Category Archives: Events

Much to do this weekend, and much traffic to accompany it

20150611_114123This weekend, one thing you should not hear from a fellow resident is, “There’s nothing to do in Birmingham, AL.” There are several large events happening on both Friday and Saturday evenings in the city’s greater downtown area. The BJCC issued a press release to unveil their plans for traffic management as they prepare to host three Garth Brooks concerts featuring Trisha Yearwood (one June 12 and two on June 13) and multiple performances of Menopause: The Musical. This also happens to be the first time the adjacent Uptown entertainment district will operate as an open-carry zone — on Friday and Saturday — since getting approval from the City Council in March. They’ll get a chance to check out the new signage marking the boundaries for the district in addition to finally seeing the BJCC Legacy Arena’s new signage.

But first, they’ll navigate the modified traffic pattern:

BJCC Garth Brooks parking map

The highlights? You won’t be able to drive through the complex using Richard Arrington, Jr., Boulevard; it’ll be closed between 9th Avenue North and 22nd Street, North. By the way, 9th Avenue North will be operating as a one-way street heading westbound while 19th Street will be operating as a one-way northbound between 9th and 11th Avenues North.

Concert attendees and theater-goers may get a chance to rub elbows with those attending the kickoff of the 2015 Art on the Rocks! after-hours series at the Birmingham Museum of Art, attendees of the Y’all Connect digital storytelling concert looking for a bite to eat, baseball fans heading to Regions Field to watch the Barons take on the Chattanooga Lookouts, or moviegoers heading to the Alabama Theatre to watch Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

… and then there’s Saturday.

Parking Map 2014

Barons fans will be milling about downtown and Parkside once again (first pitch is at 6:30 p.m.), as will those attending the Deontay Wilder WBC Heavyweight Title bout against Eric Molina at Bartow Arena. UAB has released the parking plan posted above in advance of Saturday’s event to help folks know where they can and cannot park.

Full day of events, recognition planned in Birmingham for Veterans Day

VeteransDay2013After gathering Monday night to honor former United States senator Bob Dole at the National Veterans Award dinner at the Sheraton Birmingham, a full day of events await the city as it stops to honor our military veterans. The calendar of events posted to the National Veterans Day’s website include:

The parade itself begins at 1:30 p.m. at 18th Street and Rev. Abraham Woods, Jr. Blvd. (a.k.a., 8th Avenue N.); the site also has a map of the parade route available for review. As it begins, UAB will be holding its third annual wreath-laying ceremony on the university’s Campus Green (1:30 p.m.) on the city’s Southside.

A live stream of the parade will be available on their site (click on the link to access the stream and to view previous parades).

The BJCTA (MAX) will be offering veterans free bus rides all-day on Tuesday; they must present an active military ID, VA Health card, or retired military identification card to the bus operator. See their flyer for more information. Veterans will also be offered free admission to all state parks and federal parks and sites, with the Birmingham Zoo extending the offer to current active military personnel as well.

Birmingham’s inaugural Innovation Week underway

IMG_20140922_103827This morning the Birmingham Business Alliance (BBA), TechBirmingham, the Birmingham Venture Club, and Alabama Launchpad were joined by representatives of the city of Birmingham at Innovation Depot as they held a ribbon cutting to mark the start of the city’s first ever Innovation Week. Special events like a screening of the web series StartupLand! and an open house at the Depot are interspersed among regularly scheduled gatherings (think Birmingham Startup Drinks and a Code for Birmingham hack session on Friday) this week. This morning’s ceremony was followed by a panel discussion on startup capital held at the BBA’s offices downtown.

It will culminate with a one-day . A full schedule is posted on the official website for the effort (with, the event’s media partner) creating a public Google calendar for you to subscribe to as well). Those attending the week’s events are asked to use the hashtag #innovationweekbirmingham when sharing items via social media networks, though we’ve seen a few trying to use #innovationweekbham as well (including us) to leave a few more characters free for commenting.

Indigent healthcare community forum to be held May 21

Photo of Cooper Green Mercy Hospital. Courtesy Sharon Phelan Evans.There is still a great deal of concern about how Jefferson County’s poorest citizens access and receive healthcare, especially as folks continue to navigate changes made at what is now Cooper Green Mercy Health Services after December 31, 2012. The changes have left the county with an urgent care system labeled by some, including the Jefferson County Medical Society, as an “abject failure” since the beginning of the year.

Dr. Gregory Ayers, the society’s president-elect of the Society and one of the signers of the organization’s statement, and Dr. Mark Wilson, head of the Jefferson County Department of Health, will speak at a community forum on Tuesday evening, May 21, from 6 – 8 p.m. at the Five Points West Public Library (directions), located across from the Birmingham CrossPlex. In addition to talking about the organization’s public  written statement, Dr. Ayers will also be discussing proposals to fix the new system.

We are aware of the fact that all members of the Jefferson County Commission and county manager Tony Petelos have also been invited to attend Tuesday evening’s forum.

The forum is being hosted by Birmingham ViewWeld for BirminghamThe TerminalUrbanham.comWhat’s Happening Birmingham; the Metro Birmingham Branch of the NAACP; the Public Health Network; the Social Concerns Committee of Noble Chapel CME Church; and the Committee to Save Cooper Green’s Patient Action and Advocacy Committee.


This year, we bike FROM work!

Bike From Work 2012 RouteIt stands to reason that you’ll still have to bike TO work in order to participate in this year’s Bike from Work Day being organized by the Regional Planning Commission of Greater Birmingham (RPCGB) and the CommuteSmart initiative. It’s the ninth year that an event has been held though it’s the first time it’ll take place in the evening.

This year’s ride will once again start at the parking lot adjacent to the Young and Vann Building on 1st Ave. N. & 18th St. N. (home to both the RPCGB & CommuteSmart) but it will start at 5:30 p.m. If you want to take a closer look at this year’s route, click on the map to view the PDF or you can always download it from the page on CommuteSmart’s website that hosts additional information about the event.

It’s supposed to be a pretty comfortable day tomorrow (current forecast calls for a high of 77° and a low of 53° when we last checked – perfect cycling weather), so you may want to consider taking part if at all possible.

Mardi Gras celebration in Five Points South tonight

Birmingham Carnival Society logoGood morning and laissez les bons temps rouler, Birmingham! This evening’s weather forecast (54° and no rain) is making it sound like it’ll be a nice one to head on out and join a parade…

The Birmingham Carnival Society is planning to once again hold a Mardi Gras parade (only the second one since 1901 according to their official website) in the Magic City starting at 8 p.m. from in front of the Mellow Mushroom in Five Points South (though the lineup will start closer to Tom & Jerry’s Chevron), ending at Rocky’s Pizza on Richard Arrington, Jr., Blvd.

People may enter floats up until the last minute, but maybe the fact that Good People Brewing Company has already committed will be reason enough for many to head on out. There is a $12 registration fee (to cover the costs of the parade permits).

Just in case you’re wondering – even though today’s Fat Tuesday, National Pancake Day is next week, February 28. This year IHOP hopes to raise $2.7 million for the Children’s Miracle Network (of which Children’s of Alabama is a part).

You can also get in the mood (if you’re allowed to watch at work that is) by checking out live cams from Mobile, New Orleans, and Trinidad in the West Indies.

Ruben’s marathon is set for November

When city leaders gathered back in January to celebrate the official groundbreaking of The Marketplace adjacent to the BJCC complex, Ruben Studdard was on hand to announce plans for a new marathon and fitness event to be held in Birmingham. Those in attendance were told that details would be revealed later on this year – and they finally got some yesterday with the launch of the event’s official website.

The Ruben Studdard Celebration Weekend is scheduled for Sunday, November 20 and it will benefit the Ruben Studdard Foundation. The marathon will begin and end at Linn Park, taking participants along a single-loop route that keeps participants within the city limits the entire time. The original press release had suggested that the start and end points for the race would be Railroad Park.

The weekend is also scheduled to include a half-marathon, 5K and a gala event. Registration for all of the events are currently open.

This increases the number of marathons held in metro Birmingham to two a year, with the 2012 Mercedes Marathon scheduled for February 10-12. If the organizers of the Weekend are successful, the city will also have two local opportunities to qualify for the Boston Marathon.