Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
(Steve Griffin | The Salt Lake Tribune) Michael Hatch, and Parker Wilcox push Melinda Gulbranson to victory and the championship, left, as Eric Miller and Mark Larsen push Ryan Knight to a second place finish in the fifth annual Pallet Grand Prix in the Layton Hills Mall parking lot Friday Aug. 23, 2013. "The Moms" entry in the field had a princess theme and went undefeated for the day.
Pallet Grand Prix boosts awareness of untapped labor
Employment » Group that organized race helps people with disabilities learn job skills.
First Published Aug 23 2013 03:52 pm • Last Updated Feb 14 2014 11:33 pm

Layton • The fifth annual Pallet Grand Prix on Friday had all the thrills and spills of a professional race: Cars zooming down the track, drivers focused on beating their competitors, a vehicle veering off course, spectators cheering wildly and excited winners crossing the finish line.

The event — held by PARC (Pioneer Adult Rehabilitation Center) in the parking lot of Layton Hills Mall — also had the special element of building awareness of the untapped labor pool of people with disabilities.

At a glance

Community job training program

To learn more about PARC (Pioneer Adult Rehabilitation Program), visit www.PARC-UT.org or www.facebook.com/PARC.UT.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

"It’s just a fun, feel-good event for the community," said Chad Miller, marketing manager of the Clearfield-based PARC, a nonprofit administered by Davis School District that helps adults with disabilities learn life skills and find employment.

Seventeen companies and schools entered the grand prix and built cars out of wooden shipping pallets based on the theme of "The Hero Within." The cars and drivers’ outfits referenced Superman, Captain America, Batman, Angry Birds (they protect their babies) and other heroes of the participants.

There were just a few rules for the cars, including no engines and brakes optional. The drivers were PARC clients and the power was supplied by two members from each race team who pushed the car down a 150-foot track.

The cars raced two at a time in elimination rounds. In the end, the Princess Power team of Melinda Gulbranson and Roben Rogers, who took turns in the driver’s seat, won.

The two, appropriately dressed in pink princess dresses, were cheered on by a large crowd of supporters wearing princess power T-shirts. Their team was sponsored by"The Moms," a group of family members and friends of PARC clients who exchanged fist bumps with Gulbranson after her car finished first in the deciding race.

The princesses’ competitors had just as much fun and everyone made it to the end of the race, despite a mishap involving the entry from Clearfield High School. As the car holding school janitor Jeff Weston was being pushed down the track, it suddenly lost a wheel and veered off course.

The students in the pit crew scrambled onto the track and carried the car, with Weston still behind the wheel, across the finish line.

Although he didn’t win his round, Weston was happy with how the race ended. With a big grin on his face, he said of the students, "They are way cool."

story continues below
story continues below


Twitter: @PamelaMansonSLC

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment

About Reader Comments

Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.