History of The Main Street Station

Best Bar in Daytona BeachMain Street Station is a must-see for visitors to the area. First opened in 1934 as a fully functioning garage owned and operated by NASCAR founder and legend Bill France Sr. This vintage garage bar maintains its authentic roots in appearance and its mission to keep the racing spirit of years past alive through special events such as Back to the Roots, honoring legends of racing, and ongoing special events for race fans, motorcycle enthusiasts and “local” residents alike.

Nostalgia abounds at the “Station” and memories of that original garage surround you. It’s a place to bring back the historic past of the early days of racing and the beginnings of the one and only “NASCAR” while enjoying a cold beverage at one of the three bars located on site.

“Bill France Sr.” Founder

William Henry Getty “Bill” France (September 26, 1909 – June 7, 1992), also known as Bill France Sr. or Big Bill, was an American racing driver. He is best known for co-founding and managing NASCAR, a US-based stock car racing sanctioning body.

France was born in Washington, D. C., the son of Emma Graham, an immigrant from Ireland, and William Henry France. France skipped school as a teenager to make laps in the family Model T Ford at the high-banked 1.5-mile board track near Laurel, Maryland. He ran laps until there was enough time to beat his father home. France worked at several jobs before owning and operating his service station. He built his customer base by waking before dawn and crank-starting customers’ cars in the middle of winter.

France was familiar with Daytona Beach’s land speed record history when he moved his family from Washington D.C. to Daytona in the spring of 1935 to escape the Great Depression. He had less than $100 in his pocket when they left D.C. He began painting houses, then worked at a local car dealership. He set up a car repair shop in Daytona at 316 Main Street Station, still in existence today as an event and entertainment venue known as Main Street Station, an Authentic Garage Bar.