New signs to say "Welcome to Sweet Home Alabama" - Montgomery Alabama news.

New signs to say "Welcome to Sweet Home Alabama"

(Source: WSFA 12 News) (Source: WSFA 12 News)
(Source: WSFA 12 News) (Source: WSFA 12 News)

Tourists traveling into Alabama on interstate highways will soon be greeted by new green and white signs that feature the well-known saying "Welcome to Sweet Home Alabama."

State tourism and transportation officials say the "Alabama The Beautiful" signs that have stood at the state line since 2003 will be replaced by new "Sweet Home Alabama" signs over the next few months.

After the Alabama Legislature approved a bill selecting the phrase as the official marketing slogan, Gov. Robert Bentley directed the state tourism department to erect new signs, director Lee Sentell said.

"The phrase makes people happy. The song is recognized and loved all over the world," Sentell said.

John Cooper, director of the Alabama Department of Transportation, said signs will be fabricated and erected in the next few months. Smaller versions of the signs will be on the grounds of the eight state welcome centers to serve as backdrops for travelers' photos.

Since 2003, the state's welcome signs have featured the phrase Alabama the Beautiful. The state's tourism department's advertising budget will fund the $61,000 replacement project.

Lynyrd Skynyrd recorded "Sweet Home Alabama" in 1973, but Alabama has used the song title on car tags and in tourism promotions.

Copyright 2013 WSFA 12 News.  All rights reserved.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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