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On January 2, 2020, the Magic City will be welcoming thousands of college football fans from Boston College to the 14th annual TicketSmarter Birmingham Bowl when they take on the Cincinnati Bearcats.
To make our friends from Boston feel at home, we’ve produced a short “tip” sheet for their visit.
A Little Football First
Back in 1984, the first college football game I attended as a Freshman at Alabama was against Boston College and Doug Flutie . The game was played at Legion Field in the evening.
What a game. We were in complete shock after Flutie led BC to victory after falling behind 31-14 in the 3rd quarter. I can say one thing – as a lifelong Bama fan, I fell in love with Flutie & BC (they were also NOT Notre Dame!).
Below is a video we found of that memorable game at Legion Field.
It’s great to have Boston College here in Birmingham. Welcome!
Now, onto our Magic City travel tips.
1) Visit Cathedral of St. Paul or make a pilgrimage to EWTN
When I went to St. Joseph School up in Florence Alabama (my twin brother and I were the lone Episcopalians), the Benedictine nuns told us there were three Catholic colleges we needed to be thinking about. Boston College, Notre Dame and Mobile’s Spring Hill.
The Catholic Church in Birmingham has a rich history beginning in 1872 when the Cathedral of St. Paul (it became a Cathedral in 1969) was constructed as one of Birmingham’s first churches. The cornerstone for the neo-gothic cathedral was laid in 1890. Today, the Cathedral stands out in the Birmingham skyline with its soaring steeples. For info on daily services visit the Cathedral of St. Paul website.
Launched 38 years ago by Mother Angelica in Irondale, a suburb of Birmingham, the Eternal Word Television Network welcomes pilgrimages to the studio and their Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Hanceville, which is about 40 miles from Birmingham. The TV network reaches millions of people worldwide in 140 countries. Here are details about taking a pilgrimage.
2) Compare our Italian food to that in North Boston
Boston is known for its Italian food, thanks to North End Boston’s Little Italy. If you are BC Eagles fan looking for Birmingham’s best Italian, here are some of my favorites.
3) Let Freedom Ring – From the American Revolution to the American Civil Rights Movement
Two important revolutions in our nation’s history occurred both in Boston and Birmingham – the American Revolution and Civil Rights Movement.
Our friends from New England should schedule visits to the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, Kelly Ingram Park and 16th Street Baptist Church.
4) Birmingham’s Boston Commons… Railroad Park
Nearly a decade ago, Birmingham took a page out of Boston’s playbook, and created a park in the center of the city. Of course, our Railroad Park is 340 years younger and about 1/5th the size of the Boston Commons, but they both have the same idea.
One thing folks Boston and Birmingham have in common is their love of the outdoors – we both cherish green space.
Fun fact. Both preserves are larger than NYC’s Central Park.
5) It’s PeCONs not PeCANs – here is where you can find the best pie
One last bit of travel advice for our BC visitors. Have some pecan pie. It’s a staple at any meat and three you might visit in town or pick some up at JaWanda’s Sweet Potato Pie, Savages or Edolyn’s Pies.
And remember, in Birmingham we call it PeCON not PeCAN.
It’s Nice to Have Your in Birmingham
Good luck BC against the Bearcats on January 2nd. We’ll be there with you.
And don’t forget to join the Magic City at the Uptown Street Fest and Pep Rally on January 1st at Uptown.
- What: Uptown Street Fest and Pep Rally
- Where: 2221 Richard Arrington Junior Boulevard North, Birmingham, AL 35203
- When: Wednesday, January 1, 1-6PM
- Hosted by: TicketSmarter Birmingham Bowl
- Admission: FREE and open to all
Go Eagles from Bham Now!