Canceled last spring because of the pandemic, Saturday walking tours return this month in more than 20 Alabama towns, including Moulton, Athens, Mooresville and Elkmont, and Decatur tours will be virtual this year.

The free tours will be each Saturday, starting at 10 a.m., as part of the Alabama Tourism Department’s April Walking Tours program.

The six Athens tours offered this year are the Historic Beaty District, Historic Houston District, the Historic Downtown Square, Athens State University, Athens City Cemetery and the antebellum Donnell Home. The Donnell Home tour will not be available this Saturday.

All Athens tour participants will come to the Visitor Center located at 100 N. Beaty St. in Athens.

“This is the first time in a while that we’ve had this many tours,” said Teresa Todd, president of the Athens-Limestone County Tourism Association. “This will give people more of a selection to choose from.”

In the past, “we tried to offer at least four tours so people could come to a different tour every Saturday,” she said.

Todd said the tours are an opportunity for newcomers to the area to learn more about their community, and the outdoor setting will allow visitors to take part in the events while following social distancing precautions.

Other tours in the area will start from the Lawrence County Archives at 698 Main St. in Moulton, the Post Office on Lauderdale Street in Mooresville and the Elkmont Depot at 25460 Railroad St.

Four virtual Decatur tours will be available that wind through the Old State Bank and historic Old Decatur area, including its churches, while one focuses on Decatur’s nickname of The River City.

“All four of the tours will be available on Saturday on our YouTube (@VisitDecaturAlabama),” said Danielle Gibson, president and CEO of Decatur Morgan County Tourism. The segments are each 20 to 30 minutes.

According to Todd, guides will escort Athens tour participants through historic neighborhoods and landmarks. Reservations are not required and tours are held rain or shine.

Participants are encouraged to wear a jacket, rain jacket or sweater and comfortable shoes for walking on a variety of surfaces. Tours may take a little over an hour to complete.

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