The Wire

  • New tunnel, premium RV section at Talladega Superspeedway on schedule despite weather


    Construction of a new oversized vehicle tunnel and premium RV infield parking section at Talladega Superspeedway is still on schedule to be completed in time for the April NASCAR race, despite large amounts of rainfall and unusual groundwater conditions underneath the track.

    Track Chairman Grant Lynch, during a news conference Wednesday at the track, said he’s amazed the general contractor, Taylor Corporation of Oxford, has been able to keep the project on schedule.

    “The amount of water they have pumped out of that and the extra engineering they did from the original design, basically to keep that tunnel from floating up out of the earth, was remarkable,” Lynch said.

  • Alabama workers built 1.6M engines in 2018 to add auto horsepower


    Alabama’s auto workers built nearly 1.6 million engines last year, as the state industry continues to carve out a place in global markets with innovative, high-performance parts, systems and finished vehicles.

    Last year also saw major new developments in engine manufacturing among the state’s key players, and more advanced infrastructure is on the way in the coming year.

    Hyundai expects to complete a key addition to its engine operations in Montgomery during the first half of 2019, while Honda continues to reap the benefits of a cutting-edge Alabama engine line installed several years ago.

  • Groundbreaking on Alabama’s newest aerospace plant made possible through key partnerships


    Political and business leaders gathered for a groundbreaking at Alabama’s newest aerospace plant gave credit to the formation of the many key partnerships that made it possible.

    Governor Kay Ivey and several other federal, state and local officials attended the event which celebrated the construction of rocket engine builder Blue Origin’s facility in Huntsville.

2 weeks ago

UNA celebrates Year of the UNA Woman 150 years after admitting first female

(University of North Alabama/YouTube)

The University of North Alabama is celebrating 150 years of admitting women on their campus with the Year of the UNA Woman, which kicked off on June 1 with a website and the launch of UNA Magazine, produced entirely by women.

Over the course of the next 14 months, the UNA Magazine will feature a large variety of articles detailing the history of women on campus, as well as highlight upcoming events celebrating the Year of the UNA Woman.

Women like Ann Berry, who graduated from UNA in 1978 and was appointed in March as the 34th Secretary of the United States Senate; the first African-American and the eighth woman to serve in that role.


“It is wonderful for UNA to celebrate 150 years of admitting women to the University,” Berry said. “Our successes as women represent a powerful array of accomplishments, and we must remain committed to opening doors for others. I’m proud to be a product of one of the best universities in the state of Alabama.”

The University of North Alabama was originally named the State Normal School at Florence when it opened its doors to women in 1872, making Alabama’s oldest four-year university the first state-supported co-educational institution in the southeast. The university is proud to
observe this sesquicentennial, 150 years later, with the Year of the UNA Woman.

A task force of over two dozen campus and community members are responsible for not only planning the many celebratory events in honor of the sesquicentennial, but they are also putting together a hardcover book and producing podcasts to commemorate the milestone anniversary.

“This is an exciting and important anniversary for the University of North Alabama,” said Dr. Jeffrey Bibbee and Michelle Eubanks, co-chairs of the Year of the UNA Woman Task Force appointed by Dr. Ken Kitts, UNA president. “Women have long been trailblazers at the institution, and we will celebrate their contributions throughout UNA’s history in the months ahead. This sesquicentennial is an opportunity for the University to firmly and unequivocally take its place in Alabama and the region for its progressive and inclusive history.”

Sara Watkins is a contributing writing for Yellowhammer Multimedia. You can follow her on Instagram at @saralwatkins

2 weeks ago

Airbnb names most hospitable host in Alabama

(Glamping Silver Bullet A/C Wifi Ev Charger Farm/Airbnb)

Airbnb has announced Rachel from Fairhope as their number one most hospitable host in all of Alabama. Rachel hosts three listings on Airbnb: “Silver Sail Airstream,” “Glamping Silver Bullet” and “Sanitized Fairfield Farm Cottage.”

Airbnb highlighted the number one most hospitable hosts in all 50 states in a recently publicized report.

The criteria for such a high honor are as follows:

Each host must have received a 5-star rating in 100% of their reviews in the categories of Cleanliness, Check-in and Communication.

Each host must have had a minimum of 100 reviews.


If more than one host in each state fit the above criteria, the tiebreaker went to whomever had the most reviews.

Rachel from Fairhope received over 300 reviews, each one with a 5-star rating in hospitality and safety, the most critical of categories. Many other Alabama hosts achieved this feat as well, but Rachel had the most reviews.

Based on her own travels, Rachel said she and her husband believe the key to good hospitality lies in the details. Guests can expect to find thoughtful touches when visiting their properties, such as small toiletry items in the bathrooms or light meals and late-night snacks. The homemade blueberry muffins with blueberries from a local farm that Rachel leaves for her guests have become quite the hit among travelers.

“It has been incredibly fun and exciting to meet and host so many amazing people on our farm and so far we have loved every single one of them,” said Rachel.

Sara Watkins is a contributing writing for Yellowhammer Multimedia. You can follow her on Instagram at @saralwatkins