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Arts & Entertainment, City Life, Featured, Uncategorized, Upcoming Event
Bessemer Public Library
CONTACT: Omar Chapman (205) 428-7882

 Smithsonian traveling exhibition on display at The Bessemer Public Library
Water/Ways, brought South by the Alabama Humanities Alliance, illuminates how water shapes our lives
Bessemer, Al |October 8, 2021] — Water/Ways, a Smithsonian traveling exhibit, winds its way into town for an extended exhibition from October 18th through November 19th at the Bessemer Public Library. Bessemer is one of just five locations statewide to host Water/Ways, which will be permanently retired at the end of this tour.
The exhibit reveals how our waterways are critical to the past, present and future of our state. Alabama is home to 132,000 miles of rivers and streams, and 3.2 million acres of wetlands. These waterways connect us to nature, nurture our cities and culture, and can either unite or divide our people and communities.
“Being a host location for this Smithsonian Institution Exhibition is a great opportunity for the Bessemer Public Library as well as the City of Bessemer and Jefferson County. This opportunity will provide the library and its patron’s exposure to high quality museum exhibits right in their local library and will also increase the knowledge of the Water/Ways that supply our region. We are honored to host Water/Ways and thankful for the opportunity to provide this amazing experience to our community.” Omar Chapman, Administrative Assistant.
The Smithsonian exhibit will be complemented with plenty of local programming for audiences of all ages. Special events during the exhibit’s run include specialized youth programs such as Grab n’ Go Art Craft bags for families, Grab n’ Go Coloring Activities for kids and a water drive to assist our first responders. Guest speaker will be available on the dates listed below.
-October 21st, 10:00 am
Guest Speaker Freddie Freeman, City of Bessemer Storm Water Specialist

  • -October 28th , 11:00am & 3:00pm
  • Guest Speaker Dr. Bill Deutsch, Auburn University Aquatic Ecologist
  • -November 4th , 3:00pm
Guest Speaker Dr. Duncan Scott, Birmingham Southern College Biologist

  • -November 10th , 4:00pm
Guest Speaker Marcus Jackson, Jackson’s Bait Shop Owner
Brought to ’Bama by the Alabama Humanities Alliance
This Smithsonian exhibit comes South thanks to the Alabama Humanities Alliance. For 20 years, the Alabama Humanities Alliance has coordinated traveling exhibitions from the Smithsonian’s Museum Main Street. The program brings the Smithsonian directly to small-town America through traveling exhibitions, local research and more.
“What’s so powerful about Water/Ways is that it shows how water doesn’t just shape our landscape. It shapes our lives,” says Chuck Holmes, executive director of the Alabama Humanities Alliance. “This exhibit
is a chance for folks in communities statewide to see a Smithsonian-quality exhibit up close. It also offers us a chance to reflect on how our local waterways affect how we live, work, worship, create and play.”

For more information about Water/Ways, the public can visit www.BessemerLibrary.com or call for information at (205) 428-7882. The Bessemer Public Library is open Monday – Friday from 9:00am – 6:00pm

About Bessemer Public Library
The Bessemer Public Library, Staff, Board, and community envision a future in which: Everyone can enjoy an intellectual and culturally rich life. Our community celebrates and appreciates diversity. Our staff finds value in their contribution to the mission. Our facilities will be welcoming and comfortable spaces for all. Learn more at www.bessemerlibrary.com
About the Alabama Humanities Alliance
The Alabama Humanities Alliance is a state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Our mission is to foster learning, understanding and appreciation of Alabama’s people, communities and cultures. The ultimate goal: To use the humanities to bring Alabamians together and make our state a better place to live. Learn more at www.alabamahumanities.org


Arts & Entertainment, Featured, Uncategorized
The city of Bessemer will host the 2021 National Night Out on Tuesday, August 3 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Bessemer Recreation Center, 100 14th Street South.
The event is being sponsored by the Bessemer Police Department.
National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live. To learn more about National Night Out, click the following link: https://natw.org/.
This year’s event in Bessemer will include food, drinks, popcorn, music, inflatables, school supplies and more. The event is free to the public.
For additional information, contact Bessemer Police Sergeant Alexia Bruster at 205-417-3900.
(Note: The August 3 Bessemer City Council meeting will be postponed until Tuesday, August 10 to accommodate this event).


Arts & Entertainment, Featured, Uncategorized
The city of Bessemer’s Annual Independence Day Celebration will return in 2021!
The celebration will take place on Saturday, July 3, from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Bessemer City High School campus, 4950 Premiere Parkway, Bessemer, AL.
The event will include music, giveaways and a fireworks show which will start at approximately 8:45 p.m.  Pyro Shows of Alabama will provide the fireworks display.
The event is being sponsored by the City of Bessemer in partnership with the Bessemer Area Chamber of Commerce. A special thanks to the Bessemer Board of Education for use of the school campus.
See the flyer below for more information.


Arts & Entertainment, City Life, Economic Development, Government

The city of Bessemer has approved its 2020 Transportation Plan.

The plan was adopted by the Bessemer City Council on Tuesday, August 20. It was prepared by STRADA Professional Services and the EEFS Company, P.C.

The plan addresses road projects city leaders deem as important to economic growth and safety and that are eligible for state funding.

The Alabama Rebuild Act, passed earlier this year by the Alabama Legislature, increases the state’s gas tax for the first time since the 1990s. Beginning September 1, drivers will pay an extra six cents at the pump, followed by increases of 2 cents in October of both 2020 and 2021.

As part of the Act, the state will implement the Alabama Transportation Rehabilitation and Improvement Program II, or ATRIP-II. The Alabama Department of Transportation will make available between $30 million and $50 million a year in grant funding for designated road projects in counties and cities throughout the state. The maximum award for a county or municipality is $2 million.

Jurisdictions are required to adopt a Transportation Plan by August 30 in order to be eligible for the grant funding.  The grant funding will be done on a competitive basis and will be awarded by an ATRIP-II committee
based on factors such as economic growth and safety.

Click here to view road projects Bessemer’s Transportation Plan


Arts & Entertainment, City Life

Published with permission of The Cutoff News.

Volunteers from the Bessemer Historic Society showed up to help begin the cleanup and restoration of the Lincoln Theater in downtown Bessemer on Saturday, July 13th.

The Bessemer Historic Society volunteers removed almost a complete dumpster full of garbage from the once majestic theater. They swept the floors and removed a lot of dust that has built up over the years.

Benjamin and Connie Hancox of Standard Furniture provided lunch from Bob Sykes for the volunteers. Glenny Brock of the Alabama / Lyric Theater was on hand to guide in the cleanup efforts. Ann Griffin of Hueytown also dedicated to helping with the cleanup.

The Lincoln Theater was built and opened in 1948, with seating provided in orchestra and balcony levels. It catered to African-American audiences. It was closed in the late-1970’s.

The theater was purchased in 2017 by award-winning actor and Bessemer native Andre Holland and is being restored by his non-profit Holland Project, established in 2018.

“On behalf of The Lincoln-Holland Project we would like to extend our deepest appreciation and gratitude to all the volunteers who contributed with the Lincoln Theatre clean up. The support that we’ve received has been remarkable, and we sincerely thank each and every one of you from the bottom of our hearts,” says Mary Holland of the Lincoln-Holland Project.


Arts & Entertainment, Upcoming Event
The city of Bessemer and the Bessemer Area Chamber of Commerce will host an Independence Day Celebration in the city on Thursday, July 4, 2019.

The celebration will take place at Bessemer City High School, 4950 Premiere Parkway. Festivities will start at 6:30 p.m. and last until 9 p.m., with the annual fireworks show scheduled for approximately 8:45 p.m. Pyro Shows of Alabama will conduct the fireworks show.

The celebration will include music by DJ Mac Taylor 98.7 KISS FM. There will be free ice cream, watermelon, nachos and beverages. The Chamber of Commerce will sponsor free giveaways.

Arts & Entertainment, City Life
More than 5,000 people converged on Historic Downtown Bessemer on June 1, 2019 to take part in the 2019 Caribbean Food and Music Festival at DeBardeleben park.

The festival, organized each year by the Central Alabama Caribbean American Organization, was held for the first time this year in Bessemer.

The organization had held the event in downtown Birmingham the previous seven years of its existence.

The festival featured Caribbean-themed music , dancing and food as more than 45 vendors packed DeBardeleben Park. A parade was held earlier in the day. Sponsors for the event included Alabama Power, Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Alabama, iBeria Bank, McDonald’s, 98.7 Kiss FM, Roxxy Rocks and the city of Bessemer. Admission to the festival was free.

Festival organizers said they enjoyed sharing Caribbean culture with the residents of Bessemer and surrounding communities.

Mayor Kenneth Gulley greeted the crowd and thanked the organization, as well as city staff, for working diligently to make the festival a success in Bessemer. Gulley said the organization approached the city a little over two months ago to host the event in Bessemer after the organization determined the cost of hosting the event in Birmingham would be too great.

“What an awesome crowd and what an awesome day to have a Caribbean Festival in the city of Bessemer,” Gulley said. “The beauty of this is we put this together in less than two months.”

Festival-goers said they enjoyed the shade provided by the tree canopy at DeBardeleben Park and the myriad of activities associated with the festival. In addition to numerous food vendors serving everything from Jamaican to Cuban dishes, there was line dancing, salsa performances and a performance by the Revolution Reggae Band.

Visitors came from as far away as Ohio and California to partake in the festivities. Also on hand were Artra Armbrister-Rolle, Counsul General for the Bahamas Consulate in Atlanta and officials from the U.S. Virgin Islands Tourism Office.

Pauline Ford-Caesar, festival organizer, said the organization plans to bring the festival back to Bessemer on June 13, 2020 and is already making plans to do so.

Arts & Entertainment, City Life, Upcoming Event

Vendors along Second Avenue North in Historic Downtown Bessemer are preparing for a day of fun in the sun with an Old School Summer Block Party scheduled for Saturday, June 8.

The festivities will begin at 10 a.m. on Saturday and last until 8 p.m. The event will be sponsored by The Paisley Pig, LLC. The event will feature food trucks and street vendors. There will also be storewide specials at the Paisley Pig and at United Textiles.  Admission is free to the event.