Updated on Jan. 18 with a link to purchase tickets. Real-life go-karts are fun, but there's nothing quite like throwing banana peels and racing against Donkey Kong like you can in Mario Kart on various Nintendo platforms.
Fortunately, some heroes out there have made efforts to recreate the Mario Kart experience in real life, and you should be able to do it for yourself in Dallas in 2019 during the Mushroom Rally.
The event is... well, it's what you probably expect it to be: A go-kart race with some (unofficial) Mario touches thrown in for color. They call it go-karting "with a twist" and are careful not to mention Nintendo, Mario, red shells or coins... though the visuals they use to promote the race include many of those very things.
The point is clear: They want you to feel like you're playing Mario Kart for real.
Ticket buyers -- 600 people -- will be given a costume when you show up to the race (don't bring your own from home, they say) and compete to win prizes. Tickets are $55 per person in Dallas. One winner from that pool will later be flown to Las Vegas "for the grand finale and a chance to fight it out for the grand prize."
Mushroom Rally is scheduled to hit Dallas in April after the U.S. tour begins in Los Angeles, though the organizers won't tell us where. The secrecy could just be for fun (or, more boring, it could be simply due to the fact that arrangements are still being made), but it could also be an attempt to dodge Nintendo's lawyers. A similar enterprise in Japan, MariCar, recently lost a lawsuit over their Mario Kart-themed tourism company. They've been forced to ditch their Mario and friends costumes (and fork over $89,000 to Nintendo).
Be warned, though. Some reports out of the race's original incarnation in Australia were not exactly glowing, with complaints of costumes that weren't properly cleaned and feelings that the event was "over-priced and over-promised," according to Australian news site news.com.au. Still, those reports were from back in July, so there is plenty of time to work out the kinks before they hit the starting line in Dallas ... provided Nintendo doesn't sue them first.
You can find more information at mushroomrally.com.