SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – They started out as literal soap boxes and now some of them resemble Forumla1 race cars.
The modern Soap Box Derby puts kids in a self-built car, with the sole purpose of going as fast as possible but attention to detail could make or break a fast time.
The idea of the Soap Box Derby came from Myron Scott, a Dayton, Ohio reporter. He came across a group of boys racing their homemade cars in the summer of 1933.
Scott was so impressed with the event that he bought the copyright to the “Soap Box Derby” and partnered with Chevy to put on the first derby in 1934. It was eventually moved to its current location in Akron, Ohio.
Races are held each year in officially sanctioned Soap Box Derby race locations. Locally, that’s on Franklin Street in downtown Schenectady.
Children between the ages of 7 and 20 are eligible to race but parents and mentors help build a car using a specifically designed kit.