Around the shores of Jordan Lake, a squad of outdoor enthusiasts works to cultivate environmental stewardship in youngsters through discovery-based classes and events that disguise education in a cloak of fun. Codirectors Eleanor Herr and Denise Nelson both possess a passion for nature, degrees in early-childhood education, and the creativity to combine the two into exciting programs.
Lessons and field trips designed for public- or home-schooled children instill a love of nature while adhering to the Common Core State and North Carolina Essential Standards for education. Events for kids and their families, such as a full-moon night hike with a campfire, encourage bonding that can strengthen telepathic communication during future potato-sack races. Weekly nature camps for ages 6–11 keep young brains blossoming in the summer. Jordan Lake Environment Education also hosts birthdays, replete with themed activities, coloring books, and free time for any self-provided cake and refreshments.
Since 1965, Rockingham Speedway has roused motorsports fans with supersonic races around a one-mile stretch of track. This year, Frank Kimmel Street Stock’s annual Polar Bear 150 features up to 99 drivers vying to unseat Chuck Barnes, whose crafty maneuvers and ability to distract opponents by cooling freshly baked pies on his hood have earned him the title as the race's two-time defending champion. Race attendees can arrive early to watch a one-hour practice at 9 a.m., which is followed by a qualifying round at 11 a.m. Additionally, Rockingham Speedway's website equips visitors with valuable tips for a fully energized experience, including a variety of restaurants and hotels where guests can bribe the front-desk clerk in hopes of getting a room with a racecar bed.