28 February, 2016: during NASCAR's Folds of Honor Quick Trip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Ga. (HHP/David Tulis)

Only 30 minutes south of Atlanta, and the perfect stopping point for those en route to Savannah or Orlando, Henry County is a destination where the stories of the people weave together to form the fabric of an unforgettable community—where history has a name. Southern Belle Farms brings new meaning to eating locally. Here, pick your own strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and peaches or pick up a pound cake or homemade peach ice cream you were able to watch being made in their bakery. In the fall, cheer for your favorite pig during a pig race or weave your way through the corn maze. Peruse Henry County’s French Market & Tavern, housed in a former 1900’s hardware store, where New Orleans meets the South in an eclectic experience that merges the worlds of taste bud temptations and treasure hunting. Get your heart racing at the 887-acre Atlanta Motor Speedway with track tours, racing and driving schools. Let soldiers’ stories come to life at the Heritage Park Veterans Museum where more than $5 million in donated artifacts reveal stories of those who served our country while providing a place of healing and inspiration. Visit the 250-acre Noah’s Ark Animal Sanctuary, home to the remaining members of the famous BLT—the bear, the tiger and the lion, which passed away in August of 2016. Noah’s Ark is supported by donations and cares for animals that are abandoned, abused and orphaned while enriching the community with educational experiences. Take flight at the Army Aviation Heritage Foundation and Flying Museum where you can fly in a 50-year-old army helicopter while gaining insight into the importance of aviation to our country’s military history. Hungry for more? Quell hunger pangs at Shane’s Rib Shack—Henry County is home to the original location where the popular chain first got its start. Sip suds at Jailhouse Brewing where Mugshot IPA and Misdemeanor Ale pay homage to the brewery’s location in the city’s original jail. Plan to visit seasonally during events like Taste of Henry, the Georgia State Fair and the Atlanta Motorama Car Show. At the end of the day, rest easy choosing from a variety of lodging options including name brand hotels and beautiful campsites. www.VisitHenryCountyGeorgia.com

Facts and Trivia

  • The largest cavalry raid in Georgia’s history and one the largest battles in the battle of Atlanta occurred in Henry County.
  • Henry County is comprised of four cities: Stockbridge, McDonough, Hampton and Locust Grove.
  • McDonough was named in honor of Commodore Thomas McDonough whose victory on Lake Champlain was one of the most brilliant naval exploits in the War of 1812.
  • Stockbridge, Henry County’s northern-most city, was the birthplace of Martin Luther King, Sr. and where he preached his first sermon.
  • The original Shane’s Rib Shack is located in a little ‘shack’ in McDonough, GA.
  • The free disc golf course at J.P. Moseley Park is a championship-caliber course recognized by the Professional Disc Golf Association. Catering to players of all skill levels, the 18-hole course is the highest-rated in metro Atlanta.
  • At the beginning of the Civil War, Henry was one of the leading counties in Georgia, and McDonough one of the leading towns in the middle part of the state. It lay in the region of greatest production, and consequently was of great importance to the Confederacy, a fact later attested by its being included in Sherman’s path of destruction on his way to the sea. Many of the county records were destroyed during Sherman’s march.
  • Henry County is sometimes called the “Mother of Counties” as its original land area stretched from near Indian Springs (present-day Indian Springs State Park) in the south to the Chattahoochee River near Sandy Springs in the north. Within a year of its creation, Henry County was broken up to form all or parts of 8 different counties.
  • Over 40 trains pass through Locust Grove each day.
  • Stockbridge’s Eagle’s Landing Country Club was home to the LPGA for 15 years.
  • Mallards Landing, located in Locust Grove, is a fly-in community complete with personal hangers and a community runway.
  • The nation’s busiest enroute air traffic control facility, Atlanta Air Route Traffic Control Center, is located in Hampton, GA.
  • Henry County businesses produce many well-known brands. Locally made products include: Ken’s Salad Dressing, Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ Sauce, Behr Paint, JailHouse Brewing Company beer, Curry & Echols Hot & Salty Pickles, Shane’s Rib Shack BBQ Sauce; De Wafelbakkers frozen pancakes and more.
  • One of the few remaining original Georgia speakeasies is under a bookstore by the same name in Hampton, GA.
  • The Unity Grove schoolhouse in Locust Grove is one of the original Rosenwald schools built in the 1930s. These schools were started by Julius Rosenwald and Booker T. Washington to educate African American children in the south.
  • W.D. Miller Store is the oldest continually operating business in Henry County. Originally it was the site of the grist, saw and planing mill, cotton gin and general store for the McDonough area and now serves homemade biscuits and hardware supplies.
  • Jesse Johnson, great-grandfather of S. President Lyndon Baines Johnson, was one of the first settlers of Henry County. He was a prosperous farmer, sheriff (1822–1835), and judge, before moving to Alabama.
  • Each year Henry County hosts the USSSA Spring Super NIT which is the “Largest Single Weekend Amateur Baseball Tournament in the US” with between 400-500 teams participating.
  • Shingleroof Campground in McDonough has been the site of ecumenical “camp meetings” as far back as the 1830s. These meetings began with the Second Great Awakening and are still held there annually. From 1861-1865 it also served as the mustering ground and staging areas for Confederate troops.
  • The current Georgia State Flag may have had its roots in Henry County. A flag, virtually identical to the current flag, with the exclusion of dual sashes, reading “Zachry Rangers Victory or Death” and on the opposite side “Presented by the Ladies of Henry” may have belonged to Col. Charles T. Zachry and is currently housed in the historical section of the State Capitol Building. Col. Zachry was an officer during the Civil War and a Henry County State Representative, Senator and county judge following the war.
  • Scenes from the following films and television programs were filmed in Henry County:
    • Glory
    • We are Marshall
    • Zombieland
    • Smokey and the Bandit
    • The Walking Dead (AMC television show)
    • Necessary Roughness (USA television show)
    • Resurrection (ABC television show)
    • Identity Thief
    • Anchorman 2
    • Fast & Furious 7
    • Vacation
    • The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
    • Swamp Murders (Investigation Discovery television show)
    • Home Free (Fox television show)
    • Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk
    • Dirty Grampa
    • A Madea Christmas
    • Krystal
    • Logan Lucky
    • 90 Minutes in Heaven

Annual Events

  • Yellow Pollen Street Festival – March
  • Hauler Parade in Hampton – March
  • Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 NASCAR Race Weekend – March
  • Import Alliance National Car Show – March
  • USSSA Atlanta Spring Super NIT – March
  • The Color Run 5k – April
  • Locust Grove Day – April
  • Summit Racing Equipment Atlanta Motorama – April
  • O’Reilly Auto Parts Friday Night Drags & Show-n-Shine – April – August
  • Peach Stand Road Race – May
  • The Blacklight Slide 5k – May
  • The Dirty Girl Mud Run – May
  • Thursday Thunder presented by Papa Johns – June – July 20
  • Noah’s Ark Adventure Safari Camp – July
  • Imagine Festival – August
  • Hampton Bear Creek Festival – September
  • 15th Street Pizza & Pub Brewfest – September
  • BridgeFest – September
  • Kiwanis Henry County Fair – September
  • Georgia State Fair – September 29 – October 8
  • Southern Belle Farm Fall Season – September – October
  • Fear the Woods at Yule Forest – October
  • Simply Southern Jubilee – November
  • Tanger Moonlight Madness Sale – November
  • Atlanta Festival Ballet presents The Nutcracker – December
  • Holiday Light Spectacular by Christmas Decor – November 25 – December 30

Photo Gallery

Video Gallery