You never know what will jog special racing memories. Beginning in February 1981, I hosted what the late journalist and broadcaster, Chris Economaki called the "greatest parties in racing history" - the Daytona Wrangler Speedweeks Parties - always on Thursday night after the Twin qualifying races. These parties were planned and staged by the famous Rhodes Brothers, who provided the venues, food and entertainment - by them.
The very first Wrangler Speedweeks party in 1981 was held at The Showboat restaurant and nightclub on the mainland side of the Port Orange Bridge. At times the Thursday Twin Qualifiers fell on Valentines Day - February 14. February 14 just happened to be Sam Ard's birthday. This morning while reading the tributes to Sam flowing into the Florence, SC funeral home handling his arrangements, the tribute below caught my eye:
"RIP my friend. I thank you for all the great memories both at and away from the track. I still remember the Wrangler party in Daytona on your birthday. Thanks you for all you gave to auto racing. Prayers to Jo and the family."
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"
updated by @dave-fulton: 04/03/17 05:36:32PM