Thursday, November 28, 2013

November 17, 2013 Bellingrath Gardens

Some days Dave is more productive without me on the boat.  Lucky me!  He doesn't have to leave a path for me through the boat, and I'm not interrupting him.  So today I decided to do the one tourist thing I was hoping to do before moving.  I toured the Bellingrath Gardens southwest of Mobile.  We visited the Gardens last Christmas to see the unbelievable Christmas light display when our son, Pete, was here. 

The Gardens were created by Walter and Bessie Bellingrath in the 1920's and 30's.  Mr. Bellingrath was Mobile's first Coca-Cola bottler/distributer in 1903.  In 1917, he bought a fishing camp on the Fowl River as a way to relax.  His wife decided to transform the 65 acres into gardens.  They later built a home there.  They didn't have children, so they created a foundation to oversee the gardens and home and keep it open to the public.  Many of the planters are changed 4 times a year with the seasons.  But in November, they have the largest outdoor mum display in the United States.  I spent 3 hours walking through the gardens.  We had toured the beautiful home last December.  In the summer, there is a riverboat cruise.  You can check it out on

Today, five Azalea Trail Maids were present for photo opportunities.  These high school women are dignitaries for the Mobile area.  They dress in beautiful Antebellun-style dresses and use mannerisms of that era.  They are present at many events with their "southern hospitality".

I have included a few photos from the Christmas lights and of the mums.  But photos just don't do it justice, as always.  I would recommend a visit to the Bellingrath Gardens any time of the year to anyone visiting the area.  I am sorry we didn't take the time to visit with previous visitors over the last year.  Go to this site to see all of my photos of the Christmas lights and the mums if you would like to see more.

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