A special bulletin just arrived at Bristol Motor Speedway from the North Pole: That jolly old elf in his familiar red suit – better known as Santa Claus around these parts – has a scheduled appearance at the Pinnacle Speedway in Lights on Wednesday, Dec. 9 to help spread some Christmas cheer.

This year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Santa Claus’ visits to the tradition-rich holiday light show have been very limited. Tomorrow night from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Santa will make a special socially-distanced visit at BMS and sit high atop the motorized Food City Shopping Cart just inside of the pit gate. Guests will be able to wave to Santa as they drive into the infield of the historic oval where the Christmas Village awaits.

“Santa Claus is such an important part of the Pinnacle Speedway in Lights and we are just heartbroken that we aren’t able to have him visiting with children every night in the Christmas Village as we have in years past,” said Claudia Byrd, executive director of the Bristol chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities. “We have been blessed to be able to have him visit with us a few times so far this year in a socially-distanced capacity and we are excited that he will be here Wednesday night to share some holiday cheer with all of our guests. We hope everyone will be able to take advantage of the opportunity to see Santa as they head into the Christmas Village.”

In addition to seeing Santa Claus, guests will be able to enjoy many of the popular holiday light displays, including the fan-favorite Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies Sea of Illumination, the festive Ballad Health Hospital display, Mycroft Signs Race to Space, Santa Vision, The Dueling Dragsters, Symphony in Lights, NASCAR Pit Stop, The Twelve Days of Christmas, Dinosaur Village and Ripley's Penguin Playhouse.

Inside the Christmas Village, you can park your vehicle and stretch your legs for a while. You’ll want to take advantage of several photo opportunities in front of special holiday displays positioned throughout the Village, roast marshmallows over an open fire, shop for your favorite items with many local vendors and check out some great arts and crafts. This area will have a slightly different feel this year, with specific in and out routing for guests to encourage a socially-distanced experience. In keeping with the Sullivan County mask mandate, all guests who visit the Village are required to wear masks.

The Pinnacle Speedway in Lights powered by TVA is a holiday light spectacular that serves as one of the primary annual fundraisers for the Bristol Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities. Long hailed as the premier holiday display in the Appalachian Highlands, 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. 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 click here.