This week, we’re shaking things up! If you’ve been following the track-to-track trip every week, you might think this week’s route feels awfully familiar. That’s because it is! After heading North on I-65 last week to get from Bristol Motor Speedway to Road America, we’ll be heading right back down it this week. There are a few new and noteworthy spots along the way, so don’t worry, you’ll have plenty of fresh places to explore! However, we’re also going to give you some bonus stops in a few of last week’s cities for you to check out (if you haven’t already). Just think – by the time this leg of the track-to-track road trip is over, you’ll know some of these cities like the back of your hand! After exploring so much, you might even have a few of your own hot spots to share.
Last Race: August 27 at Road America
Next Race: September 2 at Darlington Raceway
Time on the road: About 15.5 Hours
Best route: I-65 South
Start Your Engines:
Milwaukee is the perfect city to start this leg of the track-to-track road trip. There’s so much to see and do here! First, get a picture op by stopping by the Bronze Fonz. That’s right – it’s a bronze statue of Fonzie from Happy Days. So give this stop a thumbs up and give the camera your best “Eyy!” Then, gear up to go to the Harley Davidson Museum, where you’ll find some of the coolest motorcycles ever made. Or get a blast from the past at the Chudnow Museum of Yesteryear, which has nostalgia-inducing artefacts from back in the day.
When you’re ready to call it a night, you can’t go wrong at the County Clare Irish Inn and Pub. With beautiful amenities and a wonderfully homey feel, you’ll leave feeling well rested and ready to take on the day ahead! For somewhere a little swankier, The Pfister is another Milwaukee gem. You’ll be truly dazzled by the décor. Once you’ve had a good night’s rest, wake up bright and early for breakfast at Blue’s Egg.
This next stop is a new one for the track-to-track trip, so we’d say it’s about time we’re stopping here! Chicago – or The Windy City, as some like to call it – is positively brimming with things to see and do. It was hard to narrow it all down for this list, but, if you follow the itinerary, expect to see a good mix of off the beaten path places as well as Chicago classics. First, check in at The Publishing House Bed and Breakfast, a wonderfully charming B&B located in Chicago’s West Loop neighborhood. Then, get your pizza fix at Lou Malnatis, where ordering anything other than a Chicago-style deep dish should be a crime. If you’re still hungry after all the pizza, grab a snack at Portillos, where the Chicago dog was made legendary. Or, if you’ve got more of a sweet tooth, pick up some decadent donuts at Do-Rite Donuts.
Next, head on over to Oz Park. At only a short 15 minute drive away, this park, inspired by E.L. Baum’s original novel The Wizard of Oz, is sure to enchant and delight young and old alike. For yet another priceless experience, go to the Money Museum, where you’ll be able to see just how big a stack of a million dollars really is. Be sure to flash that million dollar smile for a selfie while you’re there!
It’s time to make another pit stop, and there’s no better place than Lafayette, IL (NOT to be confused by Lafayette, LA!). If you’re brave enough, head straight to Wolf Park, which is a sanctuary for wolves. Then, calm your nerves with a cold one at Lafayette Brewing Company. Or treat yourself to some surf and turf at Parkside Seafood House. When you start to get a little tired, make your way to the Union Club Hotel, which is conveniently located on the Purdue University Campus. But don’t end your night there. Make the quick jaunt across the Wabash River to the Black Sparrow Pub to enjoy some of the best craft beers in town, then hop on over to Spot Tavern for great live entertainment.
It’s time to make your way back down to Louisville. If you’re looking for divine beers and heavenly bar food, the Holy Grale is the place for you. Or, if you’re more in the mood for classic wines for your refined palette, go to the Old 502 Winery instead. While you’re at it, you’d probably appreciate a trip to Louisville Glassworks, where you can see the works of some of the finest glassblowers around. Before you head back out, grab some of Louisville’s most famous candies – we’re talking gooey modjeskas and decadent bourbon balls – for a snack on the road at Muth’s Candies.
We’re getting close to Darlington Racedway now, but before we reach our destination, we’ve got one more stop revisit – Asheville, NC. That’s right – the city that has more food options than you could possibly explore in one trip. Where to start?! Bouchon has some of the finest French foods around, so if you’re feeling a little fancy, this place is a good bet. Craving a hearty breakfast? Go to Early Girl Eatery instead. In the mood for some Mexican fare? White Duck Taco Shop is the place to go. Now that we’ve unearthed nearly endless food options, maybe it’s time to check out some of Asheville’s other offerings.
If you’ve got curious kids, Enter the Earth will amaze them! Specializing in fossils, it’s a great place to find an educational souvenir to home. And the science fun doesn’t have to end there! The Asheville Museum of Science has some really neat exhibits that are sure to captivate the whole family.
Last Stop: Florence, SC
At long last, we’ve made it! We’re counting down the minutes until the green flag comes out in the Sport Clips Haircuts VFW 200 race at Darlington Raceway. But until then, we’ll be checking out these Top 5 Hot Spots Around Darlington Raceway. Join us as we explore the lovely Southern surroundings, then cheer on Blake Koch in the race!
Summer is dwindling fast – that means we’re in the home stretch of the track-to-track road trip. But don’t feel sad just yet, we’ve got plenty more places to put on your itinerary in the coming weeks! Keep checking back for the latest road trip updates!