Sonoma Raceway Proposes Music Festivals & Unrelated Auto Events

SONOMA (CBS SF) – Plans to redefine Sonoma Raceway as more than just a vehicular events center will be submitted to the Sonoma County’s Permit and Resource Management Department in the upcoming weeks.

The new application updates the raceway’s current permit so that the facility will be able to host a range of non-racing activities such as smaller social and fundraising activities to multi-artist music festivals, like neighboring BottleRock Music Festival in Napa or Outside Lands in San Francisco.

The proposal does not address any physical changes to Sonoma Raceway, but only to redefine the raceway as a “special event and entertainment” facility. In 1997, the raceway was granted a permit to modernize the facility’s infrastructure and amenities.

“Our use permit reflects a snapshot of activity at the raceway nearly two decades ago,” said Steve Page, Sonoma Raceway president and general manager. “The professional sports and entertainment industry has changed dramatically in that time and our business model needs to change with it. The revisions we’ve proposed will create a platform for the raceway to succeed as a business in the coming decades and to continue as a major regional economic contributor, while maintaining reasonable limits on any disruptive impacts on the local environment.”

Sonoma Raceway currently hosts the Toyota/Save Mart 350 – NASCAR Weekend in June, the NHRA Sonoma Nationals in July and the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma in August.

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