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Birmingham is the largest city in the state of Alabama. Home to over 200,000 people, Birmingham boasts some impressive history that has earned it the nickname of "The Magic City." Birmingham is also the center of a sprawling urbanization area totaling over a million inhabitants. Founded in 1871 as a steel production center, the city grew radically over a period of just a few decades, making it one of the fastest expanding urban centers in the country.
Birmingham is home to the Southern Museum of Flight, which contains an extensive collection of aircraft, from the Wright Brothers earliest creations, to World War II bombers, to early biplanes used in the 1920s. Birmingham also houses the McWane Center, a science wonderland where both children and adults can experience everything from a Wild Earth Safari Simulation to the 9000-square foot ScienceQuest, where children can build, launch, and learn.
Vulcan Park in Birmingham houses a 126 foot (38 m statue and pedestal cast-iron statue of the Roman God Vulcan. The figure is the world's tallest iron sculpture with an observation deck. The statue and the 10-acre park surrounding it are free and open to the public year-round. Birmingham is also home to several festivals around the year, including the City Stages music festival, the Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival, the Southern Heritage Festival, and the pet-parade festival Do Dah Day. Book fairs are also a common occurrence in Birmingham, as the city sponsors arts and crafts to promote both local and national artists.
Birmingham is an important motor sports center. The NASCAR Nextel Cup, the WERA National Championship Series, and the Aaron's 499 are run here, along with several dirt bike and superbike competitions. The Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum offers visitors the chance of seeing 45 cars and over 1000 competition motorcycles, including 71 vintage Harley-Davidsons, from around the world. The collection is organized in five levels and 8000 square feet of total luxury.
No matter what your taste and interests are, the city of Birmingham has something to offer everybody.