As the holiday season fast approaches, that jolly old elf from the North Pole – Santa Claus – is getting ready to make his annual trek to the Pinnacle Speedway In Lights powered by TVA at historic Bristol Motor Speedway.

Santa Claus, who has been an important fixture at the signature fund raiser for the Bristol Motor Speedway chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities for nearly three decades, will once again set up shop to visit with thousands of children in the popular Christmas Village presented by Food City, located inside the iconic NASCAR short track’s infield.

Not only will Santa be checking his naughty and nice list, but he will also be putting together a list of Christmas wishes from the thousands of children who share their perfect gift ideas with him. That wish list might include a brand-new bicycle, or a high-tech digital tablet. Perhaps it will be a LEGO Star Wars spaceship, or even a new Barbie Dream House.

Children will be able to visit with Santa Claus in the Barter Theatre Santa Hut starting on opening night of Speedway In Lights at Bristol Motor Speedway on Friday, Nov. 17. Santa will be one of the main attractions at Pinnacle Speedway In Lights each night until Christmas Eve (Dec. 24), when the Barter Theater Santa Hut will close for the season at 9 p.m.

The beautifully-decorated Barter Theatre Santa Hut will be located in its usual spot on the back side of the track’s Goodyear building (near turn two) in the Christmas Village presented by Food City. To help families capture the special memory, all children who visit with Santa will have an official portrait created that will be enclosed inside a festive Pinnacle Speedway In Lights photo card for $5 each.

After you visit with Santa, the Christmas Village presented by Food City has so many other fun things to explore, including additional photo opportunities in front of several special holiday displays, roasting marshmallows over an open fire, shopping with a variety of local vendors and checking out some great arts and crafts. Several family-friendly midway rides also will be available to provide additional thrills for the kids.

Long hailed as a premier holiday destination, The Pinnacle Speedway in Lights powered by TVA is comprised of a dazzling five-mile route of more than 3 million lights attached to 250 festive displays that winds throughout the Speedway’s sprawling campus. The light show operates each night from 6-10 p.m.

The Pinnacle Speedway In Lights route offers many popular displays, including traditional favorites The Twelve Days of Christmas, Ripley’s Sea of Illumination, Mycroft Signs Race to Space, NASCAR Pit Stop, Dinosaur Land, the beautiful Candelabra, Drag Cars, Victorian Village, Snowman Maker, the Nativity Scene presented by Visit My Smokies and Toy Land.

The popular Symphony in Lights presented by HSN, located in the Darrell Waltrip Grandstands inside the BMS oval, returns to showcase more than 300,000 lights all coordinated to flicker and flash to the tunes of popular holiday music. Several Pinnacle Speedway In Lights partners also have custom light displays, including ETSU, Abingdon Olive Oil, Home Shopping Network, Ballad Health, Hardee’s Restaurants, Barter Theatre, BTES, Food City, ENT of Johnson City and the Bristol Herald-Courier.

The Pinnacle Speedway in Lights runs through Saturday, Jan. 6. 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.  Visitors can take advantage of The Fast Lane presented by Citi, a speedy $50 option which provides a shorter wait time on select nights when traffic lines get long.

After touring the Pinnacle Speedway in Lights presented by TVA, guests are encouraged to visit the Tri-Cities Airport Ice Rink at Bristol Motor Speedway presented by Stateline Services. Located a BMS Entrance No. 1, the Tri-Cities Airport Ice Rink at Bristol Motor Speedway presented by Stateline Services returns to bring joy to local ice-skating enthusiasts. The Ice Rink will open on Thursday, Nov. 16 and run until Sunday, Jan. 15. The Ice Rink costs $12 Monday-Thursday and $15 Friday-Sunday. The Ice Rink will be closed on Mondays from Nov. 20-Dec. 18, and also Jan. 8. Hours of operation vary from day to day, so please review the schedule on the BMS website in advance.

The holiday festivities will officially kick off at BMS with the Mountain Empire Chevy Dealers Speedway in Lights 5K presented by Fleet Feet on Sunday, Nov. 12 at 6 p.m. All pre-registered participants will receive an event shirt and there will be free Domino’s Pizza and other snacks and drinks for all participants following the race during the holiday-themed Home Trust Bank After Party. Those interested in registering can visit the SCC-Bristol website.

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

The Bristol Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities, a 501©(3) nonprofit organization committed to raising funds for distribution to children-based nonprofit organizations, was established in 1997. Since its inception, the chapter has raised more than $20 million, awarding grants to hundreds of qualified organizations in the 18-county area surrounding Bristol Motor Speedway. The board of trustees for the Bristol Chapter consists of 18 members, a diverse group of individuals from across the region with wide-ranging backgrounds. The trustees, two staff members and more than 300 volunteers are responsible for hosting numerous events at Bristol Motor Speedway and throughout the Bristol (Tennessee/Virginia) community. For more information about the Bristol Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities, visit