Lights on, Fairhope!

November 14, 2014



It’s the official start to the holiday season in Fairhope, Alabama when the switch is thrown, and over 1 million lights illuminate the beautiful downtown.


TreeLighting-4Mrs. Claus always makes her appearance to the delight of the children who stop by to say hello.



And it isn’t a party unless you have elves. These adorable elves were promoting their upcoming performance of Jack and The Beanstalk with the Children’s Dance Theatre.


Doesn’t look like such a small town now, does it?

With temperatures in the tropical zone of the 70’s the day before, the City of Fairhope came through with winter wonderland temps in the 40’s for the annual Lights On celebration. The shivering crowd gathered downtown to hear the Fairhope High School band and Eastern Shore Choral bring in the holiday season with (fake) snow and twinkling lights.


The lights will remain lit until the Arts and Crafts Festival which is held the third weekend in March. Until then, my favorite pathway is always through downtown.

Hampton Inn FairhopeA big thank you goes to The Hampton Inn in Fairhope, which has the best location of any area hotel. Smack in the middle of downtown, among the twinkling lights, our local bloggers meeting was held this week in their lovely conference room which has a view of the busy downtown streets.


Group at Hampton InnWe had a small group on hand this month with left to right, Kim of CoziNest, Judy of Judy Hanks Pimperl, Linda of Coastal Charm, moi, and Lorraine of Clamco. Alan of Stump the Librarian had to dash off to the library. If you are a local and use social media and need tech or blog design help, we would love to have you join us. Although we are a group for South Alabama, we’ve had visitors from Mississippi and North Alabama and welcome everyone.

The Bean and BistroWe always try to find a fun spot for lunch after our meeting. This month, we went to The Bean and Bistro which a wonderful little cafe’, tucked away behind the Pizza Hut and Sonic on the four-lane. Tomato and Dill soup? Divine. Cuban sandwich? Haven’t had one this good in years. It’s a wonderful place you need to check out.

vintage christmas decorationsAnd in the same shopping center as The Bean and Bistro, is Southern Antiques and Accents, which is still brand new. Adorable items like the ones above, plus painted furniture, large and small collectibles, and everything else you can imagine. (For locals, it’s in the old bowling alley). Which reminds me, we need a bowling alley!

Rick Bragg booksEarlier in the week, it was a treat to hear best selling author and Pulitzer Prize winner, Rick Bragg who was mesmerizing and completely charming. As he read a passage from his new book, Jerry Lee Lewis, His Own Story, the crowd of 400 sat in total silence. When he had completed the reading, Bragg lifted his eyes to the audience and joked, “Damn. That’s good.”

Rick Bragg 2

And it was.


Rick BraggThe crowd was in a jovial mood after feasting on shrimp and grits and hearing our entertaining speaker. But come on . . . feed a bunch of Southerners shrimp and grits, and we’d listen to a preacher all night. But truly, Rick Bragg was a huge success, and one of the best speakers I’ve heard in a long time, with the packed house of over 400 fans roaring in approval. Signed books are still available at Page and Palette. If you are out of town, they will be glad to ship.


And tonight, we get to hear Nick Vujicic speak at the Fairhope United Methodist Church. Click on the sidebar icon to learn the details. It’s going to be very exciting, and another wonderful event sponsored by Page and Palette Bookstore. There’s also another play-off football game for our undefeated Pirates, so the cannon will be booming and my dog will be cowering under the bed.

Round-up day is this Saturday with two performances of a play . . . in the cemetery. CLICK HERE for details. It actually sounds nice.


What will you be doing this weekend?


  • Leslie Ann, I’ve said it before -you have too much fun! 😉 Sounds like a ball!
    Be a sweetie,

  • Such joy, goodness and light….glorious light!
    This post brought on the happy. 🙂

    Have a beautiful week!

    • Leslie Anne says:

      Happiness is a good thing to have plenty of this time of year! Thanks for stopping by.

  • Fairhope has some great events! So fun.

  • I will be looking forward to your posts on all the weekend happenings. Are you covering everything? Jeez, good luck with that. I have two memorial services to attend Saturday. Gennaro D’Addio, 93, and Charles McInnis 73. Both were fine men. They were readers, writers, and library patrons who will be missed.

    • Leslie Anne says:

      So sorry to hear about the loss of your friends from the library, and so glad you were able to get to know them through your work there.

      As for the events, I just returned from hearing Nick Vujicic speak, and he was absolutely wonderful. Even with the competing events in town, there were still over 1000 people there! Must rest, more fun to have tomorrow!

      Thanks for the comment.

  • Nancy Maners says:

    I’ve been lucky enough to spend the last couple of weeks in Fairhope and to attend many of the events about which you have written. Thanks so much for sharing the information and making me aware of things here in Fairhope. It IS a magical place.

    • Leslie Anne says:

      So very happy you’ve been here to experience some of the fun. Hope you keep in touch and come back often!

  • You do such an impeccable job of showing Fairhope in all its glory. I knew you’d cover the tree lighting with some beautiful photos. No way was I going to stand in the cold waiting for them to flip the switch. I curled up under a blanket and kept warm on my sofa. I moved south to be warm, not to freeze my tuchus off. The lights will be there every other night, so I can enjoy them anytime, and hopefully the temps will start going back up. By the way…did you feel the tremor today??

    • Leslie Anne says:

      Tremor? Whaaaaaat??? Oh Mercy! I thought hurricanes were all we had to worry about! I’m turning on the news now!
      (and thanks for the nice comments!)

    • Leslie Anne says:

      You’ll love it!

  • Wonderful sights, events, and food. Thanks for sharing. As always, I enjoyed the tour.

    • Leslie Anne says:

      The food is always the best part!

  • Leslie-What a wonderful visit to your town. I love that the town stays lit up with lighting till Spring. How wonderful that you can get together as a group (bloggers) and have lunch and chitchat. I don’t know most of these bloggers so will go check them out.
    Great picture of you at the end with Bragg. Delightful!!! xo Diana

    • Leslie Anne says:

      The first year I lived here and the lights stayed up in January, then February . . . and I thought, what kind of rednecks are in charge of taking these lights down? Who in the world would leave them up this long past Christmas? But when you know they are there for the entire winter season, then it makes perfect sense and it’s so beautiful, and brings in those lovely tourists!

  • Leslie Anne, your posts make me want to move to Fairhope! Looks and reads like you’ve had a magical week.

    • Leslie Anne says:

      You aren’t far away! Come on down anytime!

  • The temps were perfect for kicking off the holiday season and I am hoping that these cold temps will bring everyone out to shop our local shops. Looks like I will be watching some college football and doing some DIY projects over the weekend.


    • Leslie Anne says:

      Hope you are cozy with hot chocolate nearby!

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