Our creative hearts

September 18, 2019


Fairhope Alabama

Fairhope Alabama - Dogwood Trail Maids by Leslie Anne Tarabella leslieannetarabella.com

People have suspected it’s something in the air, water or even something the schools are teaching that make people in Fairhope, Alabama so creative. The truth however, is that people here want to paint, dance, sew, sing and doodle on a dulcimer because we are a town based on encouragement. 

Fairhope Alabama Christmas Parade photo by Robert Tarabella - leslieannetarabella.com

The founders of our city came here with the idea of, “Why not?” “Let’s give it a try!” “This experimental city has a fair hope of success!” Based on such optimism and adventure, is it any wonder we are fearless in the pursuit of our dreams?

Quite famous and accomplished people live in Fairhope and they become regular folks we see at church or the Piggly Wiggly. We sit next to them at the children’s play and never realize they’ve had a career on TV or won Grammy’s, Doves and Oscars. Some have composed symphonies or engineered advancements in the automobile industry. A few have worked for NASA, yet to us, they’re just the people who live around the corner. Their down-to-earth attitude encourages the rest of us to explore our passions. “If this country-sounding guy can sell a million books, then why can’t I write a story?” “If this dude with a mullet can have a hit record, then I can learn to sing too, right?” 

Fairhope, Alabama Flowers on the corner, Leslie Anne Tarabella leslieannetarabella.com

We value creativity, yet we equally value kindness. His Pulitzer Prize is pretty cool, but does he share his tomatoes? Her screenplay brought huge fame, but does she help little lost dogs? 

You can’t swing a cat in Fairhope without hitting a published author or sought-after artist. Yet almost all of them are helpful and encouraging to those who are still learning.  We cheer when our friends dust off that long lost hobby or try something new. We attend each other’s opening nights and applaud wildly when they dance across the stage at age 6 or 86, and we write reviews for them knowing they’d do the same for us. 

Car with decals, Fairhope Alabama photo by: Leslie Anne Tarabella leslieannetarabella.com

Some of our retirees in town are former executives of Fortune 500 companies, yet they freely share ideas over a cup of coffee with the local educators, doctors, farmers, pirates, and writers in town. There are a few FBI agents roaming around (although we’re not sure who they are), a rocket scientist or two, professional athletes and a good number of inventors who hold patents on a variety of things.

“Oh, if we could only find a good realtor or banker around here,” said our local expert in sarcasm.  

Fairhope Alabama Troop 47 photo by Robert Tarabella leslieannetarabella.com

Lifting others up only makes us more successful ourselves. We know it never hurts to cheer for someone else. The City of Fairhope launches new talent into the world every day and it’s nice to know that some of that creativity always settles back here along Mobile Bay, because that’s where our creative hearts feel most at home. 

  • What a delightful post Leslie Anne, Fairhope is indeed a magical place!

    • Thanks. Technically, you aren’t in Fairhope, yet you’re close enough to have that creative pop we love!

  • Vicki Baggett says:

    Such an encouraging read!

  • My husband took my car to WalMart and the license plate says LUUUUCY which is her name. A tan guy walked by and said “I like your license plate.” David replied “thanks, Jimmy.” Jimmy Buffett…one of the reasons we moved to the Gulf Coast (I baked Christmas cookies listening to his music during long snowy winters in the north) shops at WalMart!

    • Oh, that Jimmy! We love him because his sister is such a good cook! Great story!

  • Gigi Hackford says:

    Yes… and creativity takes energy… those unseen vibrations can be felt… people wonder why Fairhope feels so good … good vibrations !!!

    • . . . says the lady who grew up listening to the Beach Boys. But yes, so true. You and Karen (next comment) are both huge creative forces in town!

  • Savan wilson says:

    What a wonderful picture of our amazing town! I always eagerly open your blog and even reread it in the Sunday paper! I always say Fairhope is one of the most nurturing places I have ever lived. Also like the mention of our founders.

    • Thanks Savan. It really is nurturing. I’ve had two boys grow up taking classes at the Eastern Shore Art Center, Guitar lessons with a professional musician who moved here, and studied violin under an internationally famous composer, just because he was volunteering at church. They’ve both grown up to definitely have a creative thought process and good artistic eye. Fairhope rocks!

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