a product message image
{' '} {' '}
Limited time offer
SAVE % on your upgrade

Page 1

SPRING/SUMMER 2019

DISCOVER C O A S TA L A L A B A M A A L A B A M A coasting’s

Restoring Our Gulf Coast From the Beach to the Bayou

Play, Shop, Dine Explore our Coastal Communities

Food Fight! Alabama Coasting’s Food Sport Report


ONE OF THE

R E S T A U RANT VIE WS IN -MSN

34th FLOOR of the RSA TRUSTMARK BANK BUILDING 107 ST. FRANCIS ST. • DOWNTOWN MOBILE godauphins.com • (251) 444-0200

2 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


Hosting the finest local, regional and national singer songwriters and storytellers in an intimate setting where the focus is on the artist and their music.

D I N E D O W N TO W N M O B I L E NIG H T S W E E K E ND S

FRESH CREATIVE DELIGHTFUL eat like a local

www.MyDowntownMobile.com Photo by Clem Onojeghuo on Unsplash

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 3


Making coastal Alabama the place to live, work and play along the Gulf Coast. ABOUT

W

elcome to the Discover Coastal Alabama magazine, a partnership between Coastal leaders Alabama and Alabama Coasting. This is a unique opCoastal 150 is an exclusive group of community whoPartnership works from a grassroots level to the highest levels of government to further that the mission Alabama the work of our partners and businessportunity allowsofusCoastal to showcase Partnership to make coastal Alabama the place to live, work and play along the Gulf es within Mobile and Baldwin counties and the entire state of Alabama. Coast. Coastal Alabama Partnership works with organizations in our region to enable and unify busi-

Coastal 150 was founded by the board of Coastal Alabama Partnership to re-engage nessledand leadership in pursuit improving with the leaders who the political efforts to rebuild the coast after theof Gulf Oil Spill, to and ensuring our unparalleled quality of CONTACT: re-ignite the energy built the as Coastal Council. life. Wethrough function bothAlabama a force Leadership and a resource for our region, leveraging the strength of every Wiley Blankenship

area of our two counties to focus on what is important for Coastal Alabama. Our vision is for

CEO & President Coastal 150 gives all regional leaders an opportunity to be involved in the Coastalaround Alabamathe Partnership Coastal to become world development of our coastalAlabama region’s bright future. a globally competitive destination recognized

MISSION

as the place to work, live, and play.

Mailing Address:

Alabama Located at the southwestern tip of Alabama, at the base of America’sCoastal Amazon, thePartnership Mobile P.O. Box 881 Coastal 150 is made up of the region's core leaders support Coastal Alabama Tensaw Delta, and with ourwho white, sandy beaches along the Gulf of Mexico, there’s no place Mobile, AL 36601 Partnership as the catalyst for plans, strategies, programs and advocacy on issues and like Coastal Alabama in the world. From finance deals to fishing, kayaks to bikes, and downchallenges unique to Coastal Alabama. Come Visit Us: town restaurants to rural adventures, Coastal Alabama provides the perfect playground 1 South Royal Street for 2nd Floor families, business travelers and outdoor enthusiasts. BACKGROUND Mobile, AL 36602 (251) 436-8822

hope enjoybusiness learning more about our special corner of the world,wiley@coastalalabama.org and we look forward The Coastal 150 isWe made up ofyou regional leaders committed to supporting Coastal Alabama Partnership’s mission of improving the quality of life in the coastal to seeing you again soon! Alabama region by collaborating on improving infrastructure, education and www.coastalalabama.org governmental services. Sincerely, Coastal 150 was formed to broaden the influence and reach to ensure Coastal Alabama priorities are advanced at home, in Montgomery and around the state.

Wiley Blankenship - CEO & President, Coastal Alabama Partnership 4 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


happy Birthday, alabama!

It’s Alabama’s 200th birthday. Join the celebration! Special bicentennial events and activities are planned throughout the state in 2019. Here are a few and be sure to visit ALABAMA200.org to find more! January 14 Alabama Inauguration Day, Montgomery February 23 USPS Alabama Bicentennial Stamp First Day of Issue, Huntsville March 30 The Bicentennial Bash, Tuscaloosa April 11-13 Anabranch 2019: Alabama’s Celebration of Literature and the Humanities, Montgomery May Alabama Bicentennial Military Appreciation Month, Statewide May 27 Alabama Bicentennial Memorial Day at American Village, Montevallo June 1 “The President Is Here!” Re-enactment of Pres. James Monroe’s 1819 Visit, Huntsville

June 22 Alabama Bicentennial Juneteenth Celebration at Troy University’s Rosa Parks Museum, Montgomery June 30-August 11 “We the People”: Alabama’s Defining Documents Exhibition, Huntsville July 4 Alabama Bicentennial 4th of July at Thunder on the Mountain, Birmingham July 15-20 Rocket City’s 50th Anniversary of Apollo 11 Celebration, Huntsville September 11-15 Ride Alabama 200: Alabama Civil Rights Ride, Birmingham-Tuscaloosa-Selma-Montgomery October 5 Old St. Stephens Days Bicentennial Year Celebration, St. Stephens October 11 Old Cahawba Bicentennial Celebration, Orrville/Old Cahawba November 3-December 31 “We the People”: Alabama’s Defining Documents Exhibition, Montgomery November 11 Alabama’s Bicentennial Veterans Day Celebration at USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park, Mobile November 28-29 48th Poarch Creek Thanksgiving Pow Wow, Atmore December 1-3 City of Montgomery Bicentennial Celebration, Montgomery December 13-15 Alabama Bicentennial Finale and Alabama Bicentennial Park Dedication, Montgomery

®

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 5


Page 30

Page 39

Page 10

Page 46

Cover photo courtesy of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism.

COVER STORY

FEATURE STORIES

COASTAL ALABAMA IS A RARE JEWEL. IN THIS ISSUE, WE HIGHLIGHT COMMUNITY EFFORTS TO RESTORE AND RESPECT THE PLACE WE CALL HOME

UP UP & AWAY - ANNUAL GULF COAST HOT AIR BALLOON FEST.............................. 10

OUR COASTAL COMMUNITIES FOLEY........................................................... 12 SOUTH MOBILE COUNTY ........................... 18 GULF SHORES/ORANGE BEACH ................. 26 THE EASTERN SHORE ................................. 32 NORTH BALDWIN COUNTY......................... 36 MOBILE........................................................ 40 6 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

RESTORING THE BAYOU LIGHTNING POINT IN SOUTH MOBILE COUNTY SUSTAINABLE TOURISM.............. 16 THE NEW GULF STATE PARK HELPING RESTORE THE COAST................... 22 OYSTER SHELL RECYCLING PROGRAM...... 30 TREASURE IN THE DELTA OAK LANDING IN NORTH BALDWIN.......... 38 FOOD FIGHT IN ALABAMA ALABAMA COASTING’S FOOD SPORT REPORT.................................. 44

RESOURCES DIGITAL DIRECTORY.................................... 54 FUN-RAISERS............................................... 50 MAPS........................................................... 56


orover25years

oror overoverforover225255yearyears yearss. Catering

Catering

Catering Catering Naman's Catering has Catering been the Premier Caterer for the Gulf Coast Catering Naman's Catering has Naman's Catering has Catering has beenNaman's the Premier Caterer for over 25 years. for the Gulf Coast been the Premier Caterer been the Premier Caterer for over 25 years. for the Gulf Coast for the Gulf Coast Naman's Catering has for over 25 25 years. for over years. been the Premier Caterer www.namanscatering.com • info@namanscatering.com for the Gulf Coast for over 25 years.

C

Catering

Naman's Catering has been the Premier Caterer for the Gulf Coast for over 25 years.

Naman's Catering has been the Premier Caterer for the Gulf Coast for over 25 years.

Naman's been the for th for o

2961 DAUPHIN ISLAND PARKWAY • MOBILE, AL 36605 • 251-473-3900 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 7


Y

es, this IS the best time to be in COASTAL ALABAMA!

No matter the season, no matter the weather, life is grand in our part of the world and there are always so many tough choices to make. Festivals, Music, Food, Sports, or simply “chillin”. The challenge for locals and visitors is not what to do, but how to do it all! Since 2010, we’ve offered ALABAMA COASTING Magazine as your guide to help you get the most out of your visit with us. Throughout its pages, we’ve introduced you to some of our favorite places and the best choices for where you can DINE, SHOP, PLAY and EXPLORE. We are very excited to continue as your local guide with our new DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA Magazine. Our affiliation with Coastal Alabama Partnership expands our reach and our ability to serve our readers through linkage with six regional tourism organizations. In each issue of the magazine – print and digital – in addition to our feature stories, business profiles, and event highlights, our tourism partners will share the exciting happenings in each of their own communities. For help getting around, you’ll find area maps – and if you’re reading this on your mobile device, you’ll see that that we’ve included hyperlinks throughout the magazine. We also invite you to take a sneak peek at the first of what will be seven exciting new digital platforms. Beginning with ShopFoleyFirst.com, our readers will be able to dig deeper into dining choices, with menus, shopping with products online, for instore pickup or delivery, and more. Each venue includes pictures, videos, schedules and contact and directional maps to get you where you want to be, on time. No matter what your interests are, plan your day with all the necessary information to insure a successful adventure. Whether you’re here for business or pleasure or both, we hope you’ll enjoy your time along our little slice of heaven on the Gulf Coast. Thanks again, for visiting and for reading DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA Magazine. We invite you to share your feelings and your experiences by sending us a note or joining us on Facebook Cheers,

Danny Calametti David Calametti CEO/Managing Partner President/Publisher

Photo above: We had a chance to visit with the indomitable spirit and Queen of Creole cuisine, Ms. Leah Chase, at home in the kitchen at Dooky Chase’s in New Orleans. The first thing she asked us was why didn’t we bring her any Mobile Bay flounder? 8 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


DISCOVER C O A S TA L ALABAMA Managing Partner/CEO Danny Calametti President/Publisher David Calametti Art Director Randy Jennings Digital Services Whitney Calametti Bob Roberts, Shop Baldwin First Heather Howard

Content Contributors he place to live, Eastern Shore Chamber North Baldwin Chamber e Gulf Coast.

assroots bama e Gulf

ngage to

ama ues and

ting oastal

Shop Foley First South Mobile County Tourism Stacy Wellborn Visit Mobile Gulf Shores/Orange Beach Tourism Visit Foley Photo Contributors Debbie & Tad Denson myshotz.com Paul Dovie myshotz.com Michelle Stancil, MCSpix CO N TACT: Michael Thomas Wiley Blankenship Denise Curtis, Eastern Shore Chamber CEO & President Coastal Alabama Partnership

Published by Address: Discover Mailing Gulf Coast Alabama, LLC Coastal Alabama Partnership Phone: 251-623-1751 P.O. Box 881 Mobile, AL 36601 david@alabamacoasting.com 5758 Huffman Drive Come Visit Us: North 1Mobile, South Royal Street AL 36693

From The Shoals to the shore Alabama Public Radio has you covered! Tune in or stream from www.apr.org for the best local, regional, national and global news as well as classical music.

2nd Floor Mobile, AL 36602 Š2019 Discover Coast Alabama, LLC. (251)Gulf 436-8822 wiley@coastalalabama.org All rights reserved.

No part of this publication may be reproduced www.coastalalabama.org without written permission from the publisher.

te.

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 9


U P U P & A W A Y

Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival

10 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


F

oley is the spot for high-flying adventure and family fun the first weekend in May as the annual Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival takes flight May 1 & 2, 2020. The event is hosted by the South Baldwin Chamber in partnership with the City of Foley and sponsored by Tanger Outlets. It features over 40 balloons from across the country and kicks off on Thursday evening with a Balloon Glow at Tanger Outlets. The festival grounds are open on Friday from 2pm -10pm and 9am -10pm on Saturday. During the day, attendees can enjoy performances by the World-Famous Disc Connected Canines, musical entertainment, children’s activities and more amid retail, arts & crafts and food booths. Musical headliners follow balloon flights, glows and tethered rides (weather permitting) on Friday and Saturday nights. There is no cost to watch the balloons fly! For complete information on this great family event, go to www.gulfcoastballoonfestival.com May 1 & 2, 2020

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 11


Foley

Downtown Foley. Stacey Drugs & Olde Tyme Soda Fountain.

T

he coastal community of Foley, Alabama may very well be one of the best kept secrets in travel. It’s a city blessed with an abundance of Southern charm and hospitality. Foley’s quaint downtown beckons visitors to explore historic sites, rummage through antique shops and sit and chat over a piping hot cup of tea. While Foley’s downtown offers a nostalgic trip back in time, the destination offers something for everyone, from outdoor lovers to thrill seekers.

12 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


How to Spend Two Days in Foley, Alabama DAY ONE START THE DAY GYPSY QUEEN JAVA Amazing coffee and chai served in a cozy, relaxed atmosphere. Open 7 days a week. 109 W. Laurel Avenue Foley, AL 36535 251-943-6112 MID-DAY Pack comfortable shoes and take a walking tour of Foley’s downtown. Take a peek into the past at the Foley Railroad Depot Museum and Model Train Exhibit. Learn how Foley’s history as a railroad town helped the city evolve. Just a short walk from the railroad museum is the Holmes Medical Museum, Baldwin County’s hospital from 1936 to 1958. The hospital remains nearly unchanged since it treated its last patient, and many of the hospital’s original tools and artifacts are on display.

Graham Creek Nature Preserve.

AFTERNOON Explore the great outdoors with a five mile hike at Graham Creek Nature Preserve. Pack a lunch and enjoy the quiet surroundings of 500 acres of natural habitats. Kayakers will enjoy the serenity of the Wolf Bay Watershed. Rent a kayak or bring your own and paddle through the preserve or launch at Wolf Creek Park and take in the flora and fauna of the South Baldwin County waterways. Wolf Bay Drive • Foley, AL 36535 251-923-4267

DINNER FISH RIVER GRILL 2 “Where the locals eat.” Featuring comfort food served in a casual, family-friendly atmosphere. 608 South McKenzie Street Foley, AL 36535 251-952-3474

DAY TWO BRUNCH Need something light with your coffee so you’ll have room for a fabulous brunch? Visit Stacey Drugs & Olde Tyme Soda Fountain. Take a step back in time and experience Foley in the 1930s. Not much has changed since Stacey’s opened in 1929 - the pharmacy still delivers medicines to its customers in its 1931 Model A, and self-serve coffee is still 10 cents a cup. Noted for bagels, BLTs and their salad sampler which provides a choice of egg, tuna or chicken salad. Of course, no one will judge you if you top off brunch with a chocolate malt or banana split, either! 121 W. Laurel Ave., • Foley, AL 36535 251-943-7191 MORNING Get your adrenaline pumping with high-flying feats at OWA, Foley’s newest adventure park. At OWA, there’s something for the young and young at heart. Not up for a thrill ride? Stroll through OWA’s shopping, dining and entertainment district. 1501 South OWA Blvd. • Foley, AL 36535 251-923-2111

Fish River Grill.

AFTERNOON Browse more than 120 famous-brand and designer outlet stores at Tanger Outlets. Find wares from stores including Banana Republic, Clarks, Charlotte Russe, Kate Spade New York and many more. 2601 S McKenzie Street Foley, AL 36535 DINNER For savory Italian dishes that’ll make you want to come back again, you can’t go wrong with Foley’s Portabella’s Restaurant. The La Pasta with Italian sausage, smoked sausage, peppers, onions and marinara served atop penne pasta is a local favorite. 201 S. McKenzie Street Foley, AL 36535 251-943-7773

OWA Amusement Park.

Board the train at Foley Depot Museum. DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 13


Foley Events JUNE 1, 2019 43RD ANNUAL GULF COAST MUSTANG & MEGA CAR SHOW 8 am to 5 pm OWA Foley Beach Express and County Road 20 MAY 17, 24 & 31, JUNE 7 & 14, 2019 HERITAGE PARK MARKETPLACE MUSIC & A MOVIE Beginning at 4:30 pm Heritage Park Downtown Foley JUNE 5 & 15, 2019 GRAHAM CREEK NATURE PRESERVE OBSERVE & EXPLORE 10 am to 12 pm Free Nature Workshops for children 10 and under. 23030 Wolf Bay Drive Foley JULY 4, 2019 JULY 4 CELEBRATION & FIREWORKS 8:45 pm OWA Foley Beach Express and County Road 20 AUGUST 1,2 & 3, 2019 JCMF 22ND ANNUAL PROFESSIONAL RODEO 8:45 pm jennifermoorefoundation.com/events/rodeo/ MAY, 2020 GULF COAST HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL Featuring balloonist from across the country. Activities include balloon glows and flights, festival food, live entertainment and carnival fun! Foley Sportsplex. 18507 U.S. Hwy. 98 W. www.gulfcoastballoonfestival.com

Music & A Movie.

MAY, 2020 FOLEY ART IN THE PARK Over 100 artists showcase their talents while Providing unique cultural experiences and shopping opportunities for had-crafted shopping items.John B. Foley Park Details at​ ​www.FoleyArtCenter.org

Mustang & Mega Car Show.

VI S I T CO A S TA L AL A B A M A . O R G 14 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


ShopFoleyFirst.com

Foley is much more than the city you drive through on the way to the beach. Its residents and businesses are the backbone of the Alabama Gulf Coast. One of the best guides to help you discover all there is to do here isShopFoleryFirst. com, a comprehensive website that lists every locally owned business in Foley. These include three coffee shops, a dozen restaurants, bars, an exotic meat market and enough variety in shops to fill the whole day. ShopFoleyFirst.com features menus, music and entertainment schedules, special offers, coupons, and more.

RA E V O C S I D M A B A C O A S TA L A L

rs Farmed Oysteusness icio

Bay to Table Del

ne Play, Shop, Di l Communities sta

Explore our Coa

kers Alabama Ma als Buy

Local – By Loc

TING ALABAMA COAS WINTER 2019

FOR ADVERTISING INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT: DAVID CALAMETTI 251-623-1751 • David@alabamacoasting.com DANNY CALAMETTI 832-435-3976 • Danny@alabamacoasting.com BOB ROBERTS 256-343-4455 • RBR@shopacity.com

NY

FF

EE

P

A

CO ShopFoleyFirst.com/ DrowsyPoetCoffee

T OE

TH E

OWSY P R D

CO M

ShopFoleyFirst.com/ DocHollidays

DISCOVER C O A S TA L A L A B A M A Your Community Resource As publishers of Alabama Coasting Magazine since 2010, we have proudly served as ambassadors for our home town and our local communities by telling the stories of the people, places and businesses that make this area so special. And now, in concert with the Coastal Alabama Partnership, we are proud to introduce DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA Magazine. This new publication replaces Alabama Coasting Magazine as the area’s premier quarterly visitor’s guide and regional resource.

Available online or by subscription at

www.alabamacoasting.com DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 15


Lightning Point Shoreline Restoration A public-private partnership has come together to restore Bayou la Batre’s waterfront with breakwaters, wetland restoration and more.

O

ne of Alabama’s most iconic landscapes, the seafood capital of Alabama, and a town steeped in southern history with a dash of French and even Southeast Asian influence, Bayou La Batre is an American landmark, and one that is also under threat. The Lightning Point Restoration Project is a joint effort of the City of Bayou La Batre, the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Mobile County, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Moffat & Nichol, Alabama Power, and The Nature Conservancy. The multifaceted project includes many components to help restore the local community’s shoreline and coastal habitats that have been battered by multiple historic hurricanes and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. “We are excited about the work to be done by the Nature Conservancy at Lightning Point,” said Bayou la Batre Mayor Terry Downey. “Restoration of our shoreline and protection of habitat as well as the jetties for the navigation channel for all types of vessels is important to our community.” Work on the project is slated to begin in early summer. Construction will involve 1.5 miles of overlapping, segmented breakwaters along the shoreline on both sides of the navigation channel to provide a buffer from waves and boat wakes. The work will also include two jetties between 700 and 800 feet long, at the mouth of the channel to help maintain access to the navigation channel for all types of vessels, from commercial shrimp boats to manufactured pilot boats and recreational bay boats.

16 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

The Lightning Point Project is designed to achieve multiple restoration goals:

• • •

Habitat Creation: Create approximately 40 acres of marsh, tidal creeks, and upland habitats that support a wide range of fish, shellfish, and birds. Managed Access: Complement the City of Bayou La Batre’s Master Plan for the City Docks area with walking paths and a lookout point for community use and enjoyment of the site. Design a low-impact parking lot employing green-infrastructure techniques, such as pervious pavers, bioretention cells, and bioswales, to aid in stormwater management to improve water quality in the area. Beneficial Use of Dredged Material: Utilize dredged material beneficially to create marsh habitat and use thin-layer deposition to build and nourish the marsh for decades to come. Project construction is expected to take about a year to complete. Once construction is completed, it is expected to take up to five years for the area between the breakwaters and the current shoreline to cover in vegetation completely. 

“This project is the result of a tremendous partnership between a range of people who care deeply about the Bayou,” Roger Mangham, Director of The Nature Conservancy in Alabama.


Starting Point.

Forty acres of marsh, tidal creeks, and upland habitats.

Nature takes hold - 3-5 years after construction. DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 17


South Mobile County

A

tranquil and welcoming community, SOMO (South Mobile County) is rich in wildlife, Southern culture, excitement and so much more. Get your pulse racing with the exhilaration of an international speedway, the thrill of the catch while deep sea fishing or at any of our acclaimed annual events involving music, the arts, coastal cuisine, outdoor activities and more! SOMO offers all the best of the Gulf Coast in one stunning and easily accessible location.

18 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

South Mobile County is full of adventure. Choose to ride bikes around the island, build sandcastles on the beach, search for wild creatures or wander among the gardens, there are many opportunities to explore and discover. Whether you prefer a beach house, bed and breakfast, condo or campsite. SOMO offers many types of accommodations, including beachfront and waterfront, to satisfy any occasion or group size. After a day of playing on the beach, shopping for antiques and gifts, exploring

the waterways and more, you’ll be ready to refuel at one of the unique restaurants found in SOMO. From the sugar white sand beaches of Dauphin Island and the beauty of Bellingrath Gardens and Fowl River, to the charming atmosphere and unrivaled seafood of Bayou La Batre and Coden, hop on your bikes and explore all that there is to do and spend your days finding adventure with the family.


South Mobile County Events

MAY - OCTOBER, 2019 SUNDAY SUNSET CONCERTS Celebrating the natural beauty and the Island’s designation as the “Sunset Capital of Alabama”. Held at West End Beach, the concerts begin about 90 minutes before each sunset. May 26... Yo Jonesy & The Crowned Jewelz June 23.. Lisa Mills Band July 28.... THE EXCELSIOR BAND Aug.11.... (Reggae Weekend) – Ja’ Rhythm Sept 1..... Eric Erdman, Ryan Balthrop, and Molly Thomas Oct. 13.... at Fort Gaines - Roman Street www.townofdauphinisland.org. JULY 3-5, 2019 INDEPENDENCE DAY CELEBRATIONS The 4th of July is an extra special time for many, as they gather to celebrate together. South Mobile County annual events include the Grand Bay Watermelon Festival, Dauphin Island Veteran’s Association Ceremony, and Dauphin Island Fireworks with the Mobile Pops Band on the 4th. JULY 13, 2019 ROY MARTIN YOUNG ANGLERS TOURNAMENT Taking place on the Saturday before the Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo. RMYAT is for children 15 years and younger and typically attracts more than 1,500 young anglers. www.adsfr.com/rmyat.html JULY 18-20, 2019 ALABAMA DEEP SEA FISHING RODEO More than 3,000 anglers from 24 states will fish in the Gulf of Mexico for three days for more than $400,000 in cash and prizes in 30 categories. Sponsored by the Mobile Jaycees. www.adsfr.com

Blessing of the fleet. OCTOBER 12, 2019 DAUPHIN ISLAND ART TRAIL Over 40 artists from throughout the Southeast at 10 local businesses – many hosting open houses. Ride your bike, your car or the free trolley which includes a pickup at the ferry as well for “walk-ons” from Ft. Morgan. facebook.com/Dauphin-Island-Art Trail-733270103385846/ NOVEMBER 1-19 CASCADING CHRYSANTHEMUMS Bellingrath Gardens features hundreds of colorful, four-foot long cascades of chrysanthemums throughout the Gardens. Guests can enjoy the columns of mums and thousands of mums in the flower beds in the fall colors of yellow, red, bronze, lavender and white. The Great Lawn’s dramatic border is a feast for the eyes. www.bellingrath.org/ experiences/events/cascading-mum-display/

Bellingrath Magic Christmas in Lights.

NOVEMBER 29-DECEMBER 31 MAGIC CHRISTMAS IN LIGHTS Enjoy one of the most popular holiday events in the Southeast. Stroll through the gardens with more than three million twinkling lights in over 1,100 custom designed set pieces in 15 scenes. Tour the Bellingrath Home decorated in its holiday finery. www.bellingrath.org/ experiences/events/magic-christmas-inlights-2019/ MAY, 2020 TASTE OF THE BAYOU The 5th Annual Alabama Seafood Cook off take place as part of the 31th annual Taste of the Bayou. Sample a variety of Fresh Seafood while watching top chefs compete for a win a spot in the Great American Seafood Cook-off in New Orleans AND the World Food Championships. Tasteofthebayou.com MAY, 2020 BLESSING OF THE FLEET The custom of the Blessing of the Fleet can be traced back to Old World European fishing communities where God was publicly acknowledged and asked for a bountiful harvest and the safety of the men at sea. Today, a Fleet Blessing ceremony begins with a prayer by the Archbishop of the Diocese of Mobile. After this, decorated boats of all kinds form a procession behind the boat carrying the Archbishop as the he blesses their boats and docked vessels along the way. fleetblessing.org 

VI S I T CO A S TA L AL A B A M A . O R G DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 19


Dauphin Island – Bird Sanctuary

In 2016, the National Audubon Society recognized Dauphin Island as a Globally Significant Important Bird Area - officially putting it on the “birding map.” In addition to its location, the natural habitat of abundant trees, shrubs and flowers make the island an essential resource. Working to assure this habitat is protected is the Dauphin Island Bird Sanctuaries. Their mission, in addition to their dedication to the preservation of critical bird habitat, is to promote birding and other forms of ecotourism activities. For more information, visit coastalbirding.org

Photos: Kathy Hicks

Sunsets Presenting Glorious

All Year Long

along with historic sites, abundant natural beauty and fresh local seafood

townofdauphinisland.org 20 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


Making coastal Alabama the place to live, Making coastal Alabama the place to live, work and play along the Gulf Coast. Making coastal Alabama the place to live, work and play along the Gulf Coast.

work coastal and play along the Coast. Making Alabama theGulf place to live, A CATALYST FOR work CHANGE and play along the Gulf Coast.

Coastal 150 is an exclusive group of community leaders who work from a grassABOUT

ABOUT roots level to the highest levels of government to further the mission of Coastal Coastal 150 is an exclusive group of community leaders who works from a grassroots Alabama Partnership to Alabama the place tofrom live, work and play Coastal 150 is an exclusivemake groupcoastal of community leaders who works a grassroots level to the highest levels of government to further the mission of Coastal Alabama along the Gulf Coast. level to the highest levels of government to further the mission of Coastal Alabama ABOUT Partnership to maketocoastal Alabama the place to live, work andand play along Partnership make coastal Alabama the place to live, work play alongthe theGulf Gulf Coastal 150 was founded by the board of Coastal Alabama Partnership to engage Coast. Coastal Coast. 150 is an exclusive group of community leaders who works from a grassroots with the leaders who led the efforts to rebuild the coast after the Gulf Oil Spill and level to the highest levels of government to further the mission of Coastal Alabama to 150 ignite the energy built Coastal Leadership Council. Partnership to make coastal Alabama the place toAlabama live, work and play to along the Gulf Coastal was founded by thethrough board ofthe Coastal Alabama Partnership Coastal 150 was founded by the board of Coastal Alabama Partnership tore-engage re-engage Coastal 150 gives all regional leaders an opportunity to be involved in the Coast. with the leaders who led the efforts to rebuild the coast after the Gulf Oil Spill, to developwith the leaders who led the efforts to rebuild the coast after the Gulf Oil Spill, to ment of our coastal region’s bright future. re-ignite the energy built through the Coastal Alabama Leadership Council. re-ignite the energy built through the Coastal Alabama Leadership Council. Coastal 150 was founded by the board of Coastal Alabama Partnership to re-engage

MISSION with the150 leaders who led the efforts toanrebuild the coast after the Gulf Oil Coastal all regional leaders opportunity to involved be involved theSpill, to Coastal 150 gives allgives regional an opportunity to be in in the Coastal 150 made upleaders of the region’s core leaders who support Coastal Alabama re-ignite theisenergy through the Coastal Alabama Leadership Council. development of our built coastal region’s bright future. development of our coastal region’s bright future. Partnership as the catalyst for plans, strategies, programs and advocacy on issues andCoastal challenges unique to Coastal 150 gives all regional leadersAlabama. an opportunity to be involved in the

MISSION development of our coastal region’s bright future.

MISSION REGIONALISM

Coastal 150 is made up of the region's core leaders who support Coastal Alabama

The Coastal 150 is made up of regional business leaders committed to supporting Coastal 150 is madeasup ofcatalyst the region's core leaders who support Coastal Alabama Partnership the for plans, strategies, programs and advocacy on issues and MISSION Coastal Alabama Partnership’s mission of improving the quality of life in the coastchallenges unique tofor Coastal Partnership as the catalyst plans,Alabama. strategies, programs and advocacy on issues and al Alabama region byup collaborating improving infrastructure, education Coastal 150 is made of the region'son core leaders who support Coastal Alabama and govchallenges unique to Coastal Alabama. ernmental services. Partnership as the catalyst for plans, strategies, programs and advocacy on issues and

BACKGROUND challenges unique to Coastal Alabama.

ADVOCACY BACKGROUND The Coastal 150 is made up of regional business leaders committed to supporting Coastal 150 is made up of the region’s core leaders who support Coastal Alabama Coastal Alabama Partnership’s mission of improving the quality of life in the coastal BACKGROUND The Coastal 150 is as made of regional business leaders programs committedand to supporting Partnership theup catalyst for plans, strategies, advocacy on issues Alabama region by collaborating on improving infrastructure, education and Coastal Alabama Partnership’s mission of improving the quality of life in the coastal and challenges unique to Coastal Alabama. Together with a coalition of regional The Coastal 150 is made up of regional business leaders committed to supporting governmental services. Alabama regionAlabama by collaborating on mission improving infrastructure, education stakeholders we have developed our 2019 Legislative Agenda focusing on importCoastal Partnership’s of improving the quality of life inand the coastal governmental services. region collaborating onthe improving infrastructure, and antAlabama regional issues. Coastal 150 was by formed to broaden influence and reach toeducation ensure Coastal

CON TACT:

Wiley Blankenship N TACT: CO N TAC T: CEO &COPresident Wiley Blankenship Wiley Blankenship

CEO & President CEO Levert & President Andrew CO N TACT: Coastal Alabama Partnership

Coastal Alabama Partnership Policy & Project Initiatives Wiley Blankenship CEO & President Mailing Address: Mailing Address: Partnership Coastal Alabama Mailing Address: Coastal Alabama P.O. Box 881Partnership Coastal Alabama Partnership Mobile, 36601 P.O.AL Box 881 Mailing Address:

AL 36601 P.O.Mobile, Box 2563 Coastal Alabama Partnership Come Visit Us: P.O.AL Box 881 Mobile, 36652 1 Mobile, South Royal Street Come Us: AL Visit 36601 2nd Floor 1 South Royal Street Come Visit Us: Mobile, AL 36602 Come Visit Us: 2nd Floor 450 1Saint Street (251)Louis 436-8822 South Royal Street Mobile, AL 36602 wiley@coastalalabama.org Mobile,2nd ALFloor 36602 (251) 436-8822

Mobile, AL 36602 (251) 436-8822 wiley@coastalalabama.org www.coastalalabama.org (251) 436-8822 wiley@coastalalabama.org wiley@coastalalabama.org

www.coastalalabama.org

www.coastalalabama.org www.coastalalabama.org

governmental services. Alabama priorities are advanced at home, in Montgomery and around the state.

POLITICAL ACTION Coastal 150 was formed to broaden the influence and reach to ensure Coastal Coastal 150 members Coastal PAC,and whose purpose is to influence the 150are was formed support  to at broaden reach to ensurethe Coastal AlabamaCoastal priorities advanced home,the in influence Montgomery and around state. selection, election individuals to various public offices Alabamanomination priorities are or advanced at of home, in Montgomery and around the state.in Alabama that will support policies and programs that will enhance the quality of life, economic development and environment of Mobile and Baldwin counties.

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 21


The NEW Gulf State Park Restored, Accessible, Sustainable!

F

unded with early restoration dollars from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the Gulf State Park Enhancement Project encompassed five distinct projects. As the components open, they fulfill the project’s mission of restoring public access to the bounty of natural resources of Gulf State Park. In addition to destroying many of the structures in coastal Alabama, 2004’s Hurricane Ivan also wiped out the dune system. A 2006 manmade primary dune restored the protection but because it was a solid wall of sand, it didn’t allow for interior dunes to develop. A dune restoration project cut openings in the primary dune, invasive and non-native species were removed, and native sea oats and other dune grasses were planted. The interior dunes are starting to grow, providing valuable habitat for protected species like our nesting shorebirds and the Alabama beach mouse and protecting inland areas from storms. A popular feature, the Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail system has expanded to nearly 28 miles of trails accessible for people of all abilities plus added three new educational Pause Places, several engaging interpretive signs featuring the park’s 22 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

diverse ecology and cultural history, and new wayfinding signage that also includes detailed ADA information. With 6,150 acres to explore, these trails provide easy access for hikers and cyclists while also providing car-free connections between the cities of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. Located adjacent to the popular Beach Pavilion, the new Interpretive Center (IC) serves as the gateway to the Park. An open air porch features interactive exhibits introducing people to the nine different ecosystems and their inhabitants. Arguably Alabama’s most environmentally-friendly building, the IC is designed to meet the world’s most rigorous building standards. It is pursuing LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) Platinum standards and was the very first building certified under the new FORTIFIED Commercial standard as being more resilient to storm events. Not content to stop there, the Interpretive Center is also pursuing full Living Building Challenge certification. The building will be proving over 12 months that it is generating more solar energy than it needs and collecting and treating more rainwater onsite for human use than it needs. Only 21 buildings in the world have achieved this certification to


date and the Interpretive Center will be the first in Alabama and in the South. Rebuilding the Lodge was the keystone of the project. The original lodge opened in 1974 and became an iconic part of the coastal community during its 30 years of operation before being destroyed by Hurricane Ivan (its popularity provided much-needed financial support to the rest of Alabama’s state park system and it was important to restore that funding source for all Alabamians). Once funding was approved, the project team wanted to build iconic facilities that would put Alabama on the international map of environmental and economic sustainability. Shrinking the footprint from the original lodge’s 42 acres to about 16 acres, but more than doubling capacity from 144 guest rooms to 350, while also pursuing LEED Gold and FORTIFIED Commercial certifications, the buildings are designed to reduce energy usage by 32% and water usage by 35% over a similar facility. Condensation from the guest room HVAC system is collected, filtered and used to refill the pool, saving an average of 14,000 gallons per month. Sensors on the guest room doors and windows allow guests to leave the doors and windows open to

enjoy the fresh Gulf breezes, but also shut off the HVAC system to save energy. The first hospitality project in the world to pursue SITES Platinum certification, which focuses on responsible development respectful of the environment, the Lodge is a 100% nonsmoking property, refrains from using harmful chemicals as much as possible, and uses native landscaping that doesn’t require irrigation or chemical pesticides. You won’t find a manicured lawn here in the middle of our dune system! The buildings were also set about 225 feet further back from the Gulf to allow for dune growth and are elevated an extra three feet higher than required for anticipated storm surge. The trio of certifications will make the Lodge at Gulf State Park unique in the world of hospitality, but it isn’t just about the design and construction but also in how it is operated. With a commitment to sustainability, the Lodge reduces single-use plastics and recycles where possible. Bulk dispensers in the guest rooms provide high-end amenities, potable water comes in plant-based bottles designed to be refillable, straws are made out of hay or bamboo, to-go containers are made of environmentally-friendly materials, and lights use energy-saving LED bulbs. DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 23


The last piece of the puzzle is the Learning Campus. Pursuing LEED Silver and FORTIFIED Commercial certifications, the Learning Campus is designed to be the educational basecamp for the Park. With two 32-bed bunkhouses, a 200-seat auditorium, and four classroom spaces plus a lab, groups ranging from school kids and teachers, scout troops, family reunions, and others, will have an economical lodging option while having easy access to a variety of educational programs. Partnering with the Gulf Coast Center for Ecotourism & Sustainability and other local environmental educators and facilities, will allow a variety of audiences to learn about nature while being surrounded by it. If it has been a while since you’ve explored Gulf State Park, you have many reasons to come see these wonderful new assets that will make all of Alabama proud for being leaders in sustainable tourism and responsible development. Written by: Chandra Wright, Co-Founder of the NUISANCE Group and Director of Environmental & Educational Initiatives at The Lodge at Gulf State Park.

24 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


Photo: Tad Denson.

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 25


Gulf Shores & Orange Beach

Protecting Alabama’s Beaches What is Ecotourism, and Why It Should Matter to You

A

cotton-candy sunset, dolphins frolicking in the waves or a nesting bald eagle in Gulf State Park are all Instagram and Facebook-worthy photos you might snap when visiting the Alabama Gulf Coast. But, have you ever considered how your travel adventures impact our environment?

26 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

As sustainability and environmental concerns grow, ecotourism is promoting travel that makes a positive impact on both the ecology and economy of a destination. The goals of ecotourism are to adopt more environmentally friendly practices, protect the natural and cultural heritage of the area, support local communities, and create knowledge and understanding through interpretation and education of staff, travelers, and community residents.


Sustainability Initiatives Along The Alabama Gulf Coast SHARE THE BEACH How Can You Help? • Avoid using flashlights or flash photography on the beach at night • Turn off outside patio lights and shield indoor lights from shining onto the beach at night • Do not disturb sea turtle nests • Leave sea turtle tracks undisturbed • Do not leave trash on the beach • Volunteer and participate in the Adopt-A-Nest program NUISANCE GROUP While savoring a delicious meal in Gulf Shores or Orange Beach, try a lesser-known meal choice such as the lionfish. Thanks to the efforts of the NUISANCE Group, which is dedicated to raising awareness for Gulf Coast flora and fauna, more of these invasive species are finding their way onto local menus. Lionfish taste like a mix of hog snapper and grouper and are excellent fried, blackened, or sautéed. Is your mouth watering yet? OYSTER SHELL RECYCLING PROGRAM When you come to the beach, fresh, Gulf Coast oysters are a must. Whether you prefer them raw, chargrilled, fried or oysters Rockefeller, know that the oyster shell recycling program is working with local restaurants to restore oyster beds with recycled shells. So, order several dozen to cure your hunger and help the environment.

THE LODGE AT GULF STATE PARK, A HILTON HOTEL From the early planning stages, the innovative design focused on using environmentally-friendly materials, water conservation and energy efficiency. The new structure will be the first building in the world to receive LEED© Gold, SITES© Platinum and Fortified© Commercial certifications. LEED© buildings are energy efficient and protect the environment. SITES©-certified developments are recognized for use of native vegetation on the property. Fortified© Commercial certification means The Lodge was built beyond code standards, making it stronger against severe weather. If you haven’t visited the new Lodge at Gulf State Park, you should plan your trip soon for an in-depth, educational experience. LEAVE ONLY FOOTPRINTS Developed in collaboration with the cities of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Gulf State Park, and Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism, the Leave Only Footprints initiative encourages residents and guests to minimize their impact on our natural resources. How Can You Help? • Avoid walking on beach vegetation and fragile dunes • Stay away from bird nesting areas • Don’t litter and recycle what you can • Remove all tents, chairs, toys, trash and gear from the beaches each day • Refill all holes to avoid injury to wildlife and people • Observe all beach rules and regulations

For more information, visit CleanIsland.org If we take simple strides towards being more conscious of our choices, collectively we can make a world of difference. Plan your adventures along Alabama’s Gulf Coast today. And remember to take nothing but photographs and leave nothing but footprints.

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 27


Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Events JULY 9-14, 2019 BLUE MARLIN GRAND CHAMPIONSHIP OF THE GULF This five day event is billed as the greatest show in sport fishing and raises money for St. Jude’s Childrens Hospital. www.bluemarlingrandchampionship.com SEPTEMBER 12-14, 2019 THE WHARF UNCORKED A three-day food and drinks festival combining tastings of delicious food and tantalizing wines with live music and a dash of Gulf Coast hospitality to raise money for Make-A-Wish Alabama. thewharfuncorked.com OCTOBER 10-13, 2019 48TH ANNUAL NATIONAL SHRIMP FESTIVAL A celebration of all things SHRIMP along with a juried art show and great local and regional music. www.myshrimpfest.com/ NOVEMBER 1-2, 2109 THE HANGOUT OYSTER COOK-OFF & CRAFT BEER WEEKEND showcases the talents and tastes of the best chefs from the Southeast for a decadent afternoon of oysters and spirits on the beach in beautiful Gulf Shores, AL. Sample inspired oyster dishes from dozens of restaurants who will be serving Rockefeller, Gulf Coast Cajun and Raw Oysters. www.hangoutcookoff.com

Mullet Toss.

NOVEMBER 23- JANUARY 1, 2019 COASTAL CHRISTMAS Over 40 events to celebrate the holidays lighted boat parades, merry markets, ice skating, family concerts, and more. alabamacoastalchristmas.com APRIL, 2020 INTERSTATE MULLET TOSS AND GULF COAST’S GREATEST BEACH PARTY Participants toss a mullet across the Alabama/ Florida line. It’s a party. florabama.com/mullet-toss.html MAY, 2020 THE HANGOUT MUSIC FESTIVAL an annual three-day music festival held at the public beaches of Gulf Shores directly accompanying its sister restaurant The Hangout. hangoutmusicfest.com

Hangout Music Festival.

VI S I T CO A S TA L AL A B A M A . O R G 28 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


Explore the Gulf Coast’s rich history, culture, and beauty through 90 interactive exhibits, simulators, theaters and displays. Have a maritime learning more about “America’s Sea” than you could ever imagine.

And now through Labor Day,

BUY ONE TICKET, GET ONE FREE!

Navigate h is to r y . Discover f u n. *For single use only. Must mention this publication to receive the discount. Free ticket of equal or lesser value than paid one. Offer Expires 9/2/2019.

Downtown Mobile Riverfront | 155 S. Water St. , Mobile AL 36602 | 251.436.8901 | gulfquest.org

0103 GulfQuest BOGO Card - 7x4.625.indd 1

5/14/19 8:04 PM

OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK

Come have a Cove Burger and Bushwacker!

6664 County Road 95 • Elberta, AL • 251-987-1224 piratescoveriffraff.com facebook.com/piratescove

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 29


Eat Well And Help Alabama’s Coastal Environment!

D

id you know that 35% of the oysters for the United States are produced in the Gulf of Mexico? If you love oysters and helping Alabama’s coastal environment, please visit one of the restaurants (see sidebar) participating in the Alabama Oyster Shell Recycling Program! The idea for the Program happened in December 2015 during a free outreach event that the Alabama Coastal Foundation (ACF) hosted at the Flora-Bama Yacht Club. Their executive chef recommended ACF start an oyster shell recycling program for local restaurants. Instead of restaurants throwing away shells and paying someone to take them to a landfill, ACF would collect the shells which are a very valuable natural resource: The outside of an oyster shell is the favorite habitat for a new oyster to grow. The following month, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation announced a grant opportunity with their Gulf Coast Conservation Grants Program. ACF wrote a grant request--which 30 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

was awarded--to form the state’s first shell recycling program for restaurants. The objectives of the grant were to educate restaurants and the public about the importance of recycling shells and to create a self-sustaining program. ACF launched the Program in October of 2016 and achieved all of the grant objectives by September of 2017. The Program continues to operate based on restaurant fees and donations from customers and other supporters. As of last month, the Program has collected an estimated 7.8 million shells which equates to 20.2 acres of oyster reef. In addition to food value, oysters provide many important ecosystem services such as: • Improving water quality: an adult oyster can filter 15 gallons of water per day; • Providing habitat: oyster reefs provide habitat for fish, shrimp, crabs, birds and other animals; • Limiting erosion: oyster reefs are natural breakwaters that protect shorelines.


If you enjoy oysters on the half shell at any of these participating restaurants, please be sure and give them a big “Thank You” for doing their part to nourish Coastal Alabama. Participating Restaurants • Bluegill Restaurant • Cobalt, The Restaurant • Felix’s Fish Camp Restaurant • Flora-Bama Lounge • Flora-Bama Ole River Bar • Flora-Bama Yacht Club • Grand Weddings @ the Grand Hotel Golf Resort & Spa • Half Shell Oyster House, Mobile • Half Shell Oyster House, Spanish Fort • Original Oyster House, Causeway • Original Oyster House, Gulf Shores • Saltwater Grill @ the Grand Hotel Golf Resort & Spa • Sea-N-Suds Restaurant • Tacky Jacks, Gulf Shores • Tacky Jacks, Orange Beach DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 31


The Eastern Shore

Photo Credit: Denise Curtis, Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce

L

ife is easy on the Eastern Shore! This sportsman’s paradise is bustling with vibrant communities, opportunities to flourish and a shared appreciation for the natural beauty found along Mobile Bay. There’s southern charm, blooming magnolias and fresh Gulf seafood to tempt every palette. Take a ride from the Delta in Spanish Fort, along Mobile Bay in Daphne to Fairhope and Point Clear. The Eastern Shore has it all. It’s not hard to see why the Eastern Shore is one of the fastest growing areas in the United States.

32 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

One of the first things you’ll notice about the Eastern Shore is its sprawling coastal views; the perfect setting for some of the most magnificent and colorful sunsets you’ll ever find. Locals spend lazy Sunday afternoons propped up in an Adirondack chair soaking in the scenery or strolling down one of the Eastern Shore’s many public piers nestled right on Mobile Bay. Bring along your fishing pole and you might even catch supper or attract a friendly pelican or two. Lace up your walking shoes or grab your bike because you’ll want to enjoy the Eastern Shore Trail as it winds along


Photo Credit: Denise Curtis, Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce

Mobile Bay from Interstate 10 to Weeks Bay. The path showcases a number of stunning views including the Fairhope Municipal Pier with its rose garden and giant fountain. Nature lovers will also want to check out the Weeks Bay Pitcher Plant Bog, visible from an easy walk along the boardwalk. Watch closely and you may see one of the bog’s many carnivorous plants capture insects within its leaves. Feeling a little more adventurous? Go on a gator hunt along Daphne’s Gator Boardwalk. This free and accessible attraction is a favorite for children looking to spot some big teeth. Hop on a boat tour at Blakely State Park or 5 Rivers Delta Resource Center and explore the area’s diverse wildlife in America’s Amazon, the Mobile-Tensaw River Delta. The Delta is Alabama’s largest wetland ecosystem and the nation’s second largest river delta. While you’re at Blakeley State Park, get a history lesson as you explore the battlegrounds for the last major battle of the Civil War. It includes several miles of unspoiled Confederate and Union fortifications associated with the Battle of Fort Blakeley in 1865.

The beauty of the Eastern Shore has become a haven for artists. You can explore beautiful works of art at several galleries dotted along Fairhope’s downtown streets. Be sure to stop in at the Eastern Shore Art Center where they have exhibits changing out each month in their five galleries. Try to plan your visit during the

first of the month as Fairhope’s downtown streets come alive for First Friday Art Walk. The American Sports Art Museum and Archives in Daphne is dedicated to sports art, history and literature and includes more than 1,800 pieces, the largest collection of sports art in the world.

Photo Credit: Denise Curtis, Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 33


Visitors and residents are often spotted strolling from boutique to boutique in downtown Fairhope with shopping bags in tow. The small town’s flower-lined streets allow you to pop in a shop to buy a dress for the weekend, pick up a gift at the jewelry store, get lost in an antique shop and finish off your day with an ice cream cone. Downtown Daphne also offers great shopping opportunities as you head north on Scenic 98. Near the interstate in Daphne and Spanish Fort, several shopping centers offer some of your favorite national brands as well as local shops. The Eastern Shore adventure isn’t complete without enjoying fresh Gulf seafood. The Causeway between Mobile and Spanish Fort offers a variety of wonderful seafood restaurants right on the water. More tasty stops can be found throughout Daphne and Fairhope, often attracting national television attention. The Eastern Shore of Mobile Bay leaves a lasting impression on visitors and a feeling of small-town warmth for those who call it home. The Eastern Shore welcome visitors to stop and visit a while. I’m sure one of the locals would be happy to share their favorite sunset spot with you. Written by: Denise Curtis, Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce

Photo Credit: Denise Curtis, Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce

Eastern Shore Events SEPTEMBER 28-29, 2019 31st ANNUAL JUBILEE FESTIVAL OF ARTS The Jubilee Festival of Arts attracts thousands to Daphne’s oak-lined Main Street for a weekend full of art, music, performances & local cuisine. The festival features more than 100 local and regional artist booths. Children can also explore their creative side in the Kids Art Park. Admission is free. thejubileefestival.com

OCTOBER 2-5, 2019 ALABAMA COASTAL BIRDFEST Four days of guided bird & nature tours on land and by boat plus speakers, evening events, workshops, and family-friendly Expo with raptors, snakes, exhibits, hands-on activities, and more. alabamacoastalbirdfest.com/ NOVEMBER 7-10, 2019 FAIRHOPE FILM FESTIVAL Four days of brilliant, entertaining and award-winning films screened throughout the beautiful little town on the bay. fairhopefilmfestival.org

MARCH, 2020 67TH ANNUAL FAIRHOPE ARTS & CRAFTS FESTIVAL More than 230 exhibitors will bring their best works from all over the country, including many from the Southeast, to showcase at this prestigious show. Enjoy live entertainment and festival cuisine from the food court during this wonderful three-day fine arts festival. It all takes place on the streets of beautiful downtown Fairhope, Alabama. fairhopeartsandcraftsfestival.com/ APRIL, 2020 DELTA WOODS AND WATERS EXPO Hosted by the City of Spanish Fort and 5 Rivers Delta Resource Center, the expo celebrates the outdoors with dozens of hands-on outdoor activities for all ages. deltawoodsandwatersexpo.com

Arts and Crafts Festival. Photo Credit: Denise Curtis, Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce

VI S I T CO A S TA L AL A B A M A . O R G 34 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


SHOP UNTIL

SUNSET FAIRHOPE DAPHNE SPANISH FORT

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 35


North Baldwin County

N

estled among the pine forests, live oaks and Tensaw River Delta you will find the City of Bay Minette along with several surrounding communities that are all full of southern charm. Our communities are steeped in tradition, history and culture with a landscape draped in natural beauty with fascinating wildlife, waterways, swamps and wet-

36 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

Photo: Paul Dovie, Myshotz.com

lands. North Baldwin County is a must visit destination for any outdoor enthusiast! As the northern gateway to Baldwin County and all of Coastal Alabama, and the county seat, Bay Minette, Alabama is ideally situated within an hour’s drive of the city of Mobile, Alabama and just 45 miles north of the white sandy beaches in Gulf Shores, Alabama. With easy access

to interstates 10 and 65, you are merely a stone’s throw away from anywhere you could want to be – Bayou? Bay? Beach? City? The features of North Baldwin County extend far beyond the many historical sites to see and explore. Focusing more on the serenity and a growing outdoor adventure tourism trend, often reminding visitors of other places in a unique-


ly North Baldwin way. The Mobile-Tensaw Delta, mostly protected by the Forever Wild Land Trust and named a National Natural Landmark, is obviously a big part of who and what North Baldwin is. Deep in the Delta you will find Alabama’s Champion Cypress tree – our version of a big city Skyscraper, along with the Bottle Creek Indian Mounds – remnants of the area’s first settlers, along with floating camping platforms on the Bartram Canoe Trail that can take you to a whole other world! We have a blooming Artist community in and around Bay Minette, and miles of hiking, biking and paddling trails.

The beauty that is found in world famous public gardens can be found in our endless fields of wildflowers that blossom throughout the delta; many of which are found in shallow bays and bayous that may only be accessed by canoe or kayak, keeping them protected from the world. Live Oaks dot our landscape, like monuments to another time. All of this is just moments from Downtown Bay Minette where you will find unique shopping and dining, lots of history to explore, and a community ready to welcome you to stay a while and Discover all that North Baldwin has to offer!

North Baldwin County Events JUNE 7, 2019 CRAWFISH COOK-OFF This good-eating fun-filled event held in downtown Bay Minette is great for the whole family. Four person teams compete for 10 different awards. The Event include kids’ activities, corn hole and live music. northbaldwinchamber.com/Calendar

RideYellow Participants.

JUNE 16, 2019 RIDEYELLOW This is a charity bike ride held annually on the Saturday before Father’s Day. Since it’s inception, RIDEYELLOW has donated over $400,000 to various cancer charities! The ride offers cyclists four route options - a 6 mile, 10 mile, 37 mile and 62 mile. Routes wind through the beautiful hills of North Baldwin County and Tensaw Delta Communities. rideyellow.racesonline.com

SEPTEMBER 28, 2019 8TH ANNUAL DELTA DASH Experience the Delta like never before. A 5K obstacle course race designed to challenge the heart, body and soul! The goal is simple… provide participants of all lifestyles and ages with an opportunity to test endurance, stamina, resilience, quick decision making skills, animal instinct and the ability to enjoy a face-full of mud, leaves or whatever else the terrain throws their way.  The Delta Dash will take place on over three miles of wooded terrain where several obstacles will be encountered. Obstacles could be anything from crawling in the mud, wading through a creek, a mega slipand-slide, scaling hay bales or something else (we aren’t going to tell you all our secrets). The coveted Golder Gator is up for grabs each year, are you Tough Enough to take on the Delta? Hosted by the Young Professionals of the North Baldwin Chamber of Commerce www. DeltaDash.org DECEMBER 13 & 14, 2019 37TH ANNUAL CHRISTMAS FEST A time-honored tradition featuring arts and crafts vendors, live music, food vendors, kid’s activities and the annual Christmas parade. Friday evening is always a draw with the Ping Pong Ball Drop where many wonderful prizes are up for grabs! Sponsored by the North Baldwin Chamber of Commerce. northbaldwinchamber.com

Delta Dash.

VI S I T CO A S TA L AL A B A M A . O R G DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 37


Delta Treasure in Baldwin County’s Back Yard

38 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


L

ive Oak Landing, located in Stockton, AL, is the perfect destination for Adventures, Celebrations and simply Enjoying Life. Whether you’re looking for a weekend getaway for the family, a Corporate Picnic, or your perfect destination wedding, Live Oak Landing has something to offer everyone. Live Oak is a unique 175 acre parcel owned by Baldwin County, with highway access and half a mile of waterfront, surrounded by County, State and Forever Wild protected land, making up approximately 1,500 acres on the Eastern side of the Tensaw River. This treasure is tucked away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life but still within reasonable driving distance of neighboring towns and cities, making it the perfect retreat for anyone. Live Oak has always been a family friendly environment allowing visitors and locals alike to revive themselves amongst the serenity and charm of the delta. While day visits and local community have free access to the recreation area, camping and rental options are available. Recently under-

going a facelift, Live Oak now boasts 28 improved full-hookup campsites with paved padsites and 20 primitive campsites with back country option. All full hookup campsites are large enough for RVs with pullouts. The campground and park feature a modern air-conditioned bath house, general store, laundry facilities, boat ramp, bocce court, horseshoes, disc golf course, catch and release pond, duck feeding, 4 miles of hiking trails, canoe and kayak rentals, tours and weekly activities. Live Oak also offers rental of their beautiful, newly built pavilion for parties, weddings, family gatherings and more. The pavilion is fairly large, covered and equipped with built in seating and ceiling fans. Aside from what’s offered day to day, Live Oak also hosts or is home to local and large fishing tournaments, disc golf tournaments, live music and holiday parties open to the public. Live Oak continues to grow, as it’s setting provides the perfect stage for Baldwin County to become a leader in the development of a sustainable tourism concept, benefiting the local community while si-

multaneously also raising the profile of our County and State. New and creative amenities, activities, lodging and more are currently in the works. It’s calming and serene landscapes are a site to see for adventure seekers and nature lovers alike. Bountiful in trees and plants, waddling ducks around the pond, reflective sunsets over the water like you’ve never seen and Spanish moss blowing in the breeze… spend some time here and we’re sure you’ll appreciate the Delta in a way you never have before. With its location, the landing is the perfect stepping off point for exploring and experiencing North Baldwin County, the Mobile-Tensaw Delta, Coastal Alabama, and the incredible, natural, cultural and historical diversity of the region. Whether you visit for the day or pack the family and plan an adventure, Live Oak beckons you to stop by and create your own delta memories. For more information, events, rates and rentals, visit www.LiveOakAlabama.com, email info@LiveOakAlabama.com or call 251-800-7464. DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 39


Mobile

Inside the GulfQuest Maritime Museum. Photo: Tad Denson, myshotz.com.

W

ith over 300 years of history, Mobile knows a thing or two about having a good time. There is always something to do in this historic, coastal town! You’ll find museums and attractions showcasing everything from fine art to Mardi Gras, history to science, the military to mums. How about dancing in the streets with thousands of new

40 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

friends at one of the region’s many outdoor music festivals, catching Moon Pies thrown from fire-breathing dragon floats during Mardi Gras or taking in millions of glittering holiday lights on a 65-acre historic garden estate? Did we mention Mardi Gras? As the home of America’s Original Mardi Gras, we celebrate the carnival season yearround at the Mobile Carnival Museum! If


Photo: Mic Thomas, micdesigns.com

water is more your thing, you’ll discover water-based adventures that bring you eye-to-eye with giant gators in America’s Amazon, the Mobile-Tensaw River Delta. Maybe you’ll find yourself paddling toward an ancient Indian mound accessible only by water or sipping wine on a sunset cruise on Mobile Bay, after all, being on the water is simply a part of life around here. If you’re making a trip to Mobile, plan to eat extremely well while you’re here because the port city also knows a thing or two about delicious cuisine.  Shrimp, blue

crabs, oysters and more, are as bountiful as succulent, and they come straight from our backyard, the Gulf of Mexico. We can’t forget about the cornbread beside Southern fried chicken, collards, cheese grits and other soulful delicacies that really are as good as Momma’s.   Slowcooked pit barbecue is a prized local favorite and James Beard nominated Chefs are taking innovation to the next level. Pull up a seat and eat with us.  Stretchy pants not required!   So, come, enjoy, engage, have fun! We Mobilians certainly do!

Diners enjoying the weather in Downtown Mobile DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 41


Mobile Events OCTOBER 4 - 5, 2019 TEN65 It’s free and loaded with tons of great music from national, regional and local bands. Celebrate the tunes, technology and culture that keep Mobile energized and push us all forward. Downtown Mobile. tensixtyfi ve.com

NOVEMBER 29 - DECEMBER 31, 2019 MOBILE CELEBRATES CHRISTMAS From the official Tree Lighting in Mardi Gras Park to a Charlie Brown Christmas, Mobile is awash in holiday lights, joyful celebrations and holiday cheer. Mobile.org NOVEMBER 23, 2019 MOBILE INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL The 36th annual festival promotes understanding, acceptance, friendship, and appreciation of the rich diversity of our world’s cultures. The Mobile International Festival is a place where all belong. Mobileinternationalfestival.org DECEMBER 31, 2019 MOONPIE OVER MOBILE NEW YEAR’S EVE CELEBRATION Bid farewell to 2019 and welcome 2020 with open arms as the MoonPie drops at midnight. The night is complete with live music and fireworks. It’s a must-see Mobile tradition. Downtown Mobile. 251-208-1550. mobilenewyear.com JANUARY – DECEMBER, 2019 LODA ARTWALK Every Second Friday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m downtown Mobile comes alive during the monthly artwalk. Join thousands of folks as they gather to enjoy the latest in local art, music, food and culture. More info at mobilearts.org FEBRUARY, 2020 MARDI GRAS Beads and MoonPies will be flying from parade floats, from Dauphin Island and the Eastern Shore to downtown Mobile! The celebration keeps on going until midnight on Fat Tuesday, March 5. More info at Facebook: MobileMardiGras MARCH, 2020 AZALEA TRAIL FESTIVAL Each March, Mobile explodes in pink, red and white hues as it earns its nickname - The Azalea City. The Azalea Trail Festival pays homage to the 80 year celebration of spring

MoonPie Over Mobile. with area attractions offering specials and several guided tours. For more info, go to mobileazaleatrailfestival.com. Self-guided tour maps can be found at keepmobilebeautiful MARCH, 2020 FESTIVAL OF FLOWERS This is no ordinary walk in the park! The Southeast’s largest flower show is devoted to all things floral. You can get inspired for your own home and garden projects or just marvel at the creativity of local landscape and tablescape artists. Providence Hospital Grounds. 251-639-2050. festivalofflowers.com

MARCH, 2020 AZALEA TRAIL RUN Runners from across the globe come together in Mobile for a flat and extremely fast race course that winds through the oak-shaded streets lined with beautiful, blooming azaleas. World-class 10K race, 5K and 2K fun run. Downtown Mobile. 251-473-7223. pcpacers.org APRIL, 2020 SOUTHSOUNDS MUSIC AND ARTS FESTIVAL Enjoy more than 70 artists at various downtown venues and free public stages. Genres include indie, country, bluegrass, rock, alternative, soul, funk, jazz, blues and more. Downtown Mobile. southsoundsfest.com

VI S I T CO A S TA L AL A B A M A . O R G 42 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


T

he charming and historic Malaga Inn in Downtown Mobile is the only hotel of its kind in the state of Alabama. Originally built in 1862 as wedding gifts for two sisters, the town homes were connected with a rear addition over the original carriage house and converted to a boutique hotel in 1969 by Mrs. Mayme Sinclair. The Inn remains privately owned and is operated today by Mayme’s daughter and grandson, Julie and Jordan Beem. It is

the oldest continuously operating hotel in Mobile. While many Mobilians connect the Malaga to Mardi Gras due to its prime location at the head of the parade routes, the Inn plays host to business groups and individuals, tour groups, vacationers and, perhaps ideally, wedding parties. The beautiful interior courtyard with its signature foun­tain is the perfect setting for an intimate wedding cer­emony or reception. It also gets full use as a relaxing spot for an after-work break.

As lovely as the Inn and its amenities are, the one element that stands out more than any other in online reviews and guest comments is the remarkable warmth and hospitality of the staff. They truly are there to ensure that each guest feels welcome and at home. It’s a formula that’s worked for 50 years. Ms. Mayme would be proud. For more information on this Gulf Coast escape, visit www.malagainn.com or call 251-438-4701 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 43


FOOD SPORT NATION Alabama Coasting and WFC Team Alabama As a media partner and sponsor of the World Food Championships (WFC) for the past three years, Alabama Coasting has continued to dive more and more deeply into the food sport arena. In 2018 we made that official as we signed on as the Alabama State Partner for the championships. We were responsible for coordinating and sanctioning all state related WFC activities including sponsoring exclusive WFC qualifying events, hosting certified judging classes, licensing official products, and creating other WFC “chef-centric” events. In that capacity, we produced or sponsored events in twelve different cities, certified over 120 new WFC E.A.T. Judges and recruited 21 Alabama chefs and cooks for the WFC 2018 competition held in Orange Beach. Along the way we began to discover and uncover more of Alabama’s culinary culture and we’re excited to expand upon that journey in 2019. Once again, Alabama Coasting will serve as the State Partner for the World Food Championships and with the Main Event moving to Dallas, our role becomes even more elevated. Not only will we be representing WFC and recruiting competitors for WFC Team Alabama, but we’ll also have the honor of promoting our great Alabama culinary culture in Texas and to the world!”

44 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


WFC Team Alabama Food Sport Sponsors Although the qualifying for WFC Team Alabama has begun with a few events, the bulk of the competitions will kick off after the 2018 Final Table in New Orleans in mid-May. The schedule will be updated on our website – wfcteamalabama.com as well as on the official Competition page on WorldFoodChampionships.com. In the meantime, we’re proud to announce our first wave of WFC Team Alabama Chefs: Foley Festival of Flavor, September 2018 Chef Joshua Speiss of the American Academy of Chefs, earned the first Golden Ticket of 2019 and will compete in Dessert. Corks and Forks, Dauphin Island Sea Lab, October 2018 Davidson High School’s culinary team swept this inaugural competition on Dauphin Island. They are joining forces with the culinarians from Alma Bryant to compete in Seafood. Fairhope EMBLEM Chef Competition, February 2019 Congrats to WFC Team Alabama alumna, Patty Clark of Warehouse Bakery who will once again compete in Dessert. Dauphin Island Gumbo Cook-off, April 2019 Not only a WFC Team Alabama alumni, but repeat winner of this event – Darren Harbison and his team from Mayes Café at Dauphin Island Sea Lab representing in the Seafood category. Taste of the Bayou/Alabama Seafood Cookoff, May 2019 Staying in South Mobile County, the Seafood Capital of Alabama once again hosted this statewide competition. Not from the Bayou but all the way from Florence, Alabama Chef Ramon Jacobsen representing Odettes’ earned a spot on Team Alabama as well as the chance to cook in the Great American Seafood Cookoff in New Orleans.

Special shout out to a couple of local business owners that help make this Food Sport World successful. Doug Mitchell, of 91-PLUMB, signed on as the major sponsor of the Fairhope Emblem Cook-off. Giving back to the community is a very important part of Doug’s business model – and with this event benefiting the Fairhope Elks Lodge – it was an easy decision. 91-Plumb is also sponsoring the Fairhope Emblem Club Crawfest on June 1 to benefit “No Kid Left Behind for the Holidays.” Hall’s Sausages returns as a Brand Partner for WFC Team Alabama for 2019. The Chickasaw based family-run enterprise produces a mouth-watering selection of smoked sausages crafted in small batches using the traditional recipes. They show-cased their andouille at both the Gumbo Cookoff and Taste of the Bayou to rave reviews.

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 45


FOOD SPORT NATION ALABAMA COASTING AND INNOVATIVE GROUP TEAM UP TO PROMOTE TOURISM, CULINARY, AND CULTURE

What started as an introduction at the World Food Championship in Orange Beach Alabama last year, has now blossomed into a wonderful partnership to promote tourism, culinary, and culture.

46 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

Alabama Coasting’s mission is to tell Alabama’s food stories locally, regionally, and even internationally. Innovative Group specializes in experiential marketing programs that fuel, and even change peoples’

perception about a brand, while fostering lasting relationships at every opportunity. Together we recognized that harnessing the power of Innovative Group’s exclusive, oneof-a-kind mobile assets, Alabama Coasting could greatly expand their reach and opportunity for success. MAXimus, a massive, state-of-the-art, self-sustaining mobile culinary venue will lead the tour. MAX, which was featured at the World Food Championship last year, will be on the road supporting this event again in 2019. MAX’s culinary partner is DRAFT, a dynamic, full-service restaurant aboard a fire truck that provides a unique and revolutionary themed catering experience. MAX and DRAFT will also be joined by INSITE Hospitality Suites. With multiple suite options to choose from, this all-inclusive VIP hospitality platform enhances any event with the best luxury amenities to create a lasting impression. These show-stopping mobile assets will all work


together and are set to deploy with Alabama Coasting’s unique culinary and “food sport” initiatives out on the road. “Our team is so excited about this partnership. What’s most intriguing is how the Calametti brothers are pairing tourism and the culinary tales of Alabama, incorporating their Chef partners in events like the World Food Champi-

onships. Our culinary assets and other services are a natural fit to help showcase this unique way to draw visitors to their region,” explained Jaima Schiffer, Director of Business Development for Innovative Group. “Their technology is out of this world, but it is the energy and excitement that the IG team brings that fits so well with

Family, Friends, Food, and Fun that drives all that we are at Alabama Coasting,” added Danny Calametti, CEO & Co-Owner of Alabama Coasting. Look for Alabama Coasting and Innovative Group on the road together beginning this Fall.

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 47


FOOD SPORT NATION

WFC and Team Alabama Ambassador, Chef Chris Sherrill, celebrates a Golden Ticket win with Team Puerto Rico.

Alabama Coasting on Down to Puerto Rico

This past March, we were honored to have the opportunity to serve as the WFC representatives at the Caribbean Food Championships held in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Having been postponed twice because of the after effects of Hurricane Maria, it was exciting to see this event come together and crown champions in nine different categories! Michael Compton and Alexis Garcia did yeoman’s work in pulling off this inaugural competition and they are well positioned to build a strong international event. We’re also actively working together to bring a couple of the teams to Alabama in advance of the Dallas Main Event. In addition to the food sport events, we also set out to document the current Puerto Rico food story – and trust us it is vibrant! In our next issue of Discover Coastal Alabama, we’ll detail a full report on the opportunities, challenges, and success stories of our island brothers and sisters – and unveil some exciting initiatives in development.

Chef Chris’s Puerto Rico-inspired Alabama Gulf Shrimp Paella. Compliments of our friends at Organized Seafood Association of Alabama. 48 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


“We live a pretty incredible life.” The HAW5 Foundation was formed to keep alive the energetic fun-loving spirit of Henry A Wise V. Henry was a fine young man who was very genuine and had a great attitude towards life. He was always smiling and singing, in a great mood, and never wasted a minute of the day. Henry was known as someone who included everyone. He was a popular and talented athlete with a strong inner faith and connection to Christ which allowed him to live with such a free spirit. He once said while out fishing with friends on Mobile Bay that “We live a pretty Incredible life”. This life included 16 years at Bayside Academy and attending camps like JH Ranch and Young Life - just a few of the important, impactful places that shaped Henry’s spirit during his short life.  The HAW5 Foundation funds scholarships to all of the above organizations. 100% of the donations are gifted back to people in need. The HAW5 board consist of parents, siblings, friends, and a student who received the HAW5 scholarship. The scholarship allows that same student to match the contribution and make his or her own donation to a cause of their choice.  The foundation will also always continue to support emergency and first response teams who in Henry’s case went over and beyond expectations in their search. We will forever be grateful to those men and women.  We promise as advocates for HAW5 to help others however we can to live an incredible life as Henry did. For more information and how to make a contribution please go to

haw5.com

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 49


Fun-Raisers

MEMORIAL DAY – AHERO & GUNS TO HAMMERS VETERAN BENEFIT

Dave and Yvonne Riley and the Guns to Hammers crew. 50 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


T

wo great veteran resource organizations, AHERO and Guns To Hammers are joining forces in support of a couple of Alabama heroes. Their mission is to raise awareness and funds to help disabled Veterans retrofit their homes to accommodate their current physical limitations. JR Smith, founder of Guns to Hammers (GTH) did an assessment of local resident Dave Riley’s home in Semmes last year and is coming back to town to begin remodeling. JR explains: “We need to do some window and siding replacements to halt rain leakage and install all new hardy-board floors so Dave can more easily navigate around the house. Local contractor, Wayne Reyner is heading up this project.” Dave Riley, an Army and Coast Guard Veteran and a quadruple amputee, came to Smith’s attention through AHERO (American Heroes Enjoying Recreation Outdoors). Based in Montgomery and Pensacola, this organization creates bonding experiences for Vets – connecting them to communities and each other. Riley has been part of AHERO for a number of years and has just recently finished serving as Commandant and Board President of the Disabled American Veterans association. The second Alabama GTH project is for Veteran Ricky Mamoran, Sgt. US Army, Retired, a Phoenix City resident injured in Afghanistan. “Ricky needs a complete ADA bathroom and has for some time.” JR explains. “Our goal is to raise enough money to get both of these missions accomplished in 2019.” The two organizations are hosting a kickoff benefit at Serda Brewing Company in downtown Mobile on Memorial Day from 2-6pm. During the event, Serda’s

will donate $1 of every pint served to the project. Owner John Serda is already a supporter of JR’s mission, having created a Guns to Hammers Patriot Blend coffee and earmarking $5.00 per bag sold to the group. Patriot Coffee will be available for purchase during the event as well as offerings from Soul Heaven Café and Catering. Owner Lillie Smith is also donating proceeds from the day to GTH. Serda Brewing Company is located at 600 Government Street in downtown Mobile. More info on the event can be found Alabama Coasting or Serda Brewing Facebook pages. GUNS TO HAMMERS After founding H-Towne & Around Remodelers, Inc., a successful remodeling company in Houston, Texas, founder and former U.S. Marine, JR Smith, decided to redirect his time, money and energy toward a twofold mission. First, providing remodeling services to wounded veterans allowing them to live more independent lives, and second, training eligible Veterans to manage and build ADA-compliant construction projects. JR believes connecting Veterans with Veterans proves to be invaluable for all parties involved, celebrating camaraderie and providing support to those who need it the most. AHERO (America’s Heroes Enjoying Recreation Outdoors) was conceived and founded by Major Lee Stuckey, U.S. Marine Corps (Active Duty). AHERO connects Veterans with patriotic members of local communities by organizing outdoor events and social activities. AHERO was organized and is operated by OIF and OEF Marine Corps and Army Veterans who understand the challenges today’s war Veterans face in reengaging the civilian world.

To help support the project, contact us on our Alabama Coasting faeebook page. Coffee drinkers can support Guns to Hammers by ordering Serda’s Patriot Blend at www.serdas.com/product/patriot-blend. DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 51


Fun-Raisers

Crawfish Cook-off

A

labama Coasting and the North Baldwin Chamber have teamed up to bring the World Food Championships to Bay Minette. The annual Crawfish Cook Off, set for Jun 7th in Blackburn Park will feature a chef challenge to see which competitor can create the best crawfish inspired dish. The winning chef earns a Golden Ticket and will represent the state as part of Team Alabama at the World Food Championships this October in Dallas,Texas. They will compete against 450 other teams in the largest food fight on the planet. “We have watched our Annual Crawfish Bash Event turn into a Crawfish Cook Off and could not be more excited about

the future of the event,” said Ashley Jones Davis, Executive Director for the North Baldwin Chamber, “The Cook Off offers something for everyone and encourages friendly competition among teams – several of which are local businesses and organizations. This year we are even more excited to have teamed up with Alabama Coasting and Team Alabama to bring the World Food Championships to North Baldwin.” In addition to the crawfish cooking competition, this family friendly good time includes all you can eat crawfish, sides and non-alcoholic beverages, cold beer on tap from Fairhope Brewing Company, live Music by Ryan Balthrop, kid’s activities and more!

Advance tickets are on sale now at 2019crawfishcookoff.eventbrite.com! $20 for Adults • $5 Children 10 and Under • Under 5 gets in free. Tickets at the gate are $25. Beer tickets will also be sold at the gate! For more information on the event, or to enter a team, call 251.937.5665 ext. 3, follow our “Annual Crawfish Cook-Off” event on Facebook for current information, or visit NorthBaldwinChamber.com 52 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


THUNDER ON THE RIVER

T

he 2nd Annual Thunder On The River is set for June 22 in Mount Vernon. Some 40 drag boats will roar around the Mobile River reaching speeds of 100mph. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the gate. If you want to come by boat, its $30 for you and up to three passengers. Kids under 10 are free with an adult. Gates open at 8am and races begin at 10. Tents, small coolers, and gas grills are permitted. Sponsored by the Mount Vernon Community Development Organization and Southern Outlaw Dragboat Association with a mission to enhance the quality of life for all citizens living in the Town of Mount Vernon through sponsored community recreational and family programs, the delivery of formal and informal educational opportunities, the promotion of youth development activities, and efforts designed to promote the region’s rich history and culture. .

For more information, check out their Facebook page

DRAGON BOAT FESTIVAL

O

n Saturday, June 8th, 2019 over 1500 paddlers and 10,000 spectators will witness Fuse Project’s Sixth Annual Dragon Boat Festival. Teams of 20 paddlers, 1 drummer, and an experienced steerer will rock the water in a 46 foot authentic Hong Kong style Dragon Boat at USS ALABAMA Battleship Memorial Park. Fuse Project’s Dragon Boat Festival is a family-friendly, alcohol free event. In addition to watching the races, Fuse Project will have food trucks, fashion trucks, a petting zoo, a trackless train, a gyro gym, jumpies, pony rides, all of the wonderful exhibits at The Battleship.

Admission into the festival is $5 and children under the age of 3 get in FREE! www.fuseproject.org/

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 53


Digital Directory

Discover Coastal Alabama is available in print and digital form … with appropriate partner and advertiser hyperlinks. So, if you’re reading the print version it might not mean that much to you, but if you’re on your phone, tablet or laptop – link away! As a proud supporter of local businesses we’re equally proud to unveil our new hyperlocal digital platform, designed to help you find the best of what you’re looking for – locally! In this issue we roll out ShopFoleyFirst.com, with six more to follow in the coming months covering our entire Coastal Alabama region. Each site will have its own, unique URL web address allowing you to dig deeper into things like dining choices - with menus; shopping for products online whether for instore pickup or delivery; services; and much more. Each venue listing includes pictures, videos and event schedules with contact and directional maps to get you where you want to be, on time. While ShopFoleyFirst.com is cool, you can still reach our other advertisers and partners listed below through their digital links or more traditionally. You can also find out more local information from our Visit Coastal Alabama partners at http://www.visitcoastalalabama.org/

ALABAMA PUBLIC RADIO From the Shoals to the shore APR has you covered! www.apr.org ALCHEMY TAVERN In the Heart of Old Mobile, featuring top shelf spirits, craft beers on tap & live local music. www.alchemytavernmobile.com BAUMHOWER’S VICTORY GRILLE Daphne and Mobile. Always fresh, always friendly, always fun on the Alabama Coast. www.baumhowers.com THE BLIND MULE RESTAURANT & BAR Downtown Mobile. Made-fromscratch dishes and live music by local artists. www.theblindmule.net BUTCH CASSIDY’S CAFE Midtown Mobile. Robbing a train takes time and preparation and so do our Famous Butch Burgers. You’ll see it’s worth the wait. All our food is cooked to order to assure you the best quality & freshness. www.butchcassidys.com CALLAGHAN’S IRISH SOCIAL CLUB Mobile. Burger, sandwiches, salads, live music, and more. Open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner. www.callaghansirishsocialclub COWBELL ROLLED ICE CREAM Foley. Homemade everyday Rolled Ice Cream with all kinds of combinations and flavors. We will create the perfect Roll for you! www.ShopFoleyFirst.com/ CowbellRolledIceCream

54 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

DAUPHIN ISLAND SEA LAB Discover an authentic Gulf Coast experience. Our 5 unique venues combine on-point technology and amenities to keep you focused. www.disl.org DAUPHINS RESTAURANT Downtown Mobile. Contemporary “Classic Coastal” dishes with hints of Creole and Caribbean flavors godauphins.com DOC HOLLIDAY’S Foley. A locally owned business that offers a wide range of quality beverages specifically designed to delight everyone. We have various wines on hand, and great cocktails. ShopFoleyFirst.com/DocHollidays DOWNTOWN MOBILE ALLIANCE Whether you’re looking for a fine meal, great live music or inspiring art exhibitions, you’ll find it in Downtown Mobile. www.downtownmobile.org DROWSY POET @ THE FOLEY STATION Foley. Espresso Drinks, Signature and Local Drinks including Poetchinos. Assorted Gourmet Baked Goods, NY Style Bagels (Plain, Asiago, Everything, Blueberry, French Toast) www.ShopFoleyFirst.com/ DrowsyPoetCoffee FORREST AND JENNY’S YARD ART Foley. Candles, Soaps and Yard Art. www.ShopFoleyFirst.com/ ForrestAndJennysYardArt GINNY LANE at The WHARF Orange Beach. Fun, family-friendly atmosphere with a great selection of fresh, local seafood and Certified Black Angus Beef. www.ginnylanebargrill.com

GROOVY GOAT Foley. Groovy Goat is OWA’s centerpiece for the Greatest of All Time in food, drinks, sports and games. www.ShopFoleyFirst.com/GroovyGoat GULFQUEST NATIONAL MARITIME MUSEUM Mobile. Experience an array of maritime topics from early settlements, trade routes, marine archeology, shipwrecks, Gulf marine life, weather and hurricanes, marine and coastal environments, and much more! www.gulfquest.org LET’S GET GRILLIN MEATS Foley. Our beef has NO added growth hormones, NO steroids, NO antibiotics, and NO animal byproducts. Looking for exotic meats, Bison, Ostrich, cheese, sausages, come check us out! www.ShopFoleyFirst.com/ LetsGetGrillinmeats THE LISTENING ROOM OF MOBILE Connecting the finest local, regional and national singer, songwriters and storytellers with our audience. Outside distractions not allowed! thelisteningroommobile.com THE LODGE AT GULF STATE PARK Where doing nothing is really something! The Lodge at Gulf State Park, A Hilton Hotel is a unique destination on the Alabama Gulf Coast where nature is at your doorstep. lodgeatgulfstatepark.com MALAGA INN A boutique hotel in the Downtown Mobile Historic District, the Malaga Inn speaks both of the grand tradition in genteel Southern Living and also meets travelers’ business and personal needs. malagainn.com


MANNING JEWELRY Foley. Renowned for its selection of quality fine jewelry, unique fashion jewelry, exquisite gifts, and our award winning custom designs. www.ShopFoleyFirst.com/ ManningJewelry NAMAN’S CATERING The Gulf Coast Premier Caterer for over 25 years. Specializing in full service catering and event management for corporate events, galas, fundraisers, and weddings. expansion, while keeping to the exceptional standards that have always distinguished Naman’s Catering since we began. namanscatering.co/ PIRATE’S COVE Arr ye lookin’ for the best cheeseburgers in these here waters? Ye won’t find better grub than that at Pirates Cove Marina & Restaurant in Orange Beach. www.piratescoveriffraff.com

4J

SEARS HOMETOWN STORE Foley. Locally owned and operated, you’ll find everything you need for your home and outdoor space, all at great prices and with the support of our friendly and knowledgeable staff. www.ShopFoleyFirst.com/ SearsHometownStore/

TOWN OF DAUPHIN ISLAND A quaint, small southern town with an eclectic mix of locally owned shops and galleries, and laid-back restaurants. You’ll also find miles of uncrowded, pristine beaches, excellent fishing and a historic, storied past. townofdauphinisland.org

SOUTH MOBILE COUNTY (SOMO) SOMO is rich in wildlife, Southern culture, and so much more. You can find everything from the sugar white sand beaches of Dauphin Island and the beauty of Bellingrath Gardens and Fowl River, to the charming atmosphere and unrivaled seafood of Bayou La Batre and Coden. www.dauphinislandtourism.com

VILLAGIO GRILL at The WHARF Orange Beach. Italian Fusion has never tasted so good! Our talented chefs and pristine ingredients create a dining experience so enjoyable you won’t want it to end. www.villaggiogrille.com

THREE GEORGES CANDY & THE NUTHOUSE Celebrating over a century serving Mobile! Three Georges offers many varieties of candy, ice cream and milkshakes plus daily lunch specials. www.3georges.com

TH

of

YOHO RUM & TACOS at The WHARF Orange Beach. A premium casual taco concept featuring chef-inspired taco varieties, entrees, delicious desserts, and custom cocktails. www.yohorumandtacos.com

ULY CELEBRATIONS GRAND BAY JULY 3 & 4

THERE ARE LOADS OF CHOICES AVAILABLE TO CELEBRATE OUR NATION’S BIRTHDAY. HERE ARE A FEW OF OUR FAVORITES. FAIRHOPE

WISMAR JEWELRY Fairhope. Bringing together the diverse works of jewelry designers and other artists for a fun and unique shopping experience. wismarjewelry.com

The City of Fairhope will host its annual Fourth of July Concert & Fireworks display again this year on Wednesday, July 4th in Henry George Park and the Fairhope Municipal Pier. The Baldwin Pops Band Independence Day Concert will begin at 7:00 p.m. in Henry George Park. A variety of patriotic music will be played before and during the fireworks display. The Fairhope fireworks display will begin at approximately 9 p.m. The north end of Fairhope Municipal Park will be open throughout the day and will remain open until no parking is available. The south end of the beach front park and Knoll Park will be available to spectators. Handicap parking will be available near the fountain but will be limited. Those who wish to park in the handicap area should plan to arrive early and stay until the fireworks are over. As a reminder, this is an alcohol free event and no personal fireworks are permitted. For more information on Fairhope’s Fourth of July Festival and Fireworks display call 251-929-1466.

OWA

Independence Day at OWA is a day of family-friendly activities, live entertainment throughout the property, and a spectacular fireworks show at 8:45pm to capoff the night! Celebrate with a fun day in the streets of admissionfree Downtown OWA — grab a delicious lunch, enjoy live performances throughout the day, dance to GLOWA at night, then sit back and enjoy a fireworks show over Lake OWA.

MOBILE

FIREWORKS ON THE FANTAIL Celebrate July 4th on Mobile’s symbol of freedom, the USS ALABAMA. Enjoy an evening of music, barbeque, drinks, ice cream buffet, children’s activities and fireworks viewing from the bow of the ship. Tickets are $50 for adults, $25 for children six and over, with children under 5 free. This is fundraiser for the USS ALABAMA. Proceeds help fund restoration projects for the ship.

GRAND BAY WATERMELON FESTIVAL This is the quintessential small town festival. Opening day of the Grand Bay Watermelon Festival will be on Wednesday from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. with free admission and no free watermelon, but food, arts & crafts, rides and other entertainment. On July 4th, the Festival opens at 8 a.m. and closes at 4 p.m. The admission on the 4th is only $5 per vehicle, no matter how many people are in the vehicle! In addition to everything available on the 3rd, the 4th will include the Pretty Baby Contest, Open Car Show, and all the free, sliced, ice cold watermelon you can eat. For directions and more information, go to www.grandbaywatermelonfestival.org

DAUPHIN ISLAND

RED WHITE RED WHITE AND BOOM Dauphin Island’s annual independence Celebration begins at 11am with a ceremony by the DI Veterans’ Association at the Water Tower. The fireworks show begins at 9 p.m. at the Dauphin Island public beach and pier, next to Dauphin Island Elementary School. Parking is available at the public beach for $5 per car. No glass, fires or camping allowed on the beach. DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 55


56 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019


DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 57


Southern Public Relations Federation Annual Conference Perdido Beach Resort Orange Beach Sept. 29 • Oct. 1

Want a little piece of

PARADISE?

Sponsorships are available! 3 3 3 3

Promote your company Market your brand Advertise your product Pitch your service

For details, contact Danny Calametti or Susan Nelson Pickard, APR SPRF2019Sponsors@gmail.com SPRF 2019 Conference Ad_050319.indd 1

58 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

5/8/2019 9:15:09 AM

ADVERTISER INDEX AL 200 - Alabama’s Bicentennial............................5 Alabama Public Radio..............................................9 Blind Mule Restaurant & Bar..................................5 Butch Cassidy’s Café...............................................9 Callaghan’s Irish Social Club...................................3 Coastal Alabama Partnership...............................21 Dauphin’s Restaurant..............................................2 Dauphin Island - Sunset Capitol............................20 DigiPro....................................................................59 Discover Coastal Alabama....................................15 Doc Holliday’s.......................................................15 Downtown Mobile Alliance....................................3 Drowsy Poet..........................................................15 Eastern Shore Chamber........................................35 Five Rivers Delta Safari ..........................................5 Gulf Coast ITEX .....................................................35 GulfQuest...............................................................29 HAW5 Foundation.................................................49 My Shotz Photography..........................................58 Naman’s Catering....................................................7 Playa del Rio RV Resort ........................................49 Pirates’ Cove..........................................................29 Publications Press.................................................41 Shop Foley First ....................................................15 South Mobile County Tourism...............................60 The Drowsy Poet ..................................................51 The Listening Room ................................................3


WEBSITES

NEVER TASTED

SO GOOD

DigiPro Media builds websites and mobile apps for restaurants and hotels that sell the sizzle of your business. For more information on how we can help improve your business online visit DigiProMedia.com or call (850) 807-4398.

www.DigiProMedia.com 214 E. Garden Street Pensacola, Florida 32502

DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019 59


BAYOU LA BATRE • CODEN • DAUPHIN ISLAND • GRAND BAY • IRVINGTON • ST. ELMO • THEODORE

charming, Southern beach community, Dauphin Island and the surrounding villages of South Mobile County are rich in wildlife, Southern culture, excitement, and so much more. Come relax on our quiet beaches, explore historic Fort Gaines, go kayaking or take a bike ride with the family, enjoy the pace of wandering through the Audubon Bird Sanctuary, or experience the thrill of the catch while deep sea fishing. Our area is known for Mardi Gras, art festivals, coastal cuisine, an abundance of outdoor events, activities, and more! to everyone in one stunning,

60 DISCOVER COASTAL ALABAMA - SPRING/SUMMER 2019

• Dauphin Island Sunday Sunset Concerts • World Oceans Day at Dauphin Island Sea Lab • Grand Bay Watermelon Festival • Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo • Bayou La Batre Kayak Classic Learn more about these events at

www.visitsomo.com

visitsomo.com

Profile for ALABAMA COASTING

Discover Coastal Alabama Magazine - Summer 2019  

Welcome to Discover Coastal Alabama magazine, a partnership between the Coastal Alabama Partnership and Alabama Coasting. In each issue of t...

Discover Coastal Alabama Magazine - Summer 2019  

Welcome to Discover Coastal Alabama magazine, a partnership between the Coastal Alabama Partnership and Alabama Coasting. In each issue of t...