Frohsin’s Department Store to be featured in cemetery tour

File / The Outlook

Frohsin’s Clothier in downtown Alexander City has been brought back to life and appears as it did in the early 20th century.

The history of Frohsin’s Department Store and the annual Jazz Fest will be explained at the Living History Cemetery Tour on April 13.

Rob Iler, who portrays Ralph Frohsin Sr., said he will talk about the figure’s father, Isaac, who started the store. Iler said Frohsin took over the business after his father suddenly died in 1922.

“(Isaac) is actually the first of the Frohsins to get involved in that particular department store and by marrying into the family and eventually other members of the family sold the store to him and he took it over,” Iler said. “That would be the department store in town that most people are familiar with.”

Iler said Frohsin’s started the annual Jazz Fest in 1990 to celebrate the store’s centennial anniversary.

“Ralph was a very likable and friendly person who appreciated what this town did for him and his family and always tried to give back to the town,” Iler said. “I’m trying to do my best to emulate Ralph and the way he looked. It’s a little more difficult doing a character who many people who will come to this remember.”

The Living History Cemetery Tour will be held between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for students.

The event also features an art show at The Mill Two Eighty with more than 30 artists displaying and selling their works, including pottery, jewelry, paintings, photographs, folk art and more. The art show will open at 8 a.m. and is free to the public. Artists from across Alabama will take part in the show.

Wristband tickets for the cemetery tour can be purchased at the art show. Transportation will be provided from The Mill Two Eighty to the Alexander City Cemetery for the guided tour and back to The Mill Two Eighty. In case of rain, the cemetery tour portion of the event will be held at the Alexander City Theatre II Fine Arts Center at 216 Tallapoosa St.

Editorial staff at Tallapoosa Publishers, Inc. researched the lives of the cemetery characters and drafted the scripts. The actors added their own research to their characters.

Sponsors for the event include Tallapoosa Publishers, Inc., Robinson Iron, Holley’s Home Furnishings, Frohsin’s Clothier, Central Alabama Community College, Main Street Alexander City, Alexander City Lions Club, the City of Alexander City and Radney Funeral Home.