June has begun and events here in Tuscaloosa are quickly starting to pick back up. This weekend is going to be one for the books because we have a boatload of fun for all ages. Whether you’re cracking up at a comedy skit, dancing up a storm at Live at the Plaza, or the red barn, you’re bound to have an unforgettable weekend in the one and only Tuscaloosa. Below we’ll highlight some of the many activities for the upcoming weekend!
The Pop-Up Farmers Market is operating from 3:00 – 6:00 p.m. tomorrow (Friday)! The pop-up markets happen every weekday and will continue until Sept. 30. The schedule remains the same throughout the season but the locations vary. Enjoy fresh produce while supporting local at the same time!
In need of a good laugh? Comedian Rocky Dale Davis will perform live in Tuscaloosa from 7:30 – 9: 00 p.m. on Saturday, June 12th upstairs at Dillards Chophouse. Rocky Dale Davis appeared on NBC’s “Bring The Funny”, E’s “Dating No Filter” and MTV’s “Greatest Party Stories”. You don’t want to miss this!
The Old Paths will perform at the Bama Theatre at 6:00 p.m. this Saturday. With loads of enthusiasm and ministry experience, The Old Paths Quartet materialized out of Atlanta, Georgia to become one of the most influential, trend-setting Christian groups in Southern Gospel.
The Children’s Hands-On Museum of Tuscaloosa is where children explore, create, and discover every time they visit. When they say “hands-on” they really mean it! Learning through play is what their exhibits are all about. Learn about ocean zones, paint coral reefs, discover sea anemones at Ocean Commotion this Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Get ready for some jukin’ at the Red Barn at Sokol Park! Debbie Bond, Soapy and Andrew, and Michael Batitto will perform from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. on Sunday. Bring a cooler, kick back inside or out. There is no cover, just show some love for the incredible musicians. Get ready for a fun community music gathering – spread the word!
As April comes to a close, events here in Tuscaloosa are slowly starting to pick back up. This weekend is going to be one for the books because we have a boatload of fun for all ages in-store. Whether you are relaxing on a rooftop bar or enjoying music at Shindig, you’re bound to have an unforgettable weekend in the one and only Tuscaloosa.
Thursday concerts on The Rooftop
Christian Hayes will be performing this Thursday at Hotel Indigo’s The Rooftop. Enjoy the free concert and happy hour from 5-7 with $2 domestics, $4 wells, and $5 house wines. They are smoke-free & remember – pet-friendly! Now you don’t have to leave your furry friend at home on your night out! Live music is making a comeback and you don’t want to miss this!
Congrats to all of the Spring 2021 graduates of The University of Alabama! This is no easy accomplishment, so enjoy every moment as you walk across that stage to receive your diploma this weekend. Don’t forget to stop by the Supe Store afterward for alumni gear so you can continue to represent the Crimson Tide! Return to the capstone every now and then, because it will always be your home.
Tuscaloosa Farmers Market
Get your weekend fix of artisan bread, farm-fresh vegetables, and fabulous finds from your local small business owners at this weekend’s farmers market. The Tuscaloosa Farmers Market takes place this Saturday, May 1, from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. Don’t feel like leaving the comfort of your vehicle but want to still indulge in uniquely local goods? Curbside delivery is also an option! Remember, you can’t buy happiness but you can buy local!
Join the Children Hands-on Museum for a Superhero Meet and Greet! Hurry down to CHOM to get autographs, pose for pictures and receive a superhero goody bag! Costumes are welcome! Pre-Registration is required. $15 per person. This is a safe socially distant event with visitor limits to ensure everyone’s safety.
Live Concert Series
Don’t miss the Alabama Blues Project’s 2021 Live Concert Series at Shindig Family Entertainment Center on May 1st, September 4th, and December 11th at 7 pm! General admission is FREE! *Please wear masks and adhere to social distancing guidelines. In addition to live music, you also have bowling, axe throwing,mini-golfing, and an arcade all within reach! This activity would be great for the kiddos as well!
1. The River Walk
Disguised behind all of the commotions of Tuscaloosa lies the scenic River Walk. The 4.5 miles of path that runs directly next to the Black Warrior River serves as an ideal spot for picnics, dog walks, or leisurely strolls. Get out of the house, grab a friend, and go enjoy the view!
2. Dreamland BBQ
If you are from Tuscaloosa, or just Alabama itself, you know about this famous spot. Founded in 1958 by “Big Daddy” John Bishop, Dreamland has been a staple in Tuscaloosa’s food scene, serving communities across the state and even the country. You can still visit the original Dreamland location at 5525 15th Avenue East in Tuscaloosa. Pro Tip: Get the banana pudding.
3. Civil Rights Trail
To understand the rich history of Tuscaloosa’s civil rights history, it is crucial to examine the Civil Rights Trail. Many Alabamians are aware of the civil rights history that surrounds our state, but many might not be aware of the important events that took place in Tuscaloosa. The trail has 18 stops that tell of the extraordinary action that shaped this town forever. Visit https://civilrightstuscaloosa.org/trail/ to print your trail brochure.
Downtown Tuscaloosa has maintained its southern charm over the many years of change. Find a stylish outfit at The Pants Store, indulge in a nice dinner at Depalma’s, or sip on a craft cocktail at Sessions Bar. With dozens of businesses, new and old, its streets offer exciting experiences for everyone!
5. Lake Tuscaloosa
Right smack in the middle of Tuscaloosa you can fish, boat, or lie out with your friends at gorgeous Lake Tuscaloosa. This is the perfect spot for a quick, relaxing day trip with your friends or family. With 117 miles of shoreline, you sure won’t run out of room to play!
6. Crimson Tide Football
Alabama football fans have the honor of being some of the loudest, rowdiest fans in all of college football. To be honest, it’s hard to bite your tongue when your team has won 18 National Championships AND you have a larger stadium than Auburn.
7. The Strip
The Strip. Home to Quick Grill, the Yellow Hammer, and of course, Rounders. College kids love it, locals- well, probably don’t hate it too much. This is truly the place to go if you want that thrilling nightlife experience with a hint of college kid energy. Experience the electric energy on the strip that adds such an exciting element to Tuscaloosa!
8. Nicks in the Sticks
Nothing beats family-owned cooking- especially family-owned SOUTHERN cooking. Nicks in the Sticks has been serving the Tuscaloosa community since 1953 and has gone down in history ever since. Even though the venue is quite small, they dish up big flavors. If you have the chance to go, don’t forget to put a dollar bill on the ceiling!
What’s a good ole southern town without a good taproom? Tuscaloosa is home to 3 craft breweries: Loosa Brews, Druid City Brewing Company, and Black Warrior Brewing Company. New to the Tuscaloosa beer scene is The Grocery Brewpub that is set to open in the next few months!
10. The Immense History
While this one post could be a novel, T-Town has been a historical hotspot for centuries! Once the state capital in 1825, Tuscaloosa has been the home to the Creek Indian tribe and the site of a Civil War standoff. Grab a friend and discover the antiquity of Tuscaloosa throughout the many museums and tours offered throughout the town.
11. Kentuck Art Festival
Nothing screams fall in Tuscaloosa like changing leaves, football, and seasonal festivals. For 49 years, the Kentuck Art Center has been the epicenter of creativity for this community. The Kentuck Festival is filled with great music and art pieces from over 270 inspired creatives. While 2020 put a damper on the previous year’s fun, we are hopeful for the new year and the continuation of the spirit of Kentuck!
12. Tuscaloosa Farmers Market
Shop local, eat local, enjoy local. Supporting the Tuscaloosa community has never been easier thanks to the farmers market’s weekly Saturday appearance! Get your weekend fix of artisan bread, farm-fresh vegetables, and fabulous finds from your local small business owners at the Tuscaloosa Farmers Market- but remember to wear your mask!
13. The People
A deadly virus and a couple of tornados. It will take more than that to rock this town to its core! This community has endured so many hardships throughout the years. Yet still, we emerge stronger than ever and proud of the community we have built together! I could think of 1,000,000 reasons why I love Tuscaloosa, but 15 will have to do justice for now!
It’s another beautiful weekend here in the One and Only city of Tuscaloosa! The cold weather seems to be slowly disappearing which means good times and good attitudes are on the horizon! This week is full of live performances, sporting events, and maybe even a spooky appearance. We have tons going on to make sure you have a scary good time this weekend!
Druid City Music Hall
Country music artist, Kameron Marlowe, is taking the Druid City stage this Thursday, March 4th. With a concert last week and another one Thursday night, we sure are not hurting for our music fix here in this city! The show will start at 8 pm and tickets can be purchased online at Druid City Music Hall’s website or by clicking here. Druid City Music Hall’s new renovations accommodate all social distancing measures to ensure the comfort of all its guests. Make sure to bring your mask!
UA Women’s Athletics
Still not tired of Alabama basketball? Catch the Women’s Basketball team challenge Missouri this Thursday, March 4th, at the Coleman Coliseum. Want to watch the game in-person to see the tide roll and grab a Coke? Tickets will be available in the lobby an hour and a half before the start of the 5 pm game. For those who can’t attend or are taking health precautions, you can tune into the Crimson Tide’s C Spire channel on their website for live stats.
The University of Alabama’s elite gymnastics team takes on Florida at 7:30 pm this Friday, March 5th, at the Coleman Coliseum. In awe of these gymnasts’ crazy abilities? Watching the meet at Coleman Coliseum seems like the perfect way to spend your Friday evening! Ticket sales will begin an hour and a half before the start of the meet and will be located inside the main lobby of Coleman Coliseum. Roll Tide!
With Tuscaloosa serving as a hot spot for historical activity over the centuries, it’s no wonder that the hot spot has boiled over to include ghosts! A ghost hunt will be conducted this Saturday, March 6th at the historic Browns Corner- now Half Shell Oyster House. The hunt will be conducted by tv personalities, The Southern Ghost Girls Tours. For the ghost hunt, you will get to use real paranormal investigative equipment as you see on all your favorite paranormal shows. Look for the truth as to what haunts this building as you actively participate in the investigation. Apparitions, footprints, handprints, disembodied voices, poltergeist activity, and more have been observed throughout the last 120 years that the building has stood in its location. For more information on how to RSVP, click here.
Warmer weather has sparked the fresh fruits and veggies buyer in all of us! As always, the Tuscaloosa Farmers Market is running this Saturday from 7 am to 12 pm. Come and visit your favorite local vendors and find yourself some new treats to take home! Curbside services are still functioning for those who want to utilize them. Bring a big bag (or two), your mask, and have a great Sunday morning!
Arts and Entertainment
Thursday Concerts on the Rooftop is featuring One Horrible Family this week! Originally a larger band formed two years ago, this group preferred a more intimate trio. All music students at the University of Alabama (one a former student), the group is capable of really any genre but performs mostly R&B, 80s music, and jazz. With most of their experience being in larger bars in Tuscaloosa, they are excited to relax at the Lookout for a night of rhythm and soul. The fun starts at 6 pm, and you do not want to miss this!
Jump into the holiday spirit with the arts at the exclusive Christmas Open House at Kentuck’s Gallery Shop! Enjoy 10% OFF IN-STORE AND ONLINE! Join the holiday fun at Kentuck’s Christmas Kickoff Open House from 10 am to 4 pm on Saturday, November 7, and from 12 to 4 pm on Sunday, November 8. Support local artists this holiday season and find unique gifts for all of your loved ones! Use code CHRISTMASOPEN2020 for 10% off our online shop!
Fun for the Youngsters
On Friday Para will be hosting Kids Night Out at 5:30 pm at the McDonald Hughes Community Center! The Kids Night Out event will keep the kiddos busy for 3 hours of educational and recreational fun! Pizza, juice, and dessert will be available for all participants to enjoy throughout the event. There will be swimming so make sure to pack swimwear, dry clothes, and a towel. Life jackets will be provided when needed. Registration for this fall fling is available here.
The Children’s Hands-On Museum of Tuscaloosa is hosting Sweater Weather on Saturday from 9:30 am- 4 pm. CHOM is a beloved local gem where children explore, create, and discover every time they visit. When they say “hands-on” they really mean it! Learning through play is what our exhibits are all about. This special seasonal extravaganza will include autumn weather science, leaf color experiments, and fantastic fall wreaths! All of these engaging activities are included in admission.
At 7 am this Saturday the farmers market will be open and ready to safely serve you! Handmade treasures galore awaits at the Rivermarket until 12 pm. From scented bath bombs to handmade woodwork you are bound to find something that piques your interest at the farmers market. Face coverings are required for all who wish to go inside and shop and social distancing will be in effect.
Also available on Saturday is an Intro to Vinyasa Workshop at the Yoga Bliss Studio. Vinyasa is a form of active yoga that involves different postures in consecutive succession to offer a more balanced bodily effect. Yoga is an activity that is diverse in its styles and Vinyasa yoga is considered to be one of the most dynamic styles you can enjoy! Yoga Bliss is located on Queen City Avenue and hosts several classes a week, including many similar introduction classes for all yoga beginners! For more information about the Vinyasa Workshop, visit the Yoga Bliss Facebook event page.
The House Plant Collective bus will be making a special appearance at Druid City Brewing on Sunday from 2- 5 pm. At House Plant Collective the mission is to create Birmingham’s first mobile plant store while providing the community education needed for the plants to thrive. Shop plants, grab a beer, and enjoy your serene Sunday supporting local!
Will Baggett & Jamie Hoven
Fall has arrived, and with it came that familiar crisp autumn air, which means the outdoors are calling our names! See for yourself Tuscaloosa’s breathtaking back yard…and it doesn’t stop there, either. This city’s stunning landscape paired with phenomenal local businesses elevates an already beautiful destination into a MUST-DO Road Trip. Whether you are looking to wind down with an outdoor picnic, take an adventure hiking through the fall foliage, or shop like there’s no tomorrow, let these 10 reasons why Tuscaloosa should be your next weekend getaway guide your planning process. After all, you don’t want the legendary Tuscaloosa Experience to pass you by!
A recent addition to the city’s outstanding coffee shop scene is about to open and we couldn’t be more excited! Just Love Coffee prioritizes that sense of community as a business. The laid-back & relaxed atmosphere that makes Just Love Coffee Cafe so special was created to be different than the stuffy reputation of most specialty coffee shops. Downtown Tuscaloosa is a prime place to shop until you drop. Whether you are looking for your next gameday attire at The Pants Store, or searching for an antique accessory at Twice as Nice, this area is ideal for shopping at a vast variety of places that are all conveniently located!
Offering a serene view of the Black Warrior River, the Riverwalk is also the place to hammock, picnic, or relax! There are numerous picnic tables, benches, and gazebos to provide a comfortable environment, allowing you to get the most out of your experience with the great outdoors of T-Town. Let your mind take a rest from all the hustle and bustle of everyday life. If you are looking to work up a sweat and take advantage of the cooler temperatures, there is also a running path along the Riverwalk to enjoy in the morning or throughout the day. In addition to these activities, the Riverwalk is located close to a number of restaurants to enjoy either at the start or at the end of a delightful Autumn day, like Market House Boutique, Another Broken Egg, and River. Be sure to carry a mask with you for safety if you intend to visit any of the restaurants or businesses on the Riverwalk!
3. Lake Harris
Lake Harris is one of the many nearby lakes that offers an incredible setting for a number of different outdoor activities. There are plenty of picnic areas and a beach, where one might spread out a blanket to enjoy their lunch or simply take in the scene. In addition to these spots, there are a number of trees gathered close by the bank, perfect for setting up a cozy hammock! For those who are looking to stay active, there is a 1.76-mile hike around the lake through the trees. As the weather cools down, this area will become a peaceful gathering place for all who wish to experience some of Tuscaloosa’s many hidden gems.
4. Farmer’s Market
The Tuscaloosa Farmers Market is a spectacular shopping spot where you can find anything from a hand-cut Maple & Walnut Cutting Board to a hand-poured Yellowhammer candle scented Alabama Shores, all within walking distance. Each Saturday from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. local vendors of all specialties gather at the Tuscaloosa River Market to show off their wares to the community. If you plan on discovering the market’s incredible vendors this Saturday, wear a mask and be prepared to follow all social distancing guidelines!
5. Children’s Hands-on Museum
CHOM is a wonderful place in town where children explore, create, and discover something new every time they visit. When we say “hands-on” we really mean it! Learning through play is what CHOM’S exhibits are all about, where kids are encouraged to touch, feel, and play in fantastic exhibits. Three floors of fun await with 24 exhibits, offering newborns and 13 year-olds alike an opportunity to completely immerse yourself in fun learning processes.
6. Kentuck Art Center
This local favorite offers a unique view into the minds of the endlessly talented local artists all around Tuscaloosa. From handmade, one-of-a-kind jewelry to kitchen pitchers, this gold mine is ideal for a one-stop-shop for all of your holiday gifts. The Kentuck Gallery Shop offers an incredible shopping experience unlike any other online and/or in-person! Also, the 49th Kentuck Festival of the Arts is open NOW until December 31, 2020. With over 180 artist shops specializing in categories like clay, glass, jewelry, mixed media, sculpture, and wood you are bound to find the perfect Christmas present for everyone on your list!
7. Bower’s Park
Bower’s Park is a nearby public park that offers quite a few activity opportunities, like a disc golf course or several fields for rent. Not much different from regular golf, disc golf is an active way to stay busy on a delightful weekend outside! Those looking to get into this sport need to be sure and purchase discs ahead of time, however. As far as a field for rent, Bower’s Park has a number of different fields, baseball/softball or multipurpose, that can be rented out for a small gathering of friends to safely play a pickup game of baseball, softball, and more! Before visiting Bower’s Park, be sure to bring along a mask in case of other visitors.
8. Civil Rights Trail
As temperatures slowly start to drop, it is prime time to spend the day walking around outside and exploring new places. Among the many adventures that await you in town is the Civil Rights Trail, where anyone has the opportunity to walk in the footsteps of history and learn about how the Civil Rights Movement shaped the City of Tuscaloosa. Located primarily in Downtown Tuscaloosa, this trail is perfect for staying active and demonstrates a profound learning opportunity for those who are not aware of the history of Tuscaloosa. Thanks to its proximity to Downtown Tuscaloosa, the Civil Rights Trail is also a good opportunity to discover local dining options, such as Reggae Flava and Brummi’s Yummies. For more T-Town treasures along the trail check out the official guide here.
9. Government Plaza
If you are looking for a versatile area that offers wide-open spaces to safely enjoy this city, then the Government Plaza is the spot for you. Located in the heart of downtown, this 5-acre park makes social distancing a breeze. Soak in all of the cozy fall vibes while diving into a good book from Ernest and Hadley, grubbing on delicious Heat pizza, sipping on some Monarch coffee, or maybe even unwinding with your favorite yoga flow. After months on end of being trapped inside now is the time to relax and appreciate nature in all its wonder. If you want your furry friend to tag along, the sidewalks surrounding the park makes for the perfect path for walking with your furry friend.
10. Lake Tuscaloosa
This local hangout has everything you need for an unforgettable lake day with friends and family. Lake Tuscaloosa has earned its reputation as the perfect fishing spot with bass, sunfish, crappie, and more. If fishing isn’t for you, stand on the shore, hike the lake’s cliffs, or simply take in the captivating views! Only a short drive from the city, this lake makes pairing a morning out in nature and Rama Jama’s iconic Southern breakfast unbelievably easy as well. You are bound to have a blast at this local treasure, especially in this beautiful fall weather.
When you’re ready to plan your next road trip to T-Town check out all of the exceptional hotels this city has to offer!
Written by: Jamie Hoven
It is International Coffee Day and there is only one way to celebrate. Treat yourself to the must-needed companion, Coffee, as the work and school year are in full swing. With the temperature slowly dropping like an autumn leaf, what better time than now to discover a new coffee shop where you can enjoy specially-curated coffee brews and specialty coffee drinks? The City of Tuscaloosa is home to a variety of eclectic local cafes and shops to satisfy your coffee, so you’re in luck! Below is a list of locations around town where you can discover your new favorite cup of joe and celebrate International Coffee Day accordingly!
Coffee with Breakfast
You simply cannot go wrong with a hot (or iced) cup of coffee paired with a tasty treat to satisfy your sweet tooth. What are you waiting for? Start your week off with a little pick-me-up! On the corner of Greensboro and University Blvd sits Babe’s Donuts, this local favorite has earned quite a reputation around town with exceptional service and plenty of delicious treats to choose from. Their donuts can be topped with anything from fruity pebbles to Reese’s and Heath Bars, so be sure to scope out the many options before choosing wisely. Start your week off with this little pick-me-up! They are only open for take-out, so finding a good view of Downtown T-town to enjoy your killer combo is a must.
Breakfast with Coffee
If you are looking for a spot to grab a bigger meal and still celebrate today’s holiday, check out Another Broken Egg or Five Bar! Both of these restaurants offer a delicious variety for breakfast, brunch, and lunch (as well as dinner for Five). There is indoor seating available for those that want to get out of the house, but don’t forget to bring your mask! Five Bar also has a dedicated coffee shop that is open every day from 8:00 am to 3:00 pm! Visit either of these T-Town stops to pair an incredible meal with a delightful cup of joe.
Traveling all around the city of Tuscaloosa is the Joyful Java food truck! This one-of-a-kind coffee stop is considered a must-try by hundreds of UA students. Each cup is filled with a full-bodied flavor, from beans that are daily roasted and brewed fresh. If that isn’t quite your style, no problem! Joyful Java has a nice variety to choose from, including nitro brew, Greek frappe, espresso, and even caramel apple cider. There are no wrong choices here. Find Joyful Java in Tuscaloosa, or have ’em out to cater to your next event!
Tuscaloosa is home to several unique coffee houses that all bring something special and different to this town’s cafe scene. Turbo Coffee, for example, offers cold-pressed juices, açai bowls, and superfood smoothies in addition to their coffee selection. If you are looking for to-go options, Monarch Espresso Bar currently offers wonderful window service and outdoor seating so visitors can continue to visit the shop and socialize safely while enjoying a cup of coffee!
A classy coffee cafe, Just Love Coffee, is joining Tuscaloosa in a few weeks and we can hardly wait. Run by a mission to spread joy and kindness communities, this new local shop is sure to bring something unique to T-Town. Former alumni of The University of Alabama and two brothers are more than determined to spread the mission of Just Love Coffee to the Tuscaloosa area. In addition to the specially-curated coffee, Just Love also offers a menu of delectable goodies ranging from chicken and waffles to salads! Be sure to join us in giving this local business a warm welcome when they open!
Safety is the top priority for returning to campus, but that does not mean sacrificing the ability to enjoy yourself and to enjoy new experiences, especially in the City of Tuscaloosa. There are plenty of ways to maintain a safe, physical distance while also enjoying what Tuscaloosa has to offer, whether it be the scenic views, rich history, or the one-of-a-kind businesses and restaurant culture of this city. Below, we have compiled a list of ways to stay socially active while also being socially distanced!
The different lakes located around Tuscaloosa have been a regular relaxation spot for students over the years. In order to have a fun and peaceful time, visiting one of the nearby lakes is a modern time twist on a classic activity for UA students. These lakes are not only wonderful places to swim and rent kayaks for, but they are also a peaceful spot to read a book and enjoy the nature of the Tuscaloosa area. What better way to substitute a library table or a lakeside picnic table? These lakes offer services that allow you to either rent paddleboards for the day, paddle your own kayak around to the different scenic spots along the lakefront, or layout at the beach to continue working on your summer tan! The most popular lakes around the City of Tuscaloosa to check out are Lake Lurleen, Lake Nicol, and Lake Tuscaloosa.
Civil Rights Walk
The City of Tuscaloosa has a history intertwined with the Civil Rights movement, and there is a presence of that history all around Downtown Tuscaloosa. Traveling through history along the Civil Rights Walk is a way to stay active outdoors and be proactive about the history and importance of the Civil Rights Movement to our city. Visit (website) to locate the markers located around Downtown Tuscaloosa and learn more about the lasting impact that the Civil Rights Movement has made on the history and people of the City of Tuscaloosa. Visit here to learn more about the Civil Rights Trail of Tuscaloosa and how you can find more and more resources regarding the Civil Rights Movement in Tuscaloosa.
Historic Downtown Tuscaloosa
Downtown Tuscaloosa is a relaxing area of town where anyone is free to walk around and wander from door to door to find something they feel drawn to. There are numerous boutique stores and businesses where eclectic finds are inevitable. If you’re looking for a new wardrobe, or maybe just some refreshing new pieces, check out Pause Boutique, Effie’s Inc., or Pants Store! Walking around Downtown Tuscaloosa is a peaceful yet adventurous activity for all to find unique local while staying active after months of quarantine. However, Downtown Tuscaloosa does feature a lot of locations that would require entering a building, so be sure to pack a mask and be safe when visiting indoor storefronts and shops.
Self-Guided UA Tour
The University of Alabama has a rich history that every student and resident of Tuscaloosa ought to learn and become familiar with. At the heart of it all is The Quad, which is filled to the brim with its own history but also offers one of the most picturesque areas of campus. A refreshing way to stay connected to the culture of the university while maintaining physical distancing outdoors is to take a stroll around the University of Alabama campus and soaking in the history of the many buildings and locations. Many locations, including the ones located on the Quad, include historical markers that indicate the historic significance of their existence (or previous existence) and offer a glimpse into what truly defines this university.
Enjoy the scenic nature of the Black Warrior River from the comfort of a relaxing hammock or a light jog along the riverfront. The Riverwalk is 4.2 miles of a paved trail that offers visitors a place to enjoy the outdoors in a way that is safe and distanced from others, and versatile enough that anyone can find themselves enjoying an afternoon out and about. The Riverwalk is a great place to go on a quick run, exercise on a bike, and walk your dog, plus offers serene and scenic spots for reading a nice book or enjoying a delicious picnic. Whether you are wanting to stay physically active through exercise and movement or if you are wanting to simply sit outdoors and soak in the sunlight and fresh air, the Riverwalk is a must-do.
Golf and Disc Golf
In order to stay distanced while remaining active, certain sports offer more distanced situations than others, like golf or disc golf. There are several public golf course options located near Tuscaloosa including Ol’ Colony, North River Yacht Club, The Links at Tuscaloosa, Indian Hills Country Club, Tall Pines, and Hidden Meadows. Each of these courses is available on weekends and offers a variety of offerings to satisfy the most serious players and to welcome the more introductory players. If you are more of a disc golfer than a traditional golfer, Bower’s Park is the place to be, thanks to a full 18-hole course primarily located on wooded terrain and featuring beginner and professional tees for players of all skill ranges! Whether you are driving a golf ball or a disc, these activities are a safe way to get back into the swing of things!
A staple of campus life is enjoying the food trucks that make their way onto campus or throughout Tuscaloosa. These days, food trucks are a great way to stay outdoors and distanced while also supporting local businesses of Tuscaloosa. Not only are you able to be smart about what you are eating, but you may discover a new favorite dish or new favorite dining destination! We offer a phenomenal variety with options like Catch a Taste, Aces Tuscaloosa, Cheese Louise Tuscaloosa, and Urban Cookhouse. Food trucks appear in various locations around the city, so be sure to plan ahead of time to be aware of where certain trucks will be located and what their menu will look like! Remember to wear a mask at all times except when you are eating in order to maximize caution and ensure the safety of yourselves and those around you.
Local Farmers Markets
A health-conscious and locally-oriented outdoor activity that everyone can take advantage of is enjoying a farmers market. In Tuscaloosa, a few wonderful options for outdoor farmers markets are Homegrown Alabama Farmers Market, Ingram Farms, Northport Farmers Market, and the Curbside Farmers Market. Shopping at a farmers market can expose you to new flavors to up your cooking game, and they support the local farmers that stock the markets. Be sure to wear a mask while visiting local farmers markets for the health and safety of yourself and the vendors working the markets!
Written by: Will Baggett
It is National Farmers Market Week! Celebrate at Tuscaloosa’s own riverfront farmers market this weekend! The Tuscaloosa Farmers Market is a spectacular shopping spot where you can find anything from a hand-cut Maple & Walnut Cutting Board to a hand-poured Yellowhammer candle scented Alabama Shores, all within walking distance. Each Saturday from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. local vendors of all specialties gather at the Tuscaloosa River Market to show off their wares to the community. Join us as we explore some of the market’s incredible vendors and show you just how much they have to offer!
Barry’s Bees is a local apiary that specializes in fresh and local honey bee-made products. They sell a variety of bee-related products, including beeswax candles, creamed honey, and raw local honey! They also offer homemade salsas and jams and fresh blueberries. For natural products straight from the hive or the garden, look no further than Barry’s Bees!
Fairy Fluff Cotton Candy and Stuff
Fairy Fluff is a family-owned and operated gourmet cotton candy business, serving freshly spun treats to satisfy that sweet tooth! Of course, cotton candy and cotton candy sticks are on the menu, but Fairy Fluff also offers caramel rainbow popcorn. If you catch a craving for a sweet treat while exploring the market, Fairy Fluff has got you covered!
Surreal Coffee Roasters
Surreal Coffee Roasters is a home-based roaster whose goal is to bring you a diverse range of specialty-grade, single-origin coffees from around the world. Each batch of coffee beans is roasted and sifted by hand, making every cup an exceptionally unique experience. Grab a bag of freshly-roasted coffee from Surreal Coffee Roasters this weekend to start all of your mornings off with a little extra pep in your step.
Scratch-made pies? Talk about goodness! HipPies makes perfectly baked pies with fresh ingredients, incorporating love and a bit of grooviness into each one! HipPies makes their artisan pies in a variety of sizes and fillings, including brownie pecan, balsamic blueberry, and strawberry rhubarb crumble, to name a few. They also have options for scrumptious keto treats, including lemon pound cake, banana nut muffins, and stuffed pumpkin spice muffins. To see how HipPies is wholly dedicated to the art, science, and enjoyment of real artisan pie, check out their masterpieces of locally sourced ingredients here.
Elephantine Mink Soap Co.
Elephantine Mink Soap is a local bath product company that specializes in luxurious skincare products at a price that won’t break the bank. Along with standard products like shampoo, conditioner, and soap, Elephantine Mink Soap sells endless specialty bath products, including bath bombs, sugar scrubs, bubble bars, and face masks. Treat yourself to a spa night this weekend with the help of Elephantine Mink Soap!
Ben’s Bread brings the taste of England to Tuscaloosa through baked goods! Freshly baked sourdough bread is their famous specialty, but Ben’s Bread also makes rotating specialty loaves like jalapeño and cheddar and both plain and everything bagels. With Ben’s Bread, it is easy to transform any meal from dull to divine!
Belle Meadow Farm
Fresh, organically grown local produce is so much better than your average fruits and veggies, and Belle Meadow Farm offers some of the best in the business! With a vast variety of fruits and vegetables, including potatoes, watermelon, okra, and cherry tomatoes, this Tuscaloosa treasure has earned its reputation as a must-see this Saturday! Pick up some local produce this weekend from Belle Meadow Farm and experience the goodness for yourself!
Yellowhammer Candle Company
Yellowhammer Candle Company began making candles in 2019 and has remained focused on maintaining the authenticity of quality handmade products ever since. Their candles and melts are made with soy wax, guaranteeing a clean and natural product. Their signature scents include coffee shop, berries and cream, sweet cotton, mahogany teakwood, and more! Bring the delicious smells of Yellowhammer Candle Company home from the farmers market this weekend!
Besides these vendors, there are so many more! Check out Norris Farms, B&S Farms, or JJ’s Produce for more fresh produce options, and try Emily’s Heirloom Pound Cakes or Elizabeth’s Wholegrain Breads for baked goods! To look at all of the vendors and plan out your visit in the morning explore here. No matter what you’re looking for, the Tuscaloosa Farmers Market will have amazing vendors ready to assist you and share their passion with you!
Busy this weekend? Not a problem! Earlier this year the Tuscaloosa Farmers Market launched a mobile “Pop-Up” Farmers Market each weekday at different locations around town. The Pop-Up Market will bring fresh, local produce to different neighborhoods around the city from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Face Coverings required to enter the Tuscaloosa Farmers Market. Review all COVID-19 Preparedness Guidelines here.
In the One and Only Tuscaloosa, there are so many places to go and things to see. These 10 things are popular among the locals and won’t break the bank. So take a chance and try something new!
1. Children’s Hands-On Museum (CHOM)
This museum has been providing children with fun activities and events since 1984. There are three floors of fun for children of all ages. The Great Pumpkin Party and the Monster Walk Scavenger Hunt are two events that are happening soon. Admission is less than $10! CHOM is a great place to take the kids and enjoy a day of fun!
2. Paul W. Bryant Museum
This museum is a blast from the past! Check out over a hundred years of Crimson Tide memorabilia and football history. Visit the Paul W. Bryant museum to see what it takes to be “nothing but a winner.” Admission is $2 for adults and $1 for children.
If you’re a dog lover then the arboretum is the place for you! The arboretum is sixty acres of the great outdoors. Check out the dog park, community garden, as well as the hiking trails. The best part is that it is completely free!
4. The Waysider
Take a trip to Paul “Bear” Bryant’s favorite breakfast destination. It truly is the breakfast of champions. The restaurant is packed with decades of Alabama memorabilia. The Waysider offers made-from-scratch biscuits and gravy all for just under $3!
5. Homegrown Alabama Farmers Market
Edit: We regret to inform you his event will no longer happen. If you are interested in farmers’ markets in Tuscaloosa then check out the Tuscaloosa Farmers’ Market at the River Market.
6. Babes Donuts
A family-owned breakfast, brunch and coffee business located in Downtown Tuscaloosa. The menu features gourmet doughnuts unlike anything else you’ll find in town. Flavors include: bacon maple, sourdough, Reese’s Peanut Butter, Heath Bar sprinkle, Captain Crunch, Fruity Pebbles, S’mores, red velvet, blackberry cream cheese and others. Seasonal offerings can range from King Cakes during Mardi Gras to candied blood oranges. Stop by and grab a treat for under $10.
7. Steel City Pops
Nothing is better than a Steel City Popsicle on a hot Alabama summer day. They have many flavors to choose from, so there is a flavor for everyone. Flavors include: Arnold Palmer, Bosc Pear with Honey, Champagne White Tea, Cinnamon Apple, Cranberry Orange, Lime, Plum with Rosemary, Pomegranate, Strawberry Fig, Strawberry Lemonade, Avocado, Buttermilk, Carrot Cake, Chocolate, Coconut, Coffee, Maple Bacon, Bourbon, Pumpkin, Toasted Marshmallow, Vanilla Bean. All popsicles are $4.49 and under.
8. Black Warrior River
The Black Warrior River is absolutely stunning and the perfect place to go on a hot summer day. You can cast a line and catch some fish or bring your own boat and cruise the water. The Black Warrior is also perfect for paddle boarding or just floating down the river. Don’t feel like getting in the water? That’s fine because the Tuscaloosa River Walk runs along the river and offers beautiful scenery. It’s the perfect place to get some exercise or take your dog for a walk.
9. City Café
For decades, locals and students alike have enjoyed the homemade cooking served up at City Café. At lunchtime, this restaurant is packed with locals stopping in for a tasty meal at a reasonable price. Stop in and enjoy a meat and three for under $10. You won’t be disappointed, it’s just like mama makes it.
10. Gallette’s Yellowhammer
Stop by Gallette’s and sip on a Tuscaloosa favorite. People from all over the United States have enjoyed Yellowhammer’s from the One and Only Gallettes while in Tuscaloosa. The Yellowhammer is a staple on gameday at the University of Alabama. Their yellow cup is a popular accessory for the Crimson Tide fans walking around the quad. Visit Gallette’s and try one for yourself.
Written by Rachel Horton
There have been great events in Tuscaloosa all summer long and this weekend is no different! Start your weekend off this Friday with a title fight! After a great event earlier this year, Skyy Promotions Inc. Pro boxing will be at the Belk Center Friday night starting at 7 PM. Deon Nicholson, Thomas Knox, and Robert Alfonso with other local talent will continue their climb in the pro ranks. The tickets start at $25 and the last event was packed! This will be a can’t miss event!
Kick off your Saturday at the Tuscaloosa Farmer’s Market! Vendors set up ripe red tomatoes and famous Chilton County peaches. Musicians sit propped up against the door, playing guitars as you walk in, and freshly brewed iced tea is for sale to help battle the heat. Additionally, local Food Trucks, bakers, artists, and craftsmen gather here to sell their gourmet grub, fresh-baked yeast rolls, homemade jams and jellies and hand-carved cutting boards. Popular summer foods include tomatoes, Chilton County peaches, squash, corn, and local honey. The market opens at 7 am and lasts until noon!
Take your kids out for a good time at the Children’s Hands-On Museum. The Super Mario Blowout will include games, arts & crafts, and prizes! Be sure to come dressed as your favorite Nintendo character! With three floors of fun, CHOM is packed with 25 fun exhibits that teach children about different topics! Children all the way through age 13 will enjoy spending time playing in all of the exhibits and when they say “hands-on” they really mean it!
Finish off your Saturday at Midtown as they present Disney’s “Moana” this Saturday at 8 pm. Their Screen on the Green, Midtown Village’s Free Summer Movie Series, always brings in a big crowd to enjoy a movie on the big screen! Movies are shown on The Green by the Children’s Play Area at Midtown Village. Bring the kids, your lawn chairs, blankets and enjoy movies under the stars!
We have tons more going on so check out our great upcoming events, and follow us on our social media pages (@visittuscaloosa) for more announcements and events. Tell your friends and we can’t wait to see you around the One and Only Tuscaloosa!