SPEEDWAY, Ind. (May 26, 2014)— Hundreds of volunteers spend their Memorial Day cleaning up after The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.
Hours after the Indy 500 fans filled seats at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, full trash bags took their place.
“Tons of trash,” described Mooresville High School sophomore Matt Faber. “Just tons!”
Once the sun came up Monday, you could see no shortage in the infield, either.
“You get over a quarter million people inside the facility for race day,” said Doug Boles with IMS. “It gets pretty torn up.”
Joseph Smallman and his classmates from Emmerich Manual High School volunteered to help out and get the track clean. Some of them even started before the Indy 500 began.
“So far, we’ve gotten half of this cleaned up,” said Smallman. “We’ll probably be here until midnight.”
The students are one of 20 groups and nonprofits taking part in the post-race cleanup. For some, it’s an annual tradition with its share of surprises and souvenirs.
“I actually found earmuffs and everything,” said Smallman. “And my brother found two coolers, the rubber coolers.”
“Lots of unopened Hamburger Helper too,” said Faber. “That’s weird.”
Boles said the best thing for IMS to do as an organization is to give back and allow groups to participate in the clean-up process.
“If everyone knew like how much work and dedication it took to clean it all up, so they would…clean up after themselves!” said Mooresville sophomore Isaiah Branham.