The university offers a plethora of organizations and groups to become involved with on campus, with new ones forming frequently.
Last February, Matthew Longfellow, sophomore and NASCAR Club president, gathered with friends and fellow NASCAR enthusiasts to watch the Daytona 500. After a successful watch party, it dawned on Longfellow that he could make this a more regular gathering.
The following September, the university’s NASCAR Club was born.
“The SCE thought it was actually a really unique idea,” Longfellow said.
Longfellow wanted to bring a sport that he felt was stereotypically not as popular with younger audiences to a college campus and make it more interesting.
“We’re trying to make our events sort of easy for anyone to get involved in,” Longfellow said. “And, you know, fun for everyone.”
With their upcoming Daytona 500 watch party, the club will offer food at the event and will also have games and a raffle.
The goal is to make the organization as interactive as possible for both newcomers and longtime fans of the sport. They want to create a way to give newcomers a learning opportunity for things such as learning terminology and the structure of a race.
Events, however, are not restricted to watching races.
Just a few weeks ago, Longfellow and the NASCAR Club held an event to watch the beloved Pixar film Cars. On March 7, they will also hold an event to watch Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, starring Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly.
Other potential future events include a Mario Kart tournament and off-campus trips to go go-kart racing.
As for regular club meetings, this is the organization’s first full semester. Longfellow’s plan is to have one race watch party a month and one racing movie watch party a month.
“I don’t want to run the new fans thin by having too many events,” Longfellow said. “It’s sort of a quality-over-quantity sort of thing.”
The organization’s desire to be a part of the larger campus is evident. They have pages on several forms of social media, they hosted a table at the Org Fair to get the word out about their club, and will also be involved in this year’s Relay For Life event.
“I’m trying to make this a legitimate organization and not just a meme on campus,” Longfellow said.
The NASCAR club’s upcoming Daytona 500 watch party will be held Feb. 16 at 2:30 p.m. in CMC 141.
Feb. 16 at 2:30 p.m. – Daytona 500 Watch Party – CMC 141
March 7, 2020 at 6:30 p.m. – Talladega Nights Watch Party – CMC 141
March 21, 2020 at 3:30 p.m. – Dale Earnhardt Jr. Return Race – Schneider South