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Entries in Austin (65)

Wednesday
Nov072012

With A Song In My Heart: Austin Grand Prix

The climb up to Turn 1 at Circuit of The Americas (© The Austin Grand Prix)

It is a time to celebrate. To roll out the barrels. To fly the banners. To wave the flags. To welcome the world to the inaugural Austin Grand Prix. However, with Austin’s reputation as ‘The Live Music Capital of the World’, you can guarantee that Travis County will be a rockin’ and a rollin’ and struttin’ its stuff like there is no tomorrow and Iain Robertson declares that nobody could be more delighted.

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Oct242012

AGP Becomes Official Supporter of Meals on Wheels and More

Today we announced an agreement to be an official supporter of Meals on Wheels and More of Central Texas (MOWAM). This 40-year old Austin non-profit operates about twelve varying service programs, with Meals on Wheels volunteers delivering daily nutritious meals to over 5,000 homebound individuals in Central Texas. MOWAM meal deliveries help elderly and disabled homebound individuals live an independent life while saving an average of $35,510 of state spending by keeping them at home and out of assisted living.

In 2011, MOWAM prepared 967,495 meals, placed 10,274 care calls, made 5,224 trips to the grocery store, made 786 home safety improvements and repairs, and provided 4,458 bags of groceries to those most in need. These services provide thousands of individuals in Central Texas with the support they need to live independently.

As a weekly delivery volunteer since 2007, I'm amazed that in less than the time it takes for a conventional lunch break, we can make a difference in clients’ lives by delivering a hot, nutritional meal and a smile. It really is that easy and fast!

Since 2010, we've been brainstorming ways to partner with MOWAM. We wanted to work with a reputable organization that benefits many Austinites immediately and effectively. When we were honored as #1 in Austin for Social Media by the Austin American-Statesman, we immediately saw a greater need to use our skills for social good. Earlier this year while volunteering, I snapped a photo of my insulated MOWAM delivery bag. I posted the photo to our Instagram account with the tagline: “For every “Like” on this photo by midnight, May 31, 2012, The Austin Grand Prix will donate $1 to Meals on Wheels and More of Central Texas.” The social giving initiative resulted in 14 likes, which doesn’t sound like much, but it is enough to provide 6 meals to those who need it.

On October 1, we shared another MOWAM photo on Instagram but also sent it out to our 7,000+ followers on Twitter. The idea was for AGP to donate $1 for every Retweet of the message or “Like” on the Instagram photo, up to $100. Within 24 hours the message had been Retweeted 150 times. To date, the message has been shared 300 times and been “Favorited” by 7 followers. On Monday, we donated the $100 check to MOWAM.

We will continue to lead social media giving initiatives for MOWAM that make it easy for members of the motorsports community to donate with the click of a button. Thad Rosenfeld, Director of Communications for MOWAM, had this to say:

Meals on Wheels and More is excited to be associated with The Austin Grand Prix, a locally owned and operated business that truly cares about the Central Texas community it serves.

// Please click here to learn how you can volunteer with MOWAM. If you have any creative giving suggestions, send us a message

Thad Rosenfeld, Director of Communications for Meals on Wheels and More, accepts a donation from Kerri Olsen on behalf of The Austin Grand Prix

Monday
Sep242012

Two-Wheel Update

World Superbike at Miller Motorsports Park

Two important pieces of information were released over the weekend concerning two-wheeled racing.  First, World Superbike (SBK) is moving to Laguna Seca in 2013, and second, MotoGP's 2013 calendar was released with two unconfirmed races in April, sans Austin.

// Superbike

Since visiting Miller Motorsports Park in May of this year, the idea of SBK coming to Circuit of The Americas has been in the back of my mind. Speaking with several SBK officials that weekend, the option to move to Austin was well received but no one would confirm whether talks were underway. SBK seemed happy with their stint at Miller but it was clear the new facility couldn't overcome the lackluster crowds and minimal exposure associated with the event.

In line with the overall sentiment from these discussions, this past Friday a new three year contract to host the United States round of the eni FIM Superbike World Championship at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca was announced. Laguna Seca has replaced Miller Motorsports Park starting next year, opting to return to the Californian track where MotoGP also runs.

// MotoGP

Since MotoGP was put in limbo earlier this year, a serious void was created by the lack of a two-wheeled series at COTA. Frustrating many season ticket holders who expected MotoGP to be a foundation of the facility's program, the issues between Tavo Hellmund and Circuit of The Americas bled over to the MotoGP side of things, surprising many who hoped the series would be free of the F1 drama.

Waiting patiently for things to be resolved, complications were revealed when former MotoGP Champion Kevin Schwantz announced a lawsuit against COTA, claiming they went around him to secure an alternate deal with MotoGP owner Dorna and push him out.  While this issue remains to be resolved, motorcycle governing body FIM (Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme) released a provisional calendar with two races in April yet to be confirmed. 

Two weeks following the season opener in Qatar, back-to-back races on the 14th and 21st of April are unconfirmed and the season expands from 18 races in 2012 to 19 races for 2013. The fourth event on the calendar is Spain, and with only Portugal, Spain's close neighbor, missing from the 2012 calendar, it's very possible what has yet to be confirmed is how the logistics between Austin and Portugal will take place in just one week between the two events.

Given the emergence of Schwantz's case against COTA, one could argue that there's little reason to pursue legal action unless a deal between Dorna and COTA is underway. The silver-lining is that we may soon have the top two-wheeled series here in Austin, but we'll continue to wait until official word is out later this year.