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Welcome to the
City of Florence
Message Center 

Alabama's Renaissance City


In This Issue
Message from Mayor Holt

Florence City Council Meeting - Tuesday, March 20
4:00 p.m. Work Session / 5:00 p.m. Council Meeting
City Auditorium, 103 South Pine Street
Mayor's Animal of the Month
This lovely little girl is Shaina. She has only been at our shelter for a short time and she does not wish to stay! Shaina is a 9-month-old bully mix that is extremely well behaved. She loves everyone that visits her and gets along great with other dogs and cats. Please consider fostering or adopting Shaina, she is ID# A37993046.


Call or come by the Florence Lauderdale Animal Shelter
Office: 256-718-5170 Fax: 256-740-4668
702 East College Street




On March 12, 2018, the City of Florence was officially 200 years old - making it one full year older than the State of Alabama!
It was a GRAND Bicentennial Celebration on Monday, March 12, in Wilson Park, and now we have NINE months of exciting events.



(including an online store - Click on Shop from the menu)


(Updated Schedule as of March 1, 2018)

We are indebted to our wonderful Sponsors who
helped to make the celebration possible!

Memorabilia is for sale in the Bicentennial Office and the Mayor's Office and includes:  Christmas ornaments, canvas tote bags, coasters, ball caps, coffee mugs, insulated tumblers, throws, coins, tee-shirts, polo shirts, golf balls, fans, window decals, lapel pins, screen wipes, and koozies, and the beautiful 2018 Bicentennial Calendar published by The Design Committee of Florence Main Street and features interesting information about Florence's fascinating history, along with details of the commemorations that will take place monthly from March through November.  

Bicentennial Office - 256-760-6689
Mayor's Office - 256-760-6400
The BC Office (4th Floor) and the Mayor's Office (2nd Floor)
are located in the
Florence-Lauderdale Government Building
102 South Court Street

The calendar is also available at these locations:

1. Kennedy-Douglass Center for the Arts, 217 East Tuscaloosa Street 
2. Florence-Lauderdale Tourism Bureau/Visitors Center in McFarland Park
3. The Shoals Chamber of Commerce office on Hightower Place
4. Mayor's Office, 102 South Court Street, Second Floor


Celebrate Florence 
"Through the Years" 
Bicentennial Parade
Saturday, April 7, 10:30 a.m. 


The City of Florence is celebrating its 200th birthday and
we are throwing a year-long party!
And to help kick off the celebrations, we're having a parade!

So grab your friends, decorate a float, put together a band on a flatbed trailer and join us to celebrate the bicentennial of Florence.  You are encouraged to theme your float, performance or musical group, costume, decoration or musical selection related to anything in Florence's past, present or dream of the future.  
So get creative & have some fun!

Florence Main Street, is responsible for coordinating the Bicentennial Parade and as always, there are rules to be followed. These rules and regulations are to improve safety (following state laws and city ordinances) and provide increased enjoyment for participants and spectators. 
VERY IMPORTANT...The Parade route will follow Court Street from the north end at Rogers Hall on the UNA campus to the southern end at Alabama Street.  Parade line up will begin at 9:30am on Pine Street between Irvine and Cumberland Streets.  Your exact time for line up will be determined by your placement in the parade.  That information will be sent to you early in the week of the parade.   

Please remember with the Parade line up being on Pine Street and ending on South Court Street at Alabama Street to arrange your drop off and pick up locations to match those areas.    
Awards will be given so really dive into your theme.  Think history...your group's history, history of Florence,
history of the Shoals.  Think Future...where do you see Florence or your group in 100 years?  

The following are the rules and regulations set forth for the 2018 Florence Bicentennial Parade:


This parade is FREE!  No entry fees required!  


Entry applications will not be accepted when Florence Main Street, Inc. Executive Committee or the Bicentennial Committee determines an entry to be controversial, unlawful, or inconsistent with the standards, the theme and the purposes of the Bicentennial parade. At any time after acceptance an entry may not be allowed to participate in the Bicentennial parade if it deviates from the original application or violates any Bicentennial parade rule or regulation.


Florence Main Street, Inc. and the Bicentennial Committee reserves the right to withdraw any float, any vehicle, any group or any person of which costume, display, decorations, theme or performance does not meet the Bicentennial parade rules and regulations or conform to the standards of reasonable public taste and fit the parade theme.


Entrants must observe all applicable rules and regulations and follow instructions from City of Florence Police and parade officials or be barred from the parade.  Florence Main Street, Inc. and the Bicentennial Committee reserves the right to remove any entrant from the parade either prior to assembly, while assembling or any time during the parade. 


Each entry is limited to ten (10) units. Each entry must represent a different decade.  For example, the XYZ car club will be allowed 10 cars in their entry but the cars must represent cars made in different decades.  


Entries MUST be decorated or dressed to reflect the theme of the parade:  
"Through the Years" 


No undecorated floats will be allowed!  There is nothing more boring than watching the same cars driving down the road! 


Horses/animals are allowed in the Bicentennial Parade but horses must be bagged or you must clean up after your animals.  If horses are not bagged and you do not show parade officials your 'clean up crew', you will be removed from the parade line up. All animals must be cleaned up after by the group bringing them. 


Motorcyclists are required by Alabama state law to wear helmets at all times. Motorcycles which are not designed and licensed for public streets will not be allowed to participate in the parade.  Alabama state law prohibits ATVs from public streets; therefore, ATVs are not permitted in the parade. 


Historic vehicles (automotive and non-automotive, ie: wagons) will be allowed in the Bicentennial parade.  Please follow all State of Alabama and City of Florence rules transporting historic vehicles to the parade location.


Florence Main Street, Inc. Executive Committee and the Bicentennial Committee reserves the right to accept or decline any entry.  Florence Main Street, Inc. Executive Committee and the Bicentennial Committee decisions regarding all entries is final.

Monday, April 2 is the deadline to enter the parade. 



This is stated on the entry form and will be strictly enforced. Inclusion of any late entry will be at the sole discretion of Florence Main Street.  


More information is available from the Florence Main Street office by calling 256-760-9648.

We thank you for your participation and look forward to seeing you at the 2018 Florence Bicentennial Parade.



Teryl Shields
Executive Director

Florence Main Street



We wish to contact descendants, far and near, of early Florence families and invite them to join in a First Families of Florence Bicentennial Celebration the week of April 9-15, with events especially for them.
Below is a list of more than 300 names of people who were involved in the early years of Florence, but the list is incomplete and it probably has errors.  We need help finding their descendants.
Here is what you need to do:
If you see the name of your Florence ancestor(s) on the list, please get a contact form and fill it out.  These forms are available at the National Heritage office, 568 North Court Street.  If you do not live locally, call the National Heritage office to get one mailed to you at 256-765-5028.
For those who are not sure about your ancestry, the experts in the Genealogy Room, 2nd Floor, at the Florence-Lauderdale Public Library may be able to help you.  It would be best to call and make an appointment for someone to help you in your search - Florence-Lauderdale Public Library, 350 North Wood Avenue, 256-764-6564 Ext. 30 (Local History Desk).
If you do not see your Florence ancestor's name on the list, but know they should be on it, call Curtis Flowers, 256-275-7087, to get information or a form emailed to you.

The Shoals branch of the
American Association of University Women
will be holding the annual
Green Tea
to benefit the AAUW scholarship fund for UNA women
Thursday, March 15
from 4:00 p.m. until 5:30 p.m.
at Southall-Moore House of Kennedy-Douglass
217 East Tuscaloosa Street
Women who have completed a higher education degree or certificate
are welcome to attend the tea and also join AAUW.
More information about AAUW can be found at


THEME:  "Spruce Up Your Spring"
Friday, March 16, 2018 - 8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Cross Point Church of Christ, 1350 Cox Creek Parkway, Florence, AL
The public is invited
Cost:  $45 (includes lunch) - Registration:
   Information:  Mayor's Office    256-760-6400
Horticulture and Urban Forestry with ISA points available

Outstanding speakers will present current information on horticulture and
creating and preserving the urban green environment.
Keynote speaker is Tom Underwood, Director of the Birmingham Botanical Gardens.  Also speaking are: Bill Finch, former Director of the Mobile Botanical Gardens; Troy Marden, award-winning garden and floral designer and frequent contributor to Alabama Gardener and Southern Living magazines;  Will Jangaard, Insurance Agent and Financial Representative with COUNTRY Financial; Dale Dickens, Urban Forestry Coordinator, Alabama Forestry Commission; and Tom Powers, Powers Treeology.



Conference is sponsored by the City of Florence Mayor and City Council,
 the Florence Beautification Board, the Florence Tree Commission, and
the City's Urban Forestry/Horticulture Department. 



Florence/Lauderdale Tourism and the
Muscle Shoals National Heritage Area will host the

"Women of Muscle Shoals
Speakers Panel"

on Saturday, March 17, at 2:00 p.m.
Florence/Lauderdale Tourism Visitor Center
McFarland Park


Carla Russell, Marie Lewey and Donna Jean Godchaux-McKay will be interviewed by Crazy Chester Music owner Andrea Werner to explore the ladies extensive experiences while performing and recording in Muscle Shoals.

The event will be held in the Gallery of the Visitor Center and seating is limited. Please call the Florence/Lauderdale Tourism office for additional information at 256-740-4141.

Florence/Lauderdale Tourism
to Host
Family Reunion Planning 101 Seminar
Wednesday, March 21
11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Visitor Center - McFarland Park
Florence/Lauderdale Tourism is encouraging local residents to plan family reunions in Florence and the Shoals by offering Family Reunion Planning 101 on Wednesday, March 21.  The free seminar will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Visitor Center located in McFarland Park. Light refreshments will be served. Seminar attendees will learn to plan fun family reunions and how the Visit Florence, AL team can help every step of the way. In addition to event-planning services, Visit Florence, AL can also provide families with materials to encourage reunion attendance, plan special tours and other area resources needed for a successful event.
The free seminar is open to the public.
Seating is limited and if you need additional information or want to attend, please email or call 256-740-4141.
The Knights of Columbus Council 3898
is sponsoring its annual
Friday, March 23, 2018
St. Joseph Catholic Regional School Cafeteria
115 Plum Street - Florence
Served from 4:15 PM to 6:45 PM
Featuring catfish filets, hush puppies,
Cole slaw, French fries or baked potato,
drink and dessert are included.
Tickets are available at the door:
Adults, $10.00
Children 4 - 6 years: $4.00
Children under 4 years eat FREE
Carry - outs are available.
Cheese pizza will be available for
those who do not want fish.
Proceeds from this fellowship will be used
for the Council 3989 Charity Fund.

For Information call Don Rohling at 256-710-7059

Rescheduled due to rain.
Florence/Lauderdale Tourism and the Muscle Shoals National Heritage Area will host the Swampette Muscle Shoals Music Tour from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. , on Saturday, March 24.  The tour begins at the Florence/Lauderdale Tourism Visitor Center in McFarland Park.  
Tours are led by "Swampette" Judy Hood, the wife of one of the famous Swampers, bass player David Hood.  Attendees travel on the historic Tuscumbia trolley and are treated to personalized tours of the Alabama Music Hall of Fame, FAME Studios and 3614 Jackson Highway Muscle Shoals Sound Studio.
The cost is $40 per person.  Future Swampette tours will be held June 2, September 1, and December 1. Seating is limited and reservations are recommended and can be made by calling the Florence/Lauderdale Tourism Office at 256-740-4141 or email Randa Simpson at


James Leblanc ft. Angela Hacker
with special guest Brendan Young
Shoals Community Theatre
Friday, March 30
7:00 p.m.
Come join us on Friday March 30, 2018 as the Shoals Theatre welcomes James Leblanc! LeBlanc has written hits with artists such as Travis Tritt ("Modern Day Bonnie & Clyde"), Jason Aldean ("Relentless"), Gary Allen ("Learning How To Bend"), Rascal Flatts ("Feels Like Today," "Where You Are"), Martina McBride ("Make Me Believe"), Kenny Chesney ("I Remember"), Thompson Square ("My Kind Of Crazy"), Jo Dee Messina ("Breakin' It Down"), Tim McGraw & Faith Hill ("Roll The Dice"), Candi Staton ("I Ain't Easy To Love" also performed by John Paul White and Jason Isbell) , James Otto ("Good Things Gone Bad"), Sarah Evans ("Show Me The Way To Your Heart"), Billy Ray Cyrus ("Don't Give Up On Me," "I Can't Live Without Your Love"), Chris LeDoux ("Daily Bread"), & even the cast of the hit TV Show Nashville ("Simple As That" sung by Deacon in Season 5)! 

Leblanc's credits keep rolling beyond this little list! Its no wonder albums featuring songs written or co-written by James LeBlanc have sold over 25 million units!
This is the second show in a series that benefits upgrades to sound, projection, and lighting at the Shoals Community Theatre! The goal of these upgrades is to be able to screen independent movies and documentaries as well as provide in house audio and visual support to artists who perform at the Theatre. The Theatre is a 501(c)3 non-profit that aims to culturally enrich the Shoals with theatrical performances, live musical acts, independent film screenings, and more! 

Tickets are $10 and are on sale now at



Music, Mimosas, & Munchies
Daniel and Friends Intimate Parlor Concert

Saturday, April 7
7:00 p.m.
Kennedy-Douglass Center for the Arts




Disney LIVE: Ratatouille

Friday, May 4
7:00 p.m.
Norton Auditorium



University of North Alabama Theatre Presents
The University of North Alabama Theatre will present Eurydice, April 6, 7, 12, 13 and 14, at 7:30 p.m., and April 8 and 15, at 2 p.m., in the George S. Lindsey Theatre.
A 2003 play by Sarah Ruhl, Eurydice retells the myth of Orpheus from the perspective of his wife, Eurydice.  The story focuses on Eurydice's choice to return to earth with Orpheus or to stay in the underworld with her father. Eurydice is presented by special arrangement with Samuel French Inc.
Tickets are $10 for the public or $5 UNA students, faculty, staff or alumni. 
For more information:


Booth Registration Form due by Thursday, April 5, for family services agencies




"Bubbles for Love"
Wednesday, April 25, 2018 at Noon
Parental Alienation Awareness Day
Sponsored by Alabama Family Rights Association
April is Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Month; a time to emphasize that our children deserve the leadership of the adults (parents, leaders, community) around them to ensure their health, wellness and safety. Attached is a draft proclamation proposal for Parental Alienation Prevention Week / Awareness Day for your review.  This is an important community campaign that links "Parental Alienation" with "Child Abuse" because after all, it is a form of mental abuse that children suffer.
Please show your support for children by taking 10 minutes out of your day at noon April 25th (or any other time during the week) to blow bubbles for love. View our Public Service Announcement here.
We encourage everyone to participate: mayor's offices, court houses, churches, businesses, daycare centers, schools, libraries, etc.  Children should be encouraged to freely love both parents regardless of their parents' marital status. You can also create any awareness event during April 22-28, which is Parental Alienation Prevention Week.
Please take photos of your event and activities, and send us a copy or link so we can include it in our 2017 Parental Alienation Awareness Day video clip that will be provided to the governor. Here's a preview of a previous event.  Please contact promptly, if you have questions about promoting the "Bubbles For Love" campaign.
Why Have an Awareness Day?
Take a photo or video with everyone enjoying time together, and post it on your favorite social media channels using #BubblesForLove, #StopParentalAlienation.

Kenneth Paschal
Parental Alienation Awareness Event Coordinator
Alabama Family Rights Association
US Army First Sergeant, Retired



Project of the 
Beautification Board
City of Florence
P. O. Box 98
Florence, AL  35631
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. 



Come Visit!
A weekly kids' calendar to help parents find events, camps, and sports in the Shoals area. Please contact us at to add children's events to our calendar for free. 
Like us on Facebook
Nicole Sneed

Like us on Facebook




The loose leaf collection program is in progress and will operate on a route system like it has done in previous years. This is the most efficient and equitable way for leaf collection. The route will be posted on the City's website and Facebook page; it will be updated weekly showing the most recently worked areas.



  • Rake leaves to the edge of your yard near the curb, but away from any obstacles such as trees, fences or mailboxes.
  • Keep these piles free of limbs and other trash which can damage the vacuum hoses and slow progress. 
  • Please avoid piling raked leaves on top of your water meter because this prevents meter reader from getting an accurate reading.
  • Please avoid placing raked leaves in the road gutters as this can cause flooding.


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.

Artistic Renderings of Youth

Artistic Renderings of Youth, a juried exhibit of work by 7th through 12th grade artists from Colbert, Franklin and Lauderdale counties, will be on display at Kennedy-Douglass Center for the Arts in Florence from February 26 through March 27. Celebrating its 27th year in existence, this exhibit has developed into an outstanding showcase of youth art. 

March is nationally recognized as Youth Art Month.  This exhibit provides an opportunity for the community to discover the young artistic talent in our area. The competition is coordinated by a group of junior high and high school art teachers to give students a chance to exhibit their art work and receive recognition for their talent.  There are 366 pieces in the show. Ribbons are awarded in three grade divisions, and this year three new scholarships from UNA will be chosen from the 11th and 12th division. 



Abstraction in Realism: Watercolors by Yuri Ozaki


Kennedy-Douglass Center for the Arts presents Abstraction in Realism: Watercolors by Yuri Ozaki, an exhibit by Huntsville watercolor artist, Yuri Ozaki February 15 - March 30.  Ozaki's soft, complex watercolors have such intimate detail they dive into the depths of abstraction. 
Yuri Ozaki grew up in a small town in Mie Prefecture on the Kii Peninsula of Japan. The area is known for its unique wet climate and mystical history. This area also features UNESCO World Heritage registered sacred sites and pilgrimage routes. The beauty and mystery of her home region has been a strong influence on Ozaki's work.
Her favorite subjects have been woodland scenes in the Tennessee Valley as well as her coastal hometown in Japan. Most recently, she has been experimenting with her own imaginary world based on scenes of decay and renewal in nature. She feels connected to her subjects through the texture of watercolor on paper.
Ozaki has been accepted to several national juried shows since 2010 where she has garnered several awards. She is a signature member of the Watercolor Society of Alabama and North East Watercolor Society. (

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.




Belly Dance Classes for Beginners

This is an all level, ongoing class that welcomes beginners
from 6:30-7:30 pm, January thru May on the first two Tuesday's of each month.
New session will begin Jan. 9-30/Feb. 6-27/Mar. 6-27/
Apr. 3-24/May 1-29 (5 week session)
Classes are $30.00 a month and will be taught by
 Noelle Smith with help from other teachers for different months.
Classes are taught at:
Royal Avenue Recreation Center
420 North Royal Avenue - 256-760-6425
For information call:
Noelle Smith @ 256-702-1360 or email
Florence Parks & Recreation Department
For an updated listing of the monthly activities at the
Royal Avenue Center
421 North Royal Avenue

"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***




2018 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