This week saw the opening of what looks like the best hall of fame in this country anyway, the NASCAR Hall of Fame. It is a near 200 Million project in downtown Charlotte, North Carolina, smack dab in the middle of traditional stock car country. From what I've seen and heard in the media, it chronicles the rich history of NASCAR and stock car racing from many series all over the country. It has exhibits, memorabilia, interactive displays, and an excitement that finally, after 60 years, a sport has a place to honor it's own. Just one little itty-bitty problem. D2Moo is jealous, and badly jealous at that.
Why am I so full of jealousy. I wanted it here, in the heart of the Midwest, in my home area of KC. Yes, i know that NASCAR's roots are Southern, and the Hall was built exactly where it should have been, in the Carolinas. Yet in my heart. I wanted it here. Here where it was more readily accessible to NASCAR fans and auto sports fans from everywhere in the country. Not all the fans were from the Southeast. Racing has a colorful history in the heartland, and Wisconsin, and Iowa, and Texas. KC is a cheap flight form the West Coast and Southwest. A beautiful HOF on a bluff, overlooking I-70 and I-435 in Kansas, less than two minutes from the Kansas Speedway would have been an ideal showcase and easily accessible too. It would also cap a great tourist destination that already has places to eat, shop, a huge Schlitterbahn water park, a soccer stadium, a minor league stadium, the Speedway, lots of hotels, and a Hard Rock Casino going up in turn two of the Speedway as well. Oh, did I mention there are a lot of places to eat. I don't know what is in downtown Charlotte, but I bet you can't go down a water slide there.
So I'll settle for being happy that NASCAR finally built their palace to honor the sport. Maybe all those extra exhibits could make their way here someday, at a smaller but heavily visited NASCAR Museum West. It will be sitting on that same bluff overlooking hundreds of thousands of vehicles going by every week. And seeing all those cars from the past, and the vintage videos will help me finally want to head for Charlotte and see the Big Hall. Yes, someday I'll get there for very sure.
As soon as all the green leaves my eyes. That friends, will take a while.
And they build that huge water slide within walking distance.