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People, Places and Things By Gwen DeRu

Gwen DeRu


BIRMINGHAM ZOO CELEBRATES NATION’S BIRTHDAY- All veterans, active and retired military and their dependents get free admission to the Birmingham Zoo on July 2, 3 and 4 with valid military identification.  *Feed the lorikeets* in the Schaeffer Eye Center Lorikeet Aviary, ride the Full Moon Bar-B-Que Wild Slide* and take a ride on the Jane H. Brock Soaring Safari Zipline Adventure*.  On Saturday, enjoy special Keeper Chats to celebrate the 10th birthday of the Zoo’s three African red river hog sisters, Star, Spangle and Banner. The red river hog exhibit is located in the Trails of Africa and features a lookout station where guests can have an even closer view of Star, Spangle and Banner. The fun continues with the Red Diamond Sea Lion Splash Show, which features an even closer look at this aquatic species and showcases new behaviors from the Zoo’s California sea lions. The Schaeffer Eye Center Wildlife Show, another guest favorite, is an exciting and educational narrated presentation that includes a variety of animals trained to exhibit their natural behaviors. Guests will have a unique opportunity for an up-close encounter with some of the Zoo’s most fascinating animals. Other activities include feeding the giraffes at the Kiwanis Giraffe Encounter*, learning about the African bull elephants, getting up close with African lions at Predator Zone, cooling off in the Splash Pads and much more. *Additional cost.


The Barons will celebrate Independence Day Sunday when the Biloxi Shuckers, an affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers, will play, 6:30 p.m. After the game, enjoy a special patriotic themed firework show.

THUNDER ON THE MOUNTAIN – Thunder on the Mountain 2016 at 9 p.m. on Monday will illuminate the skies above Birmingham’s beloved iron man, Vulcan. Free. The show will last approximately 20 minutes, will feature a variety of firework shells that will brighten the sky with new colors and patterns and will be choreographed to a musical soundtrack that will feature a mix of patriotic favorites and popular music.

Share your best picture by using #VulcanFireworks on Facebook Twitter and/or Instagram.



THIS WEEKEND: Don’t miss WICKED at the BJCC Concert Hall.


THIRSTY THURSDAY at the Baron’s game at Regions Field.

VOICES OF WOMEN – V.O.W. at the Bessemer Civic Center, 5-6 p.m. reception and 6 p.m. guest speaker HONORABLE JUANDALYNN GIVAN.  Call (205) 585-0061 for more.

OLIVIA’S HAPPY HOUR, every Thursday at Olivia’s Bar and Lounge with $.50 wings and drink specials, 4 p.m. For more call (205) 326-2881

LIVE AT STEEL, 8 p.m. with SHARRON performing and DJ CDUBB in the Mix at Steel on First Avenue at 23rd Street, downtown Birmingham. Get your live music and dance on every Thursday night.



COMEDIAN D.L. Hughley at the StarDome Comedy Club, this weekend.

D.L. Hughley


FANCY FRIDAYS , 5 p.m. featuring JILLIAN GRAY with YARBROUGH & COMPANY every Friday at Legends on 18th Street North, Downtown. Birmingham. This is an After Work Experience hosted by Keely and Tiger and catered by Chef Jones. Call (205) 212-4406 for more.

PLUM BAR on 17th Street, Downtown.





RAILROAD PARK is where the run is Saturday.

SOULFUL SATURDAY at Steel 1st and 23rd Club.



ANNUAL MEN’S DAY CELEBRATION, 11 a.m. at the Birmingham Baptist Bible College with REV. WILSON FALLIN as featured Guest Speaker. The Mt. Hebron Baptist Church, Thomas is hosting the celebration with Rev. Tommy G. Smith, Pastor, Deacon George E. Armstrong and Deacon Tim Robinson. The theme is “Christian Men Trusting in God.”  For more, call (205) 370-3433 or 253-2253.

SUNGLASSES ON THE ROOFTOP, 4- 9 p.m. at the Southern Kitchen Bar, downtown Birmingham.  For more, go to www.daypartybham.com

SLOW ART SUNDAY, 2-3 p.m. at the Birmingham Museum of Art.

JAZZ IN THE PARK, 6-9 p.m. at East Lake Park with SEAN MICHAEL RAY AND DANIEL D.






OLIVIA’S HAPPY HOUR, 4 p.m., every Tuesday, at Olivia’s Bar and Lounge with $.50 wings and drink specials.  For more call (205) 326-2881.

PLUM BAR on 17th Street, Downtown.

TIDE AND TIGER ON THE PATIO, 4 p.m. until on Graymont across from Legion Field.



BOOK LAUNCH – A. G. & ME, author and former City Councilor Roderick Royal is hosting the launch of his book, A. G. & ME: INTERSECTING ROADS OF FRIENDSHIP, today, 5:30 – 7 p.m. at the Saint John AME Church, 708 15th Street North, downtown.

BOOK SIGNING – Meet author and Birmingham native Laura McClure for the book signing of UNVARNISHED TRUTHS: SEEKING CLOSURE, Saturday, 2-5:30 p.m. at the Parthenon, 2210 First Avenue North, FREE.



JAZZ TRUMPETER WILLIE BRADLEY, at the Perfect Note in Hoover at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

Willie Bradley

JAZZ IN THE PARK GADSDEN – Enjoy JAZZ IN THE PARK GADSDEN with MORT GLOSSER at the Amphitheatre, 6 – 9 p.m.


TIDE AND TIGER LOUNGE – CHECK OUT the TIDE AND TIGER!  Every Tuesday enjoy wings for 50 cents and $5 drinks at half price.  Every Sunday enjoy music from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s with DJ Tide and Tiger.  For more information, call (205) 503-3880.

ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL – Enjoy lots of music at the ESSENCE FESTIVAL, this weekend, in New Orleans.




If you are interested in fashion, style and live in the immediate Birmingham Area, Birmingham Fashion week is August 25-27 at the Boutwell Auditorium.

The Birmingham Fashion Week was founded on the ideals for bringing unity to our community through fashion. The 6th Annual Birmingham Fashion Week will be bigger and better than ever before. See local and national designers, local and national boutiques, rising design stars, emerging designers with models, make-up and hair artists competing as they showcase their talents on the runway. Hair and Makeup Artists deadline is tomorrow, Friday. For more information, go to www.bhamfashionweek.com.

FRONT COVER MODELING presents ‘MeKa Fashion Statement,’ featuring special guest models, 6- 8 p.m. on Sunday, July 24, at the Cotton’s Building (Ensley) located at 400 – 19th Street, 35218.  For more information, call (205) 920-3727 or (340) 513-2046.

THE CITY OF DA-SH FASHION SHOW, Sunday, July 24th, at the Bessemer Civic Center. Doors open at 3:15 p.m. Show starts at 4 p.m. Postura International and DA-SH magazine is hosting The City of DA-SH fashion show. There will be door prizes, live performances and vendors. For more information, call (205) 705-2354.



BIRMINGHAM PUBLIC LIBRARY SUMMER READING PROGRAM – The Public library’s Reading program is all summer long.  Check out the library nearest you.

Five Points West Regional Library storytellers Fontaine Alison, holding alligator, and Candice Hardy entertain summer campers from Faith Chapel Christian Center during Summer Reading program at Wylam Library.
Five Points West Regional Library storytellers Fontaine Alison, holding alligator, and Candice Hardy entertain summer campers from Faith Chapel Christian Center during Summer Reading program at Wylam Library.

CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST MOVEMENT DAY CAMP – This annual camp will be held, Wednesday, July 20, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. where more than 100 youth ages 11 to 16 years old are expected. The camp offers participants a fun-filled day of raising awareness and critical educational seminars to promote non-violence, knowledge of self, and individuality. There will be tours, a movie, and motivational speakers. With the Civil Rights Activist Movement Day Camp, youth can move closer to eliminating ignorance, discord, and inequality. For registration and more information on how you and your company can support the Civil Rights Activists Committee through sponsorship or team participation, visit www.civilrightsactivist.org, contact Paulette Roby, Chairman of the Board, at civilrightsactivist.fs63@yahoo.com or call (205)-518-0321. Support the camp by donating any products and/or services that can be used to support the Committee‘s efforts and the young people during this event.

GROCERIES NEEDED FOR CHILDREN – The Greater Birmingham Ministries is asking for groceries as it is time to collect food for the kids that are home from school this summer. Kid friendly food is needed. Drop off food and clothing any weekday, 8:30 a.m.– 4:30 p.m. For more information, call (205) 326-6821 x 102 or email sarah@ghm.org.

PREPARED, NOT SCARED CAMPS – Join Sheriff Mike Hale and others for a camp this weekend at Ruffner Mountain, July 11 – 15 at Trussville and July 18-22 at Tannehill.  For more, go to www.freshairfamil.org.

JOE WEBB’S ANNUAL FOOTBALL CAMP – Join Carolina Panthers QB Joe Webb for a free football camp, July 9 at Wenonah High School, 8 –a.m. – 1 p.m. for ages 6-12.

5th ANNUAL NEXT LEVEL FOOTBALL CAMP – Join former NFL player Jeremy Towns and Nick Williams of the Kansas City Chiefs with other notables, July 15th at Legion Field, for ages 8-17.

HAPPY HEALTHY KIDS FAIR – Join other children and parents in the Birmingham Area at the Happy Healthy Kids Fair on August 6, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the Riverchase Galleria.



AT THE STARDOME: Every Thursday is Positively Funny Improv.  Check out D.L. HUGHLEY. D.L. Hughley spent four successful years as the co-creator, star and executive producer of his own sitcom “THE HUGHLEYS.” Hughley’s success continued from there. With his quick wit and affable personality, he has now become a favorite guest on such shows as “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” “Late Night with David Letterman,” “Late Night with Conan O’Brien,” “Politically Incorrect” and “Live with Regis and Kelly.” D.L. is also one of the original “Kings Of Comedy”. Call (205) 444-0008 for more.

At the StarDome: July 1-3 – D. L. HUGHLEY, July 8-9 CARLOS MENCIA, July 15-17 – ARNEZ J. and July 22-24 – RICKEY SMILEY.  See you there!



FAMILY TOUR: WEDGEWOOD, 10:30 – 11 a.m. at the Birmingham Museum of Art.  FREE.

SLOW ART SUNDAY, 2-3 p.m. at the Birmingham Museum of Art with Master Docent Marlene Wallace leading a discussion on L’Aurore (Dawn) by William-Adolphe Bouguereau.

CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF – On next Thursday, 5- 9 p.m. join Southern Pictures with a new film series at the BMA where each featured film is set in the South. FREE.

BOURBON POUR AT THE BMA – This is a Bourbon Pour with author of Southern Living’s Bourbon and Bacon and Off the Eaten Path, next Thursday, 5 – 6:45 p.m. at the BMA.  FREE.

ART ON THE ROCKS – The next Art of the Rocks is July 22, 7- 11 p.m. at the BMA.




AUGUST – ESTELLE WITHERSPOON DINNER by the Federation of Southern Cooperatives Land Assistance Fund

AUGUST 20 – EVO 2016 5K FIT CHALLENGE at Sloss Furnace, 9 a.m. and 9:30 a.m.

AUGUST 27 – FASHION WEEK at the Boutwell Auditorium.

AUGUST 31 – RENSHAW DAVIES, the New Orleans folk and roots duo is at The Nick, 10 p.m.

OCTOBER 22-23 – TALLADEGA SUPERSPEEDWAY’S Alabama 500 and fred’s 250 Powered by Coca-Cola, the most anticipated NASCAR Chase Elimination races of 2016.


Well, that’s it.  Tell you more next time.


(People, Places and Things by Gwen DeRu is a weekly column. Send comments to my emails: thelewisgroup@birminghamtimes.com or gwenderu@yahoo.com.)



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