Her great aunt and uncle cannot attend her college graduation, because they will be at a NASCAR race. A friend told me this when I told her how I hate the stigma of NASCAR fans.

Yes, these family members will be missing one of the most important days in the life of their great niece, but are they low-lifes for missing it because of some silly NASCAR race? No!

On May 6, 2017, ETSU will have its graduation ceremony. The very next day is the Geico 500 race at Talladega Superspeedway in Talladega County, Alabama.

At this two-and-a-half-mile track, patrons of the racing sport can accommodate themselves in the center of the track. Many fans park their campers or recreational vehicles on the campgrounds enclosed by the race track for the entire week of racing.

The thing is, in order to be able to enjoy a week like this, you have to have some seriously deep pockets.

Many people stereotype NASCAR fans into people who have no teeth and thick Southern drawls; people who like to drink moonshine, Mountain Dew and Busch Light, and people who live in trailer parks while surviving off food stamps and other government welfare.

The keyword is stereotype.

When was the last time you looked at the price of an average size RV? This is not a cheap purchase. Neither is a camp site at any NASCAR track, not to mention a site inside the actual track.

At all the NASCAR race tracks, as at the Talladega Superspeedway, there are many camping options. Camping outside the actual track-affiliated campgrounds is always the more affordable choice. If you plan on camping on the infield at the Geico 500, you could be paying up to $2250 for five days at the race track.

If you plan on going to the much smaller track this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway, you will not be able to park on the infield, as there is no space. However, you will be able to park right outside the last great colosseum for a meager $860 if you make the wait list.

Of course, there are always cheaper options, but most of the cheaper options are first-come-first-served. These economic camping options also don’t come with luxuries like access to plumbing and electricity.

With camping out of the equation, tickets are also not the most wallet-friendly.

In order to make the races more attractive, Bristol Motor Speedway has lowered their prices for children under 12 years to $10. Although, adults aren’t so lucky.

Just for the Monster Energy Cup Series race, the Food City 500, adults can expect to pay between $69 and $143. That does not include any of the other races during race week.

Some die-hard fans make trips sometimes across the country to attend NASCAR races. The costs involved with transportation and accommodation dwarf the prices of tickets.

If someone can afford to attend these events, do you think they would really be so bad off that they would match the stereotypical image of a NASCAR fan?

I’m not saying that money buys class, but it does count for something. The unfortunate people who do match the description of toothless, nicotine hounds most likely will not be able to afford to be NASCAR fans.

Next time you see a Dale Earnhardt sticker on a $40,000 pickup truck, I would not recommend calling that person despicable names matching the stereotype of a NASCAR fan, because that fan is most likely a member of the NRA ($40 per year) and owns a shotgun (around $300 new). Why? Because they can afford it.