Don’t Need Nothin’ but a Good Time
May 24, 2013
Kevin, Gerard, Pat & Mark
Don’t Need Nothin’ but a Good Time
The kick-off of the actual Indy 500 weekend is the annual final practice session/ crazy party scene known as “Carb Day”. It is a tradition for the past 10 or so years that I meet a group of friends at the speedway where we hang out and enjoy a few beers and the crab day ambiance. It has been an Indianapolis tradition for years and many skip work and head to the track, drawn much more by the start of summer, party atmosphere and the annual Carb Day concert than by any love of racing.
Dakota & Ed Carpenter
In fact racing is only a small portion of the day, the track is open for the Indy Cars for only one hour in the morning, followed by the Indy Lights race- a sort of minor league for the Indy Cars and then the Pit Stop competition. Later in the afternoon, the Carb Day concert attracts a huge, huge mob of mostly drunken revelers. This year the concert featured 80s hair band Poison.
Kirsten & James
Typically by the time the concert starts, I am long gone- the crowd is just too large, drunk and frankly redneckish for my tastes. The crowd this year was easily as large as it has been in years with over 80,000 people estimated to have attended the concert, making it one of the biggest crowds in years.
Pippa Mann & Gerard
Kevin & Mark
For our part, Dakota and I arrived early and avoided most of the traffic. We were meeting my friends Pat, who drove up from Evansville, Gerard , who drove down from Chicago and my Indy friends Kevin and Mark. They were caught in a little traffic, so while waiting, we checked out the garage area and then sat to watch the Indy Car practice. They finally made it in time for the Indy Lights race.
Dakota & Superfan
The Indy Lights race, which is generally sort of a minor diversion ended up being one of the most exciting races in the luminous history of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as three cars battled it out over the final laps and then to the amazement of everyone, 4th place driver Peter Dempsey made a spectacular 4 wide pass coming to the checkered flag in one of the best races ever anywhere. You can watch the incredible final laps via the video below.
Freedom 100 Finish!!
Pat had scored passes to the coveted Miller Lite Beer pavilion where they had catered food and lots of free beer (thankfully including a number of additional breweries in addition to Miller). We were having such a good time that we stayed through the entire pit stop competition, hanging out with a group of friends from high school who were also hanging at the track including our friends Sarah, Stephanie, Michelle and Rosie.
Helio wins Pit Stop compettition
It was a great start to the weekend that was capped off that evening by a special dedication of the newly renovated and created Elliott Room at Brugge Brasserie. The incredible renovation of the office spaces at Brugge to honor our friend Matt Elliott who passed away suddenly in that very location is a thing of beauty and deference. It honors not only Matt, but our group of friends known as the ODC (Old Dog Crew) and the many, many years that we have all been able to maintain a close bond.
The space features a private bar and lounge area as well as additional rooms all decorated with an amazing array of photos that document the special relationship that we all share. It is truly a special and remarkable testament to all of us and the enduring power of friendship. Thanks so much to Ted and Shannon for honoring us all and creating this magical and wonderful space and transforming a place filled with sadness in to a place of honor and celebration and love.
Eli, Megan & Tracy
I hope to be able to spend many more hours in the Elliott room, honoring our friend, remembering all the many great times we have shared and creating new memories along the way. It was so cool to have so many friends present to christen the space and truly have a moment to celebrate.
Kevin & Tracy
Shannon & Amanda