No more than 20 minutes by car (barring some sort of horrendous crash), is Uptown Charlotte. Everything one could possibly need is available in Char-Meck (Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, for those from Roxboro). Not only are there gleaming towers of commerce, but there is the quirky neighbourhood of NoDa (North Davidson Street between 34th and 36th Street), the Fourth Ward with its old-style houses, and if you're into more modern and snooty environs there is Ballantyne a good ways south of Uptown.
Kannapolis is a small town located about six miles from Concord. Until my visit with Nat, I had never bothered stopping here, but there is one big reason that people come here. His nickname was "the Intimidator." Dale Earnhardt, Sr. was a Nascar racing legend until his unfortunate death in an accident in February of 2001.
His hometown of Kannapolis has honored the racing hero by building this tribute at Dale Earnhardt Plaza. Arizona sculptor Clyde Ross Morgan has truly done a great job with this oversized statue, even capturing the Intimidator's trademark smirk.
To get here, take I-85 to exit 60, Dale Earnhardt Boulevard. Follow Dale Earnhardt Boulevard and the signs for Cannon Village, to Main Street. Turn right onto Main Street. Go about a half mile and on the left and you will see Dale Earnhardt Plaza.
Well, I really can't imagine visiting Concord and NOT visiting Charlotte. In fact, it's almost certain that you'll be in the area to visit Charlotte and a the likely excursion would be to Concord and not the other way around. Either way, Charlotte is a great place to live. It's the biggest city in North Carolina, although if you're coming from another large city, that might not be overly impressive. I've always said that Charlotte is a great place to live, but not that exciting to visit. I guess, I should say that you really need to know what to see and bring a curious mind to appreciate what Charlotte has to see.
Despite the lack of overwhelmingly interesting tourist sights, Charlotte is definitely a great place to eat. For more info and a plethora of restaurant tips, check out my Charlotte page.
The North Carolina Zoo is really an excellent day trip from Concord, just up I-85 an hour or so north. The zoo is the largest in the country by acreage and one of the nicer zoos I've visited (though not THE best). If you're traveling with children, a zoo is always a great option.
For more information and lots of photos, check out my Asheboro page.
Want to get out get some fresh air and see the countryside? Drive to Mount Pleasant. Just drive trhough Concord onto 73 and follow 73 to MT pleasant have a burger and come back. Its all about the scenery.