Steve Stroud, founder and CEO of the museum, was compelled to start displaying racing photographs and gear in the showroom of one of his Phoenix Parker Store locations. Customers took note and began asking questions. Inspired by his love of racing, the interest of his customers, and further encouraged by conversations with key figures in the motorsports world, Steve launched the Arizona Open Wheel Racing Museum.
The current facility boasts 10,000 sq. ft. of displays, exhibits, and meeting space and plans to expand to 16,000 sq. ft. in late 2014. The museum offers memberships to the public and hosts fundraisers to promote interest in local motorsports events and heritage. The meeting space, with a 100-person capacity, is available to host weddings, reunions, celebrations, racing meetings — in short, anything with a connection to motorsports. Along with the planned expansion, Steve Stroud is negotiating inter-collection loans with other museums and future exhibits centered around the Copper World Classic and Phoenix International Raceway’s 50th anniversary.
The Stroud Family Trust owns several of the cars on display and Steve has negotiated loans from collections throughout the country. He hopes to establish regular inter-collection exhibits and has pieces in the process of restoration to exhibit in the future.