I mentioned once before that I’m going to Charlotte for the Coca-Cola 600 race weekend at Lowe’s Motor Speedway (May 23-25). I fly in on a Friday and then come back home to California the following Monday. This is my first time to NASCARolina and I want to make the most of it.

This is a great opportunity to soak up a lot of NASCAR history in one 3-day weekend. So I’ve made a short list of things I’d like to check out, how much of it that I’ll actually get to do remains to be seen.

1.) JR Motorsports – I think this goes without saying, there is no way I’m going to North Carolina without checking out Dale Earnhardt Jr’s race shop. Oh! And the JR Nation store! It’s a total and complete mecca for any Dale Jr. fan and I’ve gotta pick up a couple souvenirs.

2.) Dale Earnhardt Inc. – This is another no-brainer, I have to see the place people call the “garage mahal.” That and they’re open on Saturdays so I have time to spread out my stops.

3.) Whisky RiverDale Jr.’s new bar/club/music venue is now open and I really, really want to check it out for myself. Is anyone noticing a pattern here? I get in on Friday and so I’m thinking this would be a great place to go Friday night. If there are any girls like me (and Penni!) that are going to be in town for the race that weekend (or that live in the Charlotte area) we should all meet up and go out to Whisky River. I’m putting it out there ’cause going as a group is just 1.) smart and 2.) fun! It could be a total Fast and the Fabulous party. Hmm… If you’re interested just shoot me an email.

Oh and as a small side note that barely has anything to do with this, Natasha Bedingfield is going to be performing at Whisky River two days after I leave, so I’m sad I’m missing that. Her new CD “Pocketful of Sunshine” is great by the way, you should get it.

4.) Hendrick Motorsports Museum – They’re re-opening the museum to the public (for free!) after keeping it closed off for renovations. I just found out about this and it could be a cool thing to check out.

Check out Rick Hendrick’s first Chevrolet. Watch a dissected Impala SS “Car of Tomorrow” being pieced together. See the cars and memorabilia of Casey Mears, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Hendrick Motorsports has reopened its 15,000-square-foot museum. Featured currently are cars driven by Geoff Bodine, Tim Richmond, Ken Schrader and Ricky Hendrick, among others. (Courtesy Hendrick Motorsports) These are just a few things visitors can do now that Hendrick Motorsports has reopened its museum. The 15,000-square-foot facility, which was closed the last four months for renovations, pays tribute to nearly 25 seasons of Hendrick Motorsports history and offers fans the latest in team-related apparel and merchandise. Admission to the museum is free of charge.

“We are extremely proud of this museum, and we hope our fans will enjoy it,” team owner Rick Hendrick said. “We’ve had a lot of success and a lot of special moments over the years, and it’s humbling to reflect on that. But the one thing we always keep in mind is that it wouldn’t be possible without our fans’ support.”

And that’s all I’ve got so far. I know there are other race shops in the area of course but not all of them have stuff you can actually check out, but I’m definitely going to try to get in as much as possible.

If you have suggestions, feel free to post them!