Get some fresh air
Stone Mountain, Ga.
Only a half-hour's drive from the big city, Stone Mountain Park is a 3,200-acre park and tourist mecca centered on an imposing "mountain" — a massive chunk of granite that's marked by a 90-foot-high, Mount Rushmore-style carving of the Confederacy's Robert E. Lee, Jefferson Davis and Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson, atop their horses. A three-minute Summit Skyride flies you in a cable car right past the generals to the top, where you can take in a great view of the Atlanta skyline and, if it's super clear, the Appalachian Mountains 60 miles away. You can also take about 45 minutes to haul your way up to the summit, or try some of the flatter 15 miles of hiking trails below: The Cherokee Trail is a nice five-miler around the base of the mountain. Camping fans might consider spending a night here; the park (owned by the same folks who run the Dollywood theme park) is home to Georgia's largest campground, with 425 sites and — no small thing — notably clean bathrooms.
Celebrate the season
Drive northeast about an hour and 45 minutes from Atlanta and you'll hit the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and a German-themed Alpine village in the town of Helen. The member event in Atlanta falls in the midst of Oktoberfest here, which means you're right on target to join in on the fun: Enjoy German beer, wine, schnitzel and such; hear German and Austrian bands; try some polka dancing; and shop the town's crafty little stores. Plus, it means that weekends are jam-packed, so consider visiting on a weekday. Additionally appealing is that Helen lies just outside the Chattahoochee National Forest and is surrounded by excellent hiking. And because this area is at a high-ish elevation (1,500 feet), it'll be a little cooler than other parts of Georgia — including Hotlanta.
Take a field trip
Yes, it's about 250 miles southeast of the city, but if you don't often (or never) get to this part of the country, take advantage of the member event with a side trip to this Southern gem. Savannah's must-see list is topped by the Historic District, a National Historic Landmark area where you'll see a neat grid of lovely 18th- and 19th-century homes, cobblestoned streets and green public squares with trees draped in Spanish moss (the Savannah Visitor Center is at the west end, where you can get oriented). You might visit the Mercer-Williams House Museum, made famous by the book Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (it's where the central character, Jim Williams, lived, and his assistant was shot), or the birthplace of Girl Scouts founder Juliette Gordon Low. Think about splurging on a dinner at the landmark Olde Pink House, an 18th-century mansion that was once a meeting spot for sailors and is now a restaurant steeped in Southern charm, with a menu that includes fried green tomatoes and blue crab beignets. The Historic District also has the popular City Market, four blocks of restored warehouses filled with artists, shops and restaurants.