Seen the new Jurassic World movie and can't get enough? Don't forget that Opelika Film nights are back and the first movie is JURASSIC PARK on June 18! Bring blankets and chairs to sit on and CyberZone will have fun inflatables for the kids to play on while Irish Bred Pub Opelika, AL will be selling delicious food! All the excitement will be going on at the Depot lawn and the movie will begin after sunset!
I understand there is a billboard somewhere in Auburn along the Interstate proclaiming “Auburn’s Open”. Construction work downtown on and around Toomer’s corner is having some effect on downtown businesses, because I think folks believe it’s too much of a hassle to get around due to construction. Phase One of Opelika’s Streetscape had the same effect here. Well, let me set the record straight.
This may just be the best time ever to visit your favorite downtown Auburn spots to shop and eat. Don’t be intimidated by the fences hiding construction, instead revel in the free parking all over town. I’ll finally be able to build a good collection of quarters in the center console before fall. Now, I have a few favorite spots I travel to in the Loveliest Village on the Plains. Lyndsay cuts my hair at Dimensions, when I get around to a haircut several times a year. I’ve always been a fan of Mellow Mushroom and Hamilton’s. Then that very cool Avondale, where the plush couches upstairs were upholstered in downtown Opelika by Koelsted’s. I’m sure you can probably think of some of your Auburn favorites downtown, so feel free to add them to the list.
Several weeks ago at Mellow, Buddy Redman and I ran into Elks Lodge Regulars Mike and Karen. Sunday afternoon a Northside Opelika couple I know wandered into Hamilton’s for drinks and an afternoon snack. Had I planned the day better I would have arrived at Hamilton’s a bit later to enjoy some Blues to end the weekend. I’ll do better next week! For some reason, some of my favorite servers/bartenders that worked in Opelika end up working for George at Hamilton’s. That’s them in the picture.
Anyway, I thought it was worth a mention of the past several weekends. And, as one that stays pretty close to Downtown Opelika, don’t hate me. Auburn has been very open and welcoming the past few weekends, as it probably always is. Can I get a War Eagle?
Denson Recycling Relocated: The Denson Recycling Center has moved one block behind the current location to 600 Eighth Avenue (Old fire station). The convenience center has been converted from the current 10-bin trailers to 300-gallon containers for single-stream recycling. All recycling materials on the acceptance list will be comingled and deposited in the 300-gallon containers with the exception of cardboard, which will continue to be deposited in a separate trailer. All single-stream recycled material will be transported to the new state of the art Columbus Recycling Facility and Sustainability Center which is owned by the City of Columbus and operated by Pratt Recycling.
The following materials will be accepted: Cardboard, Newspapers, Magazines, Paper, Aluminum Cans, Steel Cans. All cans must be washed. All plastic bottles and jugs should be crushed.
The following materials will not be accepted: No plastic bags. All recycling should be placed in the black containers loose. To process recycling at the Columbus MRF all material must be loose. To get a better understanding of single-stream recycling and why material must be loose, please check out the Columbus Recycling Facility and Sustainability Center in the video below!
No Glass. Glass will contaminate our loads and they will be rejected. The Columbus MRF is not designed to process glass. When our
The Convenience Center near Piggly Wiggly has closed. Please bring your recycling material to the Floral Park Convenience Center or any of our other sites. To start the curbside recycling in the Fall, we need 1,000 customers to sign up. If you have not signed up for curbside recycling visit www.opelika.org and click on Curbside Recycling Startup. If you have any additional questions, please call us at 334.705.5480.
More than a few have written about increasing your productive time by setting specific times to check email. Maybe once or twice a day. It says to advise those that send you mail of this practice.
Sorry, but this isn’t going to work for me. It’s probably why I have an iPhone connected to all my mail accounts. Yep, I said all. It’s why I have an iPad backup in case the phone fails. I am totally okay being connected full time.
Working remote, I find that my important mail doesn’t just come during working hours. Generally, but not always, request from the home office in Toronto need a quick turnaround in some cases. Normal work hours in Dubai or Moscow don’t match mine, so even though I don’t read mail from Midnight to 7 AM, I’ll get on it quickly after I get started for the day.
I also think it’s important for the sender to know I’m paying attention to them, no matter how small the request. If you have sent a valid request or information, I want you to know I care. Not everyone else may agree with that, unfortunately. Now for the unrequested Spammers offering services I don’t want or need, I move to our spam filter in hopes of slowing or eliminating their activity in my mailbox. I guess I’ll have to find another way to be more productive! Got to run, I think I just got an email! (Photo Credit: Sarawut Padungkwan)
The folks at The Round House have an event as part of Downtown Opelika First Friday. If you wondered what "The House" is all about, it's a great time to see. Add the music of Steffi and it should be a real treat. I grabbed the information below from the groups Facebook page.
Local folks in Opelika and Auburn are often "Wowed" when they come to The Round House and find out what's going on here, there are real startups here, and some amazing people. The Round House is powering and empowering entrepreneurs from the ages of 13-65 with great ideas right here in Opelika.
Folks across the country have been wowed by the sultry jazz infused amazing voice of local girl Steffi Ledbetter When you first see her, or hear that she made it all the way to Hollywood on American Idol, you instantly think a pretty young lady like that would be a "pop princess" the first time you see her perform you'll be taken back to the days when beautiful songstresses filled the high end clubs and poker rooms across the country in the roaring 20's. Kyle says she's that good.
On Friday June 5th 2015 as part of Opelika Main Street First Friday's Round House invites you to Steffi and Startups. Hear her perform live in our lobby afront Michael Mcpheeters amazing mural, mingle, meet and listen to some of the amazing startup ideas brewing here at Round House. Heck pitch your idea to one of our entrepreneur's in residence.
You'll also get to meet some of the entrepreneurs and startups from across the country that are joining Round House this summer for our accelerator program. They're coming from Emerson, Rochester Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Indiana and Boston, we've got some real Rock Stars coming to Opelika!
The event is FREE but we ask for a small donation to The Big House which can be a gently used toy, game or clothing for kids in our foster care system.
Food, and drinks will be provided and we'll feature a tasting from our becoming world famous distillery John Emerald Distilling Company come on down Friday June 5th from 5:00pm-7:00pm and please spread the word
I’ve had a few days to digest the weekend activities in Opelika on Saturday. It was a beautiful day and downtown was packed with families for several events. Touch a Truck and the newest downtown event, Burger Wars were big hits. According to Pam Powers-Smith “Touch-A-Truck had the most attendees it has ever had. Burger Wars sold out of tasting tickets within the first hour. Both events were a huge success. Many attendees of Touch-A-Truck headed over to Burger Wars after the event.
Touch a Truck had several new players this year. CTU (Custom Trucks Unlimited) trucks, the APR cars and the Knuckle Boom truck added to the fun for the kids. I personally was glad to see that Big Rig from APR downtown. Having known some of the APR folks over the past few years, it was good to see the fruits of their works out in public. Many still wonder what is in that hilltop building on Highway 280 when you’re leaving Opelika. In fact, last year APR increased the building size to bring more of the manufacturing process in-house. In case you missed what they do here’s a note from their website: At APR the mission is to engineer only the highest quality tuning solutions for Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche vehicles ensuring the enthusiast the ultimate driving experience while consistently providing the enthusiast the ultimate in customer care and support.
Powers added that “The helicopter (Omni Flight) entry and exit to the event is also always a crowd favorite.” Zaccaro Racing had a Jet Engine Powered Dragster that caught everyone’s attention at the close of the event, when they fired it up. The blast from the engine shook nearby windows and blew over a few barricade.
You can look for Burger Wars to be bigger and better next year. Organizers have already discussed some changes to improve the experience for both those cooking and attending. Not sure how it could get any better, as everyone I saw was having a great time.
Downtown has lots of plans for the summer, with First Friday this week and downtown shops doing a sidewalk sale and movies at the depot. You've got to love this town!
Have you ever wondered what a person with diabetes goes through within one day? Multiple blood-sugar checks, insulin injections, meal planning, dietary maintenance, consistent exercise/physical activity, and the balance of all of these factors to ensure successful control of glucose levels are all a part of the daily routine of people and families living with diabetes. The process can be extremely overwhelming, and the goal is sometimes difficult to accomplish, especially for those facing a new diagnosis.
As we celebrate our fourth annual golf tournament, we seek your support for Swing 4 Diabetes. Hosted by Diana Ramage and Kendall and Celesta Simmons, this event is an annual fund raiser which will address the special needs of people living with diabetes. The money raised this year will benefit the Diabetes and Nutrition Center at East Alabama Medical Center. This specialized department provides supplies, counseling and education for those who otherwise would not be able to afford those services. Please come join us in our efforts to inspire and educate our community. Tourney is Monday at Moores Mill Club.
In support of the tournament, Jefferson's Opelika is having a raffle to raise additional money. Up for grabs is a wine basket, Budweiser cooler and a golf bag. Ask the server at Jefferson's for more information.
The Opelika Fire Department would like to let the City of Opelika residents and businesses know that they will be flushing city fire hydrants during the month of June. That means you will see fire fighters working at fire hydrants throughout the city and/or see water running down the street from time to time. There are approximately 1,700 fire hydrants located throughout the city of Opelika. Fire crews will begin testing hydrants along Marvyn Parkway the first week of June. The City will try to keep residents / businesses updated on the sections Fire Fighters will cover each week on the city’s website and Facebook pages, respectively.
The hydrant-flushing program is very important to the maintenance of the City’s domestic water distribution system. Each year, not only do the Opelika Utilities Board’s water technicians systematically open hydrants throughout the City to allow water to flow at a high velocity through the distribution mainlines to test (and help maintain) the integrity of the city’s water system; the fire department does this as well. This operation serves the following purposes:
- Enhances water quality by removing sediments from inside the mainline and flushing them out through the hydrant.
- Identifies malfunctions of the hydrant and related valves.
- Helps determine weaknesses in the water distribution system.
- Identifies inadequate water volumes and pressures in the main lines.
- Helps determine fire flows at the hydrant.
You may encounter the following conditions during hydrant flushing operations:
A temporary drop in the water pressure to your home or business.
Rusty brown, or cloudy water. (Discolored water is not harmful. These conditions will subside in a few hours after the flushing is completed.)
What should I do when City crews are flushing hydrants in my area?
Mainly, avoid using the dishwasher, washing machine. While flushing operations are going on in your area you may notice a drop in water pressure. Because of that, it might be handy to keep a gallon or two of water in your home during the month of June, so you’ll have drinking water (or water for cooking) during the hours the hydrants are tested in your neighborhood.
If you are driving in the work zone, please drive carefully.
Why does my water look rusty or cloudy after hydrant flushing?
When a hydrant is opened, the water in the mainline will flow out at a high velocity. This creates a scouring action in the pipe and dislodges fine sediment particles that have accumulated in the pipe. The fine sediment mixes with the water, turning the water a cloudy or rusty brown color. This mixture is discharged out of the hydrant. There is no health hazard associated with the discolored water. Remember, after the hydrant flushing operation, let your water clear a few hours before you use it to any great extent. (Source: City of Opelika)
Sometimes a picture is all you need. See you downtown Saturday!
Just when I thought the city had given up on recycling efforts, this new plan has been announced along with home recycling pickup (if enough sign up for it).
After studying various options over the past several months, the City of Opelika will expand its recycling program beginning in June, 2015 and convert to single-stream recycling. Single-stream recycling, makes it much easier for residents to recycle because they will no longer be required to keep materials separate and deposit them in different bins at the convenience centers. Single-stream is also much more efficient to operate. 300-gallon containers at multiple sites will be used for single-stream recycling.
One of our main goals is to increase our recycling tonnage which also helps us qualify for more ADEM grants. In FY 13 the City processed 296 tons of material with revenue of approximately $16,000 and in FY 14 the City processed approximately 373 tons with revenue of approximately $26,000. This increase of 26% in material and 66% in revenue is due primarily to the development of a commercial cardboard route in May. By continuing to grow our commercial cardboard route, offering curbside recycling and having five convenience centers open, our tonnage should continue to increase. We are projecting our FY 16 tonnage on corrugated to exceed 300 tons which will push our total tonnage to 450-500.
This expansion will include the following.
Beginning in June, convenience centers will be converted from the current 10-bin trailers to 300-gallon containers for single-stream recycling. All recycling materials on the acceptance list will be comingled and deposited in the 300-gallon containers with the exception of cardboard, which will continue to be deposited in a separate trailer. All single-stream recycled material will be transported to the new state of the art Materials Recycling Facility (MRF) owned by the City of Columbus and operated by Pratt Industries.
In Fall, 2015, a new convenience center will be located at our Recycling Center on Jeter Street and will be upgraded to provide the following services.
Single-stream recycling with 300-gallon containers. Cardboard recycling. Assistance with unloading recycled materials. This assistance will be offered from 8:00-2:00, Monday-Saturday. Electronics recycling. Used tire recycling for individual residents only. Recycling of white goods, refrigerators, freezers, stoves, etc., at no charge. Clear, green and brown glass will be accepted at the Jeter Street site only.
The Convenience Centers located at Covington Rec Center, Floral Park and on Grand National Parkway will provide single-stream recycling with 300-gallon containers and cardboard recycling.
The Convenience Center located at the Denson Rec Center will be relocated to Fire-EMS/Hazmat Office located at 600 Eighth Avenue one block behind the current site. This site will provide single-stream recycling with 300-gallon containers and cardboard recycling.
In June the Convenience Center at Piggly Wiggly will be closed and signage will re-direct that material to the Floral Park Convenience Center.
The program will be audited and reviewed annually to assure this is the best system to meet Opelika’s recycling needs.
Curbside Recycling: The City, in partnership with Keep Opelika Beautiful, will provide curbside collection of single-stream recycling with 95-gallon carts, beginning in the FALL of 2015. The marketing and the initial 500 carts will be provided by Keep Opelika Beautiful. For this program to be successful, a minimum of 1,000 customers must sign up for this every other week service at a rate of $10.00/month (One half the current garbage rate). This service will also be offered to local businesses. To encourage and to teach the value of recycling, each school in Opelika will be provided carts for recycling. You can SIGN UP for this service NOW by visiting the city’s website at www.opelika.org and click on “Curbside Recycling Signup” (found on the front page, in the left column area) to fill out the online form, or call us at 334.705.5480.
Commercial Recycling: Through grants from the Alabama Department of Environmental Management the City has been able to offer cardboard recycling to businesses that produce adequate amounts of cardboard each week. The route currently has approximately 30 customers. We will continue to grow this route.
Acceptable Materials: Cardboard, Newspaper, Magazines, white paper, Aluminum Cans, Steel Cans. All cans must be washed.
Plastic: All plastic bottles and jugs should be crushed. DO NOT PUT RECYCLABLE MATERIALS IN PLASTIC BAGS! All material should be loose.
The Jeter Convenience Center will accept these additional items when it opens in the Fall.
Brown, green and clear glass.
Electronics: Recycled materials will be stored and recycled semi-annually at the Electronics Recycling Day sponsored by the East Alabama Recycling Partnership.
Tires: From residents only. No commercial customers.
White Goods: Refrigerators, freezers, stoves, hot water heaters, dishwashers, etc. may be brought to the Jeter site at no charge.
For more information, or to sign up for curbside recycling, please visit our website at www.opelika.org and click on “Curbside Recycling Signup” to fill out the online form, or call us at 334.705.5480. (Source: city of Opelika)
There are performers out there who, if they're playing at Sundilla, I'm happy. And there are those who, if they are NOT playing at Sundilla, I will travel to see when they're in the area. And then there are those who, even if they are playing Sundilla, I will travel to see at other venues that same tour. I'm going to see Dan at Sundilla tonight; as this is being written, I don't know if I saw him perform in Georgia last night, or if I'll see him in Florida tomorrow and Birmingham on Saturday... but there is a chance. Because I don't get to see Dan Navarro perform live often enough. (Thanks goodness I get to hear him several times during Folk Alliance every February, or I'd have to get a more fuel-efficient car in order to be able to afford my Dan Navarro habit.)
Dan Navarro brings his 30 years of writing and singing, his Grammy nominations, his Oscar nomination, and his nationwide reputation as one of the best performers EVER (not to mention his well-deserved reputation as one of the nicest people in the world) to Sundilla TONIGHT at 7:30. Admission at the door is $15, but you can still get 12 tickets at Spicer's Music, Mama Mocha's Coffee, and online at www.sundillamusic.com.
(Can't wait until 7:30? Then tune in to WildmanSteveRadio at 3:00 PM CDT, and hear Dan perform LIVE in the studio! And if you have not listened to last week's episode of the Sundilla Radio Hour featuring an in-depth discussion with Dan, and a couple of live performances, then by all means do that ASAP by clicking here.)
Dan started his career as a songwriter, most often with Eric Lowen, for artists as diverse as Pat Benatar (the Grammy-nominated "We Belong") , The Bangles, Jackson Browne, Keb' Mo', Dave Edmunds, The Temptations, Dionne Warwick, Dutch superstar Marco Borsato, The Triplets, Austin outlaw legend Rusty Weir and many more...
In the 1990s, he recorded and toured with Lowen in the acclaimed acoustic duo Lowen & Navarro until Eric's retirement in 2009. Dan has since transitioned smoothly into a growing solo career, increasingly in demand on the national concert circuit...
He's moonlighted as a session singer and voice actor for 27 years, in major motion pictures like The Book Of Life (as the villain "Chakal"), The Lorax, Happy Feet (1 & 2), Rio (on the Oscar-nominated "Real In Rio"), Ice Age (2 & 3), and a dozen more; TV series Turbo Fast, Prison Break, Family Guy and American Dad; recordings with Neil Young, Andrea Bocelli, Luis Miguel, Jose Feliciano, Susanna Hoffs and Jon Anderson of Yes; and hundreds of commercials for Subaru, Shakey's Pizza, McDonald's, Toyota, Coca-Cola, Honda, El Pollo Loco, Nationwide and more...
He has contributed countless hours in Washington on issues of intellectual property, copyright and performer's rights, including testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Copyright Royalty Board on behalf of the Nashville Songwriters Assn Int'l, AFTRA, NARAS, BMI , SoundExchange and the musicFIRST Coalition...
Dan also serves on the boards of SAG-AFTRA, Folk Alliance, The Levitt Pavilions LA and the Golden West Chapter of the ALS Association, fighting the neuromuscular disease better known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, which tragically took Eric Lowen's life in 2012...
In 2009, after 22 years and 12 albums with Lowen & Navarro, Dan released the spirited "Live at McCabe's", backed by his pals, Austin's now-disbanded Stonehoney. He is currently finishing his next album , "Shed My Skin" - his first studio album of new material as a solo artist - is slated for release in 2015.
It has been 27 days since the last Sundilla concert, and if you're itching for some great live music, there's no better person to bring it to you than Dan Navarro. So come see Dan at Sundilla TONIGHT at 7:30. Admission at the door is $15, but you can still get 12 tickets at Spicer's Music, Mama Mocha's Coffee, and online at www.sundillamusic.com.
Here are a few more tunes from Dan Navarro; all of them are great, and that's without the added magic of being there to see the music performed live...
All is Quiet
Shed My Skin
Hard For Me Now (Shot with my iPad at 1:30 AM in a hotel room in Toronto. Dan was still bringing it, even though this was his fifth or sixth straight 20-hour day...)
Public Works Director Mike Hilyer announces that City Road Crews will be making the intersections of 4th Avenue and 5th Street and 4th Avenue and 7th Street, respectively, into 4-Way stops on Thursday, May 28th. Both intersections are currently 2-way stops. Motorists are asked to drive with extreme caution – and slow down! – when approaching both of these areas until all motorists become used to having the extra stops along the drive.
Here's the cast of Game of Thrones like you've never seen them before. a project by the band Coldplay to raise money for the Red Nose Campaign.
*Friday MAY 29th and Saturday MAY 30th on the Grounds at Standard Deluxe * The folks there are Throwing a Lil' Music Showcase with their best buds: This Is American Music ....JOIN Them and Come Hear some of the South's Finest Musicians Featuring Performances By:
Friday Night music & dinner ($20):
* The Acrostics
* Flint Hill Specials
* Joey Kneiser & Kelly Smith from Glossary
Saturday Music ($25)
* Great Peacock
* Have Gun, Will Travel
* Dana Swimmer
* Fire Mountain
* The Holy Ghost Electric Show
TICKETS (for Saturday) $25.00 here: http://tinyurl.com/tiamshowcase and at The Gate !
On Monday, May 25th, beginning at 10 a.m. the City will host its annual Memorial Day Services to remember our Military Heroes of all wars who fought for the freedom of our country – many giving their lives in the effort – at the Veterans Memorial Monument which stands in front of Opelika’s City Hall, located at 204 South 7th Street in downtown Opelika. As with every year’s Celebration / Memorial Service for the past decade, Opelika’s theme will be “Let us NEVER FORGET: Freedom isn’t Free!” This year the City of Opelika will honor our “Citizen Soldiers” – our Alabama National Guard.
This year’s special guest speaker is Brigadier General Sylvester Cannon. Brigadier General Cannon serves as the Commanding General, 135th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), Birmingham, Alabama and the Deputy Commanding General, Army National Guard-Combined Arms Support Command - Sustainment Center of Excellence, Ft. Lee, Virginia. In this position of Commander, 135th ESC, he oversees all of the 135th Sustainment
Command's internal and external support missions in support of United States Forces, Multinational Forces and Interagency organizations worldwide.
In his position of Deputy Commanding General, Combined Arms Support Command, Brigadier General Cannon serves as the advisor to and personal representative of the Commanding General, Combined Arms Support Command, for all Army National Guard matters. Brigadier General Cannon received his commission as a Second Lieutenant in 1985 from Officer Candidate School – Alabama Military Academy after three years of enlisted
After receiving his commission, he started his career as a Military Police Officer but later transitioned into Logistics Corps. He has commanded at the Company, Battalion, and Brigade level as well as serving in a variety of staff assignments. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from the University of Alabama and a Master’s degree in Human Resource Management from Troy State University. In his civilian
career, BG Cannon is a Manager with the Alabama Department of Revenue whereby he oversees the Alabama Department of Revenue’s Individual and Corporate Tax Division’s eight regional offices positioned across the state. He lives here in Opelika!
Following the Memorial Day services, the Museum of East Alabama will host a reception for the public and serve refreshments so that folks can view the extraordinary memorabilia of Opelika’s history, including our soldiers through the years.
A NEW FEATURE for this year’s Memorial Day activities will include military vehicles on display for the public along Courthouse Square on the Avenue A side of the park, in the parking area, between 10 a.m. and noon. Included in this display will be an ATV with a machine gun, a Combat Rubber Raiding Craft (Zodiac F470) with Outboard Motor, and an Unmanned Ariel Vehicle (UAV) with
Every morning at 7 AM and afternoon about 3 PM I can count on that big yellow Opelika Schools School Bus to pass the house. It just did now on the final run to take kids home for the summer! Y'all Be Careful out there!
From last nights final show!
Tuesday’s penultimate Late Show With David Letterman broadcast earned a 4.9/12 in metered markets, its best number since 2009, up 48 percent from last week and 145 percent from a year ago. (Source: Cynopsis Media)
Opelika’s Public Works Department has announced its upcoming 2015 Summer Mosquito Control Schedule. Spraying will begin on Tuesday, May 26th and the spray trucks will be out between the hours of 6-10pm.
The city has been divided into four sections and spraying will take place on Monday through Thursday evenings, respectively. Listed below are the sections 1 – 4 and the evening which residents can expect to see the spray trucks in your area.
Area Spraying Schedules
Section 1 areas, which include: All streets and roads north of 2nd Avenue and east of 10th Street.
Section 4 areas, which include: All streets and roads south of 2nd Avenue and east of 10th Street.
Section 2 areas, which include: All streets and roads east of 2nd Avenue and west of 10th Street.
Section 3 areas, which include: All streets and roads south of 2nd Avenue and west of 10th Street.
This schedule is subject to change with inclement weather.
Mosquito Control Tips for Home and Yard - To help control the mosquito population around your home and yard, public works offers the following tips for home owners.
• Get rid of old tires, tin cans, buckets, drums, bottles or any type of water holding containers.
• Fill in or drain any low places in your yard that may hold water.
• Make sure trash containers have their lids closed to prevent water from accumulating.
• Repair any leaky faucets or pipes that may allow for water to stand.
• If you own a pool make sure it is properly maintained and cleaned to prevent mosquitoes from hatching.
• Change the water in bird baths and plant pots at least once a week.
• Keep grass cut short and shrubbery well-trimmed around the house so adult mosquitoes will not hide.
If you have any questions regarding the above schedules, or what section your neighborhood falls into, please don’t hesitate to give the city’s public works department a call at (334) 705-5400. (Source: City of Opelika)
The Farmers Market will be open at Courthouse Square Tuesdays from 3-6 PM thru the summer! Sponsored by Opelika Main Street (Photo Credit: Opelika Main Street)
Before passage of the Gourmet Bottle Bill, Alabama was the only state that restricted the size of bottled or canned beer to no more than 16 oz. Starting in 2011, Free the Hops began introducing the Gourmet Bottle Bill to raise the limit to 25.4 oz.
On May 16, 2012, Governor Bentley signed the Gourmet Bottle Bill into law, and it goes went effect on August 1, 2012. This allows for many high-end, gourmet beers in Alabama that are only bottled in these larger container sizes. This legislation was also supported by Alabama's rapidly growing brewing industry as well as the Alabama Wholesale Beer Association.
Now the Legislature is dealing with a bill to allow breweries, like Opelikas new Red Clay Brewery the ability to sell Beer in Growlers direct to the public. Here's text from an alert from Free the Hops this morning.
On Wednesday (5/13), the Brewery Job Bill - SB452 - proposed by the Alabama Brewers Guild passed unanimously out of the State Committee. Next stop is passing the full Senate. Let's help the Alabama Brewers Guild get growler sales from the breweries! Go to http://www.freethehops.org/legislative, enter your address to find your state senator, and tell him or her that you want them to support brewery jobs.
Alabama is the only state that prohibits to-go sales from the brewery or brewpub. SB452 would remove this restriction, allow a bare minimum of growler sales from the brewery, and allow Alabama breweries to compete fairly with the rest of the country. This will lead to new jobs, increased tourism, and new investment in Alabama.
While the local brewing industry has experienced rapid growth in recent years, Alabama is still ranked 50th in economic impact per capita from craft beer. If Alabama were to achieve 2012 national averages, it would add roughly $284 million to state GDP and create nearly 2,500 full-time jobs (PDF). SB452 will not create 2,500 jobs by itself, but removing this unfair restriction on the local brewing industry is a necessary first step.
Free the Hops has asked members to help remove Alabama's unfair restriction on growler sales from the brewery or brewpub and help grow craft beer in Alabama!
Telephone calls have a big impact on politicians. If you can, please call your senator's office on Monday and leave a brief message of support for this important job creation bill in addition to any other messages you send.
Call your senator, then send an email as followup, asking him/her to vote YES for SB452.