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'Pure Michigan' to sponsor NASCAR race

Lake Michigan
Jennifer Guerra
Michigan Radio
Lake Michigan as seen from Beaver Island

The state’s popular Pure Michigan tourism campaign is headed to the race track this summer.

Pure Michigan will sponsor its first NASCAR race at the Michigan International Speedway. It will be billed as the Pure Michigan 400. ESPN will be broadcast the race  nationwide and run Pure Michigan ads during the event.

George Zimmerman, vice president of Travel Michigan, says while the NASCAR demographic is "a slightly different audience than our typical target," he feels there's a lot of overlap between what racing fans are interested in and what Michigan has to offer - like fishing and golf.

Zimmerman called the sponsorship a “one-time deal.”

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation, which houses Pure Michigan, paid $975,000 to sponsor the race. The race takes place August 21st.

Jennifer is a reporter for Michigan Radio's State of Opportunity project, which looks at kids from low-income families and what it takes to get them ahead. She previously covered arts and culture for the station, and was one of the lead reporters on the award-winning education series Rebuilding Detroit Schools. Prior to working at Michigan Radio, Jennifer lived in New York where she was a producer at WFUV, an NPR station in the Bronx.
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