Most great things have humble beginnings, and Express Oil Change & Tune-Up Clinic is no exception. In its 31-year history it grew to more than 170 locations across 10 states. Within these auto havens, ASE-certified vehicle-maintenance professionals slake engine thirsts with their signature 10-minute express full-service oil change and a menu of other automotive procedures. Techs swap out old oil for shiny, new oil and a new filter, followed by a thorough inspection of the engine and inner workings that ensures cars can run for miles and won’t fail during drag races through mall parking lots. Their service centers also perform general maintenance such as brake and AC service, and more advanced services such as radiator maintenance and computer diagnostics.
A family-run business, Destin Jeep Rentals outfits families, couples, and lone travelers with the wheels to traverse the scenic Gulf Coast. They rent out four-door Jeep Wranglers, letting drivers tackle the open road in closed-roof or convertible Jeeps. Daily and weekly rates are available.
Sam Meineke opened his three-bay muffler shop in 1972 with a single product line, and through time, he and his successors have expanded the business into a complete automotive car-care center. Today, nearly 900 franchise owners operate their locations around the globe, still standing on the firm foundation of Sam's ideal of nursing vehicles back to health at fair prices. The team of mechanics at Meineke Car Care Center of Fort Walton Beach performs an array of services, keeping rides running in showroom condition with tune-ups, 23-point inspections, tire rotations, and deep-tissue windshield massages.
H&H Home and Truck Accessory Centers decks out trucks with attractive parts for both maintenance and flair, while luxuriating homes in leisure-inducing add-ons. Brand-name truck products include sun subduing window visors (from $49.99) as well as bed mats for pick-ups (from $79.99). Make a modest auto out of an underdressed Chevy or Ford with a protective tonneau cover (from $299.99). A selection of truck toolboxes from brands like Weather Guard and United Welding Supply grants tool slingers extra space to stuff favorite construction components. Inside the home, games of billiards improve after guests replace fire pokers and bent-wire hangers with name-brand cue sticks and racks (from $19.99).
Manning a fleet of Robinson R44 whirlybirds, the pilots of Tallahassee Helicopters introduce sightseers to the clouds through tours and commercial flights, and also train new crops of aspiring pilots. Flights depart from Tallahassee Regional Airport, shuttling passengers into the great blue yonder to see the downtown skyline, local country clubs, lakes, and parks from above. The service also offers lunch and dinner tours, allowing tourists to make a strong impression as they arrive at restaurants in style and carve their steaks with the helicopter’s whirling tail rotor.
The company also operates its own academy, where students begin with introductory flights that put them in control of the helicopter for 90% of their flying time. The full piloting program prepares students for their first solo flights, while the R44 transition program teaches already licensed pilots the nuances of operating the R44 helicopter.