BRISTOL, Tenn. - Race week has come to an end. Campers and fans are headed home, vendors are packing up and the clean up crew is hard at work.
Campgrounds are left with piles of trash as the campers pull out and head to their next destination.
"You look around and see it is a very big mess," says Francia Presley with the South Holston Ruritan Club.
The South Holston Ruritan Club is one of the crews hard at work. They've been doing race clean up for as long as they can remember. Francia Presley has been a part of the club since she moved here in 1999, and says the stuff they find is quite surprising.
"We found today about a dozen coconuts. I don't know why. I don't see any palm trees around so somebody brought them in from somewhere," adds Presley.
Presley says after race clean up days bring a great sense of fellowship for her and other members of the club, and she's happy they have the opportunity to do something that helps the community.
"The South Holston Ruritan gets paid for doing this, and then we sell the cans and get the money from that and then we use those for scholarships for the students from Sullivan East High School," adds Presley.
Last year they raised over $10,000 in scholarship money.
Inside Bristol Motor Speedway it takes a lot of man power and time to get back to its original state. Can Do Enterprises is the company in charge of the clean up and William Barrett says the biggest challenge isn't necessarily after the big race, but after the nation wide race.
"As soon as the crowd cleared out we moved in and started recycling and picking up the trash," adds Barrett.
Barrett tells News 5 this year's clean up though has been a little different than years past.
"I would say there's definitely an up-tick of some sort. It definitely felt like there was more of a lively crowd and a busier experience," says Barrett.
But it's an experience the entire clean up crew says has become a tradition.
"If you go on vacation and you're not here during the clean up you say, 'Oh, I hate missing that.' Now, that's crazy but people feel that way. They just don't like to miss the clean up," adds Barrett.
Barrett tells News 5 they're hoping to have the inside of BMS fully cleaned up within the next few days.
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