Clarkson Covered Bridge

Members of the Marshall County Master Gardeners take photographs while visiting Cullman County’s historic Clarkson Covered Bridge Monday afternoon. The bridge and surrounding park reopened to the public Monday after being closed since last summer.

Why squabble over Park Place when you can buy all of downtown Cullman? The makers of a new, familiar-looking board game with a super-local twist are hoping that anyone who’s ever called Cullman County home is thinking the same thing — and that they’re ready to spend.

Inspired by Hasbro’s classic Monopoly, Cullman County-opoly is a buy-and-sell board game that puts players in charge of coming out on top of the local property wars. The $19.98 game isn’t a part of the official Monopoly franchise and uses none of its protected trademarks. Instead, it’s made by the Ohio-based Late for the Sky Production Company, which already has a long track record making licensed collegiate board games with a property trading theme.

The idea behind putting a Cullman-flavored spin on the formula, the company said in a press release, is to give local people a fun way to come together over the names, sights, and landmarks they already know and love: “People outside of Cullman County may know little or nothing about the Stony Lonesome Mud Run or Heritage Park, but if you are from Cullman County, it is a big deal.”

There’s no Jail to crash your progress in Cullman County-opoly (players get stuck in a traffic jam instead.) But with a little luck, you can snap up the rights to local properties that range from Clarkson Covered Bridge to Ave Maria Grotto to Welti Falls, or take control of local events like Oktoberfest or the Cullman County Fair.

The game makers did their homework ahead of time, too: the game board and included cards set features plenty of photos and graphics highlighting well-known local landmarks (a shadowy silhouette of the Cullman Christmas Pyramid stands in where Monopoly puts its railroad properties, marking recurring stops on your trip around the block.)

Fresh off its launch just this month, the game is being sold exclusively through local Walmart stores and, according to Late for the Sky, has so far been in high demand. “The store manager is watching the supplies closely,” said the company, “so if they are sold out today, you can be certain more are already on the way.”

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