Motorized Barstool Races
The re-ignition of the former Dallas-based Barstool Races occurs March 21 in Ben Wheeler, following a Barstool Adoption Auction held in January.
The idea of a motorized barstool race came to a group of men in 1978 at the Quiet Man Bar on Knox Street in Dallas. The original circle of six barstool creators consisted of Bill Jenkins, Thomas Spangler, Johnny Gable, John Pullman, Mike Carr and Keith Blackwell. Each man created his own version of a motorized barstool and then they began to race them outside the Quiet Man bar.
Soon it grew to the Highland Park Cafeteria parking lot where Mrs. Dewey Goodman announced the racers at a polished track. From there they moved to the Dart Bar of Cedar Springs followed by Luke’s Outhouse. The tradition continued throughout Dallas, where Jenkins made the news with his barstool cannon blast that set off the alarm of a nearby liquor store.
The Dallas Farmers Market quickly took up the event in full sponsorship along with Ben E Keith and Budweiser to blast the races citywide. Jenkins’ barstool train debuted (featuring a super charged 350cc Honda) coming in first place one year. In 1991, the races finally found their end at the Greenville Avenue Saint Patty’s Day Parade.
The barstools have now resurfaced in Ben Wheeler. The reincarnated, reclaimed racers are now on display at participating shops across the historic town and drivers are preparing for the March 21 event. From there organizers say the barstool races will continue throughout the year during special events.
Those interested in making their own motorized barstool can check out the Ben Wheeler Motorized Barstool Racing Rules and Regulations. Entry forms and complete rules are available at Moore’s Store, The Forge Bar & Grill or online at BenWheelerTx.com.