Lowe Mill expanding, looking for feedback on how to attract out-of-towners

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) -- If you're in the Huntsville area, you've probably heard of Lowe Mill, the historic textile mill converted into an arts center. It's a hot spot for locals, but leaders at the arts facility are ready for the mill to be recognized on a national level. They want to know what you think is the missing piece of the puzzle.

Lowe Mill is huge. There are more than 100 working artists in the facility, but that number is about to shoot up. "We are about to expand in a very big way, we're growing into a new wing," said Dustin Timbrook. "Well, it's an old wing that we're restoring and putting new studios in and we are going to grow by 30%. That's more artists, that's more studio space, that's more gallery space."

Timbrook said it's time to reevaluate his advertising plan. Now that the facility is growing, more people need to know about Huntsville's best kept secret. "My goal right now is to get us in the national spotlight and make us a destination, make us a place where people take a road trip."

He knows he has a big job ahead of him. He's working on getting advertising for Lowe Mill Arts and Entertainment into visitor centers across the southeast. "But advertising isn't very effective if you don't understand who your audience is," he said.  "So, what do people who haven't been to Lowe Mill think about Lowe Mill? What do they think it is? What do they think it looks like? How much art do they think is here?"

Timbrook needs those questions answered. If Lowe Mill is going to expand and continue to thrive, it needs to know what its lacking.

"Help us find out what the perception is," said Timbrook. "Because sadly, people outside of Huntsville don't know about Lowe Mill and we're the biggest game in America, we are the biggest private arts facility in the United States, so people need to know about that, people need to come see it."

If you would like to share your suggestions on how Lowe Mill can attract guests from out of town, check out their Facebook page here. 


  • Ariel

    I find many people do not know it exist. Advertising would be a good think in perhaps an Alabama visitors guide.
    maybe get more well known acts and shows for people interested in things other than burlesque and swing dance…
    maybe a 60’s and 70’s week then an 80’s week etc weekend each geared toward that era..

  • Jackie

    I work in Huntsville every day and have never heard of this. What about wine and arts night. That would certainly bring us out!

  • Nuclear Mike

    And please add more police patrols in the area of Lowe Mills as this is not the safest part of town now…

  • Skillpot

    As long as Taxpayer dollars are not used, but, seems it best to play this one forward, tear it down, and put some good life on the site?

    • Nuclear Mike

      …actually you are correct, I would bet there is a plan to demolish Lowe’s Mills to rebuild an out-of-town or foreign owned LLC (like the new Marriot in Downtown) venture there with taxpayer’s money working its’ way thru the City Council in the background now as all of us who have visited Lowe Mills at least once would agree it is a old falling down building complex reminding us all of a 3rd world country.

      • LUVHSV

        There is no way Lowe Mill is being torn down. It is a privately owned arts facility and the owner plans to keep it that way. It is the LARGEST privately owned arts facility (which means there is no government funding) in the entire United States. I’m sorry you have such a negative view on this property, but that’s why this article is here – what WOULD you like to see at the facility.

  • Nicole

    1) The place is a maze. 2) The drive in is not only a bit scary, but the roads in the neighborhood are dreadful. 3) The exterior of the building looks more ramshackle than cool old industrial. I say give the building and the neighborhood a facelift and add some decent direction signage for starters. Right now if you are outside you don’t necessarily want to go it, and if you are inside you are either lost or don’t see the whole thing. Finally, Lowe Mill should consider hosting a regional, juried, art show. Perhaps it’s not even at the Mill to accommodate better parking and nearby retail — but there are shuttle busses to let visitors visit the Mill easily.

  • John

    Needs more food options. Happy Tummy and Will’s are great but given the HUGE areas available, a few more restaurants would be great.
    I realize the neighborhood is not great but later hours would help.
    Agree with the bathroom, tiny.
    Have the concert series all during the summer instead of stopping in May.

    • Nuclear Mike

      Were there not summer outside music concerts before which were cancelled due to poor attendance from the heat of the day & night ‘baking’ the people sitting in the asphalt parking lot???

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