The fourth annual Mountain Soapbox Derby returns to Livingston on Saturday, April 18th from 10am-3pm at Meyers Lane in conjunction with the Tap into Montana Brew Fest. This year’s derby course will have a different layout with a few surprises and new challenges, including a jump. Spectators can enjoy live music and food vendors while watching the thrilling race. The event kicks off the evening of Friday April 17th from 6-9pm with a live Calcutta auction event at The Buckhorn, where the drivers and cars will be on display and attendees can bid on participating teams.
Proceeds from both events will benefit the Creek to Peak Foundation, that supports underprivileged kids’ dreams to participate in outdoor adventures and sports activities as well as LINKS for Learning, an afterschool and summer enrichment program that serves Park County youth and working families by offering out of school time activities that encourage success in school, inspire a lifelong interest in learning, and a commitment to community involvement. The derby partners with a different nonprofit each year. “Last year’s event raised $2800 and a portion of that was donated to The Park County Angel Fund and the Creek to Peak Foundation,” said derby founder Frank Gazella, Jr.
Created in 2016, the event is the only soapbox derby in the world to run on an off-road mountain course. Last year’s event had 21 teams race and about 1300 people in attendance to watch the race. “It was about the most scared I have been at 30 mph, but it was a good time,” said last year’s champion Rodney Hunter with Team Dirty Danglers.
Teams must register by March 1st. The first-place winner receives a $500 cash prize and a custom-made trophy that gets passed on from the previous year’s winner. The cost to register a team is $275 which includes a team t-shirt.
Local businesses can also get in on the action by sponsoring a team or building their own car to race on race day.