Tag Archives: award

UPDATE: Birmingham will host the 2021 World Games

UPDATE – 4:45 a.m., 1/22/2015: The City of Birmingham will be hosting the 2021 World Games, important as its both its 11th edition and its 40th anniversary. It will also be the city’s 150th birthday.

The city is the first in the United States to host the Games since they were founded in 1981 when they took place in Santa Clara, California.

The International World Games Association (IGWA) announced the winning city of the 2021 World Games from Hotel Mövenpick in Lausanne, Switzerland beginning at 4 a.m. CST on Thursday, January 22. The decision, made via secret ballot by the association’s executive committee, was announced shortly after 4:45 a.m. CST.  Following the announcement, Birmingham City Council president Johnathan Austin upon taking the podium said, “I think I need to pinch myself… to make sure I’m not dreaming.” Austin continued by recounting part of a conversation from Wednesday evening: “…regardless of who wins, we’re all winners, because now we have relationships, we’re friends with all of the [competing] countries.”

He promised those in attendance at the press conference that “The City of Birmingham will make the World Games 2021 the best World Games that you all have ever seen.”

The following live stream was made available via YouTube  for those following from home.  There was particular interest in Birmingham, AL; Lima, Peru; and Ufa, Russia — the three finalists for selection.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OI3RmXfz9iM&w=625]

The announcement was made in the city that will now serve as the headquarters for the international, International Olympic Committee (IOC)-recognized association beginning in February. It had been previously based in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The IGWA’s relationship with the IOC was further strengthened in November 2014 when recommendation No. 6 (PDF, page 9) was adopted during an Extraordinary Session of the IOC. It was one of 40 recommendations adopted to “shape the future of the Olympic Movement.”

The Birmingham delegation has been in Lausanne for the last few days and used the following video as part of their final presentation on Wednesday.

[vimeo https://vimeo.com/117396024 w=623]

The announcement is only the first step in the process for the city. Now that the games have been awarded, contract negotiations begin next week. The member federations of the IGWA will meet in Sochi this April to confirm the decision of the executive committee. Birmingham is currently set to take over the World Games flag on July 30, 2017 — at the end of the upcoming edition in Wroclaw, Poland.

By the way, this is where we point out that American football was added as an invitational sport in 2017 (and that it’s still possible to add baseball for 2021).

Photo: via Johnathan Austin’s Instagram account.

Last day to “vote Birmingham” for U.S. Chamber community award

021006_CommunityExcellence_Wufoo_648x108px_Final3-2Six Birmingham area businesses were among the 100 recently honored by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce as recipients of the organization’s annual Blue Ribbon Awards. There were nine recognized statewide by the organization.

Birminghamians now get a chance to help one of these businesses receive the organization’s Community Excellence Award, but only until 10:59 a.m., CT tonight!

The website for the organization’s America’s Small Business Summit (where all the businesses will be awarded on June 13) states the award “is designed to highlight a business that has found success in the eyes of its community.” The voting takes place online, and you’re allowed one vote per email address. Here’s the list of local winners:

  • Bhate Geosciences, Corp.
  • McSweeney Holdings
  • Proventix Systems, Inc.
  • Relax, It’s Handled
  • Silvertron Cafe
  • Urban Cookhouse

The local winners will also learn on March 19 if one of them are among the seven regional finalists. One of them will receive the Dream Big Small Business of the Year Award (and $10,000) while at the Summit.

Sister Cities Commission recognized as Best Overall Program

Bham Sister City Commission logoTuesday, May 1, saw the Birmingham Sister City Commission win Sister Cities International’s 2011 Best Overall Program Award for a city with a population between 100,001 and 300,000. The press release from Sister Cities states the award “recognizes sister city programs that demonstrate outstanding accomplishments in advancing the goals and mission of the sister cities movement.”

Efforts included establishing an E-Pal program with Rosh Ha’ayin, Israel that now includes two schools there and four in Birmingham, enabling more than 300 students to communicate each week via email and video conference. It also included several art exchanges with sister cities Guadiawaye, Senegal; Hitachi, Japan (where they helped organize disaster relief following last year’s earthquake and tsunami and sent two local college graduates to serve as English teachers for two years); Karak, Jordan; and Plzen, Czech Republic.

Representatives of the commission, established in 1982, will have the honor of attending a ceremony recognizing the honor with other winners in Jacksonville, Florida (currently scheduled for July 14).

Travelogue: Lou’s Pub makes Esquire’s list of best bars

Lou's Pub & Package Store logoReaders of the current edition of Esquire Magazine may have recognized the name of a local watering hole included in a very prestigious list of bars. Lou’s Pub not only made the latest installment of the magazine’s list of “The Best Bars in America” (PDF) it did so as the only representative from the state of Alabama.

It’s the second time that the bar has been included on the list – the first being in 2007 (when mental_floss‘ Neely Harris (formerly of mental_flossnow of ESPN The Magazinewrote this piece for the magazine). It’s one of several bars that can claim that designation in Birmingham over the last few years – a list that includes Rojo, The Garage, The Bottletree, and Highlands Bar & Grill.

The full list is also available as well as an interactive map including bars previously on the list on the magazine’s website.

Highlands, Hot and Hot outstanding to us regardless

Frank StittThe James Beard Foundation announced earlier this evening that Daniel in New York City has been awarded the 2010 James Beard Awards for Outstanding Restaurant.

Highlands Bar & Grill in Birmingham’s Five Points South neighborhood had been named a finalist for the prestigious award presented during the awards ceremony at Avery Fisher Hall in New York City.

It is the second time in three years that Frank Stitt‘s restaurant had been honored with a finalist nomination. The other time was in 2008.

Stitt himself was named Best Chef, Southeast by the Beard Foundation in 2001. Chris Hastings of Hot and Hot Fish Club was nominated for the same honor in the Southern region this evening but also wasn’t victorious. He has also been nominated twice in the last three years (2008, 2010).

This year’s finalist selection had probably received even more attention than normal locally due to his ongoing objection to a project that would place a Chick Fil A restaurant – with a drive-through window – around the corner from the award-winning destination.

The Bright Star in Bessemer was honored as an American Classic (as reported by several media outlets earlier this year) during the ceremony.

Photo: Courtesy Southern Foodways Alliance.

Six are honored for Living the Dream

live-the-dream-logoThe Live the Dream Awards were created in 2003 by the Birmingham Regional Chamber of Commerce to recognize those in Birmingham, AL that have achieved their dreams and who’ve made a positive impact on the region. This year’s class is pretty impressive as it includes “orthopaedic surgeon to the sports world” James Andrews; Grammy winner Emmylou Harris; UAB researcher James McClintock; NFL player DeMeco Ryans; and O2 Ideas owner Shelley Stewart. Civil rights pioneer and entrepreneur A.G. Gaston will receive a lifetime achievement award. 

The awards will be presented during a press conference this evening beginning at 5 p.m. at Burr & Forman’s offices downtown.

wOOt! Foodimentary wins a “Shorty”

food24Kudos to Foodimentary, a blog and Twitter feed based right here in metro Birmingham, AL (Homewood to be exact) as they are the winner of this year’s Shorty Award for food! The Shortys recognize leaders in producing short content using the popular microblogging site. Here’s a video primer for those not familar with Twitter.

Wondering just how popular and powerful Twitter can be? Foodimentary’s profile currently provides fun facts about food to more than 29,600 followers!

We don’t know if they’ll be able to attend tomorrow’s awards ceremony, but we hope they are able to, considering that CNN’s Rick Sanchez will be hosting with tweeters Shaquille O’Neal and MC Hammer being involved in the fun.


Image: Foodimentary logo, courtesy of the website.