The following is paid content produced by Ingles Markets.

I’m Chris Bainbridge, inviting you to take a ride with me. This is an amazing place to find adventure in all shapes and sizes. Ingles sent me on a mission to bring you the very best of what our beautiful home has to offer – food, fun, nature music, and more… all affordable and all out of the ordinary. This is The Ingles Open Road.

We’re visiting one of the oldest places on earth, yet it houses one of the southeast’s newest attractions. It’s a place that is a mile high and deep in the North Carolina wilderness. If you’re ready to reacquaint yourself with Mother Nature, it might just be time for you to visit Grandfather Mountain

The Cherokee, Daniel Boone, and John Muir all enjoyed a trip to this beautiful mountain. But just this year, the park has added something new to its billions of years of history – The Wilson Center for Nature Discovery!

Located about halfway up the mountain, by the impressive wildlife habitats, is a gorgeous building, which contains a world of interactive exhibits just waiting for your exploration. 

There’s the Paul & Susie O’Connell Exhibit Hall with the 16 natural communities that comprise Grandfather Mountain with 12 interactive exhibits. There’s the Flora Wall, the Fauna Wall, the weather exhibit,  migration mapping, a mineral cave, and more. So much love, innovation, and energy has been poured into The Wilson Center that you could spend a whole day just in here. And you might work up an appetite.

Named after long-time resident Mildred the Bear, Mildred’s Grill offers a great spot for lunch. Or you can pack that Ingles picnic and dine al fresco at one of the park’s many, many stunning outdoor areas.

Speaking of outdoor areas, make sure to visit some of the animals in the big and beautiful outdoor habitats. Check out the gardens. And no visit to Grandfather Mountain is complete without a visit to the mile high swinging bridge.

This North Carolina icon celebrates its 70th birthday this fall. So, come on out and wish it many happy returns. One thing’s for sure, you’ll be looking forward to your happy return once you visit this stunning American treasure.

Your weekend is waiting on the Ingles Open Road.