What does avid runner and city council member Jennifer Andress love most about Homewood? Wonder no more.

1. For Non-Running Clothes

Melissa Mistrot at Fab’rik

Melissa sets a dressing room up for me a few times a year, and I go in and act out that famous scene from Pretty Woman. The staff there always helps me pick out stylish clothes that are still age-appropriate, and even though everything is fun and current, it is not a fortune. I buy all of my friends’ birthday gifts here as well!

2. Runners’ Central

The Trak Shak

If you are just getting started, like most of the folks I coach at Resolute Running Training Center, this is where you begin! The pros can give you an individual fitting to select the best shoe for your foot and stride, and to prevent injuries. Then join a couple hundred of your friends with the Birmingham Track Club on Saturday mornings for group runs of all paces and distances.

3. For My After-Run Coffee

O’Henry’s Coffees

Both locations in Homewood are favorites to hang out with friends after a run. In fact, some of the founding members of the BTC (established in 1979) meet there after their run every Sunday morning. O’Henry’s is owned by Randy and Mary Adamy, runners themselves and friends of the running community. I love the oatmeal for hearty protein-carb replenishment, and in the summer the iced chai latte is my favorite cool-down drink!

4. On the Trail Again

The Lakeshore Trail

I spend hours there each week, running slow, running fast, walking or running my dog, meeting friends, running with my family, and even biking. My oldest son runs for the high school now, and they work out there often. It is conveniently marked every quarter-mile for workouts. We all owe a huge thanks to Homewood’s own Jane Reed Ross for her design, and Phase II into West Homewood is underway .


5. For the Kids

BellRunners for The Bell Center for Early Intervention Programs

Betty Bell is one of the most remarkable people I have ever met. I have been a BellRunner for 11 years, running the Mercedes each year for a hearing-impaired child. I ran my first marathon for a hearing-impaired Bell Center child, the daughter of my son’s first-grade teacher while he was in her class. That school year, 2009-2010, is one of the most treasured memories of my life, working with and running for her, while my son was having his surgery for cochlear implants while a student in her mom’s class!