Flint, MI–The Flint Soap Box Derby will “race into summer” this Saturday, June 3, 2023, from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Chevy Commons.
The race returned to Flint in 2019, but had to take a two-year hiatus due to COVID-19 before launching again in 2022.
Throughout that time, Kevin Cronin, the executive director of the Flint Soap Box Derby, has been focused on growing programming and finding funding to bring the race back to Cronin Derby Downs, an outdoor race venue opened by his grandfather and former Flint mayor Donald Cronin in 1969.
“The Flint Soap Box Derby has a storied legacy in the City of Flint, and we are excited to add another chapter to our impressive history,” the executive director said of the upcoming race. “We have had an exceptional series of building workshops preparing for race day, and we are thrilled to return to Chevy Commons.”
According to a June 1 press release, there will be one sanctioned race in the All-American Soap Box Derby’s Super Stock Division on Saturday.
This year’s participants include Freeman Elementary, Beecher High School, St. John Vianney School, Swartz Creek Middle School, Springview Elementary School, McGrath Elementary School, Grand Blanc East Middle School Robotics Team and Keep Genesee County Beautiful.
“This is such a great event for the City of Flint,” said Courtney Martin, the race director. “The winner gets to represent the Greater Flint Area this July at the All-American Soap Box Derby World Championships in Akron, Ohio.”
In advance of this weekend’s race, community participants took part in a series of building workshops on Saturdays throughout April and May. During these workshops, participants collaboratively built their vehicles alongside skilled volunteers and event sponsors, the release states.
“It’s important that our events set the foundation for future careers in STEM in a highly engaging environment,” Cronin said. “This is most evident during our building workshops, which is a feature unique to our program. We not only want to cultivate skills and develop interests for future careers, we also want to create new friendships, foster a sense of community, and build something much bigger than ourselves.”
Interested spectators and soap box fans can find the agenda for this Saturday’s race here.