Cullman business owners hope luxury hotel honoring legacy of Flying Fifty – WVTM13 Birmingham

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A unique hotel experience is taking flight in Cullman this weekend, and it’s getting a lot of attention for good reason. It’s the history connected to the hotel that makes this place different.The hotel is called the Flying Fifty. Forty-seven men make up the namesake for this unique hotel, which is the first of its kind in the city. The Flying Fifty was birthed out of economic hardship during the 1950s. Owners of the boutique hotel said Cullman had a tough year growing crops because of a weevil outbreak, and many farmers considered moving out of the city back up north. A group of 47 men decided to charter a flight from Cullman to Florida to convince King Edward Cigar to bring their factory to the city.>> WVTM 13 ON-THE-GO: Download our app for freeThe owners of the hotel said that the spirit of community is rooted in everything they do.“The whole community rallied around that,” Paul Knetter, the Flying Fifty co-owner, said. “They gave $20 here, $30 there, $100 here. They built the factory from dollars raised in Cullman. That industry—the whole industry you see in Cullman today was kick started from those guys, and we really want to honor them in that.”Hotel co-owner Challie Knetter hopes the hotel will keep that legacy alive.“That piece of history was kind of going away as if people weren’t remembering it as much,” she said. “It used to be talked about a lot. As years have gone by and things, it was talked about less and less, and it’s really special to us that we get to kind of carry that on and remember that and tell people their story. It’s so unique that they came together and not of themselves — not being greedy, wanting something. They wanted to help their community, and that’s really special.”>> FOLLOW US ON SOCIAL: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube The hotel offers guests a unique experience. There are luxury Airbnbs around the city but nothing like this. There are seven suites, and each one has a different theme all based on a piece of Cullman history.One theme is a steeple suite, which is a nod to the Christian community, with views of seven churches from its balcony. There’s also a founder’s suite, which honors the legacy of the Flying Fifty and their contributions to this community.The hotel will host a ribbon cutting on Saturday at 10 a.m., with tours of the property scheduled until 4 p.m. The event is open to the public, but the hotel won’t officially welcome its first guest until May 17. One of the family members of the original Flying Fifty will be at the ribbon cutting. They’re coming in from Washington, D.C., to celebrate the milestone.

A unique hotel experience is taking flight in Cullman this weekend, and it’s getting a lot of attention for good reason. It’s the history connected to the hotel that makes this place different.

The hotel is called the Flying Fifty. Forty-seven men make up the namesake for this unique hotel, which is the first of its kind in the city.

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The Flying Fifty was birthed out of economic hardship during the 1950s. Owners of the boutique hotel said Cullman had a tough year growing crops because of a weevil outbreak, and many farmers considered moving out of the city back up north. A group of 47 men decided to charter a flight from Cullman to Florida to convince King Edward Cigar to bring their factory to the city.

>> WVTM 13 ON-THE-GO: Download our app for free

The owners of the hotel said that the spirit of community is rooted in everything they do.

“The whole community rallied around that,” Paul Knetter, the Flying Fifty co-owner, said. “They gave $20 here, $30 there, $100 here. They built the factory from dollars raised in Cullman. That industry—the whole industry you see in Cullman today was kick started from those guys, and we really want to honor them in that.”

Hotel co-owner Challie Knetter hopes the hotel will keep that legacy alive.

“That piece of history was kind of going away as if people weren’t remembering it as much,” she said. “It used to be talked about a lot. As years have gone by and things, it was talked about less and less, and it’s really special to us that we get to kind of carry that on and remember that and tell people their story. It’s so unique that they came together and not of themselves — not being greedy, wanting something. They wanted to help their community, and that’s really special.”

>> FOLLOW US ON SOCIAL: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

The hotel offers guests a unique experience. There are luxury Airbnbs around the city but nothing like this. There are seven suites, and each one has a different theme all based on a piece of Cullman history.

One theme is a steeple suite, which is a nod to the Christian community, with views of seven churches from its balcony. There’s also a founder’s suite, which honors the legacy of the Flying Fifty and their contributions to this community.

The hotel will host a ribbon cutting on Saturday at 10 a.m., with tours of the property scheduled until 4 p.m. The event is open to the public, but the hotel won’t officially welcome its first guest until May 17. One of the family members of the original Flying Fifty will be at the ribbon cutting. They’re coming in from Washington, D.C., to celebrate the milestone.

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