Boasting a growth rate of 60 percent over the past decade, Alabaster has emerged as a sprawling suburban city just 17 miles south of downtown Birmingham. The city is home to Shelby County's only full-service hospital, the Shelby Baptist Medical Center. Alabaster also hosts one of Shelby County's largest annual celebrations, CityFest, which began in 2003 to celebrate the city's 50th birthday. The city is home to one of the state's largest Christmas Parades, sponsored by the Alabaster Beautification Board. The parks and recreation department efficiently manages a wealth of lush green spaces and sports facilities throughout the community. Young professionals, families, and retirees can enjoy diverse programs, beach volleyball, sports fields and courts, playgrounds, tennis courts, walking tracks, and picnic pavilions. The housing selection includes lovely homes along tree-shaded streets in long-established neighborhoods and newer construction in a variety of architectural styles, sizes, and price ranges.