FOLEY – More than a century of local history will be on display in April when Foley conducts walking tours of the downtown historic district.

Foley is one of more than 20 Alabama communities conducting the tours on each Saturday of the month throughout April. 

In Foley, the free tours will highlight historic areas of the city that date back to the beginning of the 20th Century. The tours will begin at the Foley Welcome Center at the intersection of Alabama 59 and U.S. 98.

The Welcome Center building was the site of the Foley Public Library from 1927 until 1984. The building was expanded and remodeled in 1962. The South Baldwin Chamber of Commerce later had its offices in the building before the structure became the city Welcome Center in 2013.

The tour will continue to the L&N Railroad Depot next to the Welcome Center. The depot was built in 1909, replacing a 1905 station that burned down in 1908. The depot was a center of South Baldwin commerce and travel for more than 60 years. The restored building is now a city museum.

Other highlights of the tours will include Centennial Plaza, the Holk Building, Magnolia Hotel, the Holmes Medical Museum – the site of Baldwin County’s first hospital, Foley Hotel building and other historic sites in the downtown area.

The tours begin at 10 a.m. and last about one hour. The walks cover about five city blocks and are conducted by local community members.

The first tour on April 6 will be conducted by retired Baldwin County Probate Judge Tim Russell, who was Foley mayor from 1996 until 2006, and his wife, Sandy, a long-time teacher at Foley High School. 

LaDonna Hinesley, Foley marketing director, will lead the April 13 tour. The April 20 tour will be conducted by Randy LeDrew, a longtime employee of Riviera Utilities, and his wife, Cathay. Guy Busby, Foley marketing communications manager, will lead the final tour on April 27.

The Alabama Department of Tourism organizes the tours around the state each year. Alabama is the only state to conduct simultaneous statewide tours.

For more information about the Foley walking tours, call 251-943-1200.