Jefferson County Profile
Jefferson County has a population of 660,367 and contains some of the most densely populated urbanized areas in Alabama, including the state’s largest city – Birmingham.
The county is considered the economic center of Alabama and encompasses 18 percent of Alabama’s total employment. Some of Alabama’s largest employers are based in Jefferson County, including the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), Regions Financial Corp. and St. Vincent’s Health System. The county is at the center of Alabama’s automotive manufacturing region with four auto makers within an 80-mile radius of downtown Birmingham.
Jefferson County enjoys an exceptional quality of life with a high concentration of cultural amenities, including nationally renowned restaurants, museums and parks. Nearly 32 percent of Jefferson County’s population 25 years old or more has a bachelor’s degree. The City of Birmingham is experiencing a nationally recognized transformation, which positions Jefferson County as a destination for recent college graduates and young professionals. Between 2010 and 2015, Jefferson County’s Median Household Income saw remarkable growth with a nearly 17 percent increase - more than five percentage points higher than the U.S. increase of 11.4 percent.
2018 Demographic Summary
- Population Total - 662,843
- Households - 266,090
- Average Household Size - 2.43
- Median Age - 37.9
- Average Household Income - $66,455
- Median Household Income - $44,197
- Per Capita Income - $26,901
Things to do in Jefferson County
Academy of Fine Arts – Incorporated in 1986, the Academy of Fine Arts helps meet the need to maintain, enhance and perpetuate the arts in the Black community. It organizes and sponsors art shows and performances featuring black artists, many having ties to Alabama. (320-0888)
Aldridge Gardens - A 30 acre botanical gardens located in the heart of Hoover. Complete with a 7 acre lake and walking trail, Aldridge Gardens is laden with many varieties of hydrangeas and other native Alabama flowers. In collaboration with the City of Hoover and the City Council, the land was formally dedicated as a public garden and a resolution was passed to ensure the property would remain so in perpetuity. A Master Plan was commissioned and approved in 1997, twenty years after Eddie Aldridge had acquired the property.
Alabama Ballet - The state’s professional ballet company stages four major performances annually, including The Nutcracker at Christmas
Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame - The art deco Carver Theater is home to the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame, which features regular performances by the famed Birmingham Heritage Band as well as touring jazz artists of national repute, and fascinating exhibitions and artifacts from the storied history of jazz in Birmingham.
Alabama Sports Hall of Fame - The ASHOF is a magnificent state treasure, dedicated to the celebration and preservation of Alabama’s exceptional sports heritage. Over the last thirty-five years, the ASHOF has become the benchmark for other Sports Museums across the country, with more than 5,000 sports artifacts elegantly displayed in the 33,000 square foot building. Out of ESPN’s list of the top 100 athletes of the century, five out of the top fifteen greatest ever are in the ASHOF: Jesse Owens, Hank Aaron, Joe Louis, Willie Mays, and Carl Lewis.
Alabama Symphony – An extraordinary orchestra, the Alabama Symphony performs exciting and ambitious seasons of classical and pops each year.
The Alabama School of Fine Arts - The Alabama School of Fine Arts offers talented young people, grades 7-12, the opportunity to study creative writing, dance, music, theatre arts or visual arts. A state-supported program, there is no tuition for Alabama residents. The school is very much a part of the Birmingham arts community and often co-sponsors productions and programs with local arts organizations.
Alabama Theatre for the Performing Arts - The Alabama Theater first opened its doors in 1927. Of America’s 5,300 original movie and entertainment palaces, only 189 remain. After closing its doors in 1982, the Alabama Theatre reopened in 1987 when Birmingham’s community spirit refused to let the theater be demolished. The theater offers classic films and live performances, and is host to various musical concerts.
Alys Stephens Center - With its beautiful main concert hall to its theatres and other performance spaces, the Stephens Center is a jewel in the crown of Birmingham’s arts spaces.
Artwalk – Free to the public, Artwalk attracts more than 10,000 people to downtown Birmingham. Twelve city blocks from 2nd Avenue North to 2nd Avenue South between 22nd and 25th Streets are transformed into a vibrant arts district with more than 100 visual artists within the first floor retail and loft space. Plus musicians, street performers, food and drink vendors and a great old-fashioned trolley to ride around the neighborhood.
Barber Motorsports Park and Motorcycle Museum – The Barber Motorsports Park has landed a three year contract with the Indy Racing League for races that could attract as many as 100,000 fans and $30-million economic impact per event. The races will put Birmingham on the Indy car circuit that includes North American cities, such as Miami, Dallas and Toronto. Located off Interstate 20 near Leeds, The 740-acre Barber Motorsports Park features a 2.8-mile road course and the 144,000 square-foot Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum – the largest vintage motorcycle museum in the world.
Bessemer Hall of History
Birmingham Barons at Regions Field
Birmingham Botanical Gardens - The Birmingham Botanical Gardens is a 67.5 acre (273,000 m) botanical garden located inside of Lane Park at the southern foot of Red Mountain. Considered Alabama’s largest living museum, the gardens are home to some 3,000 different types of plants in 20 different gardens that includes a Japanese garden, 30 plus works of original outdoor sculpture, the largest public horticulture library in the U.S .and the largest clear-span glass greenhouse in the Southeast. With more than 300,000 annual visitors, the Birmingham Botanical Gardens is Alabama’s top free-admittance attraction.
Birmingham Ballet – Founded in 1991, the Birmingham Ballet is a self-sustaining community arts organization. The performing wing of Birmingham Ballet is a semi-professional company. Semi-annual auditions are held for dancers from Birmingham and surrounding areas. The group is know for its annual production of The Nutcracker.
Birmingham Broadway Series – Organized to bring a Broadway series of quality touring shows to the city, the Birmingham Broadway Series opened its first season in 1991. The series brings top name star and Broadway’s best shows to Birmingham.
Birmingham Children’s Choir – The Birmingham Children’s Choir, founded in January 1998, is a choral music training program for girls and boys in grades 2-8. The program features three choirs whose members are selected by audition.
Birmingham Children’s Theater – The Birmingham Children’s Theater is Alabama’s oldest and the nation’s largest professional adult theater performing specifically for young audiences. The company frequently tours throughout the country.
Birmingham Civil Rights Institute – The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute is a large interpretive museum and research center that depicts the struggles of the American Civil Rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s. The institute is located in the Civil Rights District, which includes the historic 16th Street Baptist Church, Kelly Ingram Park, Fourth Avenue Business District and the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame located in the Carver Theater.
Birmingham Festival Theater – Birmingham Festival Theater has operated since May 1972. New scripts by local and nationally recognized playwrights, classics, musical revues, comedies, contemporary dramas, and light operas are the typical fare of this community theater group.
Birmingham Jefferson Convention Complex - BJCC officials broke ground on a $500-million plus multi-purpose facility adjacent to the BJCC on July 21, 2009. The facility includes a 57,500-seat stadium (expandable to 70,000 seats) with 160,000 square feet of exhibition space. It will provide a venue to host existing sports events, such as the magic city Classic and the Papa John’s Bowl and will position the city to attract larger trade shows and conventions.
Birmingham Museum of Art – Founded in 1951, the Birmingham Museum of art has one of the finest collections in the southeastern U.S. With more than 24,000 paintings, sculptures, prints, drawings and decorative arts representing numerous and diverse cultures. The museum’s collection of Asian Art is considered the finest and most comprehensive in the Southeast and its Vietnamese ceramics is one of the finest in the U.S.; the finest collection of Wedgewood outside England and home to a remarkable Kress Collection of Renaissance and Baroque paintings. The Birmingham Museum encompasses 180,000 square-feet and is the largest publicly owned museum in the Southeast.
Birmingham Public Library – Birmingham’s Public Library not only provides reference books in art and music but loans an extensive collection of videotapes, compact discs and cassettes. The library works closely with virtually every arts group in making available reference material pertaining to special exhibitions, performances and events.
Birmingham Race Course – The Birmingham Race Course is conveniently located at Exit 31 off interstate 459 between between Irondale and Trussville, Alabama. Discover the thrill of the chase 52 weeks per year with live greyhound racing and simulcast greyhound and horse racing from all over the country.
Birmingham Zoo – The 122-acre Birmingham Zoo is home to approximately 750 animals of 250 species including many endangered species from six continents. The zoo broke ground in July 2009 on a $12.5-million Trails of Africa exhibit. The simulated savannah setting will serve as the home to what zoo officials are calling a one-of-a-kind elephant exhibit. The project will add 14-acres to the zoo, which is among the largest in the South. Trails of Africa will be the first zoo addition since it completed the $13-million, 5.5-acre Children’s zoo wing in 2005.
Bluff Park Art Show – One of the finest outdoor juried shows in the Southeast, the Bluff Park Art Show is held each October in Hoover drawing large, enthusiastic crowds.
Cahaba River – Cahaba River: The Cahaba River is among the longest free-flowing rivers in the Southern United States and is among the nation’s most scenic and biologically diverse rivers. The Cahaba River is a major tributary of the Alabama River and is part of the larger Mobile River Basin. A popular canoeing destination, the river is 191 miles (307 km) long and drains an area of 1,870 square miles (4,800 km2). Feature in the August 2009 issue of the Smithsonian magazine, the Cahaba has more fish species per-mile than any other river in North America and has an abundance of rare and endangered snails, mussels and other aquatic species along with a treasure trove of rare plants growing in and near the river. Birmingham News, July 2009
Carver Theater, Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame – The Carver Theatre is located in the historic 4th Avenue Business District and has become a popular venue not only for local jazz artists, but for the local comedy and spoken word scene as well. We have played host to jazz legends such as Duke Ellington and Lionel Hampton. Hosting events from theatrical performances to jazz jam sessions to swing dance classes, the Carver Theatre opens its doors to the very best in entertainment.
Children’s Dance Foundation – Children’s Dance Foundation was established in 1975 to provide “movement to music” as a medium for the development of the whole child. The CDF soon broadened its outreach to include the physically challenged and at-risk populations.
Comedy Club Stardome – Enjoy a fun-filled evening of fantastic food and drinks while being entertained by the nation’s top comedians at the Comedy Club Stardome. The Stardome is also a great and unique place to host corporate luncheons, award ceremonies, holiday events, banquets, and dinner parties. The Ayers Talent agency can also add top comedians and entertainers to your agenda for a truly unforgettable event. It’s good clean entertainment that will liven up any occasion.
Colonial Brookwood Village – Colonial Brookwood Village combines the accessibility and convenience of a traditional mall with the ambiance and novelty of village shopping. Colonial Brookwood Village features unique specialty shops plus eateries and restaurants.
Dining – Birmingham has a national reputation for gourmet dining thanks to noted chefs Frank Stitt of Highlands Bar & Grill and Chris Hastings of Hot and Hot Fish Club. From star-quality restaurants to a relaxed atmosphere for the whole family, you will find the restaurant that fits your taste buds. By going to Birmingham magazine, you will find a list of restaurants broken down by different parts of the Birmingham region.
Downtown – Downtown Birmingham Alabama welcomes you to the Magic City, where you will find authentic southern hospitality immersed in tradition; mingled with attractions, dining, entertainment and accommodations. If you are looking for culture, sports, sightseeing or a little of each, our city center presents a diverse array of exciting choices!
Five Points South – You can people watch, dance to great live music, and enjoy fantastic dining at Five Points South, the city’s top entertainment district. Stroll along the tree-shaded streets, or stop and admire the artistry of the Frank Fleming sculpture, “The Storyteller”, at the famous fountain.
Highland Park Golf – Located in the heart of downtown Birmingham Highland Park Golf Course is a favorite spot among Birmingham residents and visitors. At Highland, you’ll find an enticing and fun 18-hole layout, excellent course conditions, a friendly staff, reasonable rates.
Hoover Library Theater – Pushing the envelope of what a library can mean to a community, the Hoover Library operates a well-respected community theater program.
Jefferson County Library Cooperative – Jefferson County Library Cooperative (JCLC) is the name for the consortium of public libraries in Jefferson County. The administrative office of the organization is housed at Birmingham Public Central Library.
Lakeview – The Lakeview District in Birmingham, Alabama is one of the top entertainment areas in town. Centered around 7th Avenue South and 29th Street; this region of Birmingham packs in the crowds every weekend. With live music, martini bars, dance clubs, and restaurants; the Lakeview District really has it going on.
Legion Field – Legion Field, in Birmingham, Alabama is the home of the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Blazers of conference USA. It has a natural grass surface and a seating capacity of approximately 83,091.
Lyric Theater – The Lyric was once the finest performing arts theater in the city and through its restoration, it is once again. Listed on the National Register as part of the Birmingham Downtown Retail & Theatre Historic District, this century-old venue is a beacon of history, entertainment and culture in the heart of Birmingham. The theater offers a wider stage and closer audience—better suited for performing arts such as the symphony, ballet, opera and theater.
Magic City Art Connection – Create. Inspire.
Educate. Collect. The 30th Magic City Art Connection contemporary art festival transforms downtown Birmingham’s Linn Park with its spring infusion of fresh artistic talent, sights, sounds and aromas. 30,000 visitors and their families head to the city center annually the last full weekend in April hungry for arts and culture, creativity, community and fun. Choose art from among 215 juried artists from around the country. Then add in the experience of Corks and Chefs: Food and Wine Tasting Event, 30 interactive art workshops for kids, live music and cultural/dance performances on 2 stages, large scale art installations, and eating all day. Be sure to check out MCAC’s 30/50 features in 2013 which celebrate the art show’s 30th anniversary in conjunction with the civil rights movement’s 50th. Find Art and more on April 26-28, 2013! 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Information: 205-595-6306, MagicCityArt.com. Join us on Facebook and Twitter.
McWane Science Center – The state-of-the-art science center, aquarium and 280-seat IMAX Dome Theater is housed in the historic Loveman’s department store and is the largest science / technology center in a six state region. The center has more than 90,000 square feet of interactive exhibits, including the Challenger Learning Center of Alabama, created in memory of the Space Shuttle Challenger Flight 51-L crew. The World of Water exhibit showcases more than 50 species of marine and freshwater aquatic life.
Opera Birmingham – This organization returned to the stage in 1999 with three full-scale productions a year. Opera Birmingham has held an Annual Vocal Competition that fosters opera education and has served as a stepping-stone in the careers of two generations of opera singers.
Patton Creek - Patton Creek, which opened in 2004, is a development consisting of approximately 600,000 square feet of retail, dining and entertainment. The property consists of approximately 80 acres of a total of 300 acres situated between I-459 (North), the Riverchase Galleria Mall (East), and State Highway 150 (South).
Pepper Place – Visit the Birmingham region’s farming families at the Pepper Place Saturday Market. They grow vegetables and flowers, bake breads and cookies, cakes and pies, tend the bees, and drive into the Lakeview District of Birmingham to sell the fruits of their labors. In addition to farmers, bakers and beekeepers you can enjoy local musicians on two stages while sipping a fresh cup of coffee or enjoying a light breakfast. In addition to the Saturday market, there are also shops that have made Pepper Place known as the city’s premier design center.
Railroad Park – A 14-acre (eight blocks) linear park Situated along 1st Avenue South, between 14th and 18th Streets, the 20-acre park is a joint effort between the City of Birmingham and the Railroad Park Foundation, formerly Friends of the Railroad District. The park will provide a historically rich venue for local recreation, family activities, concerts, and cultural events, connecting Birmingham’s downtown area with Southside and UAB’s campus. The Railroad Park will revitalize previously neglected real estate and stimulate cultural, economic, and social activity in the city.
Red Mountain Chamber Orchestra – A community group that specializes in chamber music performances.
Red Mountain Theatre Company - Formerly Summerfest Musical Theatre, it is one of Alabama’s only year-round professional musical theatre organizations, bringing both well-known national performers and local talent to the Birmingham stage.
Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail – Alabama’s Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail is the largest golf course construction project ever attempted. The Trail is a collection of 468 holes of championship golf on 11 different sites across Alabama. The Wall Street Journal said the Trail “may be the biggest bargain in the country” and The New York Times called the Trail “some of the best public golf on Earth.”
Ruffner Mountain Nature Center – Ruffner Mountain’s 1,000 acres of woodlands comprise the nation’s second-largest urban nature preserve. With 10 miles of hiking and walking trails, it offers a serene getaway in the heart of the city. The nature center includes exhibits of native animals and historic artifacts from the mountain’s iron ore mining past. 1214 81st St. S., Birmingham 35206.
Shops at Grand River – The Shops of Grand River is a distinctive outlet destination conveniently located on the I-20 growth corridor between Birmingham and Atlanta in Historic Leeds, AL at Exit 140.
Sloss Furnaces National Historic Landmark – Sloss Furnaces produced iron for nearly 90 years, which gave rise to the city of Birmingham. Now recognized as a National Historic Landmark, Sloss Furnaces with its web of pipes and tall smokestacks offers us a glimpse into the great industrial past of the South and our nation.
Southern Danceworks – Southern Danceworks is Alabama’s only professional modern dance company. It is active in the community with an extensive outreach program. Using local artists, as well as bringing in nationally known guest artists, SDW performances and programs offer something strikingly different by bringing together talent and innovation.
The Summit – Exciting, convenient, stylish. One of a kind. The ultimate in shopping indulgence. It’s the way you want to shop, an experience that puts the excitement back into the search for just the right outfit, the perfect gift for a friend, or the accessory that will make that special room in your home all the more special. You’ll experience dining sensations that will leave you breathless with anticipation for the next bite, or better yet, dessert.
Tannehill Historical State Park - Tannehill Historical State Park offers visitors a glimpse into the lives of ordinary Alabamians in the 1800s, with a large collection of 19th century cabins and the Old Tannehill Iron Works. 12632 Confederate Pkwy., McCalla.
Terrific New Theatre – Founded in 1986, the TNT is a full season of productions from musicals to short plays. On Thursday’s, you pay what you can, unless it’s opening night.
Virginia Samford Theatre – In 1927, a new cultural destination opened its doors in Birmingham. This intimate theater brought together a wide range of the community’s residents to enjoy thought-provoking new performances and soul-stirring classics. Much has changed about Birmingham in the years since, but the venue now known as the Virginia Samford Theatre remains a singular hub of creative insight and diverse entertainment.
Vulcan Park – Cast from local iron, Vulcan was Birmingham’s exhibit for the St. Louis Exposition of 1904 and has gained notoriety as the largest cast iron statue in the world and the second largest statue in the U.S – behind the Statue of Liberty. Vulcan Park is the 10-acre (4 ha) urban green space surrounding the statue. The park features a new visitor’s center, called the Vulcan Center, with interactive exhibits and displays that give insight into the history of Birmingham as well as the story of the Vulcan statue.
WBHM Radio 90.3 FM National Public Radio broadcast as a service of UAB features classical music, NPR programming, and the Alabama Radio Reading Service for the visually impaired.
Other counties in the region.