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The life and career of Lucy Baxley

At the close of every year my tradition is to acknowledge the passing away of significant political players from the political stage in Alabama. We have lost some Icons from politics in the Heart of Dixie this year. Lucy Baxley passed away in October in Birmingham at 78. She was born on a farm in rural Houston County in the community of Pansy. She went to school at Ashford. After graduation from high school ...

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State Parks experience momentum after passage of Amendment two

By DAVID RAINER, Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources The 2016 fall season has been especially fruitful for the Alabama State Parks System. Starting with the overwhelming approval of Amendment 2 on the ballot in November to encouraging visitor numbers, enthusiasm abounds at State Parks. And to keep that momentum going, State Parks is offering a substantial discount on overnight accommoda ...

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Great theater provided by Alabama politics in 2016

By Steve Flowers Historically speaking, Alabamians have been more interested in the governor’s race than presidential politics. For years, from 1876 to 1964, we were a totally Democratic state, more so out of tradition than philosophically. The hatred for the radical Republican Reconstruction shackles invoked on the South made an indelible mark on white southern voters. It was so instilled, that there are a ...

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When is the best time for hunters to harvest does in Alabama?

By DAVID RAINER, Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources When is the best time for hunters to harvest does in Alabama? According to Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Director Chuck Sykes, the answer is simple: When you have the opportunity. “I am now a weekend warrior,” Sykes said. “I shoot them when I can. If I need to kill so many does, I have to do it when I can. In a perfect wor ...

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Alabama politics flying under the radar with presidential election

By Steve Flowers While the presidential race played out this year, several things happened in Alabama politics that went under the radar. First, a federal appeals court upheld the legislature’s banning PAC to PAC transfers. The new Republican legislative majority that marched into the Statehouse in 2011 set out to destroy and bury the last bastion of Democratic power in the state – the once omnipotent Alaba ...

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Heaven’s blessings

By Kevin Payne, Palmerdale UMC The popular Christmas carol “O Little Town of Bethlehem” proclaims in its third stanza: “How silently, how silently the wondrous gift is given; so God imparts to human hearts the blessings of his heaven. No ear may hear his coming, but in this world of sin, where meek souls will receive him still, the dear Christ enters in.” That is a powerful proclamation to us today, especia ...

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Recent rains change amount of water available to ducks for hunters

By DAVID RAINER, Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Alabama waterfowl hunters who ventured out on opening weekend will probably have to expand their territory after several recent rain events have changed the amount of water currently available to the ducks. “Earlier in the year we were in an extreme drought situation throughout Alabama, especially northeast Alabama,” said Seth Maddox, ...

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Celebrating the light of Christ through the Christmas season

By Buddy Champion Bah Humbug! We have all this commercialization and busy activities. They have been trying to sell Christmas stuff in the stores since August. Who came up with all these parties and obligations that have to take place before the day of celebration? We travel long distances to see people that we haven’t seen since last year and spend money to give them gifts that they don’t want or need. Wha ...

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Alabama Ethics Commission makes it difficult for AL charities to raise funds

By Steve Flowers It is Christmas time, and since Alabama is one of the most charitable states in the nation, I would expect that many of us are in the giving mood and plan to help many worthy causes across our great state. Unfortunately, it appears that some recent rulings by the Alabama Ethics Commission are going to make it more difficult for charities across the state to raise the funds that they need to ...

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Feral hog population reaches all 67 Alabama counties

By DAVID RAINER, Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Despite a combined effort to loosen regulations on removal and to increase awareness of the problem, the feral hog population has now reached all 67 counties in Alabama. Chuck Sykes has been dealing with the scourge of feral hogs for years, now as Director of the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF) Division, and previously ...

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