“Let’s Get Cylindrical”? “Speed is the word”? Whatever the theme could be, word came over this past weekend that multi-slash performer Olivia Newton-John—the actress/singer/activist/ survivor/author—will serve as the grand marshal of the Indianapolis 500 parade on May 26 in the city’s downtown. The event, which had grand marshal Anderson Cooper last year, draws as many as 300,000 parade-goers.
Newton-John, a breast-cancer survivor, has a book titled LivWise: Easy Recipes for a Happy and Healthy Life that she is currently touting on her website and in the media. She has confirmed a book signing in Plainfield, also on May 26, and will appear at a Barnes & Noble store there from 2:30 to 4 p.m.
She has a close car-racing connection to boot: Her nephew Emerson Newton-John will race in the Firestone Indy Lights Freedom 100 on May 25, with aspirations of riding at the IndyCar Series level in a couple years. She will give the “Start your engines” command to drivers in that race, making the most of her Indy time.
Australian-born Olivia is best known for her role as Sandra Dee alongside John Travolta in Grease. Say, remember that drag-race scene?
The star will be an honorary guest at the Regions 500 Festival Snakepit Ball, also on May 26, at the Indiana Roof Ballroom.
Photo via Olivia Newton-John’s Facebook page