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Turkey Run History Timeline

Their Own Parade

The Turkey Run was created in 1974 by Stu Sarjeant. Stu and his five year old son Jim had attempted to enter their 1923 Ford T-Bucket in the 1973 Ormond Beach AACA Gaslight Parade sponsored by the local Jaycees. They were ejected and denied entry as Hot Rods were not permitted. Jim starting crying and asked his Dad if they could have their “own parade” next Thanksgiving. The following year the very first Turkey Run was born.

The Turkey Run is Born

"The Turkey Run" began with 40 cars at a small beachside motel.

Amazon acquires Audible

The show moves to Seabreeze High School and adds a swap meet.

Moving on up
The Turkey Run is Growing

The Turkey Run grows to more than 900 cars and relocates to airport property.

Getting bigger
We Need More Space

Organizers continue to search for a location to accommodate the now 1,520 show-quality cars and 250 swap meet vendors spaces.

Daytona International Speedway
The Turkey Run Finds a Home

The Turkey Run partners with the Daytona Beach Racing & Recreational Facilities District and finds a permanent home in the infield of Daytona International Speedway.

Spring is in the Air
The Spring Turkey Run

Building on the Turkey Run's success, the District creates the Spring Daytona Beach Car Show and hosts more than 800 cars in its first year.

Still Growing
Over 5,000 Classic Cars

The Fall Show celebrates its 35th anniversary, exceeds 5,000 show-quality cars and is the largest swap meet we've ever had.

Still Growing
Giving to the Local Community

As of 2021 Daytona Beach Racing & Recreational Facilities District has given over $15 million for recreational projects in the area.

A Celebrated Year
33rd Spring & 50th Annual

This year is the 50th Annual Daytona Turkey Run, and the 33rd Annual Spring Turkey Run. As of 2023 The Turkey Run has given out more than $19 million in grants to fund many local programs and projects.

About Us

The Daytona Beach Racing & Recreational Facilities District (“The District”) works in partnership with the Daytona Beach Street Rods to produce the Turkey Run on Thanksgiving weekend, and the Spring Turkey Run.

Created in 1955, the District has a long history in the community. Its original purpose was to fund and build a race track in Daytona, but International Speedway Corporation (ISC) stepped up and built the speedway in 1959. Since then, the District has leased the land to ISC and continues to annually reinvest the show proceeds back into the community.

In addition to overseeing the two car shows, which together provide a considerable economic boost to Daytona and Volusia County, the District funds many programs and projects that improve residents’ quality of life year-round. In its history, the District has reinvested more than $19 million to build and improve recreational facilities like parks and walking trails in Daytona Beach, Holly Hill, South Daytona and unincorporated areas of Volusia County. Additionally the District has helped fund many local organizations such as Halifax Youth Sailing, Halifax Historical Society, Museum of Arts & Sciences and the Daytona Beach YMCA, Disabled American Veterans, ARC of Volusia, the Jackie Robinson Ballpark, and many more.