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Welcome to the
City of Florence
Message Center 

Alabama's Renaissance City


In This Issue
Message from Mayor Holt


W. C. Handy Music Festival
July 21-30!

The Music Preservation Society/
W. C. Handy Music Festival
Office has moved!

We are now located at:
409 N. Court Street
Suite #11
Florence AL 35630
Phone:  (256) 766-7642
            (256) 394-8674




115th Signal Battalion's Deployment
Mayor Steve Holt attended the 115th Signal Battalion's deployment on Saturday, July 15, at Huntsville High School.  Mayor Holt encourages the Shoals area to remember the National Guard 115th Signal Battalion and their families during this time.  "These men and women are very special to us and we want to let them know how proud we are of them and how much we appreciate their service.  Our earnest prayer is for their quick and safe return!"
Best Hot Dog in America - Bunyan's
USA Today Network   

The Clarion-Ledger's (part of the USA Today network) columnist, Robert St. John, wrote that Bunyan's Bar-B-Q has the best hot dogs in America!

There are some things that can't be explained. I can't tell you how magnets work. I couldn't begin to describe how black holes function, why people ever watched a television show that featured any member of the Kardashian family, or why the cheapest, most unassuming, hot dogs at Bunyan's BBQ in Florence, Alabama, are so good. It is truly inexplicable (though I'll give it the old college try for the benefit of you, the reader).

Alabama Tax-Free Weekend 2017
July 21-23

Alabama Sales Tax Holiday 2017 for school-related items
Begins 12:01 a.m. Friday, July 21, 2017
Ends at midnight Sunday July 23, 2017
This gives shoppers the opportunity to purchase certain
school supplies, computers, books, and clothing free
of sales or use tax.



Saturday, July 22
10:00 a.m. until Noon
Tourism Visitors Center
Jim Spain Drive, McFarland Park
Event is free - The Public is Welcome
Southern Short Stories writer, Tom McDonald
will give a presentation and sign copies
of his newest release, "Promises to Keep."
Click here for the full Press Release
Teachers should bring some form of school identification in order to receive the supplies.

Saturday, July 22, 2017
Marriott Conference Center
5:00 p.m.

Live and silent auctions with entertainment
Featuring:  The Wildwood Ruminators
Burgers, Beers, Bids, and Blues!
Admission:  $30.00

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We need your input
on Tuesday, August 1

The Florence Police Department is scheduled for an on-site assessment as part of a program to achieve accreditation by verifying it meets professional standards.
Administered by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc. (CALEA), the accreditation program requires agencies to comply with state-of-the-art standards in four basic areas:  Police and Procedures, Administration, Operations, and Support Services.

As part of the on-site assessment, agency employees and members of the community are invited to offer comments at a public information session on Tuesday, August 1, 2017, from 6:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m.  The session will be conducted in the Florence-Lauderdale Public Library located at 350 North Wood Avenue, Florence, AL  35630.
Agency employees and the public are also invited to offer comments by calling 256-768-2738 on Tuesday, August 1, 2017, from 1:00 p.m. until 3:00 p.m.  Comments will be taken by members of the Assessment Team.

Telephone comments as well as appearances at the public information session are limited to 10 minutes and must address the agency's ability to comply with CALEA's standards.  A copy of the Standards is available at the Florence Police Department Records Division or online at  The local contact is Lt. Ryan Fleming, 256-760-6597 (
Anyone wishing to submit written comments about the Florence Police Department's ability to comply with the standards for accreditation may send them to the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement, Inc. (CALEA), 13575 Heathcote Boulevard - Suite 320, Gainesville, Virginia, 20155 or email

Florence Invitational
Groups:    Eddie Frost Group - Up to 49
                Chris Burns Group - 50-64
            Alex Sloan Group - 65 & Over
  • New set of irons for each division winner
  • Name engraved on plaque in golf shop
  • Flights in each age group depending on number of participants
  • Winners of each flight will be awarded gift certificates to golf shop
* Lunch will be provided all three days
* Saturday evening BBQ dinner  --  Couples Putting Contest   --  Cornhole Fun
Call Golf Shop @ 256-740-8825 to register TODAY!!!!!!
$150.00 per entrant  --  Last Day to Register is July 26th
               *** Field limited to 120 players ***




A Night with Coach Gene Stallings

By Rogersville Chamber of Commerce


Thursday, August 3, 2017

6:30 PM- 9:30 PM

Florence-Lauderdale Coliseum

Veterans Drive - Florence

This is your opportunity to share A Night with Coach Gene Stallings! Join us for a dinner and speaking engagement, and bring your best football spirit! Tickets can be purchased online or at the Rogersville Chamber of Commerce for $60. Sponsorships are also available (VIP Sponsors receive tickets to a private Meet & Greet).
Call the Chamber today to reserve yours! (256) 247-9449 or go to  
2017 Lion Pride Dinner & Auction
Saturday, August 12, 2017
5:30 PM
Listerhill Credit Union Auditorium
Second Street, Sheffield
Please contact:
Jennifer Sutton
 Any questions can be sent to
Saturday, August 26
5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
The Shoals Front Porch Storytelling Festival is excited to invite everyone to come out to play music on the front porch of Kennedy-Douglass Center of the Arts on August 26, 2017, from 5:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m., for Play Music on the Porch Day! Grab any instrument, even if it is your voice, and come join us for a spontaneous community jam session and refreshments on the front porch! All ages are invited to this free event!

"Throughout history it was common to hear live music on porches, in yards and on street corners. Musicians would regularly surround themselves with friends and family to sing and play music together. This tradition is being lost as more people only experience music as passive entertainment instead of as a participatory celebration of life. 

PLAY MUSIC ON THE PORCH DAY invites musicians to revive the tradition of gathering, singing and playing music outside with friends and family... Share your talent. Share your passion. Share your music!" Find out more about the world-wide initiative on or follow PlayMusiconthePorchDay on Facebook and Instagram! 
Kennedy-Douglass Center for the Arts is located at 217 E. Tuscaloosa Street and is open, free of charge, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 256-760-6379 for more information. 

The Public is Invited to join THE CLUB
on these fun adventures!

Please join us and enjoy the MYSTERY TRIPS and OVERNIGHT trips with your new friends at The CLUB.
The Dam Fall Color Tour and Searching for Christmas Lights are two of our favorite annual tours along
with Reelfoot Lake, the Earthquake Lake, Tiptonville, TN during bald eagle season.
Upcoming Tours for 2017
Taking Reservations Now.
Monday-Friday 10 am-4 pm @The Club.
Your choice of seats on the motor coach will be in the order that your register.
Limited seating. Please call for additional information:  256.760.6642

The Ark Encounter & Creation Museum
  • 5 Days - 4 Nights
  • Sep 11 - 15, 2017
  • $535 pp/Double Occupancy
Tour Includes:
  • Motorcoach transportation
  • 4 nights lodging
  • 8 meals: 4 breakfasts and 4 dinners
  • Admission to the New, Stunning - ARK ENCOUNTER!
  • Admission to the Famous CREATION MUSEUM
  • Exclusive Diamond Tours® Dinner Party with Entertainment
  • Admission to the NEWPORT AQUARIUM

For Information & Reservations Contact:

Fran Davis @ (256) 760-6420
You can also email me at


The Club, 450 Country Club Dr, Florence, AL @ 8 am

Additional Payment Information:

$75 Due Upon Signing
*Price per person, based on double occupancy
Add $179 for single occupancy
Final Payment Due: 7/4/2017


Branson Holiday Show Extravaganza
  • 7 Days - 6 Nights
  • Nov 05 - 11, 2017
  • $625 pp/Double Occupancy
Tour Includes:
  • Motorcoach transportation
  • 6 nights lodging including 4 consecutive nights in the Branson area
  • 10 meals: 6 breakfasts and 4 dinners
  • Admission to 7 Fabulous Branson Shows! Including:
  • Three Evening Shows: LIVERPOOL LEGENDS SHOW "The Complete Beatles Experience", "MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET" SHOW, & THE DUTTON SHOW

For Information & Reservations Contact:

Fran Davis @ (256) 760-6420
You can also email me at


The Club, 450 Country Club Dr, Florence, AL @ 8 am

Additional Payment Information:

$75 Due Upon Signing
Price per person, based on double occupancy
Add $180 for single occupancy.

Final Payment Due: 8/29/2017 


Beautification Board
City of Florence
P. O. Box 98
Florence, AL  35631
Available for Purchase
The Florence Beautification Board has worked with the City to effect an upgrade of the landscaping in Wilson Park; including the removal of the old wooden benches to be replaced by metal ones.
Benches "In Honor Of" or "In Memory Of" or "Donated By" may be purchased from the City for placement in Wilson Park.  The tax deductible cost is $875.00 and includes the bench, an engraved plaque, and installation.  The benches are six feet long with an armrest in the center.  They are constructed of powder coated metal, green in color, and have a curved back.



KENNEDY-DOUGLASS CENTER FOR THE ARTS is located at 217 East Tuscaloosa Street,
Florence, and is open, free of charge, Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  
Call 256-760-6379 for information on City museums and art events or Click here.

Mostly Blues Exhibit
Kennedy-Douglass Center for the Arts presents Mostly Blues, a soulful exhibition of paintings, drawings, photographs, sculptures, and mixed media pieces by area artists that visually interpret and pay homage to the power of music.  Invited artists from Colbert, Franklin, and Lauderdale counties have distinct interpretations that celebrate this area's ties to the music world. The exhibit opens July 3, 2017, and will be on display through August 3, 2017. We also would like to invite everyone to the Mostly Blues artists' reception July 6, 2017 at 6 PM to meet and mingle with the artists. 
The annual exhibit, Mostly Blues, began in 1994 to honor W.C. Handy, the "Father of the Blues." Music-themed fine art, folk art, and design will fill the art center's main gallery as we gear up for the annual W.C. Handy Music Festival. 
This Mostly Blues exhibit will feature artwork by Ree Shannon, Rachel Wakefield, Martha Beadle, Marianthe Snyder, Taylor Dockery, Eric Freshour, The Shoals Artist Guild, Krena Poole, Helen Allman, Brian Dean, Lane May, Terry McGee, Mark Chamblee, Tara Bullington, Shannon Wells, Josh Johnston, Tim Stevenson, Jonathan Cain, Tabatha Jarmulowicz and more! 

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'American Idol' Auditions
to bring thousands of musicians, national focus to Shoals



Thursday, September 7
Alabama Music Hall of Fame
617 U.S. 72 W
Tuscumbia, AL
About 2,000 musicians are expected to descend upon the Alabama Music Hall of Fame on Sept. 7 as "American Idol" holds auditions in a state that has already supplied some of the show's most successful contestants. ABC recently announced that the network would be bringing back the beloved singing competition series for the 2017-2018 season and that Katy Perry is set to judge.
Dixie Griffin, manager of the Hall of Fame, said a part of the museum attests to the effect "American Idol" already has had on the state.  With the Alabama auditions taking place in September, Griffin expects "American Idol" will once again have an impact on the state, particularly the Shoals area and the Alabama Music Hall of Fame.
Please visit for more details on specific audition locations, full eligibility requirements, submission forms, terms and conditions.

The City of Florence has numerous boards and commissions through which our citizenry can get involved.  We depend upon you to help us make wise decisions and we solicit your advice and ideas.  Your service is invaluable in helping us continue to build and prosper as a progressive City. 



If you are interested and willing to serve on one of these boards, you may: 

Pick up an application from the Mayor/Council Office or
download a simple application that is available on the City's website at

A description of each board, along with the resolution
detailing the guidelines for serving, is also posted on the same website.  Applications stay on file for one year.  After one year, you will need to reapply or let us know to update your application that is on file.  






The Florence/Lauderdale Animal Shelter has

DOGS AND CATS available for



Click here for the Quarterly Newsletter...





NEW SHELTER HOURS - The Shelter is open from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. weekdays.  


Friday Evenings the Shelter is open for Pet Adoption - 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.


Weekend hours are:

 Saturday, open to the public and volunteers,

from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., and


Sunday, closed to the public,

but open to volunteers from 9:00 a.m. to 12 Noon.


Volunteers are always welcome!




The City Council adopted a  pet license ordinance for certain dogs and cats. 

The ordinance became effective May 1, 2014.




"Where Boomers and Seniors Come Together As ONE"
450 Country Club Drive
(Savannah Highway/Hwy. 20)
Florence - 256-760-6420
***The Club is a drug free, alcohol free facility***




2017 Weekly Schedule of Events


On FRIDAYS, the Boomers and Seniors wear RED to show support for our service men and women.  Get your "CLUB" shirt the next time you visit.
"JOINTS IN MOTION" CHAIR EXERCISE CLASS will help you with your activities of daily living.  Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 8:45 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.  No age limit. Men, women, friends and family are welcome to join us at The CLUB.  No fee.  Class Leader:  Fran "fish" Davis.
Also, the Joints in Motion Class offers the opportunity for you to join them in prayer around the flagpole each Monday morning after class at 9:50 a.m. to pray for our community, city, nation, first responders, troops, and families and friends of The CLUB.
THE NUTRITION PROGRAM is a NACOLG/State program which serves lunch each Monday-Friday, at 11:00 a.m., at The CLUB.  Suggested donation $1.  This program is based on age and not financial need.  Limited seating (35) available on first come basis.  You must be seated by 10:30 a.m.  Feel free to come check it out.
The only requirements are:
1) Must be 60 years of age, and
2) Must sign in and be seated by 10:30 a.m.
BOOMER'S & SENIOR'S TUESDAY NIGHT DANCE at The CLUB, 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., each week.  The doors will open at 6:00 p.m.  $6 per person.  Singles & couples are welcome.  21+ years old.  Music spanning the decades is performed by The Browns.  For more information please call The CLUB at 256-760-6420, Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Alabama's state dance is Folk and Square Dancing.  It's a healthy challenge that will have you stepping to the music and enjoying your new dance family.  The Singing River Squares will happily be your square dance angels during your BEGINNING SQUARE DANCE CLASSES that begins approximately every 12 weeks. The Singing River Squares WELCOMES you to give it a try.  Singles, couples, families...anyone with the desire to learn is welcomed.  For more information call Fran at The CLUB, 256-760-6642.  The seasoned dancers will dance PLUS TIPS in between the beginners tips.
BINGO is offered at 9:30 am on Tuesday and Thursday mornings.  No fee for BINGO.  Expendable type prizes are appreciated such as paper products, toothpaste, mouthwash, lotion, soap, puzzle books, unopened snack foods. If you'd like to make a donation our guys & gals they would greatly appreciate it.
BOARD GAMES, ROOK, CARD GAMES, DOMINOES and fun with friends each morning & afternoon at The CLUB.  9 am to 4 pm.  No fee.


We attend
Senior Citizens Appreciation Day (SCAD)
each spring!

We have picnics at The Club throughout the year. Feel free to give us a call for the schedule. Due to thunderstorms that roll through our area we have to postpone our outdoor events occasionally.
The DULCIMERS play each fourth Thursday at The CLUB, from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.  Come and enjoy their music!
We enjoy MYSTERY TRIPS and overnight trips with our friends from The CLUB.  The Dam Fall Color Tour and Touring for Christmas Lights are two of our favorite annual tours along with Reelfoot Lake, the Earthquake Lake, Tiptonville, TN during bald eagle season.

Our vegetable garden at The Club

Have a great weekend!

Mayor Steve Holt

How to Submit Your Event, News, or Announcement:

  • Public and community events or announcements can be in an email, Word document, PDF, or JPG file suitable for viewing on the web.  Include graphics in JPG or PNG if possible.
  • Along with your information, include your name, phone number, event name, location, date and time, and a brief description.
  • IMPORTANT:  Please submit your information no later than Tuesday of each week (preferably sooner).  Submissions after the deadline will be added to the next week's publication.  The newsletter is posted on Thursday afternoon.
  • Send your information to: or call Sandra Morgan with questions at 256-760-6408.


City of Florence | 256-760-6300 | |
110 West College Street
P.O. Box 98
Florence, AL 35630