FirstEnergyAll-American Soap Box Derby Countdown

Akron Area Soap Box Derby is a franchisee of All-American Soap Box Derby, Akron, Inc.

2023 Akron Area Soap Box Derby Board Members


Jeff Iula

Vice President

Alan Endres


Vickie Beck


Angelo Milone

Race Director

Craig Flury

Board Members

Bruce Hunsicker Sr.

Ed Harmon

Melanie Long

Kaylee Long

Mike Forster

John Harmon

Bruce Hunsicker Jr

Jeff Iula

Angelo Malone

Beckie Caputo

Allan Endres

Ted Caputo

The History of the Akron Area Local SoapBox Derby

The Akron Area SoapBox Derby was founded in 1934 and has continued since then for 81 years. There are only 3 cities that have been in every All-American Akron, Clevleand, and Indianapolis.

The first Akron Local race was held on Tallmadge Hill in 1934 and 1935. In 1936, Derby Downs was built. The Akron Local was the first to race on the hill. Akron had raced there for the last 79 locals. The Beacon Journal sponsored the local from 1934-1973. It was also the largest race in the country almost every year.

The largest Akron Local was in 1959, when 556 kids raced for one champion which was Clarence Barker. The Akron Local Race was run backwards on Derby Downs with a huge ramp between 1950-1958. The Akron Local had 3 World Champs until 1979 when Craig Kitchens won. Since then the Akron Area has won 12 more for the most in history with 16. The Akron Local has had 9 Rally World Champions.

The Akron Area SoapBox Derby is a no-profit organization and it is run by the Akron Area Board of Directors. Which all board members are volunteers, and Akron holds over 20 races and rallies every year.


Mission Statement

The Soap Box Derby® is an international nonprofit organization whose mission is to build knowledge and character, and to create meaningful experiences through collaboration and fair and honest competition.

Core Vaules and Drivers

• Youth Education and Leadership Development
• Family Engagement and Enrichment
• Honesty, Integrity and Perseverance
• Innovation and Entrepreneurship
• Teamwork and Collaboration
• Mentoring
• Volunteerism
• Commitment to Community

The Derby is the official sanctioning body of Soap Box Derby racing and has exclusive licensing partnerships with more than 100 racing districts throughout world. These racing districts conduct sanctioned Soap Box Derby races throughout the year and qualify champs for the annual FirstEnergy All-American Soap Box Derby® World Championship race at the world famous Derby Downs Track in Akron, Ohio. 

The Derby's Education Program is a fast-growing component of the organization and includes a STEM-Based Curriculum, the Gravity Racing Challenge® STEM Team Competition and a Mini Soap Box Derby program. 

The Derby also operates the world famous Derby Downs Track in Akron, Ohio where events are held throughout the racing season.

The Board of Directors oversees the operation of the Derby, and the day-to-day activities are handled by the Headquarters staff in Akron.