About Us

Our Mission: The International Soap Box Derby® is a non-profit youth education and leadership development organization whose mission is to build knowledge and character, and to create meaningful experiences through collaboration, fair and honest racing competitions, STEM curriculum, and other community-focused activities.

Portage County Soap Box Derby

Portage County Soap Box Derby is based out of Portage County and includes racers from Mahoning County and even Mercer County, PA.  We are looking for new families for racers, helpers and potential board members/volunteers!  Our Local Race is run every year on E. High St, in Mantua, OH on the Saturday prior to Father’s Day as it has for over twenty years.  We hold the local race for four divisions (stock, super stock, masters, and Superkids).  Stock is for children interested in racing who are ages 7-13 – this is an introductory class. Super stock is a more advanced class and is for children who are 9-18 years of age. Masters is the most advanced and for ages 10-20.  Finally, Superkids is our fourth division which is meant for any racer who might be too physically or mentally handicapped to operate a car on their own but would still want to feel the excitement of racing down the hill.  The winner of our local race along with our rally champions automatically earn a spot into the All-American in Akron in July to represent our Local which is very exciting.  If you are interested, please contact anyone of our current board members and we are willing to help you in any way we can!

For the Local race we do have cars to be lent out so that should not deter anyone from trying this great fun and exciting form of racing!

2023-2024 Board Members

President – Dean Olson – 330 351-3035

Vice President – Jay Moore – 330 – 697-4569

Treasurer – Jillian Moore 

Race Director – Dale Smutny – 330-518-9981

Rally Race Coordinator – Vickie Beck – 330-388-8200

Secretary – Sherri Moore

Frequently Asked

How can I get started racing?

Visit our Getting Started page for more information on how to get started as a Soap Box Derby racer.

Do I have to buy and build a car?

For first-time drivers, we have club cars that you can re-build to fit your driver and use it to start racing. If you enjoy it, we can help you find sponsors to get your own car.

How can I donate my time or money to help this local program?

Please contact us – we can always use both to grow our program!

I have questions. How do I reach out?

Send us an email – and an enthusiastic volunteer will email you or call you back and go over all your questions.

Become a

Take part in the tradition of the Portage Soap Box Derby – Get started with the program today to discover the excitement of gravity racing!