From colorful antebellum dresses to shipmate attire, the eye-catching outfits are just a small part of the warm southern spirit shared with locals and visitors by the young women that serve as ambassadors in our area. The Dogwood Trail Maids, Azalea Trail Maids, Oakleigh Belles and USS Alabama Crewmates are an integral part of our coastal region.
Dogwood Trail Maids
The 58-year-old Dogwood Trail program is sponsored by the Eastern Shore Optimist Club. The program is designed to further the progress of local young women by offering opportunities of leadership, public speaking and life skills. The Dogwood Trail Court makes approximately 90 appearances as Goodwill Ambassadors annually and the maids receive scholarships from the Optimist Club.
The Oakleigh Belles – Ladies of the House
The Historic Mobile Preservation Society guides the Oakleigh Belles as they represent the Society and the community as ambassadors of southern history, culture and hospitality. The program started in 2008 as a leadership program that includes training members to serve as docents at the Historic Oakleigh House Museum. The ladies attend monthly meetings and participate in a wide variety of special events promoting Oakleigh and the Mobile area.
All Aboard Crewmates!
The USS Alabama Crewmate program dates back to 1967. The nautical themed program was designed to assist with activities and promotion of the newly created USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park. The tradition continues today as Crewmates are selected in a challenging process that includes a detailed application and interview. Scholarship money is award to those fortunate enough to be chosen as Crewmates. They are involved with numerous special events at the Battleship, in Mobile and Baldwin Counties and around the State of Alabama.
Azalea Trail Maids – As Colorful As Spring!
The Azalea Trail Maids deep roots date back to the 1920s with the official first Court named in 1949. A group of 50 high school seniors are selected annually to serve as the official ambassadors for the City of Mobile. They are popular fixtures at special events, not only in Mobile and around Alabama, but around the country. They are ensconced in elaborate hoop skirt dresses in the colors of spring. The Queen of the Azalea Trail Maids wears the coveted pink dress.
For more on Coastal Alabama, check out our Day Trips and visit our partners’ websites.