Birmingham has a new permanent nighttime feature and it is magical.
With the help of children from the gathering last night at Sloss Furnaces, Mayor Randall Woodfin “flipped the switch“ — lighting the 140 year-old historic landmark’s water tower, boilers and smokestacks.
Bham Now was on hand to capture the moment alongside members of the Sloss family, public officials and several hundred Sloss supporters.
A Big Spotlight
“Lighting Sloss Furnaces is going to put a big spotlight on this very important tourist attraction,” said Lee Sentell, the director of Alabama Tourism. “Hopefully it will encourage people to study and understand the importance of the iron and steel industry in the creation of Birmingham… the Magic City. This is an exclamation mark to a great tourist attraction.”
Cathy Sloss Jones, President of Sloss Real Estate and board member of Sloss Furnaces summed up the 25 minute ceremony and new Sloss lights best:
“It is so beautiful. It is everything we hoped it would be. And I think people are going to enjoy it all over the city. Being up close is amazing, but I know from distance it will be equally amazing.”
Places to See Sloss Illuminated
Since Sloss Furnaces is currently closed to the public due to construction and preparation for The World Games, we’ve made a handy list of places you can catch a good view of the newly “lit” iron foundry.
- Back Forty Brewing Co.
- Any of the lots at Pepper Place
- Any viaducts over the train tracks, especially the 35th St. Bridge
- Barker Park – 2 blocks north of Protective Stadium (directions)
- On the Hugh Kaul Trail, a couple of blocks west of the new Ghost Train Brewing Taproom
- Vulcan Park and Museum
- Altamont Park (for people taking an evening walk- no parking is available)
- Highland Avenue Red Mountain Expressway Overpass — near Freddy’s
The best “drive-by” view? 1st Avenue North traveling east out of downtown.
Photos and Video From the Event
Missed seeing “lit” below is a gallery of photos from the event and a Facebook Live video of the ceremony. Enjoy!
Are you going to watch the newly lit Sloss Furnaces in the coming days? Share your photos on social media by tagging us at @bhamnow Also – if you interested in supporting the “Light Up Sloss” initiative – donate the Sloss Furnaces Foundation.