Field Trips are available to all members regardless of location. This year’s field trips are listed by departure location (Tuscaloosa, Gadsden and Birmingham). Domestic and International Trips are listed at the bottom of the page. For more detailed information on each of the trips, please view the OLLI 2020 Spring Catalog (PDF).

Departing from Tuscaloosa

Tuscaloosa trips will depart from the Bryant Conference Center (BCC), 240 Paul W. Bryant Drive, Tuscaloosa, unless otherwise stated. Transportation for the local trips will be by charter bus or vans. The type of transportation provided is at the sole discretion of the OLLI Program Director. For more trip details, email the trip leader or call the OLLI office, (205) 348-6482.

A201 Bama Bed and Breakfast

Thursday, January 30
Trip Leader:  Peggy Hamner (
Cancellation Deadline:  Thursday, January 23
Meet at Bama B&B (46 Sherwood Dr., Tusc.) 10:00 a.m.; Return to BCC: 1:00 p.m.
Fee:  None
Activity level: Easy

Enjoy this opportunity to tour Bama Bed and Breakfast and talk with its owner Kim Roberts! Kim will tell us about the home’s history (built in 1823), her experiences while operating it as a bed and breakfast, and the ins and outs of short-term private rentals in Tuscaloosa. From Bama B&B we will drive back to Hotel Capstone to socialize over a Dutch-treat lunch. Learn about the perks of the hotel’s “buy 9-get 1 free” buffet card and the lunch discount you can receive as an OLLI member!

A202 Behind the Scenes – Alabama Museum of Natural History Collections

Friday, February 7
Trip Leader:  Peggy Hamner (
Cancellation Deadline: Wednesday, January 29
Depart BCC:  12:50 p.m.; Return:  4:00 p.m.
Fee: None
Activity Level:  Moderate/Difficult (walking, much standing)

The Alabama Museum of Natural History maintains a broad array of collections in Mary Harmon Bryant Hall. Two experienced curators will share their expertise with us, providing information about both ancient fossils and more recent specimens collected from many sites in Alabama. This is a unique opportunity for you to find out much more about the Museum than you will learn in just a visit to its public spaces in Smith Hall!

A203  UA Opera Rehearsal – An Evening of American One-Act Operas

Thursday, February 20
Trip Leader:  Peggy Hamner (
Cancellation Deadline:  Wednesday, February 12
Meet at Bryant-Jordan Hall, Bryce Campus 6:30 p.m.;  end 10:00 p.m.
Fee:  None Activity Level: Easy

Watch and listen as UA faculty and students rehearse four short operas, one of them created especially for the UA Opera Theatre by Michael Ching, a noted American composer. You’ll enjoy a second opera by Mr. Ching, about a man arguing with his cat, and a mythology-infused comedy by Tony Solitro, as well as another shorter American opera. At this rehearsal, the cast will be accompanied by piano as they run through complete performances of all four operas. You may want to return on your own to see the fully costumed production at one of the public performances on February 27, 28 and March 1.

 A204 Mississippi Bound, Historic Meridian, MS

Friday, February 28
Trip Leaders:  Amelia Yessick ( and Tommy Brittain
Cancellation deadline:  Friday, February 14
Depart BCC:  8:00 a.m.; Return 4:00 p.m.
Fee: $45 (includes transportation and admission)
Activity Level:  Moderate – (urban) walking and standing

Join us as we tour the Mississippi Arts + Entertainment Experience, where Mississippi legends and artists of all genres come alive. Then, on to lunch at the historic Weidmann’s Restaurant, circa 1870, for a truly southern dining experience (Dutch-treat). Next, we will visit the Crooked Letter, a Mississippi Marketplace where we can see (and purchase) quality goods Mississippi made. We will finish up at the Atrium Mini-Mall for some quality bargain shopping before heading home

A205  68th Annual Arts and Crafts Festival, Fairhope, AL

March 20 – March 22
Trip Leaders:  Jennifer Woods ( and Mary Ann McKissick (
Cancellation Deadline:  Friday, March 6
Depart BCC: Friday March 20, 8:00 a.m.; Return Sunday, March 22, 7:00 p.m.
Fee: $250 Double; $400 Single (includes two nights in hotel, two breakfasts and transportation. Other meals are Dutch-treat)
Activity Level:  Difficult (extended walking and standing OUTSIDE)

Experience the charm and timelessness of Fairhope, while you attend the 68th Annual Fairhope Arts and Crafts Festival. This festival was chosen as one of the top events in the southeast for March by the Alabama Bureau of Tourism and it is also in the top 20 events selected by the Southeast Tourism Society. The festival was also included in the top 100 in 2018 by Sunshine Artist Magazine. More than 200 exhibitors, including many from the Southeast, will bring their best works from all over the country to showcase at this prestigious show. You’ll also enjoy live entertainment and festival cuisine from the food court during this wonderful three-day event, come rain or shine! Costs of this trip are partially covered by the Dennis James Memorial Travel Fund, reducing the fee/participant.

A206 Tuscaloosa Civil Rights History Trail

Friday, March 27
Trip Leader:  Peggy Hamner (
Cancellation Deadline:  Thursday, March 12
Depart BCC:  9:00 a.m.; Return: 12:00 p.m.
Fee:  None
Activity Level:  Moderate (standing, walking several city blocks at a time)

In June 2019, the Tuscaloosa Civil Rights History Trail officially opened. The trail highlights locations where Civil Rights events occurred, such as the conflict of Bloody Tuesday, sit-ins and bus boycotts, as well as, sites of cultural achievement such as the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center. We will follow the Trail by bus and on foot, visiting locations that are significant in the Civil Rights Movement and that will help locate the Movement’s roots in Tuscaloosa’s history. Our knowledgeable guide, Dr Scott Bridges, President of the Tuscaloosa Civil Rights History Trail Task Force, will provide historical information as we follow the trail.

A207 Birds, Beach and Bayou, Ocean Springs, MS

Thursday, April 2 – Saturday, April 4
Thursday, Trip Leader:  Becky Embry (
Instructor:  Dwight Lammon
Cancellation Deadline:  Friday, February 28
Depart BCC:  7:30 a.m., Thursday, April 2; Return:  6:30 p.m., Saturday, April 4
Fee:  $390 Double; $563 Single (transportation, hotel, two tours and ferry tickets)
Activity Level:  Moderate BUT possible 4 ½ – 5 hours of sporadic walking on uneven ground and sand on Ship Island day.

Two (one to two-hour) boat excursions Birder or non-birder; you will NOT want to miss this OLLI trip! Experience the charm of historic Ocean Springs, Mississippi, highlighted by a tour of the Walter Anderson Museum of Art on our very first day! The adventure continues all day Friday with an excursion by ferry to Ship Island. This unspoiled island is part of the National Seashore and offers birding, shelling and hiking opportunities. Our farewell adventure takes place on the Pascagoula River with a morning river, marsh, and nature tour with Captain Benny McCoy. Come Join Us!

A208 Sylacauga Marble Festival

Thursday, April 9
Trip Leader:  Beth Seale (
Cancellation Deadline:  Wednesday, March 25
Depart BCC:  7:45 a.m.; Return:  5:30 p.m.
Fee:  $42 (includes transportation, and Blue Bell tour)
Activity Level:  Moderate/Difficult (lots of walking on streets and on rough ground; standing)

Marble, quarried near Sylacauga, is renowned for its pure white color and fine grain. Come with us to the Marble Festival to watch artists carve their imaginations into this beautiful stone and hear their stories. Our first stop will be at Imrys Quarry Observation Point to learn about the history of marble and mining. We’ll then take a tour of the Blue Bell Creameries plant and sample its ice cream before visiting the B.B. Comer Library. There, we’ll view a film about the festival and a PowerPoint presentation on marble sculpting techniques. Before leaving, we will visit its sculpture gallery and the sale room (always time for shopping!). We’ll socialize over a Dutch-treat lunch and then spend time in the city park, watching the sculptors at work. You’re encouraged to take photos and ask them questions!

A209 Arlington Antebellum Home and Gardens

Thursday, April 23
Trip Leader:  Peggy Hamner (
Cancellation deadline:  Monday, April 6
Depart BCC:  10:00 a.m.; Return:  3:45 p.m.
Fee: $47 (includes transportation, tour and lunch)
Activity level:  Moderate (walking and standing indoors and outside)

The Arlington Antebellum House, a former plantation house, stands on a six-acre garden near downtown Birmingham. We’ll have time to take a stroll around the garden near the house before sitting down to a catered lunch. Lunch will be followed by a tour of the house, which features a beautiful collection of 19th century furniture, textiles, silver and paintings.

A210 Gees Bend Quilters and Camden

Thursday, May 7
Trip Leader:  Peggy Hamner (
Cancellation date:  Wednesday, April 22
Depart BCC:  7:45 a.m.; Return:  6:00 p.m.
Fee: $60 (includes bus, ferry, tour and lunch)
Activity Level: Easy

You have probably heard of the famous quilters of Gee’s Bend (officially the town of Boykin). Take this opportunity to meet some of the skilled quilters who live in this tiny town in a bend of the Alabama River, learn their stories, see their creations (and perhaps buy one!). From Gee’s Bend, we will go to Camden, possibly by ferry, to have a catered lunch and a tour at Gaines Ridge, built in 1837, and one of the oldest buildings still standing in that area. Then, we will visit the Black Belt Treasures Cultural Arts Center, displaying and selling not only treasures from Gee’s Bend, but also the work of other of Alabama’s Black Belt region’s most talented artists & craftsmen. Bring your cash, check, or credit card and bring home your own treasure (optional)!

A211 Gordo’s Mule Day and Chicken Fest

Saturday, June 6
Trip Leader:  Teresa Plowman  (
Cancellation deadline:  Friday, May 22
Depart BCC:  8:00 a.m.; Return:  2:00 p.m.
Activity Level:  Difficult (lots of walking and standing on city streets, probably hot weather)
Fee: $20 (transportation)

First weekend of June, plan a trip to Gordo’s Mule Day/Chicken Fest. Start the morning off by visiting the indoor Flea Market – too many things to even try to list! Then, let’s head to town, where you can visit Ma’Cille’s Museum and Starboard Rail Books. For folks that like the arts, there will be many booths to check out, offering paintings, polymer clay, ceramics, pottery and more. Feel free to shop and visit with the various vendors and enjoy the large food court. Let’s finish up the day with a parade showcasing mules, antique tractors and cars. Come spend the morning with us and you’ll want to come back!

Departing from Birmingham

Greater Birmingham field trips depart from Shades Mountain Baptist Church, unless otherwise stated. Fees must be paid with registration. Cancellations must be made by contacting Registration Services, (205) 348-3000 or 866-432-2015. Refunds will not be issued after the cancellation deadline. Substitutions are not allowed. If a field trip is full, call the OLLI office to be added to the wait list.

B201 A Day in Decatur, AL

Thursday, February 20
Leader:  Pam Moore (;  Co-Leader:  Beth White (
Cancellation Deadline:  Thursday, February 13
Fee:  $70 (includes transportation, museum admission); Dutch-treat lunch
Depart:  Shades Mountain Baptist Church 8:30 a.m.; Return by 5:00 p.m.
Activity Level:  Moderate

David Breland of the City of Decatur will lead the group on a morning tour of the historic Old State Bank, a driving tour of the historic homes in the Bank Street District, and the two downtowns – one “rebel” Old Decatur and one “Yankee” Albany.  A Dutch-treat lunch at The Railyard, a trendy foodie spot, will be followed by an afternoon at the Cook Museum of Natural History.  Developed over 50 years, this museum is now a state-of-the-art, hands-on, immersive experience where visitors can explore, interact with, and learn about nature.  Mr. Cook’s inspiration and motivation came from his desire to generously serve and support his local community and region and to display God’s creation creatively

B202  Explore the Amazing Wonders of High Falls and More, Geraldine, AL

Friday, March 20
Trip Leader:  Joe Myers (
Cancellation Deadline:  Wednesday, March 11
Fee:  $20 (transportation); Dutch-treat lunch
Depart:  Shades Mountain Baptist Church 8:00 a.m.; Return by 5:00 p.m.
Activity Level:  Strenuous There is no better time to experience the beautiful waterfalls of rural north Alabama than in the spring, with an expert hiker and outdoor enthusiast.  You will get up close and personal with waterfalls on public land and little visited waterfalls on private land.

B203 Wetumpka Impact Crater, Wetumpka, AL

Friday, March 27
Trip Leader:  Beth White (
Cancellation Deadline:  Friday, March 13
Fee:  $25 (includes transportation; catered lunch)  Depart:  Shades Mountain Baptist Church 8:30 a.m.; Return by 4:30 p.m.   Activity Level:  Moderate (walking uneven ground for a distance) Dr. James Lowery will lead the group on a tour of the Wetumpka Impact Crater.  Begin the day at Trinity Episcopal Church with a PowerPoint presentation on the geology of the crater.  While there, a catered lunch will be served, followed by touring the crater site in the afternoon.

B204 Bloomin’ Festival, Cullman, AL

Saturday, April 18
Trip Leader:  Betty Digges (
Cancellation Deadline:  Friday, April 3
Fee:  $55 (includes transportation and Grotto admission)
Depart:  Shades Mountain Baptist Church 8:30 a.m.; Return by 4:30 p.m.
Activity Level:  Moderate

The Bloomin’ Festival is a juried arts festival on the beautiful campus of the St. Bernard Abbey and Preparatory School, with more than 150 artists demonstrating and exhibiting their work.  Admission to the Ave Maria Grotto is included, and will be our first stop.  The rest of the day will be enjoying the food, arts, and flowers of the festival.

B205 Sloss Furnaces, Birmingham

Wednesday, April 29
Trip Leader:  Betty Digges (
Cancellation Deadline:  Wednesday, April 15
Fee:  $17 (includes tour and iron pour) Optional Dutch-treat lunch
Meet at Sloss Furnaces (20 32nd St N, Birmingham, AL  35222) parking lot by 8:45 a.m.
Activity Level:  Moderate

Sloss Furnaces operated as a pig iron producing blast furnace from 1882 to 1970.  After closing, it became one of the first industrial sites in the U.S. to be preserved and restored for public use and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1981.  Tour the only industrial museum preserving a 20th century blast furnace.  During the two-hour tour, you will etch your own design in a sand mold; view a film and tour the site; and in the metal arts foundry, see the molten hot iron flow into your mold.  Your cast iron art is yours to take home.  If interested in lunch after the tour, the Back 40 Brewery is across the street for an optional Dutch-treat lunch.

Departing from Gadsden

These trips depart from UA Gadsden Center. Registration fee must be paid with registration. Cancellations must be made by contacting Registration Services, (205) 348-3000 or (866) 432- 2015. Refunds will not be issued after the cancellation deadline. Substitutions are not allowed. If a field trip is full, call the OLLI office to be added to the wait list.

G201 Nashville, TN

Friday – Sunday, January 24 – 26
Trip Leader:  Shirley du Pont (
Cancellation Deadline:  Monday, January 13 Depart:  8:00 a.m.
Fee:  $375 dbl; $480 sgl (includes transportation, hotel, all tours & admissions)
Activity Level:  Some walking

Get ready to see the sights and enjoy the sounds of Music City.  We will visit the Upper Room on Friday and explore Broadway on Friday night.  Saturday, we will have a tour of Belle Meade, a tour of the Ryman Auditorium and an evening at the Ryman.  Before coming home on Sunday, we will visit the Johnny Cash and Patsy Cline Museums and Café.  Join us for lots to see and do.

G202 Arlington Antebellum Home and Alabama Public Television

Friday, February 7
Trip Leader:  Shirley du Pont (
Cancellation deadline:  Monday, January 27 Depart:  8:00 a.m.
Fee:  $40 (Includes transportation and admission)
Activity Level:  Easy

Arlington is a fine example of Greek Revival architecture dating from the 1840s. Originally called “The Grove” the house was built by Judge William S. Mudd, one of the ten founders of Birmingham, and is the only remaining antebellum mansion in Birmingham.  We will enjoy lunch while visiting the home. Alabama Public Television began broadcasting in 1955, and was the first educational television network in the U.S.  We will see the control center and watch an example of local productions. This is the home of an award-winning documentary team, administration, marketing, and is one of the largest educational departments nationwide.

G203 Inherit the Wind

Saturday, February 22
Trip Leader:  Shirley du Pont (
Cancellation deadline:  Monday, February 10 Depart:  8:00 a.m.
Fee:  $40 (includes transportation and admission);  Dutch-treat lunch
Activity Level:  Easy

Creation or evolution?  Faith or Science?  These are the issues on trial in one of the greatest dramas of the 20th century. Based on the events of the famous Scopes Monkey Trials, Inherit the Wind pits two hot-shot lawyers against one another as the state prosecutes a teacher for discussing the theory of evolution in the classroom.  We will travel to Tuscaloosa for the play and have a Dutch-treat dinner on the way back.

G204  American Village and Karl C. Harrison Museum of George Washington

Friday, March 6
Trip Leader:  Shirley du Pont (
Cancellation deadline:  Monday, February 24 Depart:  8:00 a.m.
Fee:  $35 (includes transportation and admission); Dutch-treat lunch
Activity Level:  Easy

Highlights of the campus include Washington Hall, inspired by George Washington’s beloved Mount Vernon; the Colonial Courthouse; the Colonial Chapel, inspired by one of America’s oldest churches, Bruton Parish Church of Williamsburg, Virginia; and a full-sized replica of the Oval Office, including an exact replica of the Resolute desk used by most Presidents since Rutherford Hayes.  The Karl C. Harrison Museum of George Washington collection focuses on art and artifacts from the colonial period through 1865. The collection contains paintings, letters, furniture, porcelain, glassware, silver, jewelry, busts and more.

Travel Adventures

Leave the travel planning to the experts! For more details and how to register, call the OLLI Office (205) 348-6482 or contact the OLLI trip leader.


Cost (including flight from Bham) Double $3,359  single $4,059
Optional:  3 night post-tour extension with flight to: St. John’s Newfoundland – double $949; – single $1,249
OLLI Trip leader:  Marilyn Nevin   (

Enjoy the culture and seaside beauty of the Canadian Maritimes.  Rural Scenery and rugged coastal landscapes as you journey off the beaten path to discover one of Canada’s most storied regions.  Uncover immigrant history, fascinating Acadian culture, and the tranquil life styles of quaint fishing villages as you get to know Novia Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island.  Picturesque sea views, small-town charm, and a colorful past Collide on this breathtaking trip.

Contact Us:

 (205) 348-6482

All OLLI classes, events and field trips have been suspended through the month of April.