Officials of the Bristol chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities (SCC) announced Thursday evening that it raised a significant total of $453,100 despite the challenges from a worldwide pandemic that hampered much of their fundraising efforts throughout the year.

Checks from that total are being distributed tonight during the annual Night of Smiles presented by State Water Heaters event to many rural-area child-focused agencies throughout Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia. The special event will begin streaming live on the BMS Facebook page at 6:30 p.m.

This year’s Night of Smiles event has a different look and feel, as representatives from each of the agencies being honored take a tour of the Pinnacle Speedway In Lights in their vehicles and then receive their checks in a socially-distanced manner from SCC-Bristol executive director Claudia Byrd as cars cross the start/finish line of the Bristol Motor Speedway oval.

“There's no greater blessing than to be here at the Night of Smiles presented by State Water Heaters and help give away the money raised to area agencies that are going to help children in need in our community,” Byrd said. “This year has been especially challenging for us all given the pandemic, but we were able to forge ahead despite the obstacle.  Although demand for assistance will always exceed our ability to assist, we're so thankful to everyone who has donated and volunteered throughout the years to help us raise nearly $17 million. We would not be able to do this without your love and support.”

Night of Smiles presented by State Water Heaters is the culmination of a year of SCC fundraising events, including The Pinnacle Speedway in Lights, which opens for its 24th season on Friday, Nov. 13 at 6 p.m.

Organizations that received funding from Bristol Motor Speedway's Chapter of Speedway Children's Charities during the Night of Smiles event includes:

Abuse Alternatives

American Red Cross of NE Tennessee

American Red Cross of SW Virginia

Arc of Washington County

Assistance and Resource Ministries

Bethany Christian Services of East TN

Big Brothers Big Sisters of East Tennessee

Boys & Girls Club of Central Appalachia

Boys & Girls Club of Elizabethton/Carter County

Boys & Girls Club of Greater Kingsport

Boys & Girls Club of Greeneville & Greene County

Boys & Girls Club of Johnson City/Washington County

Boys & Girls Club of Morristown

Bread of Life Children’s Ministry

Bristol Faith in Action

Bristol Regional Speech & Hearing Center

Cap the Gap for Foster Care

CARE Center

Carter County Foster Care Association

CASA for Kids

Children’s Advocacy Center of the first Judicial District

Children’s Advocacy Center of Highlands Community Services

Children’s Advocacy Center of Sullivan County

Child Advocacy Center of the 3rd Judicial District

Christmas Box of Northeast Tennessee

Communities in Schools SWVA

Community Help Center of Northeast Tennessee

Crossroads Medical Mission

Family Crisis Support Services

Family Promise of Greater Kingsport

Feeding Southwest Virginia


Girls Incorporated of Bristol

Girls Incorporated of Johnson City/Washington County

Girls Incorporated of Kingsport

Girls on the Run of Northeast Tennessee

Greater Kingsport Family YMCA

Healing Hands Health Center

Holston Habitat for Humanity

Holston United Methodist Home for Children

Hope House

Isaiah 117 House

Jeremiah School

Jericho Shrine Center

Johnson County Safe Haven

Literacy Council of Kingsport


Mountain Kids Inc.

Mountain Region Speech and Hearing

Of One Accord

Reading Buddies Bristol TN/VA

Ridin’ High Therapeutic Horse Program

Rise Up

Rivers Way

Santa Pal

Second Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Tennessee

Shepherd’s Inn

Small Miracles Therapeutic Equestrian Center

Southern Appalachian Ronald McDonald House Charities

St. Anthony Bread Food Pantry

Sullivan County Sheriff’s Auxiliary

SYNERGY Foundation

Taking Action for Special Kids

TLC Community Center

Unicoi Family YMCA

United Way of Southwest Virginia

Waiting to Hear

YMCA of Bristol

Young Life Bristol

Young Life Kingsport

Young Life Upper East Tennessee

YWCA of Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia

Long hailed as the premier holiday display in the Appalachian Highlands Region, The Pinnacle Speedway in Lights powered by TVA spreads across a four-mile route illuminated by more than 2 million lights among 250 displays. A trip through the light show sends guests down historic Bristol Dragway and all throughout the property, culminating with a lap around the iconic Bristol Motor Speedway half-mile oval.

The Pinnacle Speedway in Lights runs through Saturday, Jan. 2. In addition to the Jingle Bell Lane presented by Citi fast pass option, the event costs $20 for cars from Sunday through Thursday and $25 on Friday and Saturday nights. For larger groups, vans are $50 and buses are $125.  

For more information about the Pinnacle Speedway In Lights powered by TVA, please visit the BMS website.