Mentone: An arts colony atop Lookout Mountain

Explore booths full of handmade crafts at JulyFest Art and Music Festival.

When it comes to the arts, Mentone, a town of less than 400 residents atop Lookout Mountain in DeKalb County, Ala., punches above its weight class.

Its little downtown is replete with art galleries. Craftspeople make everything from quilts to carvings to jewelry. And the Mentone-based Little River Arts Council is host to a number of events.

"We believe the arts are for everyone, beginning with our children and continuing throughout lifetimes," the council's website says. "Our goal is to encourage individual creativity and to broaden community participation, appreciation and support for the visual, performing, and literary arts in the Mentone Area."

Mentone has other things going for it, too - like the South's southernmost ski resort, the highest elevation of any incorporated town in the state and a 104-foot waterfall, DeSoto Falls, that flows just on the outskirts of Mentone.