If you had asked me a few months ago if I was a racing enthusiast, my answer would have been, racing to where? But after a quick getaway to Cabarrus County, NC with my teenage son, my answer is now a thundering YES!
Just a quick 4-hour car ride from Atlanta, lies Cabarrus County, aptly tag-lined with “Where Racing Lives." With my son having a need for speed as a motor sports fan, and me having a need for history, nature, and a little shopping, it’s the perfect weekend getaway. There were plenty of things to do within the cities Concord, Harrisburg, Kannapolis, Midland, and Mount Pleasant, each having distinct historical downtowns and racing DNA at every turn.
MOTOR SPORTS FANS: When Cabarrus County says, “we have it all,” they aren’t kidding! The area includes Charlotte Motor Speedway, zMAX Dragway, and a self-guided tour of racing legend Dale Earnhardt Sr.’s hometown called The Dale Trail. I HIGHLY recommend attending the Bank of America Roval 400 in October and staying at The Embassy Suites in Concord.
NATURE LOVERS: There is no shortage of recreational activities in and around Cabarrus County. Whether you like to bike, kayak, climb or hike, Carolina Thread Trail and Harrisburg Park are quite impressive.
HISTORY BUFFS: Cabarrus County has a deep history which extends well past racing, visible not only in their charming and quaint historic downtowns, but also in every restored and re-purposed building. Visit downtown Concord, founded in the late 1700’s, and walk around well-preserved cannons, historical buildings, and re-purposed mills. Reed Gold Mine in Midland offers a family friendly tour.
SHOPPING AND FOODIES: For shopping, check out Gibson Mill antique hall, The Bead Shop in Concord (say hi to the owner Kathleen!), Goldberry Books, and Concord Mills Outlet Malls. Foodies and craft beer lovers won’t want to miss Southern Grace Distilleries, Havana Carolina Café, High Branch Brewing Co., 73 & Main and 44 Mills Kitchen.
Be sure to check out VisitCabarrus.com for a list of upcoming events, races and motor sports events.