You Can Be The Honorary Starter at the 2013 Pure Michigan 400!

UPDATE: U.S. Army veteran and Purple Heart recipient David Balestrino Jr. has been named honorary starter for the Pure Michigan 400. Read more about David on michigan.org. Thanks to everyone who entered and voted in this contest! See you on Sunday, August 18 at Michigan International Speedway.

Can you picture yourself as the Honorary Starter at the Pure Michigan 400? As part of a contest we’re hosting with Michigan International Speedway (MIS) on the Pure Michigan Facebook page, fans have the chance to win the honor of waving the green flag at the August 18th race.

MIS just announced that TV star Carter Oosterhouse will serve as the Grand Marshal of the race, and the Honorary Starter will be a part of the action right alongside him!

Contest details are as follows:

TO ENTER

Go to the contest tab on the Pure Michigan Facebook page and simply tell us in 50 words or less why you should be selected as the Honorary Starter at the Pure Michigan 400. The entry period is from July 25 – August 8. Please note that submissions may take up to 24 hours to post.

TO VOTE

Fans of the Pure Michigan Facebook page can vote on their favorite submissions up to once a day throughout the duration of the contest. Pure Michigan will choose the winner from the top 10 most-voted entries.

THE PRIZE

The winner will serve as the Honorary Starter at the Pure Michigan 400 on August 18! He or she will also receive four tickets to the race for friends and family. Please note that all other expenses including travel to Michigan International Speedway are at the winner’s own expense.

Interested in becoming the Honorary Starter? Head over to the Pure Michigan Facebook page today to submit your entry! The winner will be notified and announced by August 13.

Will you be at the Pure Michigan 400? Share with us below and get in on the discussion by following the #PureMichigan400 hashtag on Twitter!

Giveaway: Celebrate National Fudge Day with Pure Michigan

Mackinac Island is world-famous for its fudge, and with National Fudge Day coming up on Sunday, June 16th, we thought it seemed fitting to celebrate.

The sweet and creamy treat has been a staple on the island for more than a century – ever since Harry Murdick opened the first fudge shop in Michigan on Mackinac Island in the late 1880s. Today, Mackinac Island is home to seven different fudge confectioners with several locations of each on the island.

Here are just a few other reasons why Mackinac Island fudge is Pure Michigan:

  • Mackinac Island is home to more than 15 fudge shops within a 3.8 square mile radius.
  • Each summer, visitors flock to the historic Northern Michigan destination and bring back a sweet souvenir – more than 10,000 pounds of fudge leave the island each day during travel season. 
  • Many fudge shops on Mackinac Island have a special ventilation system to waft the smell of freshly made fudge out onto the Main Street sidewalk. Ryba’s was the first to have this system in 1960.
  • Mackinac Island fudge makers ship in about 10-tons of sugar per week and 10 tons of butter per year to make fudge. About 80 percent of the sugar used comes from Michigan.
  • President Gerald Ford visited Mackinac Island in July 1975, and made a personal stop at May’s Candy Shop for fudge.

To get our fans involved with the Fudge Day fun, we’ve teamed up with four shops from around the island – Joann’s Fudge, May’s Candy Shops, Murdick’s Fudge and Ryba’s Fudge – to offer fans on Twitter the chance to win a prize package of fudge every hour between 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. this Friday, June 14th. To be eligible to win, fans can simply tweet their favorite flavor of fudge to @PureMichigan on Friday.

Pure Michigan will then choose one winner at random each hour to win a package from one of the shops in the following order:

  • 10:00 a.m. – Joann’s Fudge
  • 11:00 a.m. – May’s Candy Shops
  • 12:00 p.m. – Murdick’s Fudge
  • 1:00 p.m. – Ryba’s Fudge

Winners will be contacted through Twitter with details on obtaining their prize. Tweets must include the hashtag #puremichiganfudge and entrants must follow Pure Michigan on Twitter.*

Additionally, we encourage fans that are on Mackinac Island on Sunday, June 16 to celebrate National Fudge Day by taking a tasty tour around the island to find your favorite shops and flavors. Fudge shops can now also be found in other vacation spots across the state of Michigan, such as Traverse City, Petoskey and Frankenmuth, and fudge fanatics can order their favorite flavor online from shops across the state.

And, don’t forget to return to Mackinac Island in August to celebrate the sweet sensation that is fudge during the Mackinac Island Fudge Festival, August 23-24, 2013. 

Are you looking forward to National Fudge Day? Be sure to follow @PureMichigan on Twitter this Friday for your chance to win authentic Mackinac Island fudge!

*Disclaimer: Users can only enter the Twitter contest once and those who make multiple accounts in order to enter more than once will be ineligible to win. Those who post the same tweet repeatedly or violate any of the other Twitter Rules will also be ineligible.

NASCAR Driver Brad Keselowski is Ready to Race at MIS (Plus a Giveaway!)

Racing returns to Michigan International Speedway (MIS) this summer with the Quicken Loans 400 on June 14-16, followed by the Pure Michigan 400 on August 16-18. To gear up for the events, we spoke with NASCAR driver and Michigan native Brad Keselowski who will be riding in both races.

Watch Brad in the video below and let us know if you’ll be cheering him on at MIS this summer!

And if you’re still looking for tickets to the Quicken Loans 400, you’re in luck! Keep reading to see how you can score free admission for four.

Do you want to score four free tickets to the Quicken Loans 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series? Simply tell us in the comments section of this post what you love about NASCAR racing and which three people you would take with you to MIS. We’ll then select one lucky winner at random to win four tickets to the race. To be eligible, simply submit your comments (along with your email address) by Monday, June 10that 11:59 p.m. EST. We’ll contact the winner Tuesday morning using the email address provided (we won’t share it or sell it to anybody). Please note that each ticket is good for general admission on Sunday, June 16th and includes access to the Race Pit and Paddock areas. Guests must be 17 years or older to enter the Pit. A $10 food voucher is also included with each pass. UPDATE: This contest has ended. The winner has been selected and contacted via email with their prize. Thank you everyone for the comments!