Dothan, Alabama

Dothan, Alabama
—  City  —
Downtown Dothan, Alabama, looking up Foster St.
Nickname(s): The Peanut Capital of the World or The Circle City or The Hub of the Wiregrass
Location in Houston County and the state of Alabama
Dothan is located in Alabama
Location in Alabama.
Coordinates: 31°13′38″N 85°24′26″W / 31.22722°N 85.40722°W / 31.22722; -85.40722Coordinates: 31°13′38″N 85°24′26″W / 31.22722°N 85.40722°W / 31.22722; -85.40722
Country United States
State Alabama
Counties Houston, Dale, Henry
 - Total 86.8 sq mi (224.8 km2)
 - Land 86.6 sq mi (224.3 km2)
 - Water 0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2)
Elevation 322 ft (98 m)
Population (2009)
 - Total 67,560
 - Density 665.2/sq mi (284.93/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 - Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 36301-36305
Area code(s) 334
FIPS code 01-21184
GNIS feature ID 0117397

Dothan (play /ˈdθən/) is a city located in the southeastern corner of the U.S. state of Alabama, situated approximately 20 miles (32 km) west of the Georgia state line and 18 miles (29 km) north of Florida. It is the seat of Houston County, with portions extending into nearby Dale County and Henry County. Its name derives from Genesis 37:17: "let us go to Dothan." According to 2007 Census Bureau estimates, the city's population was 65,447,[1] making it the largest town in this part of the state.

Dothan is the principal city of the Dothan Metropolitan Statistical Area which encompasses all of Geneva, Henry, and Houston counties; the small portion that lies in Dale County is part of the EnterpriseOzark Micropolitan Statistical Area. The combined population for the entire Dothan metropolitan area in 2000 was 137,916.[2] The city serves as the main transportation and commercial hub for a significant part of southeastern Alabama, southwest Georgia, and nearby portions of the Florida Panhandle. Since approximately one-fourth of the U.S. peanut crop is produced nearby, with much of it being processed in the city, Dothan calls itself "The Peanut Capital of the World."[3]



Earliest years

The area that is now Dothan was originally inhabited by members of the Alabama and Creek Native American tribes. Within the vast forests of pine that covered this region, a glade surrounded by poplar trees sheltered a large spring at the crossroads of two trails, where local Indians used to meet and camp. White settlers moving through the area during the late 18th and early 19th centuries named the spring "Poplar Head," but most felt that the sandy soil common to this region would be unsuitable for farming, so they moved on. A rude stockade was constructed on the Barber Plantation, where settlers could take refuge whenever they felt threatened. This fort disappeared by the 1840s, with the end of the Indian Wars in Alabama and the removal of the Native Americans further west.[citation needed]

The first permanent white settlers consisted of nine families who moved into the area during the early 1830s to harvest the abundant timber. Their settlement, named "Poplar Head" after the spring, failed to thrive and was all but abandoned by the time of the Civil War. After the war, the establishment of a local Pony Express route coupled with other developments during the Reconstruction era to finally allow the town to bloom. On November 11, 1885, the locals voted to incorporate, naming their new city "Dothan" after discovering that "Poplar Head" was already registered with the U.S. post office for a town in northern Alabama.[4]

Civil unrest

On October 12, 1889,[5] Dothan was the scene of a deadly altercation resulting from a dispute over a tax levied on all wagons operating within city limits. Local farmers opposed this levy and united in a body called the "Farmers Alliance." The arrest of some of the alliance's men led to a riot, and although the violence lasted only a few minutes, it left two men dead and others seriously wounded.[6] Chief of police Tobe Domingus was found guilty of murder, and sentenced to ten years incarceration. Appeals to the Alabama Supreme Court resulted in a new trial,[7] and Domingus was acquitted.[8]

Expansion and growth

In 1893, Dothan secured a stop on the first railroad to be built in this region. This development brought new prosperity and further growth, as local farmers now had a means of marketing their produce. The pine forests were harvested for turpentine and wood, which was transformed into ship masts, lumber and other wood products.

As the pines were cut and land subsequently cleared, cotton became a staple of the local economy, until cotton was devastated by the Boll weevil in the early 1900s. Farmers turned to peanut production, experiencing remarkable success and bringing financial gain to the city, which became a hub for the production and transport of peanuts and peanut-related products. Today, one-quarter of the U.S. peanut crop is harvested within 75 miles (121 km) of Dothan,[9] and the city refers to itself as "the Peanut Capital of the World." A two-week fall festival known as the National Peanut Festival celebrates this heritage. The city also sought out industry, with textile and agricultural concerns being joined by manufacturing plants for the Sony, Michelin, and General Electric corporations later in the century. In 1939, Dothan took part in the New York World's Fair.

Economic growth was also generated by some of Dothan's Jewish citizens, most notably Hyman Blumberg and his wife Esther, who had settled in Dothan in 1892 and started a retail apparel business which remained in his family until closing in 1975—a business noted for its moving escalator, the first in the area.[10]

Later events

Originally part of Henry County, Dothan became the county seat of the newly formed Houston County on May 9, 1903. The city continued to flourish and grow throughout the twentieth century, with an airport being constructed in 1965 and the Wallace Community College in 1969. Troy University in Dothan[11] was established in 1961 and currently occupies a landscaped campus northwest of the city. The Southern Company constructed the Joseph M. Farley Nuclear Generating Station near the city between 1970–81; this 1,776 megawatt facility currently generates approximately 13,000 GW-h per year.[12] More recent decades have seen factories constructed in the city by Sony and Michelin Corporations, together with the emergence of a local arts and music scene complete with an art museum, several theaters, symphony orchestra, dance troupe and other cultural amenities.

In 2008, Alabama developer Ronnie Gilley and his business partner Kix Brooks of Country superstar duo Brooks & Dunn announced plans to construct a $300 million entertainment venue just south of Dothan.[13] This development, to be named "Country Crossing", is ultimately intended to feature restaurants, a dinner theater, camping facilities, concert facilities, fairgrounds and a charity bingo hall.[14] While approved by the County Commission, Gilley's development has encountered stiff opposition from local religious and anti-gambling groups who are concerned that the planned bingo hall is illegal under state law, and would bring increased crime and gambling addiction to the area.[15] Gilley had previously threatened to pull his project if bingo was ruled illegal,[16] but ground-breaking began on March 2, 2009.[17] Country Crossing is expected to generate over 1,200 jobs during its first year alone.[17] On April 22, 2011 Gilley pled guilty to Count 1 on Conspiracy, Counts 2 – 13 Federal Programs Bribery, Counts 34 – 37 Money Laundering. Count 1 – Conspiracy is reported to carry a fine up to $ 50,000.00 and 5 years; Counts 2 through 13, Federal Program Bribery, carry fine up to $ 50,000.00 and up to 10 years; and Counts 34 – 37, Money Laundering, carry a fine up to $ 250.000.00 and up to 10 years. Forfeitures are possible, Gilley waived any rights to appeals. A total fines of $ 1.4 million dollars in fines and all sentences combined could result in 105 years.[18]


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 86.8 square miles (225 km2), of which, 86.6 square miles (224 km2) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.52 km2) of it (0.23%) is water.

Ross Clark Circle on Dothan's east side

In addition to styling itself "The Peanut Capital of the World", Dothan is also the self-proclaimed "Hub of the Wiregrass". It is also commonly referred to as "The Circle City", due to being encircled by Alabama State Route 210, a four-lane highway also known as the Ross Clark Circle. Recent decades have seen the city expand in several directions beyond the confines of this highway.

Dothan's name is often mispronounced by those unfamiliar with the area.

Fort Rucker, the "Home of Army Aviation", is located about 20 miles (32 km) west of the city, just north of the town of Daleville.


Dothan has a humid subtropical climate. It experiences hot, humid summers and generally mild winters, with average high temperatures ranging from 93.0 °F (33.9 °C) in the summer to 59.0 °F (15.0 °C) high during winter. Snowfall is an extremely rare event — a 2-inch snowfall occurs about once every ten years or so, which results in a yearly average of 0.2 inches (5.1 mm).[19] Tornadoes are a constant danger during the spring, summer and fall; the city's tornado activity is slightly below the Alabama state average, but 79% above the U.S. average.[20]

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high
°F (°C)
Average low
°F (°C)
53 (11.8)
Average rainfall: inches/mm 6.3
56.1 /


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1890 247
1900 3,275 1,225.9%
1910 7,016 114.2%
1920 10,034 43.0%
1930 16,046 59.9%
1940 17,194 7.2%
1950 21,584 25.5%
1960 31,237 44.7%
1970 36,733 17.6%
1980 48,750 32.7%
1990 53,589 9.9%
2000 62,145 16.0%
Est. 2007 65,447 5.3%

According to the 2007 census[21] estimate, there were 65,447 people, 23,685 households and 17,108 families residing in the city. The population density was 667.7 per square mile (257.4/km2). There were 27,908 housing units at an average density of 299.3 per square mile (115.5/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 67.33% white, 30.11% black or African American, 0.28% Native American, 0.85% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander American, 0.46% from other races, and 0.96% from two or more races. 1.32% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There are 27,908 households, of which 31.5% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.9% were married couples living together, 15.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.3% were non-families. 28.4% of all households are made up of individuals, and 10.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.39, and the average family size was 2.94. 70% of women with school-age children work.

Age distribution was 25.4% under the age of 18, 8.4% from 18 to 24, 28.3% from 25 to 44, 23.3% from 45 to 64, and 14.6% who are 65 or older. The median age is 37 years. For every 100 females, there are 88.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 83.3 males. 22% of adults have never married. 55% are currently married. 3% are separated. 12% are divorced. 9% are widowed.

The median household income was $35,000, and the median family income was $45,025. Males had a median income of $34,475 versus $22,572 for females. The per capita income for the city was $20,539. About 12.7% of families and 15.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 23.2% of those under age 18 and 15.0% of those age 65 or over.

Approximately 79% of residents completed high school, while 23% went on to complete college. 8% of the population has a graduate or professional degree; 6% are unemployed. Average commute-to-work time is 18 minutes.


Houston County Courthouse in Dothan, Alabama

Dothan is governed by a Mayor and City Council (called the "Board of Commissioners"), with a City Manager employed to manage city affairs.[22] The city is divided into six council districts, with one commissioner elected from each district to a four-year term. Members of the commission serve part-time, and are responsible for drafting all city ordinances and policies, and appropriation of city funds. Dothan's mayor is elected at-large for four years, and serves as a member of the Board of Commissioners. The Board employs a City Manager to implement its policies and manage the city's day-to-day operations, including hiring, managing and firing the heads of city government departments. A total of 999 full-time and 215 part-time employees work for the various city agencies in Dothan, including police, fire, clerical, judicial, finance, public works and utilities.[23]

As of 2010, the office of Mayor is held by Mike Schmitz, while the City Manager is Mike West. Larry H. Williams serves as city Fire Chief, while Greg Benton, a 21 year veteran with the police force, is police chief.[22][24][25]

Dothan is located in Alabama's Second Congressional District; its current Representative (as of 2011) is Martha Roby (R). The city is located in three different state senate districts (28, 29 and 31)[26] and in four state representative districts (85, 86, 87 and 93).[27]


The majority of K-12 students in Dothan and Houston County attend Dothan City Schools,[28] or Houston County Schools.[29] Others attend local private schools such as Houston Academy,[30] Providence Christian School,[31] Northside Methodist Academy,[32] Emmanuel Christian School,[33] or Westgate Christian School.[34] Institutes of higher education include Fortis College, Troy University Dothan Campus,[11] Wallace Community College and Bethany Divinity College & Seminary.[35]



Dothan's airport, the Dothan Regional Airport, is currently (2009) served by Atlantic Southeast Airlines, a subsidiary of Delta Air Lines, with 3-5 daily flights to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. This airport was established at the former Army airbase at Napier Field in 1965, after a push to move the airport was started in the early 1950s by then-Mayor Richmond C. McClintock. Jet services began in 1968 with Southern Airways' acquisition of DC-9 aircraft, and continue today using the CRJ-200 regional passenger jet.[36]

Unlike many municipal airports in the U.S., the Dothan airport is entirely self-supporting, operating without any tax-generated funding. All airport revenue is generated through rental and other user fees charged to patrons and tenants of the facility.[37]

Ground transportation

The city of Dothan has hosted a number of railroads throughout its existence, beginning with the Alabama Midland Railroad in 1893. The Chattahoochee & Gulf (later the Central of Georgia) would reach Dothan as part of a continuous route from Columbia, Alabama to Lockhart, Florida. Additionally, the Bay Line Railroad would construct a line connecting Dothan to Panama City, Florida in 1908. There were also a number of logging railroads and other shortlines that existed near Dothan in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The Bay Line and Central of Georgia railroads jointly operated passenger service from Atlanta to Panama City via Dothan until 1957. Dothan was also a stop for two Seaboard Coast Line local passenger trains from Waycross, Georgia to Montgomery, Alabama until 1971. And finally, Dothan was a stop for the South Wind - later Amtrak's Floridian - passenger trains, with service ending in 1979. The Floridian was the last passenger train to operate through Dothan.

A number of changes came to Dothan area railroads over the last 50 years. The Central of Georgia would spin off a portion of their line from Hartford to Dothan to the Hartford & Slocomb railroad in 1953, which was later abandoned from Hartford to Taylors in 1992. In 2003, Central of Georgia successor Norfolk Southern sold their route from Dothan to Hilton, Georgia to the Chattahoochee & Gulf shortline, leaving CSXT as the last Class I operating in Dothan. The most recent changes to Dothan's railroads came with the Genesee & Wyoming Inc. purchase of the Bay Line, H&S, and Chattahoochee and Gulf railroads.

Greyhound bus station in Dothan, AL

Although passenger trains no longer operate through Dothan, Greyhound Bus Lines maintains a station in town. While Dothan does not have regularly scheduled public transportation, it offers dial-a-ride service through its non-profit Wiregrass Transit Authority.[38]

The Dothan area has been contending for a potential Interstate 10 connector out of Florida.[39] Prelimiary funds for this project were approved as part of a 2009 Federal spending bill signed into law by President Barack Obama.[40] Presently, the city is served by three U.S. highways (all four-laned within the city limits, and for some distance beyond): U.S. 84 (east-west), U.S. 231 (north-south) and U.S. 431 (north-south; southern terminus in Dothan).

Healthcare and utilities

Dothan is the home of two hospitals: Southeast Alabama Medical Center[41] and Flowers Hospital.[42] These two hospitals are the largest employers in Houston County.[citation needed] According to a 2003 study, fewer than 10% of Dothan area residents, or 14,156 people, have no health insurance.[43]

Pilcher's Ambulance Co. is located at 923 S. Foster St. They have been serving Alabama since 1965.

Electricity, water and sewer services, together with residential trash service, are provided through the city government.[44] Natural gas service is provided through the Southeast Alabama Gas District,[45] while propane is marketed through Amerigas and Ferrellgas.


The largest Christian denomination in Dothan is the Southern Baptist church.[46] There are also Churches of Christ, Methodist, Presbyterian, AME, Freewill Baptist, Episcopal, United Pentecostal, Assemblies of God, and various other Evangelical churches serving Dothan's Protestant community. St. Columba Catholic Church caters to Dothan's Roman Catholics.[47] Dothan hosts a Reform Jewish synagogue, Temple Emanu-El,[48] which became nationally famous when they offered Jewish families as much as $50,000 to relocate to Dothan in 2008.[49] The city is also home to a Muslim mosque,[50] and an Antiochian Eastern Orthodox church.[51]


Dothan is served by one daily newspaper, the Dothan Eagle,[52] and one weekly newspaper, the Dothan Progress.[53] and a news website Rickey Stokes News[54] It is host to three television stations, WDFX 34 (FOX network)[55] WDHN 18 (ABC network) and the oldest television station in southeastern Alabama, WTVY 4 (CBS network). The city is also served by several radio stations; formats include classical, Christian, rock, country, rap, urban contemporary, talk radio and sports.[56]


Dothan hosted Minor league baseball teams from 1915 to 1917 (Al-FL-GA League and Dixie League) and again from 1936 through 1962 (AL-FL League, GA-FL League and AL State League). Teams were known at varying times as the Boll Weevils, Browns, Rebels, Cardinals and Phillies. Major League affiliations were maintained in later years with the St. Louis Cardinals and the Philadelphia Phillies organizations. All teams played at the "D" league level, a defunct minor-league classification that represented the entry or "rookie" level in the minors. Ballparks included Baker Field, City Park, Stadium Park and the Wiregrass Memorial Stadium.[57]

Recently,[when?] efforts have been advanced to return minor-league Baseball to Dothan. Proposals have been made for the city to construct a new stadium in hopes of attracting a new Class A franchise; projected costs for the ballpark are between $8 and 15 million dollars, which would be paid for using tax dollars, while private investors would put up the estimated $7 million required to start the team itself. No further action appears to have been taken in regard to this proposal.[citation needed]

Dothan was selected as one of eleven Alabama sites for a course on the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail.[58] This set of courses has been referred to as possibly "the biggest bargain in the country" by the Wall Street Journal, and "some of the best public golf on earth" by the New York Times.[citation needed] The Dothan course, Highland Oaks, was rated in 1994 by Golf Digest as the 7th best public course in America, and 31st on their list of the fifty most affordable golf courses.[citation needed]

In 2007-10, the city was recognized as part of the "Playful City USA" initiative by KaBOOM! created to honor cities that ensure that their children have great places to play.[59]


According to the Dothan Chamber of Commerce, Dothan contains a civilian labor force of approximately 168,000 persons, with an additional 4,900 serving on active military duty in nearby Ft. Rucker.[60] The local economy is well-diversified, with services claiming 22% of the workforce, manufacturing 19%, retail trade 18%, government 17%, transportation and construction 6% each, and agriculture, wholesale trade, and real estate/finance/insurance claiming 4% each.[61] Dothan's economy includes agriculture, aerospace, distribution, retail and advanced technology, with Sony (Sony closed its doors in January 2011), General Electric, Michelin, Dunbarton, Barrington Seafood, Qualico Steel, Pemco World Air Services and several other companies represented. Movie Gallery, which was the second largest video rental chain in the United States, opened its first store in Dothan in 1985 and maintained its headquarters there. According to Dothan's 2007 Annual Financial Report, the 2007 fiscal year saw 605 new jobs and $29,685,000 in capital investment brought to the city.[62] Although peanut production remains a mainstay of the agricultural sector, cotton is gaining in importance. Tomato production is locally significant as well, especially in the nearby town of Slocomb, which styles itself "the Tomato Capital of the World".[63]

The people of Dothan enjoy one of the lowest costs of living in the country.[citation needed] Dothan was rated #1 by US News and World Report in 2006 as the cheapest city to live in, due to low local taxes. Sales tax is a large source of revenue for the city, thanks to retail and restaurant businesses patronized by the large number of travelers on Highway 231, and also because Dothan is the largest city within a radius of 80 miles (129 km).


According to 2003 statistics released by the F.B.I., Dothan has a violent crime rate largely below the national average, with only four homicides reported in the city that year. Property crime rates were slightly above the national average. Only 239 violent offenses (murder, rape, robbery and aggravated assault) were reported in 2003, compared with 2,917 property crimes.[64]



  • The National Peanut Festival occurs annually in November. The festival hosts competitions in different areas for all ages. A large midway, entertainment by nationally known recording artists, and the largest parade in the area are featured attractions.

Museums and monuments

  • The US Army Aviation Museum, located on nearby Fort Rucker, houses one of the largest helicopter collections in the world. The museum focuses on the role of fixed and rotary-wing flight in the U.S. Army. The exhibits depict over 50 years of Army Aviation, and include a number of life size dioramas, films, and interpretive material. Several period aircraft are available for viewing.
  • George Washington Carver Monument, located at the National Peanut Festival Fairgrounds, pays tribute to one of the nation's greatest educators and agricultural researchers, whose work resulted in the creation of 325 products from peanuts, more than 100 products from sweet potatoes and hundreds more from a dozen other plants native to the South. These products contributed to rural economic improvement, by offering alternative crops to cotton that were beneficial for the farmers and for the land.
  • The Wiregrass Museum of Art, located in the city's original power and water plant (1913), features ongoing exhibitions of visual and decorative art. The museum's permanent collection includes works by Contemporary Southeastern artists such as Dale Kennington, Frank Flemming, Dale Lewis and Cal Breed, as well as material by nationally recognized artists including Frank Stella and Jim Dine. The museum was organized in 1989 by private citizens and the City of Dothan; it is operated by the Wiregrass Museum of Art, Inc., a 501(c)3.[65]
Wiregrass Museum of Art
  • The George Washington Carver Museum relates the story of the African-American genius who invented over 500 different products from peanuts and other plants native to the South. Besides offering exhibits about Carver himself, this museum also offers information on African cultures and their influences on the world, prominent African-American scientists, explorers and inventors, and the positive contributions made by African-Americans in military affairs and the area of social development.[66]
  • Peanut Monument at the Visitor Information Center proclaims Dothan as the "Peanut Capital of the World".[67]

Art and Theatre scene

  • The Featured Players Theatre: Originally located at 158 S. Foster St. in downtown Dothan, Featured Players moved in 2009 to 137 N. Saint Andrews Street. This company offers live plays for adults five times a year; its Children's Theatre produces plays four times a year. When not presenting plays, Featured Players offers a "coffee-house" set-up with "open mic" nights and acoustic folk rock artists. Open Friday and Saturday nights.[68]
  • Southeast Alabama Community Theater offers live entertainment and theatrical productions for the Dothan community.[69]
  • "Joseph" Statue at Millennium Park is a ten-foot, cast bronze sculpture, located in the historic downtown area. It depicts the Bible verse, "For I heard them say, Let us go to Dothan" (Genesis 37:17), which inspired the city founders in 1885 to change the name of the town from Poplar Head to Dothan.[70]
  • Peanuts Around Town is a public art project organized by The Downtown Group, consisting of 5-foot-tall (1.5 m) peanut sculptures decorated in various fashions and displayed around Dothan.[71]
  • Wiregrass Festival of Murals is an ongoing project offering historic murals painted by nationally and internationally acclaimed muralists on walls of buildings in the downtown historic district. Guided tours are available upon request.[72]
  • The Dothan Wiregrass Art League is an organization of local artists who have banded together to promote art in the community. DWAL sponsors art shows, exhibits and workshops. Many of the artists teach weekly art classes to the community.[73]


Local music

  • Dothan Opera House, built in 1915, features theatre performances, concerts, symphonies, ballet performances, and other cultural events. Tours are available upon request.[75]
  • Music South, formerly the Southern Alabama Symphony Association, offers a wide variety of musical performances, from classical symphony performances to jazz, African and other musical styles. "Music by Moonlight" offers four free concerts per year at Dothan's Landmark Park, featuring classical, jazz, Celtic and Bluegrass musicians, among others.[76]
  • Country Crossing is a multimillion-dollar country music venue being constructed south of Dothan along U.S. Highway 231. When completed, this facility will offer restaurants, lodging, retail, camping and charity bingo venues, together with a large amphitheater featuring performances by top-name country and western stars.[77]
  • Patti Rutland Jazz is a professional contemporary jazz and hip-hop dance company located in Dothan. This company produces two full-length jazz and hip-hop theatrical dance productions yearly (one in late February and one in early June) at their home in the Cultural Arts Center,[78] as well as at Dothan's historical landmark Opera House. Patti Rutland Jazz operates as a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization whose core mission is to offer its dancers to the Wiregrass Region to assist under-served youths with free dance classes. This mutually beneficial program hopes to make Dothan a destination for, and a source of, future professional dance talent in the United States.[79]

Area attractions

Themed attractions

  • Adventureland Theme Park is a family-oriented mini-theme park. It includes two 18-hole miniature golf courses with waterfalls, a figure-eight go-cart track, bumper boats, batting cages, a Max Flight roller coaster simulator, and a large arcade.[80]
  • Dothan Area Botanical Gardens offer a paved nature trail and rose and herb gardens, as well as a demonstration garden.
  • Landmark Park Agricultural Museum and Starlab Planetarium is the official agriculture museum of the State of Alabama. It includes a 1900s farmstead with farmhouse, outhouses and farm animals. Other attractions include a nature trail and a planetarium.[81]


  • The Press Thornton Future Masters junior golf tournament has been held annually since 1950 in early July. More than 600 junior golfers participate in this part of the Junior Grand Slam of Golf hosted by the Dothan Country Club.[82]
  • Dothan National Golf Course, Established in 1968 as the Olympia Spa, this resort was built after the discovery of its therapeutic hot mineral springs. This facility includes a golf course, hotel, restaurant & lounge, swimming pool, and an indoor natural Hot Mineral Springs Spa that is fed from a depth of over 3000 feet with a water temperature of 104 degrees
    Dothan National Golf


Other venues

Dothan Civic Center
  • Westgate Park and Water World is a five-field complex hosting local, regional, state and national softball tournaments. It is adjacent to Water World, Westgate Recreational Complex and the BMX Track. Water World has a wave pool and water slides.[85]
  • Westgate Tennis Center has sixteen lighted clay tennis courts.[86]
  • The Dothan Civic Center was constructed in 1975, and features 10,800 square feet (1,000 m2) of exhibit space and seating for 3,100.[87]
  • Porter Hardware is the oldest operating business in Dothan, and is billed as the oldest hardware store in Alabama.[88]
  • Wiregrass Commons Mall[89]

Notable natives and residents

  • Dothan is the hometown of professional skateboarder Jamie Thomas, creator of two skateboard companies and a shoe company.
  • Larry Brackins, an American football wide receiver who is currently a member of the Philadelphia Soul of the Arena Football League was born and raised in Dothan and graduated from Dothan High School.
  • Allen Forrest aka Matchstik Rapper and Music producer

Sister cities

Dothan has two sister cities, as designated by Sister Cities International:


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  26. ^ 2001 Alabama Senate District Map. Retrieved on 2009-04-27.
  27. ^ 2001 Alabama House District Map. Retrieved on 2009-04-27.
  28. ^ Dothan City Schools
  29. ^ Houston County Schools
  30. ^ Houston Academy
  31. ^ Providence Christian School
  32. ^ Northside Methodist Academy
  33. ^ Emmanuel Christian School
  34. ^ Westgate Christian School
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  66. ^ George Washington Carver Museum
  67. ^ Peanut Monument
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  71. ^ Peanuts Around Town
  72. ^ Wiregrass Festival of Murals
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