The Wire

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

    Excerpt:

    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

    Excerpt:

    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

    Excerpt:

    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 months ago

University of Alabama’s Million Dollar Band to perform in 2020 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

The Million Dollar Band to perform at Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in 2020.

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The University of Alabama Million Dollar Band has been selected to perform in the 2020 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade®, representing the state of Alabama.

This will mark the first appearance by the band in the Parade. The Million Dollar Band will join the Parade to the call of “Let’s Have a Parade,” the iconic phrase that has signaled the start of every Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade since 1924.

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“It’s fitting that the UA Million Dollar Band, one of the most respected university marching bands in the country, will be performing in one of the largest parades in the world,” said UA President Stuart R. Bell. “What Alabama fans have been able to enjoy on Saturdays will now be shared with more than 50 million people live on the streets of New York and watching on television. We’re honored by the invitation, and I couldn’t be more pleased by the work of these talented student musicians.”

“The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is one of America’s iconic holiday traditions,” said Dr. Ken Ozzello, UA professor of music and director of bands. “Having the opportunity to participate will be thrilling for the members of the Million Dollar Band and provide them with life-long memories.”

Each year, the Macy’s Parade Band Committee looks for bands that have the stage presence and the musical and marching abilities to captivate more than 3.5 million live spectators and more than 50 million viewers. The Million Dollar Band was selected from more than 100 applicants as one of nine bands to march in the 94th edition of the annual holiday spectacle.

The band will join the revelry along with other iconic Macy’s staples: floats, giant character balloons, clowns and superstar performers galore on Thanksgiving Day 2020, helping create an unforgettable experience for millions.

“When most Americans think of The University of Alabama, they may think about football, however, it is the exciting showmanship, entertaining performances and incredible music at halftime that captures our attention,” said Wesley Whatley, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade creative producer. “The Macy’s Band Selection Committee is proud to welcome the sights and sounds of The Million Dollar Band to the streets of New York City for their inaugural appearance in the 2020 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade!”

The Million Dollar Band will spend the next 14 months planning for their Parade appearance.

“In preparation, the band will work on its marching technique, as well as the standstill portion of the Parade which is televised by NBC,” Ozzello said. “It will be a challenge to stage 400 musicians and performers in front of Macy’s, but the staff is eagerly looking forward to taking on that challenge.”

Performing for millions of fans each year, the Million Dollar Band has been a Crimson Tide tradition for more than 100 years, and it has become one of the most respected university marching bands in the country. The band, which is made up of more than 400 students from almost every major and department on campus, is UA’s largest student organization.

For more than 90 years, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has given thanks to what Macy’s values most – its loyal fans. More than 5,000 Macy’s employees and dedicated volunteers work tirelessly to create a spectacular event that entertains the cheerful crowds and provides joy to millions at home watching on Thanksgiving Day. Stretching down a more than two-mile-long route in New York City, the spectacle is alive with gleaming color, music and smiles.

Shane Dorrill is the Assistant Director of Communications, Broadcast Media and Safety at the University of Alabama

2 months ago

New University of Alabama radio station provides information for football fans

(University of Alabama/Contributed)

When Crimson Tide fans travel to Tuscaloosa for football games, they will have a new way of getting information.

UA Info Radio is broadcasting on 92.5 FM and streaming through ready.ua.edu, the UA Safety app and the UA Gameday app.

“We have one of the best game day experiences in the nation, and UA Info Radio will only make the experience better for our fans,” said Dr. Donald Keith, director of emergency management at the University of Alabama. “As fans drive into Tuscaloosa, they can tune in and hear the information they need before arriving on campus.”

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On game days, UA Info Radio will provide pre- and postgame traffic updates as well as information on parking and pregame events, such as the family-friendly tailgate area and autograph sessions with former football players. Fans will hear fun facts about the Crimson Tide. Music selections from the Million Dollar Band, including “Yea, Alabama,” will help everyone get pumped up for the game.

Additionally, game-day-specific safety tips, such as what to do if you get separated from your party or how to contact University police, will be broadcast. In the event of severe weather or other emergencies that may occur during the game, UA Info Radio will provide fans with important safety information.

When not broadcasting about game day, UA Info Radio airs information on campus events, such as performances by UA’s theatre and dance department, selections from the School of Music and interesting facts about the Capstone.

In the event of severe weather for the Tuscaloosa area, UA Info Radio will provide updates and information to help faculty, staff, students and visitors stay safe.

UA began the process of acquiring a low-power FM, non-commercial radio station for public safety after the April 27, 2011, tornado that destroyed much of Tuscaloosa.

“After the tornado, when the electricity was out for several days, the only way for many people to get information was through a battery-operated radio,” Keith said. “We decided at that time that UA needed a radio station that could be used to distribute information in the case of an emergency. UA Info Radio is just another tool we use to help keep people safe on our campus.”

This story originally appeared on the University of Alabama’s website.

(Courtesy of Alabama NewsCenter)