Known for being "fans first," Charlotte Motor Speedway was "community first" during its Service Day on Wednesday, which saw speedway employees spend the day volunteering their time by doing everything from painting and pressure washing to cooking meals, installing light fixtures, spreading mulch, trimming hedges and reading to children at five area nonprofit organizations.

Speedway employees donned red Pit Crew shirts and spent the morning volunteering at The Salvation Army; Coltrane LIFE Center; Opportunity House; Piedmont Residential Development Center and the Church of God Children's Home of North Carolina.

Employees from every department at the speedway threw a summer bash for residents at the Piedmont Residential Development Center and presented longtime Opportunity House cook Addie Payne with a special gift basket.

"It's a great honor to be able to give back to our neighbors in Cabarrus County and the greater Charlotte region," said Greg Walter, Charlotte Motor Speedway's executive vice president. "We're all about serving others. It's what we do at every speedway event, but today we took a servant's heart out into the community. Seeing the smiles on the faces of those we've helped is certainly the most special aspect of our Service Day."

More than 100 employees were on site at locations as early as 7 a.m. and ready to go to work. Employees logged in excess of 1,000 volunteer hours throughout the Service Day project, from planning through execution. Several speedway partners also donated equipment and necessary supplies.

"It's a collaborative, group effort," said Maj. Johnny Poole of The Salvation Army. "Sharing is caring. (The speedway) shared their time and their talents. They brought everything. It makes light work when you come together like this as a community effort, not just a Salvation Army effort."