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February 17, 2015

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Selma-to-Montgomery March, and there’s no better time to visit Alabama’s capital city, a Deep South history hotspot. But don’t get lost in yesterday; the city’s present is as interesting as its past.

Do

The final Selma-to-Montgomery March that ended at Montgomery’s capitol building steps on March 25, 1965, was the culmination of the modern Civil Rights Movement. This year, the event is being commemorated with a host of activities highlighting the passion and courage that changed the world, including a re-enactment of the four-day journey.

Visit the Rosa Parks Library & Museum and sit in a replica of the bus where the “mother of the Civil Rights struggle” made a stand by staying seated.

Stand by the granite fountain of the Civil Rights Memorial and remember the movement’s martyrs.

Catch a Montgomery Biscuits baseball game (and a warm buttermilk biscuit) at Riverwalk Stadium.

Hitch a riverboat ride on the Harriott II for a roll down the Alabama River.

Snag a seat at the state theatre, The Alabama Shakespeare Festival, which showcases the Bard’s best works each season as well as contemporary plays and premieres from its Southern Writers’ Project.

Eat

Indulge in a greasy-good dog “all the way” at Chris’ Hot Dogs, open since 1917 and still run by its founding family.

Opt for farm-fresh dishes prepared with new-South flair in an old grocery warehouse at Central.

Find heaping helpings of Southern comfort-food classics at Martha’s Place.

Stay

Book a comfy room at The Renaissance Hotel & Spa, located on the edge of the entertainment district in the recently revitalized downtown.

Jennifer Stewart Kornegay is a freelance writer in Montgomery, Alabama.

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