SPEEDWAY — Like many areas, the town of Speedway has been hit hard by the pandemic. Main Street is a bit quiet, and businesses haven’t seen an event bring large amounts of people to the area in quite some time.
Ashlee Nemeth, general manager of Foyt Wine Vault on Main Street, is hoping that people stick around after they receive their COVID-19 shot at the mass vaccination clinic at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
“I think it will bring in a little more people through our doors at least I am hoping that it will," Nemeth said. "I mean our fingers are crossed because a lot of the speedway businesses have been hurting from COVID and things like that.”
Nemeth said they will be open with the updated guidelines in place that went into effect on March 1, which means people can sit at the bar and more tables are open for seating.
Nemeth said she hopes that the mass vaccination event will also help introduce some new clientele to the restaurant since people will be coming in from outside the Indianapolis area.
Kim and Rob Lucas are driving to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway from West Lafayette to receive their vaccines.
“He was going to have to drive to South Bend at the end of March to get the Johnson & Johnson vaccine,” Kim said.
The two will be driving up twice, once on Sunday evening and again on Monday afternoon because they could not score appointments at the same time. But, they said it’s worth it to get the vaccine they want.
"One shot dose and out and that's the name brand we've always known, Johnson & Johnson," Kim said. "It's just one of those names that we've grown up with.”
Signs around the motor speedway make it clear that you cannot enter unless you have an appointment. As of Thursday, all appointments for the mass vaccination event at the speedway were booked.
When people arrive they will stay inside of their vehicles and be directed to a garage bay where they will receive their shot.
Then, they will get a sticker and be directed to a waiting area to be monitored for 15 minutes.
People with appointments must wear a mask when they come to IMS. Indiana State Department of Health staff will also need to see proof of Indiana residency and age eligibility at check-in.