Message from iHeartHsv.com, a TBEX North America 2017 Sponsor
By Katie Wright
Hi everyone, Katie here again! You may have heard already, but Huntsville is hosting the TBEX North America 2017 Travel Bloggers conference from May 4th to 6th and we couldn’t be more excited! I realize that some TBEXers might not know much about Huntsville, so I thought I’d show you a few things to expect during your time in our fair city.
Huntsville has space – of both the “outer” and “scenic” varieties. Huntsville is nicknamed The Rocket City, and it’s easy to see why. We like to say that we’ve got a spaceline, not a skyline. We’re home to the Marshall Space Flight Center, Redstone Arsenal, and the U.S. Space and Rocket Center. The USSRC is home to two Saturn V rockets, decades of NASA history, a moon rock, and my favorite, Space Camp.
Huntsville is also home to miles and miles of trails, greenways, nature preserves, and city parks. Spring in Madison County is always gorgeous, so reserve some time to stroll around and take in all the beautiful sights while you are here.
If you can, there are a few Pre-TBEX tours you can join to see more about our space, such as a trip to the impressive Three Caves with the Land Trust of North Alabama, and even a day of Space Camp!
Amazing local food and drinks
Huntsville is home to so many amazing local restaurants, bars, and breweries that it would be impossible to list them all here. From fine southern dining at Cotton Row, to nerdy cuisine at Toy Box Bistro, to gourmet chocolates at Pizzelle’s, there’s something for everyone in Huntsville. You’ll get to sample some of our food and ambiance at the TBEX opening party at A.M. Booth’s Lumberyard.
Huntsville also takes great pride in its beer scene. We have nine breweries, each with their own personality and signature beers. Some even have uniquely Huntsville names, such as the Lily Flagg Milk Stout from Straight to Ale, the 1819 Dubbel from Yellowhammer Brewing, and the Big Spring IPA from Green Bus Brewing. You can see some of our operations yourself at the TBEX closing party at Campus 805, an old middle school converted into an entertainment district with bars, restaurants, and two breweries.
While not the oldest town in Alabama, Huntsville certainly has a rich history. The town was founded in 1805 by the Big Spring, and was later home to the Alabama Constitutional Convention. Alabama became the 22nd state in 1819 after the constitution was signed in Huntsville! It’s easy to see signs of nineteenth-century Huntsville just walking around downtown- many of the storefronts are over 100 years old.
Huntsville is also home to a number of beautiful Antebellum homes. There’s one with blue-paned windows, one that hosted a party for a cow, and several that may be home to a ghost! You can learn more about historic Huntsville during one of the walking tours (ghost and non-ghost), or the historic trolley pre-TBEX tour.
Last but certainly not least, Huntsville is full of charm, and not just in its people! It’s not hard to find buckets of charm at Lowe Mill ARTS & Entertainment, the nation’s largest privately-owned arts facility. Home to over 200 working artists, you’ll love wandering the halls of this converted textile mill.
Our beautiful Botanical Garden is the definition of charming, as well. You can take in a bewitching butterfly house, adult-size hammocks, and a Shakespearean herb garden, among the scores of flowers and trees of course. There’s always something fun going on at the gardens!
If you prefer your charm in scavenger hunt form, then you’ll be glad to learn about our Lucky Duck Scavenger Hunt. There are 14 bronze ducks scattered around downtown Huntsville, and if you find them all, you can get a prize!
I can’t wait for TBEX and the chance to show off my hometown. Hope to see you there!
Katie Wright operates a lifestyle blog, KatieActually, and is a local freelance journalist and blogger.