After decades of winning the admiration of stock-car racing fans with his aggressive driving strategy and off-track charisma, Rusty Wallace now gives others the chance to experience the rush of racing. He joined forces with Sodikart to roll out the Rusty Wallace Kart Experience, pairing kart with driver at some of the country's most celebrated racetracks. Racers can hop in a custom RT8 (or its kid-friendly counterpart, the LR4) and hit the gas, tearing up everything from the versatile road courses and speedy main track of the Atlanta Motor Speedway to the challenging lava pits of the Milwaukee Mile.
But this go-karting business has a big brother?the Rusty Wallace Racing Experience. It's a high-speed trip into the pro-racing trade, with breathtaking ride-alongs and racing experiences in stock cars. Guests buckle up and sit shotgun alongside professional drivers as they fly down straightaways and around curves. They can even get behind the wheel themselves, finally feeling what it's like to be a professional driver.
After training for weeks, runners take their positions at the starting line, wait for the signal, and adjust the regulation sombreros attached to the tops of their helmets. Upon hearing the starting gun, they all bolt forward?only to tumble into a pit that puts them neck deep in oozy, disgusting, glorious mud.
Participants in the American Mud Race replicate this scene as they take on a 3- to 4-mile mud-filled obstacle course, all in the effort to benefit wounded veterans through the Home at Last Project by West Orange Habitat for Humanity. Afterward, racers bring home their mud-caked clothing and costumes to take revenge against their bathtubs, or they can replace them at the race site with a free T-shirt. Food and drink wristbands entitle their wearers to barbecue lunches and beer at the after party, where live music and DJs provide a soundtrack for dancing.
Using the experiences gained during years as a professional racecar driver and builder, Competition 101 Racing School founder Stuart Lycett trains the next generation of podium finishers during one-on-one racing lessons. Whether behind the wheel of stock cars, Trans Am T2 sports cars, sprint cars, or open-wheel cars, pupils soak in on-track experience on dirt tracks, short ovals, speedways, or road circuits while radios and on-board video cameras record every turn for scrutiny during future feedback sessions.
In addition to their introductory class, instructors also offer one-, two-, and three-day school programs. After the three-day program, studious speedsters may complete their training by competing in a sanctioned race event in front of paying spectators and a real checkered flag. Stuart and his crew also welcome interns willing to work for six months in exchange for a free three-day racing school program.
As the St. Johns River winds through the Everglades of central Florida, it flows past forests of old-growth cypress trees. Bald eagles perch on branches draped in spanish moss, and below, blue herons and alligators prowl the edges of floating grass beds. Holding US Coast Guard Master Captain licenses, the guides of Airboat Rides at MIDWAY take passengers into this swampy wilderness aboard custom airboats. Launching from their own marina, the guides educate guests on the river's ecology and history via two-way headsets and stern, unwavering eye contact. These tours have earned multiple certificates of excellence from TripAdvisor, plus respectful nods from the river's turtles. In addition to airboat tours, the guides take guests out on seasonal gator hunts.
At Masters of All Terrain events, participants may vie for the title for top finisher on a wide variety of surfaces as they complete races such as fierce 5Ks or half marathons. Racers can also compete in each race?s fitness challenge where they complete exercises such as flipping tires, tossing a keg, or shredding paperwork for collateralized debt obligations. Photographers stick around to snap high-res action shots along the way, all of which are available free afterward through the event?s Facebook page.
Imagine you're tailgating before a big football game, checking scores on your phone. You reach into the cooler for a beer, only to realize that the bottles are not twist-offs. At this point, you could drop to your knees, shake your fists at the sky, and curse the evil that would bring such a wicked fate upon you. Or you could just turn over your phone and pop the bottle open.
The innovators at HeadCase had such situations in mind when they created a line of cases with built-in bottle openers—only one of several stylish but practical products designed to enhance the use of mobile gadgets. Along with custom photos, cases sport camouflage designs and the colors and logos of professional and college teams. HeadCase products protect devices from both Samsung and Apple, meaning that users don't have to settle for the brand of smartphone they happened to be holding when they were born.