Cape Fear Botanical Garden
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Stories from the Speedway with Keith Smith & Harold Brasington III

June 16, 2023 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

Stories from the Speedway: An evening with NASCAR photographer Keith Smith and Special Guest Harold Brasington III, grandson of Darlington Raceway founder.

These Racing Insiders will share photos and tales from the early days of NASCAR, Darlington Raceway, and more — plus take your questions in this intimate setting of Cape Fear Botanical Garden’s Grand Hall. Friday, June 16 starting at 6:30pm (you may enter the Garden prior with your ticket, so come early)

Attendees will also have access to Horticulture, Hooch & Outlaws in Fast Cars – a self-guided tour digging in to NASCAR’s botanical roots.

Things to Know…

* Also happening this evening is live music by Jordan Lake Swimmers (6p-9p)
* On site bar will be open with specialty moonshine cocktails.
* Food Trucks will be on site ready to serve at 5:30pm. You are also welcome to bring your own food to the Gardens
* The Garden will be open from 9am-9pm, so feel free to come early to enjoy the grounds

ALL included with your admission:
Members: Free
Ages 13+ – $10 (+ tax)
Military (with ID) – $9 (+ tax)
Adults 65 & Older – $9 (+ tax)
Children 6-12 – $5 (+ tax)
Children & Under: Free

Sponsored by: First Citizens Bank, Gill Security, Warren Insurance Group, The Arts Council of Fayetteville/Cumberland County

Harold Brasington III: Grandson of Harold Brasington Sr, the racer who built Darlington Raceway, introducing NASCAR to paved-track racing, and forever changing racing history.

Photographer Keith Smith biography: A Kodak Brownie camera that my grandfather Edmon Smith let me use in the early 60s was a start at the old Fayetteville Speedway (where the Breece Cemetery is located close to the airport). A photo of “Windin” Wayne Andrews 1962 Chevrolet is the first car I remember photographing. Wayne went on to be a NASCAR Grand American Driver. In 1969, I borrowed my dad’s 35mm Ricoh camera and using a press pass from WFAI RADIO, my bother Nixon and I went to Martinsville Va to a modified and last model sportsman race. There I tool pictures of cars on the starting line and ventured (out of ignorance) into the flag stand in the third turn taking pictures of cars going around the track at speed and wrecks. I was able to get some photos published in a Dunn NC newspaper.

In 1973, Pat Purvis, who along with his father owned the Old Fayetteville Speedway, asked me to take photos of the popular drivers, so he could sell them in the concession stand. That led to taking photos of the winning drivers and their car and crew in victory lane. They sold very well. I eventually got credentials to go to the Daytona 500 in February 1976. There I met a photographer named Marvin Gamble who was using a large 6x7cm film camera instead of the usual 35mm. But the clarity of the photos was so much better. So I ordered the heavy camera from NY and starting selling photos with much sharper photos than the other professionals using 25mm. I was able to go for the whole week at DAYTONA in February. I would go to the local tracks in the area, a dirt track at Volusia County and an asphalt track at New Smyrna. There I was able to take photos of a 16-year-old Mark Martin.

That led to following the circuit of races at Richmond Va, Hickory, Caraway Speedway in Asheboro, Myrtle Beach speedway, Charlotte, Darlington, Rockingham, Savannah, Phoenix raceway, Wake Co. Speedway in Raleigh, Wilson Co Speedway, County Line Speedway in Rocky Mount, Dublin Speedway, the asphalt track here called Cumberland International, and then the dirt track called Fayetteville Motor Speedway.

Along the way, I was able to be the first photographer for Bill Elliott at his first few races at Rockingham, Darlington and Charlotte. In 1977, I met Dale Earnhardt here in Fayetteville and took his photos in victory lane. I took a lot of photos curing his career as he was a very popular driver.

Starting in 1983, I started publishing racing programs for many local tracks and served as track photographer for many until 2016.


June 16, 2023
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
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Cape Fear Botanical Garden
536 N. Eastern Boulevard
Fayetteville, NC 28301 United States
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