Welcome to “My Perfect Birmingham Saturday,” a column where About Town asks Birmingham residents from different walks of life how they would spend a Saturday in the Magic City if they had it their way (and COVID notwithstanding).
Today’s Saturday was planned by Taylor Clark, director of recruitment and business growth at REV Birmingham, where she helps to start, grow, and locate small lifestyle businesses in Birmingham. REV Birmingham as an organization believes small businesses are a vitally important piece of the economy and community development, Clark said, and she specifically leads the business growth strategy, which helps entrepreneurs realize their dreams of locating in a brick-and-mortar space. Clark has called Birmingham home for 11 years, moving here in 2010 when “the entrepreneurial spirit of the place was just palpable,” Clark said. “I had never really experienced community before and didn’t understand what community was before Birmingham. This is where I’m supposed to be.” Read on to learn more about how Clark would spend her Saturday in the place that “continues to be a city of pleasant surprise,” she said.
It’s important to note that having a child totally changed the way I interact with Birmingham. Pre-child was a very, very different experience – I spent most of my time eating and drinking in Birmingham. I still do plenty of that, but now I’m the mom of a six-year-old. Because of that, we wake up far earlier than I’d probably choose to on a Saturday morning.
I’m one of those people who can’t function until I have a piping hot cup of coffee. I’ll roll out of bed and, if the weather is perfect, I’ll be on the deck enjoying my coffee, watching the dogs and my son play. I’ll have an awesome Beehive Baking treat – a scone or an Everything bagel with cream cheese or a Breakfast Buddy. It’s a glorious cookie that makes you feel okay about eating cookies in the morning. I have a tremendous sweet tooth and I am a coffee addict.
I’m also an addict for growing things – fruits, vegetables, houseplants. We’ll be outside pretty much from the time we open our eyes until the sun goes down. We are either on Vulcan Trail or Clairmont Walking Trail, the trails up behind Altamont, or Moss Rock. My son loves to scooter, so during the fall we spent a lot of time on Vulcan Trail. You can catch an awesome view of the city. Oftentimes I find myself on Vulcan Trail really pensive about the city – where we’ve been and where we’re headed. I take a moment to reflect on the work I do at REV.
I have an addiction to my garden and growing things. I am in my garden getting ready to plant fall vegetables, resetting the flowerbed, and, at some point during the weekend, I’m at House Plant Collective or Shoppe picking up new houseplants to add to the collection – as if I need more. My house looks like a jungle. That’s been a really, really positive outcrop of COVID.
Then we’ll typically take a lunch break around here for snacks and refueling, and we’re back out at it.
We’ll drive to the Rotary Trail and pick up a scooter and scoot right up to Railroad Park. I’ll have a cold brew at Red Cat, and Oliver will get a vitamin water or chocolate milk. We’ll hang out at Railroad Park, walkabout there, and play on the playground.
Oliver will be campaigning for Jeni’s Ice Cream, so we’ll make our way for an afternoon scoop. Saturdays are takeout and movie night at our house, so we’ll get Iron City Pizza or Rojo and, if I’m lucky and don’t have schoolwork – I’m currently pursuing an MBA and I don’t have as much playtime as I used to – I’ll have a cold pale ale from Cahaba.
Then it’ll be time for Oliver to go to bed. He’s got so much energy; we keep it wide open.
- As told to Rachel Burchfield