Kids feed their need for speed at the soapbox derby in Moss Point

MOSS POINT, MS (WLOX) - Downtown Moss Point was transformed into a racetrack Saturday for the 22nd Annual Soapbox Derby.

Children between the ages of seven and 17 worked with adults to build engine-less cars from kits and race them in hopes of becoming the derby champ. It was an exciting race to the finish.

They maybe too young to drive a car, but that didn't stop the pint sized racers from driving their handmade ones. Nearly 50 kids participated in the annual soapbox derby.

Chevron Black Employee Network and Moss Point Active Citizens helped sponsor the fun-filled activity that attracted people from across the region.

"It is just a great opportunity for the kids. At first they are a little quite, but by the end of the day they are all excited and they want to win," Boyers said.

That includes Clodomir Garside. She definitely had a need for speed as she took off to the finish line.

"You get to be in a car. You get to race people, and you go really fast down," Garside said.

Garside's mom Rebecca couldn't be more proud.

"Her confidence has just gone way up and her shyness just went away and she is in her element out here," said Rebecca.

Rebecca says she also knows a thing or two about racing. She participated in the derby back in the 1992.

"I was talking about how much it has grown and it includes special needs children and it just seems so inclusive. It was just so exciting," said Rebecca.

Saturday's race is also special for Gladys Vaughn, who was there to cheer on the kids. The event was named in honor of her daughter and Chevron Employee Deborah Washington after she lost her battle with breast cancer.

"It is wonderful, just wonderful. I am just grateful for everybody that keeps it going and everybody who brings their children out to participate," said Vaughn.

Even though the amateur racers are competing against each other, everyone leaves away a winner.

"It teaches them sportsmanship, and science. How things go. It teaches them about gravity and so forth," Boyers said.

Winners of the Moss Point divisions will travel to Akron, Ohio to compete in the All-American Soap Box Championship.

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