Tag Archives: North Carolina car and aviation museums

2022 Road Trip-Part 15A

1 Feb

A Slice of Life

Bill Lites

Day 15 (5/30/2022)

This morning after breakfast, I headed south out of Winston Salem 25 miles on I-285 to visit the Richard Childress Racing (RCR) Museum located in Lexington, NC.  This museum has a great collection of NASCAR race cars and memorabilia about the lives, times, and drivers of the RCR team from its inception to the present day. Visitors can walk down thru the years of NASCAR racing with each RCR race car they pass.

Photo Credit: Richard Childress Racing Museum – Bing images

At some point after leaving the RCR Museum, I heard a clicking noise coming from the front of my van.  It turned out to be a screw in my left front tire.  I looked up ‘Tire Repair’ on the internet, but they were all closed for the holiday.  I drove slowly, trying not to dislodge the screw until I could find someone to repair it.  Luckily the screw stayed intact, so the tire didn’t go flat.  I finally found a WalMart Auto shop there in Lexington that was open, and got the tire repaired.  Whew!  I was afraid I would never find anyone open today.  Thank you Lord.

Photo Credit: walmart auto tire repair – Bing images

After being saved by the WalMart Auto Repair people from a major desaster, I headed southeast out of Lexington 30 miles on US-64 to visit American Classic Motorcycles Museum located in Asheboro, NC.  This museum has one of the country’s largest private collections of antique Harley-Davidson motorcycles dating from 1936 to 1978.  The collection is displayed in a two-story building along with a gift shop, a motorcycle repair shop, and the Heritage Diner.  Located at the intersection of I-75 & US-64, on the outskirts of Asheboro, this museum is a real All-in-One stop.

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

While I was in Asheboro, I headed over to visit North Carolina Aviation Museum located adjacent to the Asheboro Regional Airport.  This museum has two large 20,000 sq. ft. hangers filled with around 15 restored civilian aircraft dating from the 1930s to the 1950s.  There are lots of other aviation related artifacts and memorabilia, along with lots of model airplanes, in the Aviation Hall of Fame and the Piedmont Airlines display areas.

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

Now I headed downtown to visit the Carolina Classic Cars Museum there in Asheboro.  This museum is a huge showroom filled with sports cars, exotic, and classic cars, as well as late model muscle cars and trucks that are on display by sellers for buyers to inspect. It is truly an auto buff’s eye candy store.

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

I headed southwest out of Asheboro 55 miles on SR-49 to visit the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame located in Kannapolis, NC.  As it turns out, the Music Hall of Fame shares the same building with the CURB Music & Motorsports Museum.  The N.C. Music Hall of Fame honors 75+ local North Carolina inductees and groups, from all music genres, over the years.  The CURB Music & Motorsports Museum is the private motorsports collection of racecar enthusiast, Mike Curb, who is also the founder of Curb Records.  The CURB collection includes NASCAR race cars, Indy cars and modified race cars dating from the 1940s and includes some 700+ wall displays and photos.

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

As I was on my way to visit the Stewart-Hass Racing, there in Kannapolis, I passed the Research Campus of the University of North Carolina and stopped to take a photo of that impressive building.  I’m always surprised at the accommodations of some universities, compared with the old WWII wood-framed structures the university I attended used for some of their classrooms and workshops.

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

It was only a few miles to where I visited Stewart-Hass Racing, where I discovered NASCAR Cup Series champion, Tony Stewart, and Gene Hass, founder of Hass Automation created this facility to design and manufacture unique parts and assemblies for their winning NASCAR Cup Series racing team cars.  The amazing capabilities of this facility blew my mind!

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

The next 10 miles south on US-29 went fast and before I knew it Greta (My Garmin) notified me that I had arrived at the Mustang Owner’s Museum located in the Carpenter Industrial Park in Concord, NC.  This museum has on display some 25+ Ford Mustangs dating from the 1964 World’s Fair introduction model to the present.  The museum also has a Mustang Hall of Fame for annual inductees and hosts local Mustang events throughout the year.

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

It was just a few miles to where I visited the Morrison Motor Car Museum also located there in Concord.  Jimmy Morrison and his brother created this museum, which displays over 50 beautifully restored antique cars, classic cars, street cars, muscle cars, and modified race cars and motorcycles, some dating from the 1920s to the present day.

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

—–To Be Continued—–

Bill is a retired Mechanical engineer living with his wonderful artist/writer wife, DiVoran, of 65 years in Titusville, Florida. He was born and raised in the Southwest, did a tour of duty with the U.S. Navy, attended Northrop University in Southern California and ended up working on America’s Manned Space Program for 35 years. He currently is retired and spends most of his time building and flying R/C model airplanes, traveling, writing blogs about his travels for Word Press and supporting his wife’s hobbies with framing, editing and marketing.  He also volunteers with a local church Car Care Ministry and as a tour guide at the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum there in Titusville.  Bill has two wonderful children, two outstanding grandchildren, and a loving sister and her husband, all of whom also live in Central Florida, so he and DiVoran are rewarded by having family close to spend lots of quality time with.

One of Bill’s favorite Scriptures is:  John 10:10

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