A small, friendly and close-knit suburb of Birmingham, Alabama, Gardendale is a city with a sense of community and history behind it. With ample shopping, dining and plenty of green spaces, there’s a reason why Gardendale has grown from the farm settlement it once was into a thriving suburb. For those that enjoy getting involved in the community and enjoying smaller-town life on a slightly larger scale, Gardendale Alabama might just be the ideal fit. Here are just five facts about this fantastic destination to get you started:
1. Gardendale Started Out Life as Jugtown
Gardendale has been an area of settlement for close to 200 years, originating back in 1825 as a small-scale farming and factory town. Once known as Jugtown, thanks to the locality of a jug and churn factory, the city has only grown from strength to strength since. During World Wars I and II, the city’s population boomed, leading to it becoming a more popular place to live than ever before. Gardendale officially became a city in 1955 and was fully established with a chamber of commerce in 1987.
2. Gardendale is Big on Educational Attractions
Gardendale is an excellent place for families to live, and as such has an incredible quantity of family-friendly, educational locations to visit. Just a few of these include:
The perfect day out for the whole family, Birmingham Zoo is serious when it comes to conservation, which makes it an even more worthwhile day out. With anything from African Elephants to Komodo Dragons on display, Birmingham Zoo is just a short distance from Gardendale and can provide a fun and educational day out.
Rickwood Caverns State Park
These ancient caverns are the ideal family day out, just 20 minutes away from Gardendale. With a consistent underground temperature and formations over 260 million years old, even the most hard-hearted visitor will be impressed by the grand scale and majesty of these incredible caves. Picnic areas, gemstone mining and even swimming pools are all available on-site.
3. Gardendale Offers The Ideal Distance From Birmingham
Located around 9 miles north of Birmingham itself, this attractive location belongs to the wider Jefferson County and forms part of the Birmingham metro area – making it an ideal place to live for commuters or those that enjoy traveling to more populous areas regularly. It’s also close enough that it is ideal for family days out, without requiring long drives or road trips, with plenty to do and see just about any day of the week.
4. Gardendale Takes History Seriously
Since its creations, Gardendale has been a location that takes its history seriously. This can be seen in the many cultural and historically-focused attractions on offer, including:
Birmingham Museum of Art
Widely considered one of the best regional museums in the country, the Birmingham Museum of Art was first established in 1951 and has expanded to hold over 25,000 individual sculptures, paintings, prints and more. All different styles and forms of art are included, from the renaissance through to Asian and African artifacts.
Sloss Furnace National Historic Landmark
A throwback to the industrial age, Stoss Furnace was once used for smelting on an industrial scale. These days, the vast landmark is a representation of the rich history of Gardendale and the surrounding area, as well as a site for events, food festivals and even ghost tours.
Turkey Creek Nature Preserve
Over 466 acres of woodland and trails along creeks make Turkey Creek the ideal location for hiking, bird watching and more. With a history that dates back to Native American tribes, this wonderful nature preserve has plenty to offer.
5. Gardendale Has Plenty Of Options Higher Education
Alongside excellent elementary, middle and high schools, Gardendale also offers excellent connections to local colleges in the surrounding area. Two of note are Jefferson State Community College and the University of Alabama, the home of the Blazers, which has a campus-based in nearby Birmingham.