Demolition Derby returns to Cassville this weekend

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Action-packed entertainment returns to the Bill Hailey Rodeo Arena in Cassville this weekend. The Cassville Rotary Club's sixth annual Demolition Derby will begin at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 6.

"The demolition derby is always exciting," said Herb Primrose, Cassville Rotary Club member. "It features a lot of action and crashing."

The demolition derby, which is presented by Grandstand Attractions, Inc., of Mechanicsburg, Ill., draws around 1,800 spectators each year. In hopes of seeing more Barry County residents turn out for local entertainment, Rotary Club members are preparing for 2,000 spectators this year.

As in the past, this year's demolition derby will feature around two dozen automobiles that have been altered to ensure driver safety. Glass, chrome moldings and head and tail lights must be removed from participating vehicles. Gas tanks and batteries must also be placed inside the passenger compartment.

"A number of rules also are followed to help eliminate possible injuries to the drivers," said Primrose. "Unfortunately, no rules are in effect that prevent injury to the driver's ego."

The demolition derby will feature numerous heats with several cars competing in each heat. The final three automobiles running in each heat will receive prize money and qualify for the championship event.

Each year, the event also features special heats for compact cars and mini vans. This year, a stock class of large cars that require fewer modifications will be included in the heat lineup.

Around $3,260 in cash prize money will be awarded to heat winners and the grand champion of the Cassville demolition derby, which attracts drivers from southwest Missouri, northwest Arkansas, Oklahoma and Kansas. The grand prize winner will receive a $1,300 cash prize.

"A number of drivers from the Cassville area usually enter, which lends hometown excitement to this thrilling motor sports show," said Primrose.

Tickets for the Cassville Rotary Club Demolition Derby are $7 for adults. Children who are between the ages of 6 and 12 will be admitted for $4.

Parking and seating will be available on the east and west sides of the arena.

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