Auto Club Speedway and the County of San Bernardino today announced a unique and new partnership which provides the County a world-class venue to promote business and lifestyle opportunities within the County as well as showcase the County's distinction as Opportunity, California through the entitlement of the new fan entertainment area at the Speedway to be called the Opportunity, California FanZone. The FanZone's debut will take place at the SONY HD 500 on Labor Day NASCAR weekend. The County of San Bernardino Opportunity, California FanZone is a multi-million dollar facility project that enhances the overall aesthetics and entertainment value of Auto Club Speedway and further solidifies it as the West Coast's premier sports and entertainment venue.
Also included in this agreement is the entitlement for the 2007 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race, which will be held during the West Coast Premiere of NASCAR in February. This partnership expands a relationship which began in 2003 and most recently includes the entitlement of the NASCAR Grand National Division, AutoZone West Series Relocate Here 200 presented by the County of San Bernardino that will take place on Labor Day NASCAR weekend.
"This sponsorship is a lucrative vehicle for our economic and redevelopment teams to use in the marketing of the County of San Bernardino as the preeminent place to do business in Southern California," Second District Supervisor Paul Biane said. "The message we want to convey to investors and business leaders as well as our residents, local employers and workforce is simple: 'If you're looking for opportunity, it's here in County of San Bernardino.'"
Along with the greater opportunities that exist throughout the County, another key reason to promote Opportunity, California at Auto Club Speedway is that the venue is surrounded by approximately 3,000-acres of redevelopment area. This is an area designated for commercial redevelopment and one that the County is interested in promoting to industries and businesses that would benefit from the proximity to Auto Club Speedway.
"Our partnership with the County of San Bernardino for the Opportunity, California FanZone is the kind that serves as a model for sponsorship throughout the sports industry, one that meets the objectives of the sponsor while providing value to the fans," said Gillian Zucker, president of Auto Club Speedway. "As national media attention swirls around Auto Club Speedway this Labor Day weekend, the message will be clear that the Opportunity, California FanZone and the County of San Bernardino is the place you want to be."
The entitlement agreement, which was unanimously approved at the August 8, County of San Bernardino Board of Supervisors meeting, also includes significant signage throughout Opportunity, California FanZone where the County will promote its image and utilize the exposure as an educational tool to showcase the opportunities for businesses and families in San Bernardino County.
"The Opportunity, California FanZone is designed to highlight everything special about our region: our weather, our diversity and our geographic advantages with our proximity to Los Angeles, San Diego and the Central Valley," Zucker said. "The innovative and interactive elements of the FanZone include everything from beautiful landscaping and shade features, to food by Wolfgang Puck, along with entertainment and concerts that leave no doubt, Southern California is the entertainment capital of the world."
One of the key features of Opportunity, California FanZone is the Speedway's exclusive restaurant called Apex by Wolfgang Puck. Puck's world renowned cuisine including his famous pizzas and salads as well as other delicious entrees will be on the menu at Apex. Auto Club Speedway's ticket office is currently accepting reservations for the sit down portion of the restaurant that will debut on the SONY HD 500 Labor Day NASCAR weekend. There will also be a
cruise thru window at Apex by Wolfgang Puck, offering quick and convenient menu options for race fans.
Also located in the heart of Opportunity, California FanZone is the state-of-the-art entertainment stage. Entertainment and musical acts are scheduled to perform on both Saturday and Sunday of the opening weekend. The musical line up for Sunday, September 3 includes Latin singer Patricia Manterola, Country music sensation Julie Roberts, television favorite Jim Belushi and the Sacred Hearts and Puddle of Mudd, which will headline the Miller Lite Rock 'n Racing Concert. A town center connects Apex by Wolfgang Puck and the entertainment stage.
Other important elements at Opportunity, California FanZone includes shade features, modified entry gates, expanded hospitality areas, giant video walls, radio broadcast locations, leisure areas and grass and water accents. Interactive performers will also be showcased, including Sony Picture characters Boog and Elliott from "Open Season" and some unique exhibits that will showcase California's coastline. The new FanZone brings the majority of the key entertainment features within Auto Club Speedway's fence line and nearly doubles the footprint from 12.2 acres to 23.8 acres.