Points Racing Concludes; Race Added

After the derecho came through on August 10th, Hawkeye Downs was disappointed to see only one track stadium light remained, as well as damage to several buildings and structures. The lack of lights means our Friday night points series has been concluded, but that won’t stop the action on the track.

A drifters event, a stop from Crown Rally Midwest, and a road course enduro spiced up August, providing some much needed escape for the community after the storm. In September, that continues with several events including the Raceway Ride on September 13th, an event where patrons can drive their own vehicle around the track.

The final weekend of the month will play host to a special race on Saturday, September 26th featuring Legends, Hornets, Hobby Stocks, Sport Mods, and Sportsman on the ¼ mile track. This race will include special features including qualifying, and a choose cone for restarts. The following day will see a 200-lap Enduro on the track with an 80’s theme. 

Despite the short season, our 2020 champions are: Patrick Flannagan (Sport Mods), Jim Hanson (Hobby Stocks), Aaron Moyer (Legends), Braxton Franks (Sportsman), and Troy Scott (Hornets). Hawkeye Downs would like to congratulate these drivers on their season, and thank every driver that participated in the 2020 season.

For details on upcoming events, please visit www.hawkeyedowns.org/events . Be sure to follow our social media for updates on all of our events.

New Executive Director/Events Manager Named

(Cedar Rapids, IA) – Hawkeye Downs, a prominent venue and racing attraction in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, today announced it has hired a new Executive Director and Events Manager. Jenn Draper is well-known and well-respected in the Cedar Rapids area for her extensive experience in event planning. She has successfully planned and coordinated the Downtown Farmers Markets, as well as, the extremely popular Market After Dark for the past five years.  Ms. Draper also has developed and implemented comprehensive events planning for more than 40 large and small-scale events for the Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance including the organization’s popular Annual Meeting and Cedar Rapids Restaurant Week.  

Jenn Draper, new Executive Director/Events Manager


“I’m honored to be a part of an organization with such a rich history in Cedar Rapids,” said Jenn Draper. “Hawkeye Downs has a great story to tell, and I’m ready to proudly share the newest chapter with our community.”

Ms. Draper will use her events planning expertise to help Hawkeye Downs grow its event schedule, and its entertainment and racing facility offerings.

“As Hawkeye Downs enters this new chapter and historic revitalization era, we are absolutely thrilled to have Jenn Draper leading the charge for us,” said Hawkeye Downs Board President Julie Kraft. “Jenn’s events planning experience and vast community connections are exactly what we need to turn Hawkeye Downs into a top events and racing destination. She has a terrific track record of producing top notch events. We love her enthusiasm and can’t wait to see what she does for Hawkeye Downs. We expect Jenn will bring a whole new level of fun to every event that is hosted here.”

Ms. Draper will take the helm at Hawkeye Downs in mid-February: “I’m looking forward to finding creative ways to use the space at Hawkeye Downs to engage new crowds, while maintaining and elevating the racing experience fans expect at this venue,” she said.

This weekend Hawkeye Downs expects 3000 people will check out a variety of vendors at a gun show. Other events coming up include the Eastern Iowa RV show February 14th—16th and the Cedar Rapids Home Show February 21st—23rd.   Planning is already underway as Hawkeye Downs looks to celebrate 100 years of racing in 2025.

Hawkeye Downs Finalizes Sale Of Property To Cellsite Solutions

(Cedar Rapids, IA) – Hawkeye Downs, a prominent venue and racing attraction in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, today announced it has formally sold its property to Cellsite Solutions of Cedar Rapids.  Cellsite will now own all 93 acres of the property, but Hawkeye Downs will lease back the exposition halls and racing facilities. It’s a unique partnership between a private company and a nonprofit organization—a partnership that means Hawkeye Downs continues to host events and racing, while Cellsite Solutions will have plenty of land to expand its business.

“Going forward for Hawkeye Downs, it will be business as usual,” said board president, Julie Kraft. “We will continue to operate as a nonprofit organization and host events in our exposition halls. We will also have our regular racing season. Selling the property simply means we can worry less about maintaining 93 acres and instead, focus on improving Hawkeye Downs and the events we hold here.”

“Our company is growing and we needed ground to expand upon,” said Cellsite Solutions President Carter Kramer. “Acquiring this property allows us to stay in Cedar Rapids with plenty of room to grow in the future. Plus, it’ll be pretty cool to have a racetrack right out our front door.”

Hawkeye Downs sold the property in southwest Cedar Rapids for $2.6 million to Cellsite Solutions, which will eventually move its headquarters to the site. Under the purchase agreement, Cellsite Solutions will also provide $200,000 in capital improvements to Hawkeye Downs. That work has already begun with repairs being made to the roof on the North Expo Hall late last year.

Hawkeye Downs Logo

“We are so excited about the possibilities and the future at Hawkeye Downs. The sale of the property eases our debt burden and allows us to make necessary improvements and upgrades,” said Kraft. “Hawkeye Downs has a rich history in our community and our board members take that seriously. We know many people have fond memories here. It’s our intent to make Hawkeye Downs be the best it can be, so it can be around for many more years. The sale of our property to Cellsite Solutions makes that possible.”

“Hawkeye Downs has such potential. I see that potential. I believe our partnership with this nonprofit provides an opportunity to make Hawkeye Downs a great destination again,” said Kramer.

“We couldn’t ask for a better partner than Carter Kramer and Cellsite Solutions,” said Hawkeye Downs Racing Director Kevin Korsmo. “Carter has a contagious enthusiasm for racing. As part of this partnership, he can offer ideas for events and racing. We expect race fans will be seeing a lot more entertainment in the near future.”

All events scheduled for Hawkeye Downs, including next racing season, will go on as planned. Next weekend Hawkeye Downs hosts a gun show, followed by an RV show in February. Events are scheduled out into June 2021. Hawkeye Downs will celebrate 100 years of racing in 2025.


About CellSite Solutions: CellSite Solutions is a nationally recognized company, based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. CellSite Solutions provides used telecommunications equipment as well as telecommunications site services. The company offers quality secondary market and surplus outside plant equipment, a menu of installation services and includes a craning and logistics division. CellSite intends to redevelop its current location at 1720 I Avenue NE in Cedar Rapids and move its headquarters to the Hawkeye Downs property.  Currently, the company has 55 employees, with plans to expand and increase its employee base to more than 70 employees in the next 24 months.

About Hawkeye Downs: Each year this premiere venue hosts dozens of trade shows, conventions, and gatherings in its exposition halls and on its vast grounds. Hawkeye Downs is also home to one of two asphalt racetracks in the state of Iowa.  Every May through August, you can hear the roar of race engines almost every weekend. Founded in 1925, Hawkeye Downs was previously known as Frontier Park and the Cedar Rapids Speedway. Hawkeye Downs is a nonprofit organization that is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors.

June 29th Races Postponed Due To Heat

The Hawkeye Downs management team has been closely monitoring the forecast for this Friday, June 29th. In the best interest of safety for our fans, drivers, and staff we have elected to postpone this weeks racing due to the extreme heat forecast.

Next week is a scheduled week off for the 4th of July, so our next racing event will take place on Friday, July 13th with Casey’s General Stores “Wall of Fame Night”, which will include the AIRS Vintage Cars and the 2018 Wall of Fame Inductees. Any make up race dates will be announced at a later time.