Best job in town
Some suggestions for prime employment were: manager of the new convention center or Fred Whiddon’s job as president of the University of South Alabama.
Best new product on the market
VCR code numbers
Cholera discovered in Perdido Bay
Best new building
St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, designed by Harvey Gandler, AIA
Sheraton Battle House on Royal Street
Worst historic preservation news
The Battle House dilemma continued. Also, as the year came to an end, more talk of demolition of the German Relief Hall mounted.
Best local monument
The Admiral Semmes statue, recommissioned to stand watch proudly at the foot of Government Street, won the hearts of most locals as best monument.
Worst thing to happen to local media
The new Mobile Register trying to print color
Worst news story of the year
Fire at the German Relief Hall
Best new venture
The convention center or anything Joe Bullard does
Best law passed that encourages business
Sunday beer sales
Best place to buy a gift
Best new restaurant
The newest, The Bakery was far and away the favorite.
Best produce market
Shop Easy, the spin-off enterprise of a former produce manager at the legendary B&H, where Sheriff Ray Bridges encouraged everybody to squeeze the melons, even on Sundays
Best local club band
Velvet Melon, closely followed by the reggae of Banana Republic
“Tosca.” Anything the Mobile Opera produces is award-winning quality, but this production was a special crowd-pleaser.
Worst news for historic preservation
Burning of Leinkauf School
Most attractive debutante
Hallie Hollingsworth Editor’s Note: Now Hallie Hollingsworth Croom, the noted deb was honored this year as one of MB’s Forty Under 40.
Stupidest local law
No high heels downtown and cats on leashes
Although every seafood restaurant in two counties was mentioned, Nan Seas on the Western Shore (now gone) was the winner.
Best local dish
Readers voted that gumbo best expresses the diversity of Mobile. One reader who obviously misunderstood the category voted for WPMI weather woman Tammy Coburn.
Best place to find a date
Try the aisles of Delchamps.
Best use for the Battle House
Celia Wallace has the right idea: Restore the Battle House to its former grandeur as an elegant hotel with restaurants and shopping.
Best radio station
The new ZEW, 92.1 FM
Best news of the year
Truly good news for Mobile included a healthy economy, low interest rates and low unemployment.
The Artist Formerly Known as Prince rocked the Civic Center with “1999, ” “Raspberry Beret” and more.
Best trend in Mobile
Downtown revitalization was the No. 1 response. Also worth mentioning: more inclusiveness, yoga and women wearing less makeup!
Best of Bay took a break this year, as worried MB editors devoted their time to planning a Y2K fallout shelter.
Best fashion trend
Capri pants (Other notable trends included school uniforms, casual Fridays and Billy Bob teeth, which haven’t made it to Spring Hill yet.)
Worst local trend
A drugstore on every corner
Worst new food trend
Sushi. Apparently, Mobilians couldn’t stomach artistically arranged raw fish. They preferred the decidedly funkier oyster.
Worst news of the year
Election recount (or, as one reader put it, “election interruptus.”)
Most colorful character
The peanut man
Best place for late-night, after-theater dinners
Watch out, Ruth’s Chris — after only 28 days of business, the new Café 615 on Dauphin Street made a respectable run for best overall restaurant, before settling to be named as Mobile’s best late-night hangout.
Best high school athlete
A tie between Matt Pierce (UMS-Wright) and Jamarcus Russell (Williamson High)
Most surprising political win
Steve Nodine over Charlie Waller for District 7 City Council seat
Best new politician
Best fishing hole
The Gulf of Mexico
Best new politician
Worst economic news
Paper mill closings
Best littleknown restaurant /Best-kept secret
Callaghan’s Irish Social Club
Best place for vegetarian food
It was surprising how many people not only left this category blank, but answered with a question mark. The best is served at Naturally Yours/Eats of Eden Café.
The Fresh Market, still in its first year of operation in Mobile
Worst fashion trend
According to voters, piercings are the worst fashion faux pas. Other honorable mentions cited: mullets, tattoos, leggings, anything monogrammed and “half-dressed women.”
Best vegetarian restaurant
Those in the know said the best can be found at Jerusalem Café.
Best use of taxpayer money / Best economic news / Greatest expectation of the year
We liked what David Bronner and the RSA are doing in our city. The best use of taxpayer money and best economic news was the new cruise terminal.
Worst local news of the year
Ivan the terrible, the hurricane that hit in September. But at least it gave the younger generation some good hurricane stories to tell until the next big one hits.
Best local commercial
As he says in his commercials — which have featured everything from an elephant to Mary G. Montgomery cheerleaders — “Sandy Sansing can.”
Best place to meet singles
MB readers chose church as the choice spot to find someone special.
Best new building
The RSA Tower was the overwhelming winner.
Worst elected official
It’s a tie between Steve Nodine and Fred Richardson.
Worst use of taxpayer money