Birmingham Ranked 11th Friendliest City in U.S. By Travel + Leisure Readers

Travel + Leisure magazine readers ranked Birmingham the 11th friendliest city in the country in the magazine’s America’s Favorite Places survey. According to the magazine, the survey “asks Travel + Leisure readers to dish about their hometowns—the place they grew up or have lived in and know better than anywhere else on Earth.” The magazine says “Locals say Birmingham is a true example of Southern hospitality. Residents will want to learn all about you—’especially if you know someone they might know,’ one survey respondent noted.” 

The cities that finished ahead of Birmingham are Buffalo, New York; Norfolk, Virginia; Greenville, South Carolina; New Orleans; San Antonio; Indianapolis; Nashville, Tennessee; Louisville, Kentucky; Fort Worth, Texas; and Milwaukee.

Community Leaders Celebrate the New Hope Community Development Center Grand Opening

Birmingham City Councilor Sheila Tyson and citizens celebrated the grand opening of the New Hope Community Development Center, in the former New Hope Credit Union building at 1741 Jefferson Ave.

Attendees had a chance to tour the new facility, enjoy free hot dogs, hamburgers, chips and soda, and take home some fall and winter essentials with a giveaway of socks, hats and scarves.

The New Hope Community Development Center (NHCDC) is a nonprofit organization formed on the western side of Birmingham. The center’s mission is to inspire and empower individuals and families to live fulfilled lives through education, growth and development.

Birmingham Public Library Board hires Floyd Council as new library executive director

During a special board meeting, the Birmingham Public Library Board voted to hire Floyd Council of Atlanta as the new executive director of the Birmingham Public Library. Council will oversee all operations of BPL’s 19 library locations and manage 285 employees.

Council, who is currently the central library administrator for the Atlanta Fulton Public Library System, took over the BPL System on Monday, November 13. A veteran of the U.S. Army, Council has three decades of public service, including 14 years at libraries across the country.

He holds a master’s in library and information science from the Florida State University College of Information, a bachelor’s in media communication from American College, and studied as a J.D. candidate at the Western Michigan University’s Thomas M. Cooley Law School before switching careers into the public library profession.

Council is a native of Shelby, Mississippi and the eldest son of Evelyn Council and the late Floyd Billings. Council enjoys technology, music, art, design and genealogy. He is the devoted father of two sons, 10-year-old Floyd Council Jr. and 5-year-old Jonathan Trevor Council.

Bluff Park Art Show 
Attracts Thousands

The Bluff Park Art Association’s annual show, held the first Saturday in October, attracted thousands of art lovers to this year’s event, held October 7. This year, 145 artists in mediums including photography, woodworking, oil painting, pottery and more displayed and sold their work. 

The show also offered several awards and cash prizes for artists. Winners were:

  • • Bluff Park Art Association Permanent Collection Purchase Award ($3,500): Essie Ebrahimi, Montevallo, Alabama – Woodworking
  • • President’s Award ($1,750): Cathy Smart, Baton Rouge, Louisiana – Photography
  • • Award in Honor of Don Everhart, Show Judge 2017 ($1,750): Peter Marken, Calera, Alabama – Woodworking
  • • Bluff Park Art Association Board of Director’s Award ($1,250): Felix Berroa, Marietta, Georgia – Painting
  • • August A. Moore Memorial Purchase Award ($1,000): Vanessa Miller, Huntsville, Alabama – Painting 
  • • Award for Excellence in Glass ($500): John Evon Helena, Alabama – Glass
  • • Hugh and Jackie Dye Award in Memory of Evelyn Allen ($500): Rick Plasters, Birmingham, Alabama – 2-D Mixed Media
  • • First Commercial Bank/ Synovus Award ($500): Johnny Stephenson, East Point, Georgia – Photography
  • • Hoover Arts Alliance Award ($500): Craig McMillin, Folsom, Louisiana
  • • In Memory of Melinda Groover ($500): A. Denise Rollings-Martin, Bremen, Alabama – Jewelry
  • • Mills Pharmacy Award ($500): David Self, Pelham, Alabama – Clay
  • • Bluff Park Art Show Popular Vote Award ($300): Ahmad Austin, Alabaster, Alabama – Painting