Musical legend and American Idol judge Lionel Richie recently returned to his roots, including a stop at Tuskegee University.
Richie made a stop at his alma mater on Monday as he was honored by his hometown with the dedication “Hello Park.” He also spent time on the campus, as he and his fellow American Idol judges were treated to a performance by the Marching Crimson Pipers, with whom they shared a few moments.
“Hello Park,” named after Richie’s massive 1980s hit, is a green space near the university nominated by him in the Lowe’s Hometown’s project. It sits on a plot of land Richie’s family owns near the entrance of Tuskegee University.
“I decided to take that land right across the street and turn that into a welcoming place, not only for visitors coming to Tuskegee, but also for the students and faculty to be able to sit and basically bathe and meditate in the history of Tuskegee University and the surrounding area,” Richie said in a July interview with Southern Living. “There’s George Washing Carver, Booker T. Washington, the Tuskegee Airmen … there’s so much history in that area. It needed a gathering spot. It needed a place where people could come and talk and reflect.”
American Idol is currently preparing for its 22nd season of television.