So I live in Raleigh, North Carolina - not the center of the known universe, but not the armpit either. I have the luxury of being about four hours away from the nearest LEGO store in Washington, DC and about six hours (maybe more) away from the store in Atlanta. I say luxury because four hours as a road trip isn't bad for me and could be a bit farther.
That will change in the summer, because Raleigh just got a LEGO store. The news was announced here, and the location is minutes away from where I live.
And no, I didn't have anything to do with it...well, that I know of.