LITTLETON, Colo. — The Mushroom Rally in Littleton brought a lot of characters to race around a high-speed GoKart track with dreams of Vegas.
Mario, Princess Peach, Yoshi, Bowser, Luigi — all were seen wandering among the games of corn hole, ring toss and money (er, star?) machine Saturday at K1 Speed in Littleton.
The characters were, of course, mostly adults gathered to try their hand at the 2019 Mushroom Rally — AKA Mario Kart Live. (A few kids came, too.)
Denver (or more accurately Littleton) was one of 16 cities hosting "Mushroom Rally" races across the United States. Twenty-four finalists from across the U.S. will compete in Las Vegas on Saturday, Dec. 7 to become the "ultimate Mushroom Rally champion," according to the event website.
Participants at the Denver-area event dressed up as their favorite Mario Kart characters (costumes were provided) and then zoomed around a custom track.
Initially the event was billed as a place were racers collected stars to win prizes. True, but not on the track itself.
Instead, ticket-holders get handed a sheet of paper to collect star stamps. While waiting to race, they can meander to the costume room, slip into their favorite character (although there weren't a ton of options) and then wait in line to play one of the aforementioned carnival-like games (and earn a star stamp in the process).
The goal? Get as many stamps as possible. And get a lot — because only those with the most star stamps in the country (yes, in the entire COUNTRY) get to go to Las Vegas.
The only other way? Win. Because a seat to the Las Vegas championships means being the best — like the very best. Only the fastest driver each session gets to compete in Vegas.
The track itself was pretty much exactly the way it's always set up at K1, but with Mario Kart-themed decorations.
Plus, the event was a pricey one: Tickets are listed at $55 per person ($60.88 total with the Eventbrite surcharge).
The ticket includes one race, the carnival-like games and a plastic medal. Top three also get an additional prize.
For reference, one 14-lap race on any other day at K1 Speed runs $22. Two races are $38. And for $48, a rider can speed around that track 42 laps (that's three races).
So, if your main objective in heading to the track is the thrill of the karts...well, you get the idea. If the costume and star-collecting thing is worth the extra $33, then go for it.
The Mushroom Rally kicked off Friday, April 5 and runs through Sunday, April 14. Tickets are mostly sold out.
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