Articles Tagged "Things to do"

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5 Tuscaloosa Features That Make The City Special

Tuscaloosa is special to residents for so many different reasons. Here are just 5 things we love about the community.

Tuscaloosa homeowners know that they've moved to a special place: a friendly city with plenty of Southern charm, good schools, nice neighborhoods with affordable homes, and plenty to enrich the lives of the residents. So if you're looking into Tuscaloosa homes for sale but you're wondering just what makes Tuscaloosa so special, we can answer that question right now.

Here are just a few of the things our real estate agents find that stand out about Tuscaloosa.

  1. Tuscaloosa Amphitheater. 2710 Jack Warner Parkway, Tuscaloosa
    You can't beat music under the stars at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater. The calendar really revs up in the spring when the weather warms, with Hank Williams Jr. and the Old Crow Medicine Show on May 12. Owned by the City of Tuscaloosa, the amphitheater holds 7,470 patrons. It sits on 15 acres by the scenic Black Warrior River. It's easy driving distance from the University of Alabama campus and a few blocks from downtown. The amphitheater is also the site of the annual Celebration on the River, the city's free July 4th celebration.

  2. Tuscaloosa Riverwalk. 2710 Jack Warner Parkway, Tuscaloosa
    Do you love getting out for a walk where you can commune with nature, but also you're close inside the city limits so you don't have to drive far? We've got just the place with the 4.5-mile Riverwalk, which runs beside the scenic Black Warrior River. This dog-friendly walk has beaches, gazebos, and lots of shade for picnics and for cooling off. There's also a Visit the playground near the Tuscaloosa Public Library, or the splash pad at the Bama Bell dock for the kids. Start at the Amphitheater loop (lots of parking at this end). Also, the path is well-lighted, so if you want to walk in the evening, be our guest.

  3. Tuscaloosa River Market. 1900 Jack Warner Parkway, Tuscaloosa
    These days, cities big and small are hosting farmers' markets, giving the local community an opportunity to purchase homegrown produce, and in Tuscaloosa, the venue is the Tuscaloosa River Market. You can sample the best in what your neighbors are growing, or how about locally produced arts and crafts, as well as entertainment? The Farmers' Market is tons of fun, so you won't miss out on homegrown food when you move to Tuscalosa. What's more, the River Market is for rent for special events such as weddings, banquets, sporting events, and others.

  4. Bama Theater. 600 Greensboro Ave. 
    Who doesn't love going to a live theater event? And no place is quite so special in our town as the Bama Theater.  This historic theater, currently being lovingly restored to its 1930s glory, is home to varied events, including plays, indie movies, beauty pageants, choral events, dance exhibitions, and more. The interior of the building evokes the Italian Renaissance, with distinctive Public Works Administration murals, faux balconies, terra cotta tiles, cherub plaques, and a small alabaster fountain.

  5. The University of Alabama. Wallace Boulevard. Turn right at University Boulevard and travel east through downtown Tuscaloosa to the UA campus
    Tuscaloosa is a fabled college town with The University of Alabama residents and all that implies. From fabulous sporting events (go, Crimson Tide!) to college courses and programs, lectures, art exhibitions, musical events, plays, workshops and seminars, and meetings and conferences, UA is a community in itself, with deep roots in Tuscaloosa and a reputation for giving back.

Tuscaloosa is a vibrant town with lots to do. We're happy to answer all your questions about our community or anything to do with buying or selling a home. Contact us today.


Experience Tuscaloosa With These Essential Attractions

Tuscaloosa is full of exciting things to do. Here are the top attractions you don't want to pass up.

Planning on moving to Tuscaloosa for a job? Or does it just seem like an up-and-coming but affordable place where you could raise a family? Of course, you're looking at real estate, and hopefully, you're delightfully surprised at how it's possible to own a nice home in Tuscaloosa without having to give up eating. But there are other reasons to move to this dynamic Southern city in addition to Tuscaloosa homes for sale.

Our real estate agents have some suggestions for those considering moving here or anyone who has just moved here and would like to know our area better. Let's take a look.

  1. Alabama Museum of Natural History. Smith Hall,427 Sixth Ave., The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa
    The Alabama Museum of Natural History is a real jewel when it comes to visitation in Tuscaloosa. More than 110 years old, the museum features the state's natural history through exhibitions, collections, and teaching and research programs. It also offers camps, expeditions, and special programs that help participants learn about and experience the natural history through the state's many rivers and trails. Some of the most interesting exhibitions are: Creatures of the Cretaceous; Hodges Meteorite; and the 60-foot-long skeleton of an Eocene-epoch whale.

  2. Children's Hands-On Museum of Tuscaloosa. CHOM. 2213 University Blvd., Tuscaloosa
    The Children's Hands-on Museum of Tuscaloosa 
    is a great place for kids to learn to explore, create, and discover. The idea is to learn through play. The exhibits show kids how. Children are encouraged to touch, feel, and play their way through the museum. Besides exhibits, there are birthday party spaces, activities and daily programs, holiday celebrations, curriculum-specific field trips and events for various age groups of children.

  3. Paul W. Bryant Museum. 300 Paul W. Bryant Drive, Tuscaloosa
    It's not surprising that you'd find a sports museum in a place like Tuscaloosa, which, as you will soon learn, is simply sports-mad, especially when it comes to the Crimson Tide — the University of Alabama's legendary football team. But the Paul W. Bryant Museum is not just about football; it's devoted to educating and inspiring the world about the accomplishments of UA collegiate athletes. There is the Paul W. Bryant Library, which contains an extensive collection of archival information on UA sports, plus displays, exhibits, artifacts and memorabilia regarding the history of University of Alabama Football.

  4. Tuscaloosa Riverwalk.
    Tuscaloosa Riverwalk
    is a great place to take your friends and visitors. Walk along the picturesque Black Warrior River and enjoy the changing leaves in fall, the springtime burst of color, or anytime. Currently running 4.5 miles, it's being expanded. Take advantage of the benches, gazebos, and shade trees. There's also a playground near the Public Library and a splash pad at the Bama Bell dock. The trail is well-lighted with street lamps, and some areas are dog friendly.

  5. Historic Tuscaloosa. (205) 758-2238 or email
    Historic Tuscaloosa works to preserve key features of Tuscaloosa's past. Currently, the group operates five properties: the Old Tavern; the Battle-Friedman House; the Jemison-Van de Graaff Mansion; the McGuire Strickland House; and the Murphy African-American Museum.

  6. The Arts Council. PARA Building, 614 Greensboro Avenue Tuscaloosa
    The Arts Council is the umbrella organization for 50 cultural and arts organizations offering educational programs. The Arts Council also oversees the Bama Theatre and the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center. Consult the calendar of events to see what's going on.

These venues will get you started on your Tuscaloosa experience. Our real estate staff can make more suggestions or answer your real estate questions. Contact us today.


The Best Tuscaloosa Spots For National Cheeseburger Day

Who doesn't love a good burger? Here are the Tuscaloosa cheeseburger joints to stop by on National Cheeseburger Day.

Bet you didn't know Sept. 18 is National Cheeseburger Day. Well, you do now, but you probably didn't need a reason to go for a juicy, mouth-watering cheeseburger. Oh, yeah, it has calorie overload with all that cheese and hamburger meat, but you can go for low-fat meat or even a meat substitute and low-calorie or fake cheese if you're worried. Or a ground chicken or turkey burger. Whatever you do, it's ok for the day. Just choose your favorite cheeseburger, chomp down, and celebrate the day in style — either at home or in one of the venues near Tuscaloosa homes for sale — where you got your beautiful home, in fact. 

New in town? You're in luck. Our real estate agents have some choice venues for you to try so you can find your favorite cheeseburger. 

  1. Baumhower's. 500 Harper Lee Drive or 4251 Courtney Drive, both Tuscaloosa.
    Founded by University of Alabama All-American and six-time All-Pro for the Miami Dolphins Bob Baumhower, Baumhower's started in Birmingham in 1981 and now has 10 locations throughout the state, with two in Tuscaloosa. Baumhower's is known for using fresh, local ingredients, for its distinctive sauces, and for keeping up with the latest food trends. There's nothing trendy about the traditional cheeseburger, but at Baumhower's, you've got a choice from several Gourmet Burgers, including the Hangover with fried egg, avocado, American cheese, applewood-smoked bacon, and onion bun, and the Victory, with a double stack of meat and applewood-smoked bacon — and several more.

  2. Mugshots Grill and Bar. 511 Greensboro Ave, Tuscaloosa
    Mugshots is well known throughout the South, but aren't you lucky to have one near your Tuscaloosa home? The tradition at Mugshots is to submit a photo of yourself with Mugshots swag, and maybe you'll end up on the wall. Often honored for having the best burger around, Mugshots is known for its signature sourdough bun, countless toppings, and certified Angus beef.

  3. Avenue Pub. 2230 University Blvd. Tuscaloosa
    There's a new take on pub classics with the Avenue Pub's emphasis on "made-in-house" items from fresh, local ingredients. Open in Tuscaloosa since 2014, Avenue Pub is a great place for homeowners like you and local students to gather. Sample some of the distinctive appetizers, like Conecuh sausage and pimento cheese served on green tomatoes or Thai nachos, then go for the delicious Bacon Burger — with cheese, please.

  4. Milo's Hamburgers, 5020 Old Greensboro Road, Tuscaloosa
    For those who like their burgers straightforward, Milo's Hamburgers is the place to go. Founded by U.S.Army mess cook Milo Bowman in 1946, Milo's burgers feature the founder's secret sauces and come as double burgers, cheeseburgers, Mexi Burger, Bacon Cheeseburger, and other variations. Plus, there's chicken in several delicious iterations.

  5. Rama Jama's. 1000 Paul W. Bryant Drive, Tuscaloosa.
    Breakfast is great at Rama Jama's with their slightly crunchy pancakes for game day, but it's lunch where you want to be in place for one of their signature cheeseburgers. There are lots of burgers and burger platters to choose from: the National Champ Burger, with 18 ounces of beef; the Touchdown Burger with a fried egg and hash browns; and the Swiss and Mushroom Burger. There's nothing fancy about Rama Jama's, but you'll love the sports-centric atmosphere and the friendly service. Just for fun, try the fried green tomatoes in place of fries.

So are you making plans to celebrate National Cheeseburger Day in Tuscaloosa? We can't wait. Be sure and call us with any questions about other great venues in Tuscaloosa. Planning on buying or selling a house? Contact us today.


The Best Breakfast Diners In Tuscaloosa

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Here's where you can start your day right in Tuscaloosa.

Health experts regularly recommend that we eat breakfast to help our heart, digestion, bones, and ensure our cholesterol stays on the low side. So why not use breakfast as an excuse to get out and about in Tuscaloosa?

If you've been looking around for things to do and places to go near the house you chose from Tuscaloosa homes for sale, you're in luck when it comes to breakfast. There are so many delightful places to "break the fast" in this area, so even if you're not a big fan, you may find you've changed your mind and will welcome some bacon and eggs, waffles, or whatever.

So rise and shine, breakfast eaters. Let's see what our real estate agents have rounded up for our early morning delight.

  1. Historic Waysider Restaurant. 1512 Greensboro Ave, Tuscaloosa
    Designated by Southern Living magazine as the best breakfast spot in Tuscaloosa, the Historic Waysider Restaurant has been serving up breakfast joy since 1951. You may have to wait a while for a table (you'll be sitting on an old church pew on the front porch), but it's worth it. Of course, in Alabama, football rules, so you can study the walls with pictures of football and other sports greats while you wait. Once you're seated, choose from Southern breakfast classics such as Steak with Two Eggs or Biscuits with Red Eye Gravy, or the Country Ham and Shortstack of Waffles. Don't miss the fluffy biscuits!

  2. T-Town Cafe. 500 14th St. Tuscaloosa
    As if the simple but tasty fare weren't enough, the T-Town Cafe also attracts with its friendly and welcoming staff. Expect to find your basic breakfast of eggs and breakfast meat, or Smothered Porkchop and Biscuits (smothered in Sausage Gravy), but you can counteract with a healthful option of three egg whites, bowl of oatmeal, cup of fruit, and dry wheat toast. There's also a nice selection of breakfast burritos. No matter what you choose, the price is right.

  3. Brick & Spoon. 2318 4th St., Tuscaloosa. 
    Brick & Spoon bills itself as an "upscale take on breakfast, brunch, and lunch," and we wouldn't disagree with that but we would add, it's worth expanding your horizons and giving it a try. What's for breakfast in Upscale Land? The scrumptious Beignet, for one thing, is served with powdered sugar and marmalade; follow up with Bananas Foster. But for the serious breakfast eater, we recommend the Garden Omelet with seasonal vegetables and feta cheese; or the Killer Creole Omelet,  with shrimp, tasso, onions, red and green bell peppers anf cheddar jack cheese, topped with housemade Hollandaise. Don't forget the Fire Roasted Corn Grits or Breakfast Potatoes on the side.

  4. Rama Jama's. 1000 Paul W. Bryant Drive,  Tuscaloosa
    Rama Jama's
    is all about your basic Southern breakfast in a sports-centric setting. Platters are substantial with various combos of eggs, pancakes, hashbrowns, and breakfast meat. Try the All American Omelet Platter, with eggs, cheese, breakfast meat, vegetables, and grits. Also, try breakfast sandwiches and sides of grits, oatmeal, or tater tots.

  5. Wright's Restaurant. 3750 University Blvd. E, Tuscaloosa
    Wright's Restaurant
    is the last word in Tuscaloosa family-style restaurants, with its traditional "meat and three vegetable" offerings for lunch. But if it's breakfast you're looking for, you can't go wrong at Wright's. Nothing fancy — just all the regular breakfast items, including eggs, meats, hashbrowns, grits, French toast, pancakes, and more.

Whether you need recommendations on where to eat out in Tuscaloosa, or you're buying or selling a house, our real estate staff can help. Contact us today.


Here Are The Top Reasons To Move To Tuscaloosa

Tuscaloosa may just have everything you've been looking for in a community. Here's why you should plan your move now.

Shopping for a home among Tuscaloosa homes for sale? Then you probably already know it's a great place for finding a home you'll love at an affordable price. That's just one reason to move to Tuscaloosa. Our real estate agents have plenty of other reasons why you'll love it here. Let's have a look at the top reasons to move to Tuscaloosa.

  1. Warm weather
    Many folks fleeing the colder climes find a new home in the Deep South, where they can be warm a good part of the year. Yes, there is winter here in Tuscaloosa, but it's mild for the most part. For newly arrived snowbirds, our winter daily highs of around 60 degrees (rarely below 40 degrees) can be mighty pleasant. Extremely cold or warm temperatures are rare in the winter, and there's hardly ever any snow. Rain? Oh, yes, rainfall can be abundant, with an average of 53 inches a year, but there are also a lot of sunny days (214) for the rest of the year.

  2. Friendly people
    Many visitors to the Deep South are struck by the friendliness of the people, and Tuscaloosa is no exception. If you're moving from a place where people don't have time for you, be aware that is not the case in Tuscaloosa. In general, you will find the local populace warm and welcoming. With a population of close to 100,000 people, Tuscaloosa is a small city that provides enriching opportunities, while maintaining the advantages of more laid-back urban settings.

  3. A university town
    The University of Alabama has been a dominant force in shaping Tuscaloosa. As the flagship university of Alabama, "Bama," as UA is known informally, obviously offers outstanding educational opportunities to those who move to the environs. UA also extends cultural enrichment with lectures, art exhibitions, and community education. For sports fans, it's probably enough to mention the Crimson Tide football team in conversation and you'll get an earful and an understanding of how deeply Alabama and football are enmeshed.

  4. A museum/gallery town
    Love museums and galleries? There's something for the whole family in Tuscaloosa. Here are some of the top museums, galleries, and other venues for cultural enrichment: Alabama Museum of Natural History (UA);  Paul W. Bryant Museum (football history of UA); Warner Transportation Museum (UA); Moundville Archaeological Park (UA's Mississippi culture site); Sarah Moody Gallery of Art (a UA gallery); and Tuscaloosa Museum of Art.

  5. Lower cost of living
    The cost of living in Tuscaloosa is about 12 percent lower than in the rest of the country. The city offers a number of affordable housing opportunities, from rent-to-own apartments, rental apartments of one, two, or three bedrooms, and affordable houses, the cost of which is well below the national median. Overall, groceries, housing, and transportation are also less than the national average.

  6. Low unemployment
    The city has a low unemployment rate (3.6 percent) and a diverse job market, with The University of Alabama, Mercedes-Benz US International, and the DCH Health System being the major employers.

  7. Schools, colleges, and universities
    The Tuscaloosa City School System includes some highly rated schools: Tuscaloosa Magnet School-Elementary, grades K-5; Rock Quarry Elementary School, K-5; and Tuscaloosa Magnet School-Middle, grades 6-8.

    Alabama's largest university, The University of Alabama, is a  research university with an annual enrollment of 38,600. Stillman College is a black liberal arts college with 1,200 students, while Shelton State Community College is a two-year institution with an annual enrollment of 7,000.

Convinced about Tuscaloosa? Our real estate staff is eager to help you find your next home. Contact us today.


Explore Tuscaloosa Local Arts At These Venues

If you want to explore the creative side of Tuscaloosa, make sure you visit these local stores and venues.

If you've been shopping for Tuscaloosa homes for sale, you probably want to know what your prospective neighborhood has to offer in the way of schools, houses of worship, medical facilities, restaurants, and recreation. But our real estate agents also recommend that you broaden your horizons by checking out the local arts scene.

Maybe you're already in a home, and it just never occurred to you to get to know what artistic and cultural amenities are nearby. Whether it's going to a gallery show, taking art lessons, listening to live music, or hearing a lecture in an independent bookstore, you'll find fun, interesting and edifying things to do for the whole family. 

Here are some of our recommendations for the Tuscaloosa area. 

  1. Ernest and Hadley Book Sellers.  1928 7th St, Tuscaloosa
    April 30 was Independent Bookstore Day, but even if you missed it, celebrate by visiting your local bookstore: Ernest and Hadley Book Sellers. Independent bookstores have struggled with competing against national chains, but also because people have found alternative means of "reading" by listening to streamed books or just forsaking reading altogether. But bookstores these days are much more than places to shop for a book — although you can certainly do that by sampling a few pages of the books you're interested in. You can also stop by for book signings and talks by authors, sometimes served with tea!

  2. Tuscaloosa Amphitheater.  2710 Jack Warner Pkwy., Tuscaloosa
    Tuscaloosa Amphitheater presents a range of performers, offering the finest in live music. Recent headliners include the Avett Brothers while coming soon are the Black Crowes. 

  3. The Arts Council. 600 Greensboro Ave., Tuscaloosa
    Show your support for local arts in Tuscaloosa by becoming a supporting member of the Arts Council. Support a variety of arts initiatives from gallery exhibitions, to comedy shows, to cultural events and theater. The Arts Council encompasses Bama Theatre, Children's Hands-on Museum, Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center, Harrison Galleries, Kentuck Art Center, and others. 

  4. Oz Music. 506 14th St., Tuscaloosa
    Oz Music is Music Central for Tuscaloosa's discriminating indie music lovers, and others too, who just want to get a groove on by listening to the latest tunes. Plus, Oz buys and sells the latest vinyl, CDs, and DVDs. From Dance and Electronic, to Rap and Hip-Hop, to Blues and Jazz, to Classical and World Music, and Country and Folk, Oz is a real wonderland for the musically diverse.

  5. Art Garage. 2422 6th St., 2422 6th St, Tuscaloosa
    What a novel idea: a membership for the whole family so all can indulge their individual penchants for creating art. Buy a family membership and enroll the kids in such fun events as Dollhouse Camp or Crafts Camp. For adults, enroll in Parents' Night Out or Community Art lessons with a skilled instructor. Art Garage members may partake of exclusive benefits and have unlimited access to open play sessions.

  6. Kentuck Art Center and Festival. 3501 5th St, Northport. Art exhibitions are at various museums. 
    The Kentuck Center curates four exhibition spaces annually — the programming is chosen without biases of age, race, gender, and socioeconomic background and with the crossing of cultural boundaries. Some programming is free so that the underserved in the local community can participate. Further, there is an annual two-day festival in October, called Kentuck Festival of the Arts, which attracts more than 10,000 visitors, and features the works of 270-plus artists, live music, activities for children, spoken word, folk and contemporary craft demonstrations, food trucks, and craft brews.

Here's hoping you'll find your way to one of the fabulous arts and cultural venues around our area. Questions? Contact us today.


Active Dog Month: The Best Places To Take Your Canine Friends

Looking for places to keep your dogs occupied? Here are the outdoor spots in and around Tuscaloosa you should visit.

Many homeowners have acquired dogs and cats during the time of the pandemic — both to keep the kids occupied and also, for adults, as companions to combat enforced loneliness and isolation. As first-time pet owners may be learning, these animals are not inanimate stuffed toys, but living creatures that have needs. Dogs often need vigorous walks to keep them mentally and physically fit. 

It just so happens that April is Active Dog Month. If you're not doing it already, what better time to begin a regular regimen of exercising and playing with your dog outdoors? The weather's grand and your canine will love it, no matter when or where. But to get you started, here are some venues near Tuscaloosa homes for sale where you can concentrate on your dog's — and your — fitness and fun.

Tuscaloosa Canine Fun Spots

  1. Annette M. Shelby Park Trail. 1614 15th St., Tuscaloosa
    Annette M. Shelby Park features a .7-mile paved loop, but that can be plenty for a small or older dog. It's open to trail bikers, runners, and walkers year-round. Dogs are welcome but must be on a leash. The park has a splash pad with nearby restrooms and water fountains. 

  2. Will May Dog Park (located within Sokol Park South), 5901 Watermelon Road, Northport. 
    If you or your dog has never experienced a dog park, you're in for a treat with Will May Dog Park. There are areas for small and large dogs, as well as a training yard. Water is available once spring arrives, but it's always a good idea to bring some. Dog waste must be removed. There's a limit of three dogs per person. No aggressive dogs, puppies under 4 months, or dogs in heat.
  3. Freeman Park. 3001 Dragons Lane, Tuscaloosa
    Freeman Park
    has a lot of amenities, including a swimming pool and shelter, but also a nice trail where you can walk your dog. 

  4. Sokol Park, 5901 Watermelon Road, Northport
    Sokol Park is a multi-purpose park, which includes Will May Dog Park. But for dogs that don't enjoy dog parks, there are trails, which are usually not crowded. Trails are of varying lengths and are not difficult.

  5. Hurricane Creek Park. 7005 Old Birmingham Hwy., Tuscaloosa
    The setting for Hurricane Creek Park is geologically special (it's where the Gulf coastal plain meets the Appalachian Paleozoic rock area ecosystem). Once a site where extensive mining occurred, it is now known for rare plants, scenic beauty, and some local history. You can hike on the Eagle Scout Trail but be aware there are some stream crossings, and your dog should be big enough to manage these. 

  6. The Riverwalk. 2710 Jack Warner Pkwy., Tuscaloosa
    The Riverwalk is a 4.5-mile walk that starts at Capitol Park and ends at the gazebo east of Manderson Landing. The paved two-way trail offers places to rest and rehydrate. There are even a few off-leash places on the trail.

  7. University of Alabama Arboretum. 4801 Arboretum Way, Tuscaloosa
    The 60-acre University of Alabama Arboretum is pet friendly. Devoted to Alabama's native flora and fauna, the arboretum is open daily during business hours, so bring your dog and take a walk in a beautiful setting. It's crucial to pay attention to the arboretum's pet policies so that it can stay pet friendly: keep dogs on leash; pick up after your dog; and don't allow your pet to dig in beds, disturb plants, or urinate on plants.

You'll enjoy living in a Tuscaloosa neighborhood near a park where you can exercise yourself and Fido. Ask our real estate agents about buying or selling a home in Tuscaloosa. Contact us today.


Celebrate Waffle Day Right With Tuscaloosa Breakfast

Waffles may be the ultimate comfort breakfast. Here's where you can start your morning right in Tuscaloosa.

Bet you didn't know that Friday, March 25, was International Waffle Day. Yeah, yeah, we know — as if we needed a designated day to enjoy waffles. These days, waffles have been front and center on the menu, not only at breakfast but for every meal, with everything from chocolate chips and peanut butter to crushed pineapple and bacon (!) being added to the mix. Not to mention, we're now topping them with not only whipped cream and syrup, blueberries and strawberries, but also chicken. Where will it end?

Whether you're whipping up your own favorite waffle recipe for the family in your new home from Tuscaloosa homes for sale, or dining out on the town, adding delicious waffles to the menu will be a hit with everyone. Who can blame the Swedes, Norwegians, and Danes for starting up International Waffle Day and also opting for the delicious waffle as a way to also celebrate the advent of spring?

If you're wondering how to celebrate International Waffle Day, our real estate agents have some suggestions:

  • Serve waffles for breakfast, lunch, or dinner with everyone's favorite toppings.
  • Try a new recipe for waffles, maybe with whole wheat flour; serve heart-shaped Swedish waffles with a dollop of cream; or find Belgian waffles in the frozen section. These are thicker than regular waffles and should be dusted with confectioner's sugar or given a coating of chocolate or cream.
  • Here's a potato waffle recipe that uses a minimal amount of flour, while calling for your leftover mashed potatoes.

Otherwise, try out some of these notable eateries and ask for the waffles.

  1. Heritage House Cofffee and Tea. 700 Towncenter Blvd., Tuscaloosa
    Heritage House
    is Tuscaloosa's first coffee house, having opened in 1993, and serving 40 international coffees, many types of tea, from-scratch baked goods, and even waffles. Visit any time of day for waffles, including dinner. Try the two Belgium-style waffles and top them with blueberries, strawberries, bananas, pecans, or whipped cream.

  2. Just Love Coffee Cake. 2531 University Blvd., Ste 100, Tuscaloosa
    There are lots of interesting food items on the menu for Just Love Coffee Cake, and most of them aren't about coffee cake. At any rate, go right to the Artisan Waffle section and scan for the Breakfast Slider with bacon or sausage, egg, cheese, and maple syrup; the Berry Berry Bo Berry, with blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, whipped cream, and powdered sugar; the Flyin' Pig Waffle, with bacon, sausage, egg plus sausage gravy or maple syrup; or lots more waffle choices.

  3. Broken Egg Cafe1650 Jack Warner Parkway, Tuscaloosa
    The Broken Egg Cafe has a variety of scrumptious and healthful offerings, but do try the Power Belgian Waffles (made of whole wheat), topped with bananas, pecans, and a coconut milk-peanut butter sauce on top. Beyond breakfast, sample Chicken and Waffles, with fried chicken tenders on a Belgian waffle, plus house-made chipotle honey.

  4. Metro Diner, 1800 McFarland Blvd., East, No. 404, Tuscaloosa
    At the Metro Diner, breakfast is served all day long, with special emphasis on "comfort food favorites, new twists on classics, and traditional homemade breakfast platters." You can't go wrong with the Fried Chicken and Waffle, featuring half a fried chicken and a Belgian waffle, topped with powdered sugar, sweet strawberry butter, and sweet and spicy sauce. Try the Belgian Waffle, if you crave lighter fare.

At home or dining out, there are plenty of options for celebrating International Waffle Day. Have questions about buying your home in Tuscaloosa? Contact us today.


Get Crafty With These Holiday DIY Projects

Want to get in the holiday spirit and keep your hands busy? Here are some holiday crafts you can make at home.

Looking for budget-friendly holiday crafts to boost your decorating efforts? Where do we start? There are so many easy-to-make, attractive projects to choose from, you may have trouble narrowing your focus. You might get some ideas from driving around Tuscaloosa homes for sale, studying holiday wreaths, for starters, but you can also go online and find images that inspire you as well as instructions for holiday ornaments, candles, garlands, and much more.

Let's start by taking a look at some of the projects our real estate agents have rounded up for your consideration.

Holiday DIY Projects

  1. Printed Tea Towel Stocking Stuffers
    You don't need many supplies for these charming tea towels: flour sack dish towels, black fabric paint, a sponge brush, a tree-shaped cookie cutter, a paring knife, freezer paper, and a sponge. Press the cookie-cutter about a through the sponge and save it for later.

    Iron the towel and lay it on a large piece of freezer paper. Paint the sponge stamp and press it onto the towel, repeating in whatever pattern you choose. Dry the towel or towels overnight, then iron with another towel between the iron and the towel. You can fold up and tie the towel as a stocking stuffer or wrap gifts with it and tie it off with ribbon.

  2. Holiday Wreaths
    Wreaths for your door can cost plenty, but the good news is you can make your own. Try snipping some greenery from your holiday tree, then add pine cones, ribbon, raffia, and ornaments. You'll need pruning shears and wire snips for shaping greenery; needle-nose pliers are also helpful. Other supplies you'll need are floral wire and floral tape in green and other holiday colors, twine, floral pins, and craft glue. Use a wire or Styrofoam form to anchor your wreath. You'll also need hanging hardware.

  3. Holiday Ornaments
    Glitter Leaves.
    Get some extra sparkle in your holiday tree with a few of these handmade Glitter Leaves. Cut out two leaf shapes from heavy paper. Affix glitter to the outer-facing sides of each. Loop a pretty ribbon through a bead; secure the ends between the leaves before pressing them together with glue to dry. Once they're dry, add more glitter with a glitter stick if you like, along edges, or make a pattern. Hang several in the tree for maximum sparkle effect.

    Wooden Ornaments. Order wooden ornament forms or wooden slices online, or find them in a hobby store. Cut out designs from pretty wrapping paper, fabric, or napkins. Water down some school glue, and affix the paper or fabric to the ornament forms. Let them dry, then cut away the excess paper with an X-acto knife. Run some raffia or ribbon through the pre-drilled holes in the forms to hang them.

  4. Lighted Pine Cone Baskets.
    Here's some added glow for your evening holiday decor. Obtain a basket big enough to hold several pine cones. Spray the cones with clear paint. Before they dry, sprinkle the cones with glitter. Use a glitter glue pen for extra sparkle. Pile the cones into the basket with a string of mini lights. Weave the lights amidst the cones in a way that looks pleasing to you, leaving enough of the lights over the edge of the basket to plug in.

Our real estate staff can also answer your questions about buying a home or selling your current property. Contact us today.


Jump Into The Holiday Season With These Attractions

The holiday season is in full swing, and there's plenty to do in and around Tuscaloosa. Here's what you can look forward to.

December is such a busy month. Most of us are zipping around, shopping for gifts and wrapping them up, decorating, baking, and making sure everything related to the holiday madness gets done. And this year, the pressure is on. We're planning holiday get-togethers again, including Yuletide dinners, parties, and the exchange of gifts. But in the days leading up to the holidays, it's worthwhile to take some time out, get out of the house and visit local holiday attractions. Happily, many are not far from Tuscaloosa homes for sale

Our real estate agents have some suggestions for attractions near you. Check them out, and enjoy.

  1. Weihnacht's Markt. 420 Rice Valley Rd N, Tuscaloosa, AL
    Here's your chance to shop at a traditional German Christmas market on Sunday, Dec. 12, 4-6:30 p.m. Weihnachtsmarkts are found in towns in Germany, Switzerland, and Austria. The market heralds the beginning of Advent, a holy season of the Christian church that leads up to Christmas and the celebration of the birth of Christ. These markets draw millions of visitors, and are known for Nativity scenes; special foods such as Zwetschgenmannle (figures created from decorated dried plums); carved nutcrackers; and traditional Christmas cookies. Mulled wine and cider are also sometimes available. Our local market offers a great opportunity to become acquainted with this charming cultural tradition from the Germanic people.

  2. Theatre Tuscaloosa. Bean-Brown Theatre. 500 Old Greensboro Road, 154 Tuscaloosa, AL
    How about a theater weekend for you and your pals? (Sure, your significant other is absolutely welcome too.) Theatre Tuscaloosa is presenting "Girls' Weekend," playing Dec. 10-19. It's a madcap comedy where four friends plan a get-away at a remote cabin, but also plan how they can sneak visits with their sweethearts.

  3. Tuscaloosa Ice Skating. Government Plaza. 2106 6th St, Tuscaloosa, AL
    Ice skating is a great way to entertain holiday company or just to let the kids expend some energy. This year Tuscaloosa ice skating has moved to Government Plaza as part of Holidays on the Plaza, which will also feature the Tinsel Trail (benefiting Tuscaloosa's One Place, and other holiday parties and festivities). Enjoy ice skating through Jan. 17. Admission to Holidays on the Plaza is free, but you'll need to purchase passes for ice skating.

  4. Light Displays.
    You can pack the family in the car and drive around Tuscaloosa, exploring and finding your own pretty Christmas lights, or you can visit the ones we've compiled below, or see more compiled for the WBRC Magic City Weekend:

    Calera's Christmas Wonderland409 East Milgray in Calera (Southern Hills subdivision). Walk through 30,000 lights and enjoy a visit with Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus. Through Christmas Eve, 5 p.m. until 10 p.m.,  weather permitting.

    Bama Lights in Pinson. 8333 West Hill Road, Pinson, AL. Tune the car radio to 88.1 FM, then drive through the lights display. No charge, but donations are accepted for Magic Moments, an organization for children. Through Dec. 25, nightly from 5 to 9:30 p.m., weather permitting.

    Christmas at the Falls. Noccalula Falls Park and Campground. 1500 Noccalula Rd., Gadsden, AL. Enjoy thousands of lights, plus a musical light show at the Covered Bridge, a train ride, hopping animal habitat, and concessions. See Santa at the General Post Office through Dec. 23; visit lights through Jan. 2.

    Toy Shop on Magnolia. 211 Magnolia Street, Trussville, AL. Handmade decorations and lights made up to look like Santa's workshop. Nightly, starting at dusk, to the end of December.

Need more suggestions for brilliant holiday attractions you can visit? Contact us today.


Only In Tuscaloosa: BBQ Joints You Have To Visit

When you're in Tuscaloosa, barbecue may be the ultimate comfort food. Here are some of the best joints you need to visit.

Alabama is known for many iconic foods: boiled peanuts, fried okra, pecan pie, banana pudding, grits, and fried green tomatoes. But there's also fabulous barbecue. Fueled by hickory wood, and sometimes oak and pecan, Alabama is most famous for its distinctive pork, including ribs, shoulder, butt, and ham. However, the chicken and brisket are great, too. All in all, Alabama barbecue holds its own among the other Southern states that form the barbecue belt: Georgia, the Carolinas, Arkansas, Kentucky, and Tennessee.

Ready to try it out? Fortunately, there are several great BBQ joints near Tuscaloosa homes for sale. Our real estate agents are happy to make some recommendations.

  1. Thomas Rib Shack. 2931 15th St., Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
    Thomas Rib Shack bills itself as a soul food joint, and that's fair. Barbecued ribs or any kind of barbecue might be called the original soul food. Pair it with the trimmings or go rogue and try the chitlin dinner, side of oxtail, pan trout, or catfish. It's not fancy, but it doesn't need to be because it's authentic. Check out their Facebook page so you can watch for announcements on Soul Food Sundays.

  2. Dreamland Tuscaloosa. 5535 15th Ave. East Tuscaloosa, AL 35405
    Dreamland Bar-b-que
    , like any famous Alabama barbecue joint, is noted for its ribs — but that's not all. You can get a half chicken, smoked sausage, and turkey breast, plus delicious sides including baked beans, potato salad, mac n' cheese, and coleslaw. What's the perfect dessert to follow barbecue? Why scrumptious, creamy banana pudding, of course.

  3. Archibald's and Woodrow's BBQ. 4215 Greensboro Ave., Tuscaloosa, AL 35405
    Depending on how hungry you are, choose one of Archibald's and Woodrow's BBQ plates, platters, or sandwiches. Take your pick of fabled ribs, sliced pork, chicken fried steak, or chicken, or opt for delectable fried catfish. For the calorie-conscious, there's whiting prepared several different ways. Sides are varied: potato salad, corn on the cob, beans, coleslaw, or collards, mashed potatoes, black-eyed peas, fried okra, and fried green tomatoes. Leave room for banana pudding.

  4. Buddy's Rib and Steak. 2701 Lurleen B. Wallace Blvd., Northport, AL 35476
    Buddy's Rib and Steak is just down the road from Tuscaloosa, so you don't have to go far for some memorable barbecue. The menu is basic: plates of sirloin, chicken, beef, or pork and two sides for lunch, while dinner offers several steak choices, plus plates with ribs, beef, or pork.

  5. Hoo's Q. 101 15th St. E, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401.
    Deservedly well known for their "Q" sauce, Hoo's Q serves up plates of ribs, chicken, meatloaf, and more with the special sauce. There are also tender wings, as well as salads — and a big favorite among Southerners — pimento cheese. Sides include grilled okra (as good as fried, many Southerners maintain), baked beans, and coleslaw. Don't skip dessert: fried pecan pie, peanut butter pie, and banana pudding. There's also Hoo's Q and Brew in N. Tuscaloosa (1825 Mcfarland Blvd., N. Suite No. 110, 35406), which has some of the same fare but with more of a brewpub flair.

  6. Bama Barbeque. 3076 McFarland Blvd. #14, Northport, AL 35476
    After you take in the Tuscaloosa River Walk, get in the car and drive the short drive (3 miles or so) to Bama Barbeque and Grill in Northport. Enjoy plates or sandwiches with pork, beef, ribs, smoked sausage, chicken, or catfish. Sides include the usual suspects: coleslaw, beans, corn, and potato salad. Finish up with lemon, strawberry cream cheese, or pecan pie.

Have questions about Tuscaloosa? Contact us today.


Things To Do This Summer In Tuscaloosa

Tuscaloosa is overflowing with things to keep you busy this summer. Here are some great options for the whole family.

Looking for some fun activities to do this summer? Our real estate agents have you covered. Whether you want something for a quiet afternoon or something a bit more exciting, we put together a list that should have something for everyone. After viewing Tuscaloosa homes for sale, enjoy a day in the area with these activities.

  • The Battle-Friedman House - 1010 Greensboro Ave.
    Built in 1835, The Battle-Friedman House was home to two prominent Tuscaloosa families: the Battles and later the Friedmans. Today, the house is open for Tuscaloosa residents and beyond to see what life was like almost 200 years ago. The Tuscaloosa County Preservation Society offers tours throughout the week if you'd like to learn as much as possible.
  • Bowers Park - James I Harrison Jr. Pkwy E.
    Need an activity that will keep you active? Bowers Park is the perfect site for all your summer fun. Their pool and slides are great for the whole family, especially if you're wanting to cool off from the summer heat. The park also has a disc golf course, eight baseball diamonds, playgrounds, an activity center, and more.
  • The Riverwalk - 2710 Jack Warner Pkwy.
    If you want a quiet day out exploring Tuscaloosa, the Riverwalk may be your best option. The paved two-way trail runs along the Black Warrior River and connects to park areas that are ideal for picnicking or just taking a break. The area is dog friendly too, so your furry friend can also get some exercise while you explore the waters trickling through Tuscaloosa.
  • The Buzz About Bees Exhibit (Alabama Museum of Natural History) - 427 Sixth Ave.
    The Buzz About Bees Exhibit
    is a collaboration between several organizations that care about bees, and their mission is to educate about this misunderstood insect. Visitors will be able to see live how honeybees make their famous combs as well as learn about their honey production and complicated social structures. By the time you're done with the exhibit, you'll have a new appreciation for this visitor you see in your garden each year.
  • Tuscaloosa Amphitheater - 2710 Jack Warner Pkwy.
    Located right by the Riverwalk, the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater is your go-to destination for the biggest shows and concerts. It's the largest outdoor theater in the west of the state, and that means it can host some of the biggest performing stars. Their 2021 summer schedule includes ZZ Top, Lady A, Santana, and more, but you better move quickly because tickets go fast.

Looking for other fun things to do in Tuscaloosa? Contact us today and we can help you find fun things to do as well as your dream home!


Spend A Day In Downtown Tuscaloosa

Downtown Tuscaloosa has a lot to offer. Here are some of the best stops to visit while you explore the area.

Need a break from searching for your next home? Spend the day in downtown Tuscaloosa! Our real estate agents know that downtown Tuscaloosa is full of unique shops and delicious restaurants. Here are some places to add to your itinerary.

  1. Cravings Artisan Pizza Company

Cravings Artisan Pizza Company serves mouth-water Detroit and Sicilian-style pizzas. Their menu also includes breakfast offerings and sandwiches. Order a refreshing glass of ice-cold beer or wine to complement your selection.

  1. Mugshots Grill & Bar

In the mood for a burger after checking out Tuscaloosa homes for sale? Stop by Mugshots Grill & Bar for a grilled Angus burger, complete with your choice of toppings. Mugshots has been voted the Best Burger in Tuscaloosa numerous times.

Try a traditional favorite, like the Middleberger (served with mayo, mustard, pickles, onion, and tomatoes), or order one of the specialty entrees, such as the Southern Burger (served with housemade pimento cheese, bacon, fried pickles, lettuce, and tomato).

Mugshots also offers salads, sandwiches, hot dogs, and a variety of deep-friend sides and appetizers, include beer-battered fries, onion rings, nachos, and wings. They also have milkshakes and a variety of brews on tap.

  1. The Makers Market

The Makers Market is a specialty gift shop and grocery store that has something for everyone. Pick up a jar of jalapeno, blueberry lavender, or fig balsamic jam. Or, try the delicious apple butter or one of the pepper jellies.

Many of the flavors also come in sugar-free varieties. Salsa, banana bread, and specialty vinegar combos are also available. This fun gift shop also offers seasonal wares and home decor perfect for your next holiday celebration.

  1. Lou and Co.

Founded by Alabama native Sydney Powers, Lou and Co. were established to satisfy the unmet need for elegant home decor, gifts, and clothing in Tuscaloosa. This creative shop is an excellent stop to find a gift for any occasion, including baby showers, sorority bid days, and birthdays. Lou and Co. also offers monogramming for many of their offerings, including packing cubes, totes, towels, ad blankets.

  1. The Shirt Shop

Need to overhaul your gameday apparel? Stop by The Shirt Shop! The Shirt Shop offers an extensive collection of shirts, vests, builds, and hats that make it easy for a Bama fan to spruce up their wardrobe.

Or, if you prefer a more customized look, take advantage of The Shirt Shop's option to build your own game day apparel. You can choose practically every aspect of your Bama shirt, including the style, color, logo, and logo location.

Want to start your home search? Contact us to get started!


Enjoy a Tuscaloosa Brew at These Spots

National Beer Day is upon us, and to celebrate, visit these Tuscaloosa breweries to find your new favorite beer.

After an exciting day of exploring Tuscaloosa homes for sale, stop and relax with an ice-cold brew at one of the city's local breweries. Or, celebrate National Beer Day on April 7 with a glass of your favorite brew or try a refreshing glass of something new. Our real estate agents recommend the following spots for a frosty glass of beer.

Black Warrior Brewing Company
Located at 2216 University Blvd. in Tuscaloosa, Black Warrior Brewing Company is situated across from City Hall in the city's downtown region. Black Warrior Brewing Company regularly holds discount nights for their wine and beer, as well as team trivia and bingo nights.

Choose from a variety of beverages to find one that suits your palate. The Apricot Wheat and Bama Blonde Ale are popular with patrons new to the world of craft beer, while the Lock 17 IPA and Blood Orange Double IPA appeal to beer drinkers well-acquainted with various types of beer.

Druid City Brewing Company
Druid City Brewing Company rests at 607 14th Street in the Parkview Center area. It's been in business since 2012 and prides itself as "Tuscaloosa's original craft brewery."

Try the Lamplighter IPA for the perfect mix of hops and floral notes. Or, check out the Downtown North Porter for an after-dinner treat; this malt-based beer includes delicious hints of chocolate and vanilla.

The Druid City Brewing Company is also a great spot for an evening of live music or a couple of hours of brain-teasing trivia.

Loosa Brews Craft Emporium
After a day of touring Northport homes for sale, Loosa Brews Craft Emporium is a lighthearted, refreshing way to end your day. Loosa Brews Craft Emporium is located at 412 20th Avenue in Tuscaloosa.

This brewery includes more than 30 draft beers on tap, including traditional favorites and rare offerings. Spend a couple of hours enjoying the onsight arcade and pinball parlor.

Feeling tired, or just want to enjoy your beer at home? Loosa Brews Craft Emporium offers many of their wine and beer varieties to go.

The World of Beer Bar and Kitchen
The World of Beer Bar and Kitchen Strives to help its customers make memories. Situated at 2107 University Boulevard in Tuscaloosa, this local gem is pet-friendly and offers an extensive menu of pub fare and lunch and dinner entrees.

Pair a German pretzel with your favorite draft, or take in the Truffle burger with your beverage of choice. You can expect periodic new offerings, as The World of Beer Bar and Kitchen rotates its beer offerings. The beer menu includes local favorites and varieties from across the globe.

Looking for a home with more space for entertaining? Contact us today to check out your options!


Discover Healthy Restaurants in Tuscaloosa

Want a mouth watering meal while keeping calories low? Try out these Tuscaloosa spots for a healthy meal.

Once upon a time, when food was referred to as "healthy," it was considered code for "tasteless." Fast-forward to the 21st century, when "healthy" and "flavorful" are no longer mutually exclusive. Our real estate agents enjoy delicious, guilt-free meals at these wonderful restaurants in Tuscaloosa and think you should explore them too.

  1. Frutta Bowls - 1800 McFarland Blvd. E., Suite 436, Tuscaloosa, AL 35404
    Described as a smoothie you eat instead of drink, açai bowls opened up tasty new horizons in healthy eating. Frutta Bowls in Midtown Tuscaloosa incorporates options such as dragon fruit, kale, and oatmeal for added variety. The base of your choice is piled high with fresh fruit, nuts and seeds, honey, and other delicious toppings. Complete your order with a cup of freshly-brewed organic coffee from Golden Valley Farms. Hours are 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. daily.

  2. Sitar Indian Cuisine - 500 - 15th St., Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
    Creative use of seasonings adds depth and flavor to food without resorting to high-fat sauces, ingredients, or preparations. At Sitar Indian Cuisine, classic dishes such as Chicken Tikka Masala and Shrimp Vindaloo are served with your desired level of heat. Their Thali lunch special may be the best meal deal around Tuscaloosa homes for sale. Get four main dishes (vegetarian or non-vegetarian), basmati rice, bread, pakora, dessert, and a drink for only $11.95. Order online for speedy pickup. Sitar is open for lunch from 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. and dinner from 5 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. every day but Monday.

  3. Tazikis Mediterranean Café - 1800 McFarland Blvd. E., Suite 300, Tuscaloosa, AL 35404
    With its emphasis on fish, olive oil, and fresh fruits and vegetables, the Mediterranean diet has gained popularity for its heart-healthy benefits. Dine at Tazikis Mediterranean Café and you're likely to become a convert as well. Made-to-order gyros come in 10 different choices, and lots of customers come back for the grilled salmon. After a long day at work, call ahead for one of their family feasts-to-go that serves four to eight people. Tazikis is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. except Sunday, when closing time is 8 p.m.

  4. Chicken Salad Chick - 1800 McFarland Blvd. E., Suite 308, Tuscaloosa, AL 35404
    Google "chicken salad" and an endless list of recipes will pop up. Once Stacy Brown's version received the seal of approval from family and friends, she was on the way from a humble at-home business to Chicken Salad Chick. The flavors featured at the restaurant, including Cranberry Kelli and Lauryn's Lemon Basil, are named after real "chicks" in Stacy's life who have inspired and influenced her. At Chicken Salad Chick, "the secret ingredient is always love." Hours are 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

  5. Edgar's Bakery - 1653 McFarland Blvd. N., Tuscaloosa, AL 35406
    From custom-designed cakes for a birthday party to snacks and veggie trays for Iron Bowl weekend, treats from Edgar's Bakery have been a part of local celebrations since 1998. In addition to catering, Edgar's offers a wide range of grab-and-go breakfast and lunch items that can be ordered ahead on their website. Pick up a Spicy Eggacado Sandwich or Edgar's Reuben for a day of viewing Northport homes for sale. Edgar's is open 7 a.m. - 5 p.m. daily.

Want more reasons why Tuscaloosa is a great place to call home? Contact us at Hamner Real Estate for the inside scoop.


5 Home Upgrades You Can Make Even on a Budget

Home Upgrades on Budget

If you're looking to upgrade your home, you'll want to look into projects that can be done on a budget. That way, for a minimal investment, you'll make a big impact that will improve the look or function of your home. Especially, if you are getting ready to list! 

Our real estate agents suggest the following 5 upgrades you can make even on a budget:

  1. Give your kitchen cabinets a makeover
    Your kitchen cabinets make a big impact on the room's overall appearance, and if they're too dark or scuffed, they can make your kitchen look dark and dingy. Replacing them can be expensive, but cleaning and painting your cabinets can give them a whole new appearance. This project can be completed in just a weekend. You'll need a cleaner, sandpaper, paint, a paintbrush, and some effort, but the results will be striking. And while you're at it, swap out your cabinet handles for a further style boost.

  2. Add some curb appeal
    The front of your house sets the tone for your entire home since it's the first thing you'll see as you come and go. Give your home's curb appeal a boost by painting the door, either to refresh what you already have or to add a bolder pop of color. Replacing the door's hardware, adding some containers of plants as well as hanging baskets, and creating a cozy seating area can further upgrade your curb appeal. If you'd like to take it a step further, you can also replace your porch's outdoor lighting fixtures.

  3. Use paint to renew old flooring
    Flooring can set the tone for an entire room, but if it's not in your budget to replace it, you might be able to paint it. Old vinyl or laminate flooring can be painted by applying flooring enamel and topping it with an acrylic sealer. Checkerboard or other geometric designs are popular choices for this type of project and can transform outdated flooring into a stylish asset.

  4. Add crown molding
    Crown molding creates a transition between the top of the wall and the ceiling and adds a finished, polished look to your home. You can buy crown molding at home improvement stores in lengths of up to 16 feet and easily install it yourself. This one upgrade can help take your home's interior from basic to interesting.

  5. Install a programmable thermostat
    Programmable thermostats are quite inexpensive, and they make your home more comfortable and energy-efficient. Installing one will let you program your heating or air conditioning to be turned on and off according to your set schedule so you can wake up or come home to a comfortable house. You'll also save energy since you can set the thermostat to run less when no one's home and then boost or lower the temperature shortly before you arrive back home.

Contact us at Hamner Real Estate to learn more about Tuscaloosa homes for sale and the upgrades that you can make for a minimal investment. Our experienced real estate agents would love to help!


National Take a Hike Day: Hiking Trails in Tuscaloosa

Hiking in Tuscaloosa

There are many reasons to love Tuscaloosa homes for sale, but this year, one stands out in particular: The county is dotted with beautiful parks and natural wonders you simply have to see to believe.

National Take a Hike Day is coming up on Tuesday, November 17th, and there are plenty of places in Tuscaloosa where you can do just that. Tuscaloosa boasts many large, well-kept parks in wooded and lakeside environments, many of them pet-friendly. Let's take a closer look at some of the area's most eye-catching hiking spots:

  1. Munny Sokol Park Trail – 5901 Watermelon Road, Northport, AL 35473
    Located on the grounds of Sokol Park, beloved for its dog runs is the Munny Sokol Park Trail. Ideal for trail-runners and bicyclists, it passes through most of Sokol Park and provides easy access to loops and side trails. It is just over 2.2 miles, with gorgeous scenery. The high season falls in May through September. Light traffic makes it a serene experience near Northport homes for sale.
  2. Tuscaloosa Riverwalk – 2710 Jack Warner Parkway, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
    The historic Tuscaloosa Riverwalk is a paved, 4.5-mile trail that winds along the southern bank of the Black Warrior River right in downtown Tuscaloosa. It is divided to allow both hikers and bicyclists to use it safely. On your journey, you'll encounter plenty of benches, gazebos, and trees perfect for a hammock. Street lights line the trail, ensuring it is well-lit in the early evening.
  3. Approach Trail and North Loop – 22550 2nd Ave Northwest, Falkville, AL 35622
    Hurricane Creek Park features 40 acres of forest rich with unique rock formations, waterfalls, and even a picnic pavilion. Although there are many trails to be found, the Approach Trail and North Loop will bring you on a scenic 3.5-mile journey hailed as the centerpiece of the park. Difficulty is moderate with some steep climbs, and leashed pets are welcome. A great spot to visit near Falkville homes for sale!
  4. Lake Nicol Outer Cliff Trail – See Website for Directions, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
    Lake Nicol is a popular wooded park right in Tuscaloosa, well known for its dramatic cliffs. The cliffs are numerous enough for several groups to gather, making them a popular locale for parties or family events. The peaks overlook the relatively small, human-made Lake Nicol. Several different trails are etched through the surroundings, offering mild elevation and taking about an hour to complete a circuit.
  5. Lake Lurleen State Park – 13226 Lake Lurleen Road, Coker, AL 3545
    For hiking near Coker homes for sale, Lake Lurleen State Park may be the crown jewel of Tuscaloosa County, and for a good reason. Trails circumnavigate the lake for a total of more than 23 miles to explore. Long routes are available, but hikers of all skill levels will find something to enjoy. Fall is the ideal season to visit, but Lake Lurleen welcomes visitors and their leashed canine companions all year round.
  6. Moss Rock Preserve – 617 Preserve Way, Hoover, AL 35226
    Looking for hiking around Hoover homes for sale? Showcasing 12 miles of trails that all connect to form a loop, Moss Rock Preserve is set on 349 pristine acres noted for the gentle gurgling of small streams and the many boulders hikers may climb (carefully!) for an unbeatable view. You can complete some trails in as little as two hours or stay all day to see the sights. 

Contact us at Hammer Real Estate to learn more about Tuscaloosa.


National Book Lovers Day - Outdoor Reading Spots Near Tuscaloosa

Parks in Tuscaloosa

Not all outdoor activities involve balls, bicycles, and sneakers. Our real estate agents find reading even more enjoyable out in the fresh air and sunshine. National Book Lovers Day is Sunday, August 9th, so grab a book and head out to one of these scenic reading spots around Tuscaloosa.

  1. Faucett Brothers Park - 13040 Eugenia Faucett Dr., Northport, AL 35473
    Faucett Brothers Park is a living memorial to the legacy of five men who made major contributions to the community around Northport homes for sale. In the early 1900s, the Faucett brothers operated thriving retail operations that boosted the area's agricultural and economic development. One of their descendants donated 80 acres of wooded land to the Parks and Recreation Authority (PARA), which officially opened Faucett Brothers Park in 2005. 
  2. Tuscaloosa Riverwalk - 2710 Jack Warner Pkwy., Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
    Located alongside the southern bank of the Black Warrior River, pet-friendly Tuscaloosa Riverwalk is a scenic oasis in the city's downtown area. The 4.5-mile paved trail is lined with some benches, picnic tables, and gazebos where you can settle in with a good book. If you want a bite to eat, the Riverwalk provides easy access to restaurants and shops. The park is open 24/7, with plenty of street lamps keeping the trail well-lit.
  3. Hurricane Creek Park - 7005 Old Birmingham Hwy., Tuscaloosa, AL 35404
    Readers of the Tuscaloosa News once named Hurricane Creek Park as one of the "Seven Wonders of Alabama." The 250-acre property known as the M-Bend, a reference to the adjacent section of Hurricane Creek, was established as an undeveloped, automobile-free preserve just minutes from Tuscaloosa homes for sale. Relax on one of the homemade benches or take a break to explore native plants and aquatic wildlife found in the park. Hours are dawn to dusk, seven days a week.
  4. Van de Graaff Arboretum & Historic Bridge Park - 3231 Robert Cardinal Rd., Northport, AL 35476
    Unlike other carefully maintained green spaces run by PARA, Van de Graaff Arboretum & Historic Bridge Park is a rustic, semi-primitive "nature park." The main attraction is the 1882 King Bowstring Bridge, a section of Alabama's oldest iron bridge that once spanned the Black Warrior River and now crosses Mill Creek. Classic porch-style swings overlooking freshwater ponds offer a welcome serenity. Overnight camping is available, but day use is free of charge from 6 a.m. - dusk.
  5. Queen City Park - Jack Warner Pkwy. and Queen City Ave., Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
    In the 1930s, Queen City Park was one of the public works projects brought to life under the Civil Works Administration (CWA) and Works Progress Administration (WPA). In addition to facilities for tennis, baseball and swimming, workers constructed nature walks featuring stone paths and bridges. In 1992, the pool and pool house were added to the National Register of Historic Places. Stop in at the on-site Tuscaloosa Public Library and check out a book to read on one of the benches along the wooded hiking trail. Queen City Park is open daily from dawn until dusk.

Real estate contracts and inspection reports aren't exactly reader-friendly, but we can walk you through them, so you don't miss a thing. For dedicated and experienced help buying or selling a home in Tuscaloosa, contact us at Hamner Real Estate. 

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