This Saturday, Oct. 27, is THE day to go to the Market at Pepper Place. Check out Better Block Birmingham, a new John Lytle Wilson mural and more

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Birmingham, Alabama, Better Block
Better Block Birmingham project in the works at Pepper Place. Photo submitted

The Market at Pepper Place is always happening on Saturdays, but this Saturday is a can’t miss. Come out Oct. 27, 2018, from 7 a.m. to noon, for the Market, some pre-Day of the Dead Festival fun and Birmingham’s first Better Block—a complete reimagining of the streetscape of 2nd Avenue South between 28th and 29th Streets. Did I mention the unveiling of the latest John Lytle Wilson mural and a brewery bike tour?

Local Is Better

Birmingham, Alabama, Market at Pepper Place, pumpkins
Alabama-grown pumpkins at the Market at Pepper Place. Photo submitted

You still have time to stock up on Alabama-grown pumpkins for Halloween. Get them at the Market at Pepper Place while picking up everything else on your shopping list. This Saturday, Oct. 27, the Market features over 60 local Alabama vendors, including farmers, makers and food and drink vendors.

Wellness Day

Get fit and healthy for the holidays at Pepper Place on Oct. 27. Photo submitted

Look for the group of “Get Fit for the Holidays Wellness Days” tents at the Market at Pepper Place on Oct. 27. Get recipes, nutrition and healthy living information, plus tips on how pets are good for you and how you can be happier and healthier with your pups!

Cooking Demos

  • 9 a.m.: Highlands Bar & Grill Chef de Cuisine Zack Redes is coming! 
  • 10:30 a.m.: Jessica Ivey, dietitian and nutritionist, shows you how to make easy, healthy pumpkin soup.

Día de los Muertos Preparations

Birmingham, Alabama, Day Of The Dead Festival
Paper flowers. Photo via Día de los Muertos Alabama, Facebook

Birmingham’s 16th annual Day of the Dead Festival happens at Pepper Place on Friday, Nov. 2, from 5 to 11 p.m. Can’t wait? Neither can we. At the Market on Saturday, Oct. 27, stop by the festival’s booth for more information and handmade paper flowers.

Next, if you want to check out Day of the Dead Face painting demos, head on over to the Better Block Pop Up Shops.

Better Block Reveal And Festivities

Over the past few days, some 100 volunteers from the Birmingham community have been busily reimagining the block of 2nd Avenue South between 28th and 29th Streets as a better place to live, work and play.

Birmingham, Alabama, Better Block, Pepper Place
Temporary crosswalk created for Better Block Birmingham. Photo submitted

What are they doing exactly? Installing temporary street features, such as bike lanes, crosswalks and an on-street trail that will connect to Jones Valley Trail. It’s a chance for citizens to try out new street design features, which will inform future city planning. Though the temporary transformation has taken place in days, the planning for Better Block Birmingham took several months.

The big news: Better Block Birmingham includes the reveal of  John Lytle Wilson’s new mural at the Market at Pepper Place. (Hint, nature lovers will be pleased.)

Birmingham, Alabama, Better Block, Pepper Place
Mural in progress. Hmmm, what could it be? Photo submitted

The Better Block concept started in Dallas. Since then, more than 200 cities around the world have used Better Block temporary installations to illustrate rapid street changes and community revitalization.

The Better Block Birmingham installation will stay up through Thursday, Nov. 1.

“Birmingham has never had a tactical urbanism project installed at this scale, and it’s a great way to test out design ideas. This event will show people just how cool our city can be if we think outside the box—and also put pedestrians first.” 

Christina Argo, senior planner, city of Birmingham

The big reveal of Birmingham’s Better Block coincides with the Market at Pepper Place on Oct. 27. The day includes Pop Up Shops, music, food, fitness activities, Day of the Dead face painting demos and the BBB+B (Better Block Bike + Brew) tour.

Better Block Birmingham Schedule: Saturday, Oct. 27

  • 7 a.m. to noon: Pop Up Shops, performances, music, fitness demonstrations, BBB+B (Better Block Bike + Brew) on-your-own tour and Redemptive Cycles bike valet
  • 8 to 9 a.m.: Aero Joe Pilates outdoor pilates mat class (8 to 9 a.m. FREE for first-timers; $15 for others; sign up here)
  • 9 to 10 a.m.: Aero Joe Pilates outdoor walk-up mini stretch sessions
  • 10:00 a.m.: Alabama Ballet demonstration 
  • 11 a.m. to noon: Aero Joe Pilates outdoor aerial yoga demonstrations
  • 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.: BBB+B group tour (limited to first 25 riders)
  • 2 p.m.: BBB+B Prize Pack drawing at Better Block Pop Up Shops
Aerial view of 2nd Avenue South installation. Photo via Better Block Birmingham, Facebook

Pop Up Shop Vendors

BBB+B (Better Block Bike + Brew) Tour

  • Meet at the John Lytle Wilson street mural at 11 a.m. on Oct. 27 (parking lot adjacent to Better Block Pop Up Shops on 2nd Avenue South).
  • Pick up your punch card, and get a punch at each tour stop: Ghost Train, Trim Tab, and Back Forty.
  • Finish the ride at Better Block Pop Up Shops by 2 p.m. and enter your completed punch card to win!

The group bike tour is limited to the first 25 riders that pick up their punch cards. If you prefer to take the tour with your own group or on your own, stop by the Better Block Pop Up Shops (7 a.m. to noon) to pick up a punch card.

Meet back at Better Block Pop Up Shops at 2 p.m. for the BBB+B Prize Pack drawing! The BBB+B Prize Pack includes a Visa gift card, annual Zyp Bike membership, Zyp SWAG, and the Market at Pepper Place gift bag.


If you’d like to jump in and volunteer for Better Block to prepare for Oct. 27, check out volunteer time slots here.

Better Block Birmingham on 2nd Avenue South is a collaboration of Team Better Block, AARP Alabama and the city of Birmingham.

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