Every fall for 15 years the Birchfields drove to the mountains of North Carolina to enjoy the colors of the season. But a fortuitous side trip changed all that.
While driving to North Carolina for their annual fall getaway, Clay Birchfield suggested to his wife, Patti, they stop in the small town of Mentone, Alabama, to just check it out. They fell in love with the artsy village and never made it to North Carolina that year. Nor have they since. With Mentone so much closer to their home, the Birchfields decided to explore buying a place. A contractor showing the couple a sample of his work helped seal the deal. Arriving at a home he built, Clay and Patti stepped onto the deck and found themselves on top of the brow gazing south at Shinbone Valley. They were smitten. The view convinced them to purchase the lot next door.