Nestled at the edge of the Talladega National Forest and the foot of Mt. Cheaha, the historical Cedars Plantation welcomes guests with cozy accommodations, delectable breakfasts, and breathtaking scenery. More than 20 acres of lush pastureland surround the 1830s mansion, which boasts four bedrooms, each equipped with a private bath. The inviting inn also bestows historical charm courtesy of empire-carved moldings and period antiques, without the puffy sleeves, boring railroad discussions, and influenza fears that plagued its era. Evenings beckon guests to soak in the in-ground pool or hot tub, play tennis on the private, lit courts, or relax on the oxygen-filled wraparound porches and balconies. In the morning, gentle sunrises pry guests from snuggly blanket forts to welcome the day with a hearty breakfast. A tantalizing spread—breakfast casseroles, french toast, pancakes, eggs, bacon, sausage, fruit, and freshly brewed coffee—served in the main dining room or bedside strengthens travelers and silences stomachs' early morning rooster impressions.
Dale Jarrett Racing Adventure places novice passengers alongside professional drivers for ride-along experiences on Talladega Superspeedway. At 2.66 miles around, Talladega Superspeedway is the largest oval racetrack in the Sprint Cup Series and is well-known throughout motorsports. Passengers circumnavigate the speedy circle at speeds of up to 175 mph aboard real racecars once owned by such drivers as Mark Martin, Michael Waltrip, and Bobby Labonte. Before embarking, riders receive safety training and suit up in a full fire suit complete with a helmet with facemask and Hans Device, the same head restraint used by professional heavy-metal guitarists. Talladega Superspeedway is located next to the International Motorsports Hall of Fame, which is open daily to visitors.
Standard Furniture traces its origins back to 1912, when a local family began traveling through Birmingham, peddling fine household furniture out of a wagon. Four generations later, the business has blossomed into 13 retail stores throughout Alabama and Tennessee, and its century-long commitment to quality furniture and customer service won it the Alabama Retail Association’s Silver Award as one of the Retailers of the Year in 2011. Each gallery abounds with bedroom, living-room, and dining-room furniture from top designers such as Lane, along with mattresses in a range of shapes and styles from brands such as Tempur-Pedic, Serta, and Jamison. At each location, a knowledgeable staff awaits to offer design counsel, suggesting pieces that best suit a household’s style or will hold up against a disobedient pet woodchuck.
The Richard Petty Driving Experience allows aspiring need-for-speeders the chance to saddle into a 600-HP stock car. You'll ride shotgun in a two-seat NASCAR-style vehicle with an experienced instructor at the wheel, steering your steel steed around the 1-mile, 10-degree-banked Walt Disney World® Speedway for three laps at speeds easily exceeding 100 miles per hour. Start by zipping up in a fire suit and strapping on a helmet. Then climb through the car's window, as NASCAR drivers do, and check the car's oil pressure, deflector shields, and photon torpedoes. Once on the track, you'll accelerate through the straightaways, smoothly breeze through the tight turns, and roar to the conclusion of your third course tour. For answers to frequently asked questions, see here.