IN THE NEWS...
Azalea City country fans have solved a Mystery at The Steeple. In late October, local radio station WKSJ 94.9 FM announced that they would be collaborating with Mobile’s newest venue The Steeple to bring an enigmatic Grammy nominated country act that has won awards from both the Academy of Country Music and the Country Music Association. Read the complete article here.
Mayor Sandy Stimpson wins another four years
There were many categories where less than 100 votes determined the top three. Some categories received more than 20,000 votes total! (That’s just crazy! The first year we got less than a thousand votes … in the whole contest.) And it’s hard to tell someone they didn’t win when they received more than 5,000 votes, but it happened more than once. And even in the less popular categories, finalists received hundreds of votes each. So even if you didn’t win, know you are loved and better luck next year! Nappie revenge winning is oh so sweet! But this issue is about the winners, all 287 of them. Yes, 287.
It took a long time for Winston Groom to come back to fiction, but give him credit: He didn't come back in a small way. "El Paso," due out next week, turns an epic cast loose in a panoramic landscape and gives them plenty of time to lose or find their ways.
"Forrest Gump," thanks in no small part to the wildly successful film adaptation, made Groom a household name. He did release the sequel "Gump & Co" in 1995 and the novel "Such a Pretty, Pretty Girl" in 1999, but then moved over to historical nonfiction, with a series of books on conflicts from the 1842 Battle of New Orleans to World War II. Read the complete article here.
El Paso," by Winston Groom, will be published Tuesday, Oct. 4. Groom will appear at a book launch party at 6 p.m. that day at The Steeple 251 St. Frances St. in downtown Mobile. Tickets to the event are $38 and include a signed first edition of "El Paso."
the southern atelier: MOBILE FASHION WEEK 2016 HOSTED BY THE STEEPLE ON ST. FRANCIS
The Steeple on St. Francis, “Old Mobile’s Most Inspired New Space,” will be hosting the 6th annual Mobile Fashion Week this Friday and Saturday night at its multi-purpose, historically renovated venue in Downtown Mobile, Alabama.
Originally founded in 1895, the motivation behind the renovation of The Steeple was to create an event-specific space in the previously dilapidated building. Since June of this year, it has provided a space for celebration for a host of events, from weddings to concert series, just to name a few. This weekend The Steeple is truly living-up to its ‘Performance Venue’ label and adding Runway Fashion Show to its long and unique list of event capabilities! Read the complete article here.
Many cities in the U.S. recreate their own version of New York Fashion Week early each fall. It can be a fun scavenger hunt making the trip to different cities this time of year to check out the latest fashions in that part of the country and comparing different regions.
I have had the pleasure of attending several runway shows in different regions and Mobile Fashion Week is one of the most well organized, community supported and fashion-forward shows I have attended so far.
If you haven’t been yet, MFW is the perfect chance to see the amazing transformation of a piece of history. The Steeple originally opened its doors in 1842 but was demolished in 1895 after a fire. Remains of the original structure can be seen in the foundation and bearings throughout the building. Read the complete article here.
A common trope in Southern music is that most careers begin in a sanctuary on Sunday morning. A new venue in downtown Mobile used to be a church: It's The Steeple on St. Francis, which lies within the walls of the former St. Francis Street Methodist. "I always want to be respectful of what it was designed for. It was designed to worship the Lord. I respect that," says Steeple special event manager Ginna Inge.
The church, dating back nearly 175 years, holds a spot on the National Register of Historic Places. Founded in 1844, it was rebuilt in 1895 after fire swept through. Among the notables in congregations were writer Augusta Jane Evans and cleric Holland Nimmons McTyeire, a founder of Vanderbilt University. Read the complete article here.
LAGNIAPPE: A new life for historic Mobile landmark
With a complete restoration, The Steeple on St. Francis Street is ready to open its doors to guests. The owners, Cliff and Ginna Inge, have been renovating the old St. Francis Street Methodist Church since they purchased the building in early 2014. Renamed The Steeple, it will be used as a multi-functional event space available for rent.
The church was originally opened in 1842, but was destroyed by fires from the Mobile magazine explosion of 1865. A disaster that left hundreds dead and most of downtown severely damaged when 200 tons of shells and powder exploded in a warehouse on Beauregard Street. After the church was tragically charred by those fires, it was later demolished and rebuilt in 1895. Read the complete article here.
Right around the corner from where this brand new Hilton Garden Inn will sit is where new Mobile meets old Mobile.
“We’re really excited that a historic building has been preserved,” says Carol Hunter with Mobile’s Downtown Alliance. Last June the St. Francis Street church was being renovated. Now, called the Steeple on St. Francis, it’s open as an event center.
“When I first walked in, I was just covered with goosebumps because it was so beautiful! So the first thing that we noticed, there were these glass, aluminum old doors that were put in in the fifties and we immediately said these have got to go!” says Events Coordinator Ginna Inge. Read the complete article and watch the video here.
al.com: Here's 'The Steeple,' In The Historic Heart Of Downtown Mobile
When Marianne Turberville Wilkins was a little girl, she would lie down in her family's usual pew – the third from the back, on the north side – and stare, mesmerized, at the colorful, arched stained-glass windows that went from the floor to the ceiling of the vaulted sanctuary at St. Francis Street United Methodist Church.
Though she was paying no attention to the pastor's sermon on Sundays, the scenes in the stained glass "taught me how to pray," she said.
After creating many other congregations in Mobile, including Ashland Place, Dauphin Way and State Street AME Zion, the church, itself an offshoot of Government Street United Methodist (known as "The Beehive") held its last service in 1993. Located in the heart of downtown Mobile at the corner of St. Francis and Joachim streets... Read the complete article here.