CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — Cedar Rapids native Joey Gase will race in the NASCAR Nationwide Series at the Iowa Speedway in Newton this weekend.
But before he competes, Gase will be back in his hometown to raise awareness for a special cause. He’ll be at Hawkeye Downs Speedway Friday night.
Their weekly race is being sponsored by the Iowa Donor Network. Joey has worked closely with IDN over the years, even donning their logo on his #52 car.
Joey’s mom became an organ donor when she passed away in 2011. Ever since then, the Cedar Rapids native has worked to raise awareness about organ and tissue donation.
”There are people, just by having pictures on my car, may have no idea about Iowa Donor Network is or Donate Life, but by seeing pictures they ask why are they on the car, and you get them to tell their story and it’s such an important cause,“ Gase said.
Joey says people often tell him they can’t be donors because they have health problems or they smoke. He tells them that there is a lot they can still do, including donating eyes and tissues. Joey says that’s why he encourages everyone to register and let the doctors decide, then the time comes if you are a viable donor.
Joey will be signing autographs and racing at Hawkeye Downs Friday night. Representatives from Iowa Donor Network will be on hand to answer questions. They also will have refreshments and be offering pace car rides.
Gates open at Hawkeye Downs Friday at 6 p.m., and races start at 7:30.
Gase has a busy week here in Iowa. He’s also throwing out the first pitch at the Kernels game Thursday night, then he’ll be in Newton for the NASCAR Nationwide Series Race on Saturday.