on January 29, 2008 at 9:47am
Wonder how many of the Churches & People that oppose the Drag Strip will oppose serving & selling Liquor in Benton??
Not that many I’m sure,since most people Drink Alcohol products of some kind.
—–Brad Moore on January 29, 2008 at 11:04am
Pure Vanilla Extract is an alcohol product – 80 proof from what I understand.
—–Lee Nickols on January 29, 2008 at 12:37pm
good point. Also coffee is shown to cause as much or more health risk than alcohol in moderation. BUT hey, I might have some Vanilla Extract around the house. 🙂 I like moonshine. But thats just me.
—–chad allen on January 30, 2008 at 5:56am
I saw some where on here you was 100% for the racers.
So why don’t you check out the results with ADEQ court case with the owner of Two Lane Black Top in Be Branch, Ar. and post it.
—–Brad Moore on January 28, 2008 at 4:37pm
I would presume Saline County’s population in 1990 was < 80,000.
—–chad allen on January 30, 2008 at 5:25am
The argument about a street legal race track has already been in the courts with Two Lane Black Top at Bee Branch check the results.
—–Brad Moore on January 30, 2008 at 9:40am
Where is Bee Branch? What is the length of the facility “Two Lane Black Top”?
—–Ryan on January 30, 2008 at 10:53am
Bee Branch, AR – 1/8 mile with limited shut down room.
—–chad allen on January 30, 2008 at 3:00pm
Also Newport,AR. has a street legal track that has opened.
Are you for or againest the track in Benton.
—–Brad Moore on January 30, 2008 at 6:50pm
I can’t be for or against a proposal that I have not seen.
The are a number of good opportunities for Watts Field, I want to choose the best one.
Do you have a copy of the proposal?
—–chad allen on January 30, 2008 at 8:24pm
I have not seen any proposal either, but I do know that what these people are offering is to give us a choice of entertainment that we don’t have.And just mabe it will help keep some teen from getting killed street racing, while helping bring in a little revenue to Benton.
If it were golf or something else I’m sure nobody would care. But a few people don’t understand what street legal racing is, so they start crying and complaining.
I think I saw were someone said that Benton did not have a problem with street racing if that is true they are the only town that I know of that doesn’t.
What are all of these opportunties that Benton has for Watts Field if you have one better I don’t blame you, but if you don’t I’m sure people will remember this, I know the racers will.
But I do have a question for you since you have posted the law explain to me what a race modified car is would that be like a Corvette,Mustang or a Viper or what would it be.
—–Brad Moore on January 31, 2008 at 8:24am
It’s a State Law – I’m not sure how ADEQ defines “car modified for racing”. I believe everyone understands a “just off the lot” Corvette, Mustang, Camaro or Viper does not require modifications to go fast. However, you can spend some money at Mann’s or Steve’s and go faster.
I added a K&N Filtercharger to my Dodge Grand Caravan and Nissan Maxima – K&N touts their filter adds up to 20% more horsepower. Does that fit ADEQ’s definition of “modification”?
Please understand the Benton City Council and Mayor Holland have been sitting on their hands waiting for someone to come up with a plan for Watts Field. I have posted those several times and are:
1. Ten acres for a major employer (200 – 2000 jobs).
2. New road off Airlane Drive into Holland Park (done deal)
3. New Parking Lot adjacent to new road (done deal)
4. New fairgrounds
5. New upscale equine/rodeo arena
6. New Benton Events Center
7. I have an architects drawing for soccer and baseball fields on the airstrip
8. New wetlands reclamation near Sunset Lake and the I-30 corridor
When the City of Benton partnered with Holland Chapel Baptist Church to participate in the auction of Watts Field, the 8 concepts listed above were very desirable to both entities. No one considered or discussed a drag strip.
Like I said, there are numerous good options for Watts Field – I want to choose the best (not just something good).
—–Ryan on January 31, 2008 at 3:54pm
Why chose only one? If there’s room to do more than one. The Drag Strip obviously wouldn’t need ALL the land, we just need a bit for stands, concessions, and the pavement. I Could see a events center, rodeo, and fairgrounds fitting in with the strip.
—–chad allen on January 31, 2008 at 8:11pm
Very well put Lee & Ryran:
What will produce 200 to 2000 jobs. There is not enough land to house anything at Watts Field that would hire 2000 people, but I don’t know everything.
Oh! And did you discuss the 8 concepts with all the people of Benton are did the city of Benton just discuss the 8 concepts with the Holland Church.
I talked to the people who are trying to do something for the city of Benton and they told me that they had discussed the park and the new road with someone from city hall and that they still have room for the track.
From what they told me they only want to try this for one year to see if it works for them and the city of Benton. Look at it this way it want cost Benton any money and all of their equipment is portable so what is wrong with that.
But as for it being legal or illegal all you have posted is negative posts why don’t you go to Two Lane Blacktop web site and click on the links history and you may find something of interest. Also you will see where the owner won the court case with the ADEQ. I am forgetting that is not negative sorry.
But I almost forgot you go to Pulaski county to watch the races at I-30 speedway and back them, but you cannot back a track in your home town now how hypocritical can you be.
Also when it comes time for these racers to vote they will remember who voted for and againast this track, and as you already know there will be a lot of them from Benton show at the meeting when it happens
Oh! Yes I almost forgot this track will not cost Benton any money from what the ones wanting to put the track in told me. Will all of these other projects being discussed be done without costing the tax payers of Benton any money, I don’t think so.
If you would do your home work you would find what has been going on with Holland Church. I talked to some young guys that went to the first meeting with the Mayor at the airstrip they said that the church ask them to get off of there parking lot and that they were rude with Mayor and for them not to get back on ther property. I have no reason not to beleave them, because sunday when the services were over they had a emergency business meeting to discuss buying the land where they want the track to be. You know I always thought a church housed christians if I am not mistaken christian means chirst like but maybe I’m wrong, but I do know that Jesus went out among the sinners so I wonder what he would think of this church.
So maybe you need to talk to these people like I did you may be surprised what they have to offer Benton.
—–Brad Moore on February 1, 2008 at 8:22am
A technology center will bring 200 – 2000 jobs. According to the experts, 10 acres is required.
Please list all of my negative posts.
I-30 Speedway fills up the hotels and restaurants in Benton – especially during the Short Track Nationals the last weekend in October. I am a fan.
I look forward to studying the proposal from The Mann’s. There are several options on the table – I want to choose the best one.
—–concerned neighbor on February 1, 2008 at 9:52am
I would like to bring to light that you are speaking in general of the people of Benton. Not all “tax paying – voters” attend church nor to all of us who pay the elevated taxes in this town support the I30 speedway. Personally I detest having to drive by there on my way home from work and breathe the dust and other pollutants that are expelled just for others entertainment. Just remember in your quest for the “Drag Strip” that for everyone who speaks up for it, silently there are more taxpayers who are registered voters who will stand against it.
—–KC Jr 54 on January 29, 2008 at 3:38am
Fixed it. Sorry Shelly, it was super late and my mind wasnt working with obviously.
Also, just wanted to share some of my photos from Saturday:
—–chad allen on February 1, 2008 at 2:11pm
I think I was addressing Brad, to whom I have respect, but people like you are just little people who hide behind screen names and their mommy dress tail.
I could care less what you are onyone like you thinks.
Comparing a street legal drag strip to a dirt track does show your level of intelligence which is none.
I’m sure most every one of the people in Benton pay their taxes and as for the voters time will tell.
I personaly would like to see this track go in for the young people to help get them off the streets racing and give them a place to hang out. I’m sure little people like you could care less about the youth of this country, but someday they will be voters of this country.
I wonder if the Manns have even been notifiyed if not you should have given them time to get their act togather this is Friday.
Sounds like you want to catch them off guard and don’t want them prepared.
The short track nationals are once a year how can you copare it to every weekend. If you went out to the ralley Sat. you would have seen how many was there and that was only a small portion of the racers that were able to come to the rally in 20 degree weather so don’t campare one race a year with every week end.
As for the negative post you only print the part of the law you want people to read look into it and post all of the court rulings so it will be fair to all involved, because most people don’t know of the court rulings, but since you posted the law I asume you all so knew of the court rulings with the ADEQ.
—–Brad Moore on February 1, 2008 at 6:52pm
State Law is neither negative or positve – it’s just the law. Some say the law I posted does not apply to street racers. I don’t know – I’m not a lawyer and I wasn’t aware of the rulings when I posted the law.
Sounds like you don’t know me very well if you presume that I want to sabatoge the Mann’s – your statement is absurd. The meeting was called this morningby the chairman (I am not the chairman) – I posted the date and time immediately.
I presumed everyone knows I-30 Speedway runs every weekend from March to October.
I simply posted information – I do not have a covert plot to overthrow the Mann’s.
Call me at 501-778-3820 if you want to continue this discussion.
—–chad allen on February 1, 2008 at 8:25pm
I did find out that the meeting was called this morning that does make me wrong and I can admit that.
Why would I want to call you if I have something to say to you I can do that here.
If you have other ideas we can make other arrangments anytime.
—–Shelli Poole on January 30, 2008 at 4:22pm
I thought I posted this already but Imust have been drunk on vanilla extract…
If anyone wants a dvd copy of the 30-minute feature from the Jan. 26th drag strip rally that Benton’s Channel 12 produced, you may obtain one by emailing [email protected]
—–Lee Nickols on January 31, 2008 at 4:54pm
You know until all this happens, I have 35 acres of land out where I am . I am going to start packing some of it down to make a dirt track. Ahh should be a blast. Hmm it would be awesome if someone bought the land my wifes family has for sale and it was right next door. THAT WOULD ROCK.
—–Brad Moore on February 1, 2008 at 11:29am
INFORMATION FROM MAYOR HOLLAND’s OFFICE:
The Economic Development Committee will meet Monday, February 4, 2008 @ 6 pm in the Council Chambers.
(1) Buxton Group Retail Study
(2) Retail Convention in Las Vegas in March
(3) Old Airport Property and possible use as Drag Strip
—–KC Jr 54 on February 1, 2008 at 1:00pm
“breathe the dust and other pollutants”
Concerned Neighbor, you complain about a ‘drag-strip’ being put in, yet it is VERY clear you have never been around one. Especially one aimed at street legal only cars. You lived there while there was an airport, so i doubt the noise would bother anymore then that. Especially considering these events would only occur Fri & Sat nights. The airport was 24/7. Be realistic here. Property value !? Are you kidding me, across the nation property values are dropping, and Benton is no different. If anything the dozen or so EMPTY buildings around you in addition to I-30 being in your backyard has already done more to hurt that then anything else would. If anything the dragstrip could bring life BACK to those empty buildings, in turn increasing your property value.
Also, about the ‘dust and pollutants’…..you think a dragstrip would produce a lot of this ?! Just wait until they build that factory in that spot to accommodate 200-2000 jobs.
The church has been extremely close minded about this from everything i have heard. I had friends down at the first meetings, and as Christians they were down right appauld at the behavior and actions. The church treated them like down right criminals, and even then i have seen churches except those people.
I really wish a church member would get in on this and give their point of view on the situation.
—–Lee Nickols on February 1, 2008 at 3:59pm
wow unbelievable the response to this issue. Let me say this Brad. I respect all that you are trying to do in Benton. I would LOVE to see a drag strip HOWEVER if its found to be more profitable or in the best interest of Benton to do something else so be it.
I do know this. all I see from the Mann side is a very organized well presented proposal and if my ranting has in any way detracted from what they are trying to do I am sorry.
When it comes down to it, I am for SALINE Co. and I feel privileged to be here. After living in NLR in a bad area I love being in a place that is full of great people and great possibilities. I believe you are a great help to that Brad and I will support and defend Saline with all I do.
I am sorry if I made it sound otherwise from my postings. I get wound up sometimes but I know you have a very hard job and some people will be happy with your decisions and some will not.
I think the Mann’s are doing things the right way and I look forward to whatever we have at the AIRSTRIP.
—–Jill Jones—–Jill Jones on February 1, 2008 at 11:45pm
Wow…takes a big man to apologize, and you have my respect for it! We all have varying opinions and concerns based on many factors in our own lives and backgrounds. A civil debate is always welcome, and I, for one, am glad that Shelli has created a place where our city councils, mayors, and civic leaders can get a glimpse into what is on the minds of all Saline County residents. I enjoy these forums very much, and hope that the site continues to grow with like-minded people, by like-minded I mean that the common denominator is not that we always agree, but that we love where we live, and only want the best for our communities.
—–Brad Moore on February 2, 2008 at 7:52am
I am excited by the possible uses of Benton’s portion of the airstrip at Watts Field. Citizens were highly critical of The Benton City Council for spending the $535K for 28.5 acres; however, the purchase price was a bargain and now we have set up Benton with “options”.
Options are good.
p.s. call me sometime
—–chad allen on February 3, 2008 at 8:02pm
I hope the judge reads this post because the dust and mud bowel of Ar. is Mt. Ida Rd.
All have a good week.
Brad; options are always good.
I hope the Manns have a good proposal for you’all to look at.
—–Zach on February 5, 2008 at 3:23am
Chad, I am in full support of the dragstrip… I however cannot agree with your constant badgering of Brad Moore. It seems as if you have an argument for anything he says. To me its portraying a poor image for the support of the track, not only the badgering but some of your statements are very ignorant. Do us all a favor and tone it down.
—–KC Jr 54 on February 5, 2008 at 11:50am
Well it doesnt really matter anymore. Shelly and Nathan, thank you very much for you trying to do this. Maybe you will find a city that would be open to this idea a bit more then Benton.
Benton: Maybe next time you wont let something good slip through your fingers. Have fun developing a new park (b/c the current ones arent enough) or that new factory that is suppose to house jobs (enjoy the noise and pollutants from that concerned neighbor). To say i am slight disappointed with, Benton, is an understatement.
—–Shelli Poole on February 5, 2008 at 11:57am
KC, I couldn’t make it to the meeting last night. Do tell.
—–Ryan on February 5, 2008 at 5:03pm
—–Ryan on February 5, 2008 at 12:01pm
Maybe the Mann’s and their investors need to join up with the fairgrounds proposal and get this thing started! Arkansas is like 20/30 years behind in motorsports venues.
Sad to hear that the Strip is not even a possibility now, and was only decided by a few people of the city. Benton, you passed up a amazing revenue opportunity. I’ll just be really sad if they actually tear out that pavement for a Business complex. Do they not understand that the strip of pavement is probably worth as much as the building they might plan! They paid ~500k for the land right? The pavement alone cost more to lay down than that. There’s other areas around to build a business, and you already have a space for a park, invest in improving that other one with the money from the strip. I guess some people just don’t have good business sense.
I’m just young and stupid though…
—–Zach on February 5, 2008 at 2:10pm
Well, Guess i’ll see you guys later…. Gonna go see if I can get my car to do 140 on the interstate.
—–chad allen on February 5, 2008 at 6:28pm
Zack; I don’t remember asking you to agee with what I post. If you don’t like what I post don’t read it I think we still live in a free country.
Had you been at the meeting last night maybe you would understand why I ask Brad some of the question I did.
—–Lee Nickols on February 6, 2008 at 7:50am
Ahh now we are talking. I have only been able to hit 120 before traffic gets too bad. Just be careful Zach cops bust you over 100 its a bad bad thing.
Good luck and be safe..
—–Shelli Poole on February 5, 2008 at 11:30pm
BC article on Dragstrip Vote
—–chad allen on February 6, 2008 at 2:21pm
You need to talk to the racers that was there so you will know just how one sided it ended up being.
The alderman all set with the people that was against the track.
They have knew how they were going to vote on this from the start.
What is very funny they may get voted out anyway,at the next election. MO
The older people in Benton are not the only people that can vote.
—–brandon on February 6, 2008 at 6:38pm
Chad, please clarify…I can’t tell what your intention was in the above post. What preconceived agenda did the counsel have? No sarcasm here. Serious question.
—–brandon on February 6, 2008 at 6:42pm
“several dozen” opposing the idea vs. over 5,000 signatures of persons supporting the idea and yet the city council slapped it down with an authoritative pimp hand.
I wonder where the mayor was?
A very good point was made at the meeting regarding the amount of footage needed to operate a drag strip.
After you subtract the land owned by other parties the area remaining was too small. Why did that fact alone not end it? HCBC disagreed with lending/leasing their share which left them with too small of an area to operate. I did not understand that. Anyone know if I missed something?
—–brandon on February 6, 2008 at 6:34pm
You know, I may be alone considering I enjoy fast cars and motorcycles, but I would not be in favor of a drag strip within the city limits. They are not exactly known for being attractive and prosperous for real estate values. Nor do they tend to financially reward their hosting economy. Perhaps Paron, Lonsdale, Owensville, or even as close by as Salem could be alternate locations. In the city , and shouting distance from a Church? Not a great plan.
—–chad allen on February 6, 2008 at 11:00pm
to clarify, it looked as though the benton city alderman had formed an opinion before the meeting ever started from their attitude.
if nathan mann had been given the right to speak about the footage i’m sure he could have explained it but being the alderman would not or could not control the interruptions by the people of benton he did not even have a chance to explain anything, he should have had the same opportunity to speak as he gave the other side he did not interrupe them while they were speaking. i assume you were there were you one of the ones running their mouth.
one thing for sure you are alone when it comes to knowing anything about a dragstrip being in the city limits here are a few of the dragstrips in city limits houston raceway park houston,tx.,ennis raceway park dallas,tx.,gateway raceway park st.louis,mo., memphis motorsport park millington,tn.and kansas city raceway park kansas city,ks., all of these dragstrips are in the city limits want to know more about dragstrips in the city limits do your home work i almost forgot they do bring in a litte bit of revenue to these cities also.
now as for a great plan that is your opinion not every bodies.
i wish they would come to paron,ar.
Oh! and i almost forgot where do you enjoy fast cars and motorcycles.
—–Renee Taggart on February 6, 2008 at 9:07pm
I do agree that a drag strip of some sort does need to be some where. I would really like it if it were in an alcohol free zone.
My son and I are at I30 several weekends out of the season to support a horizon mini sprint driver. It is great to watch the enthusiasm that these kids (and adults) put into this passion that they love just as well as the child who plays baseball, football etc.
The kids (and adults) need somewhere in a controlled environment to get that ‘need for speed’.
Is there not somewhere in Saline County that a strip could go in that is not near a housing addition that residence could agree with?
I wish the Mann’s the best in their search to find an area to put in a legal racing strip. Even if it’s not in Saline County please come back to this site and let us all know where it is.
—–john pearson on May 15, 2014 at 3:46pm
I know this is an old thread but thought I’d comment anyway. I signed the petition for the dragstrip and was saddened when it was defeated. I was really riled to hear an alderman use the term “bad element” to describe the people that would frequent these races. I was prompted to have a t-shirt made that reads “BAD ELEMENT DRAG RACING”. Anyway, my comment or actually my question is this- How is having a sanctioned dragstrip at the old airport any different, safety wise, than the State Troopers using it for car chase practice/training? I don’t begrudge them, they need a place to do their training, and its a great, safe place. A fully sanctioned dragstrip, complete with concrete barriers would be just as safe. I guess whats good for the goose is not nessesarally good for the gander.