5 things to know about East Birmingham, including murals + an amazing scene at the BHM airport

Can we just talk about how relevant this quote is now? Photo via @thats.pretty.sweet on Instagram.

East Birmingham is home to some hidden gems you’re going to want to check out. It’s a great place to start if you’re in the mood to go thrifting, mural hunting, or even checking out over 40 airplanes parked at the Birmingham airport. Keep reading to learn more.

1. Where is East Birmingham?

Well, the name pretty much gives it away, but East Birmingham is nestled between the North Avondale, Northside and Woodlawn communities. The area consists of four of Birmingham’s 99 neighborhoods. They include:

  • East Birmingham
  • Inglenook
  • Kingston
  • North Avondale

2. Did you know East Birmingham houses one of the largest companies in the US?

John Sherman’s Coca Cola United facility in Birmingham. Photo via Nathan Watson for Bham Now

Nestled right against the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport sits Coca-Cola UNITED, one of the largest Coca-Cola bottling facilities in America. You know that Coke that you grabbed at the gas station? There’s a good chance it was bottled right here in Birmingham.

Founded in 1902, Coca-Cola United has provided hundreds of jobs to the Birmingham community. President and CEO John Sherman, III even recently received an award from the Red Cross for the company’s outstanding safety and training measures.

3. East Birmingham’s most Instagrammable spots

East Birmingham is home to some amazing murals in some unexpected places. If you’re looking to amp up your Instagram page with some colorful local art, look no further.

We could all use a little inspo during these uncertain times. This mural created by Blank Space Bham is on the side of Sozo Trading Co. in Avondale on 1st Avenue South.

Say hello to one of my personal favorite murals in Birmingham. Why do I love it? Well, it’s an entire buildingā€”C & CJ’s Car Wash and Fast Religion Motorcycle Superstore to be exact. This mural created by Vincent Rizzo brings a surprising pop of color where you least expect it on 1st Avenue North.

4. Let’s go thrift shopping!

Sozo Trading

Have you been to Sozo Trading Co? I sure hope you said yes because it’s a gold mine. This North Avondale thrift store specializes in upscale thrift items and supports the ministry of Sozo Children.

It has over 20 booth spaces for local vendors, sustainable goods and even it’s own brand that is the epitome of my dream wardrobe.

Photo courtesy of Sozo Trading

Sozo has been closed due to COVID-19 but reopened its doors on May 1. Of course, the store is putting new safety protocols in place to follow state and local guidelines to keep everyone safe. If you’re itching to go thrifting in Birmingham, grab your mask and check them out.

5. The BHM Airport is a sight to behold

Calling all aviation fans! A portion of the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport lies in Inglenook. If you need an excuse to go on an adventure, head over to East Birmingham for an unexpected sight.

Since most travel has come to a halt due to COVID-19, airlines needed somewhere to store their planes. According to Kevin Henderson of Sky Bama, over 40 Delta jets are parked at the local airport due to these cancellations.

I drove by the area a few weeks ago and it seems a bit surreal. It’s like a graveyard of planes just eerily waiting for their next takeoff.


Where Can I Read About the Other Neighborhoods?

This article is the 18th installment in a 23-part series Bham Now is doing to feature Birminghamā€™s 23 communities, comprised of 99 neighborhoods. So far weā€™ve featured the following communities:

Now we want to hear from you, Birmingham. What’s your fave spot in East Birmingham? Let us know on social @BhamNow.