Do you love Mario Kart? So do we! That’s why we are stoked that it looks like the chance to race Mario Karts for REAL is coming soon to Los Angeles. We do, however, have some questions.
Just think, all of the fun and hijinks of go-karts with the added style and (unofficial) zest of the Nintendo franchise. Here’s what we know and the questions that we have:
What We Know
1. It’s an Australian Idea
The race is put on by an Australian company that is famous for putting on “Mushroom Rallies”‘ all over the world. The Aussie brand has hosted “pop up” racing events in the UK as well as Australia, all designed to be limited-time fun events.
2. The LA Event is Part of a U.S. Tour
The mushroom rally Mario Kart event will form part of an “ultimate Go Karting Experience” in 16 cities around the United States, including Los Angeles, Denver, Houston, Dallas, Miami, Cincinnati, Columbus, Indianapolis, and Kansas City.
3. This is a Limited-Time and Ticket-Only Event
The races in LA will be held from Saturday, March 16, 2019 to Sunday, March 24th, 2019. You MUST have a ticket to race, and tickets are on sale now, as of February 4th, 2019! Check out the ticket sales site here at Eventbrite; they cost $55 per person.
The ticket price includes costume rental, race, games, activities, and prizes. (This part is a little fuzzy. Riders will collect “stars” according to the Mushroom Rally website. We don’t know how these convert to prizes). Each racer is guaranteed one race.
4. This Isn’t a Street Race
Unlike the Mario Kart that you might be used to seeing on your gaming device, this race will happen at K1 Speed at 19038 S Vermont Ave in Gardena, California. As a bonus, this means you should just be able to go watch if you want to see a friend race; each racer gets one guest pass to watch.
5. You Do Not HAVE to Bring a Costume, But You Can
A big part of the fun will be dressing up as your favorite Mario Kart character. You can bring your own costume, but if you don’t have one, the organizers will have a variety to choose from. The costume rental doesn’t cost extra but is only for the racer, not their friends. If you use the company’s costumes, it’s worth noting that they also double as protective gear in case of an accident…or banana peel.
6. There’s a Real Prize at Stake
Well, this is all in good fun, but the top winners in each heat will race at least a second time, and the final winner from each city will be flown to Las Vegas for the Mario Kart Finals! (Each participant is also entered into a lottery to race in the final as well, so you really have two chances to go to Vegas.)
7. More than Two Hundred Riders Per City Are Expected
That’s a lot of Peaches and Marios and Waluigis. However, if you have mad go-kart skills, you could apparently win yourself a trip to Vegas.
Questions We Have:
This Isn’t Like the Fyre Festival, Is It?
Serious LA’s research into the event displayed a noted amount of secrecy surrounding many details and a “Mushroom Rally” website full of typos and lack of clarity. While the proven success of the event (and one presumes the organizers) in Australia and the UK would seem to suggest that these folks know what they are doing, caution is warranted in booking, and especially if you end up going to Vegas.
In fairness, the organizers say that they prefer to remain secretive to keep the excitement of the event popping.
Is This a Nintendo Thing? If Not, How Do They Get Away With It?
It’s worth noting that the organization in charge of this Mario Kart experience calls it “Mushroom Rally” because they are unaffiliated with Nintendo. Therefore, the race is “unofficially” called a Mario Kart-themed event.
The organizers may not identify it as an official event, but all press materials and articles (including our own) call it a “Mario Kart Event.” To date, however, the organizers seem to be avoiding copyright infringement.
Whether you are hoping for that free trip to Vegas or not, if you are a big fan of Mario and go-karts, this might be worth the $55 for you. It seems to be a harmless and family-friendly event!