Tuscaloosa looks to boost tourism with 200th anniversary
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — Tuscaloosa leaders are hoping to attract even more tourists to the Alabama city as it celebrates its 200th birthday, a newspaper reported.
Several events have already been held to commemorate the city’s 1819 founding, The Tuscaloosa News reported.
Plans for Dec. 13 — the day the city was incorporated — include a parade downtown and the unveiling of a statue commissioned by the University of Alabama on the banks of the Black Warrior River.
“We hope it’s going to be a big party throughout Tuscaloosa,” Elizabeth McGiffert, events chairwoman for the Tuscaloosa Bicentennial Commission, told the Tuscaloosa News.
Tuscaloosa is already coming off a good year for tourism in 2018, when the city experienced a jump in visitors. City leaders say visitors come to watch Crimson Tide football, but are also attracted to Tuscaloosa’s amphitheater, which hosted Keith Urban and other big acts in 2018.
Overall, the tourism industry in Alabama grew by 8.5 percent in 2018, supporting 200,000 jobs, according to state officials.