Behind the scenes at Birmingham’s Closets by Design, plus an amazing wrapping station that you need now

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Closets by Design designs some incredible multipurpose spaces.
Wrapping was never so much fun. Photo by Hannah Chambley for Bham Now

Birmingham’s Closets by Design team works directly with customers to design, manufacture and install the organizational spaces of their dreams.

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18 wheelchair accessible parks and trails in and around Birmingham

Wheelchair accessible parks in Birmingham help everyone enjoy the outdoors.
My sister Karon and one of her sons enjoying the flowers at Birmingham Botanical Gardens. Photo by Joel Bullock

People need wheelchair accessible trails and parks for different reasons. Whether a wheelchair is a permanent or short-term feature in your world, we know you want to get out and about. Especially since Spring is now here! So, we put together a list of places you can go to enjoy the great outdoors.

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9 things to know and love about Birmingham’s Cahaba Community, including Lake Purdy

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Barber Motorsports Vintage Museum is in the Cahaba community of Birmingham.
Pictures can’t even begin to do justice to the Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum. Photo by Sharron Swain for Bham Now

Chances are, you didn’t know Birmingham’s Cahaba Community was a thing. It’s made up of one neighborhood: an old coal-mining area called Overton. Once you finish reading, you’re going to want to visit because there’s a lot going on.

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Birmingham-based Mixtroz to keynote at Google Atlanta’s International Women’s Day event March 14

Kerry Shrader and Ashlee Ammons of Mixtroz are headed to Atlanta for an International Women's Day event at Google.
Kerry Schrader and Ashlee Ammons of Mixtroz. Photo from Mixtroz

It’s hard not to go all fangirl on Mixtroz’ Ashlee Ammons. She’s fun, smart, energetic and going places. And, she’s the millennial daughter of Baby Boomer biz partner Kerry Schrader. Together, they are the dynamic duo at the helm of Mixtroz.

In case you and Mixtroz (pronounced “mix-troes”) haven’t met yet, the name stands for “mixer+intros.” As in, you go to an event where you want to meet people—conference, wedding, school, whatever. Through the wonders of technology, they help hook you up with cool people.

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8 costume events in Birmingham, plus one online cosplay gathering

Static Jones is a regular cosplayer at Birmingham costume events
Magna Defender from Power Rangers Lost Galaxy. Photo by Static Jones Cosplay

Did you know we have a bunch of costume events here in Birmingham? Maybe Halloween or Purim was your favorite holiday as a kid. Perhaps you realized later just how much fun it could be to let your freak flag fly. Even if you’ve never tried it, doesn’t it just look like so much fun?

Whatever your reasons for wanting to dress up, we found eight good excuses to don your best costume and head out for some fun. Plus, we wanted to let you know about one cool cosplay event that that takes place online every February.

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5 outdoor survival tips with Birmingham’s Kim Waites

Wild South's Kim Waites has learned a thing or two about survival.
Wild South’s Kim Waites has learned a thing or two about survival. Photo from Facebook

Kim Waites decided two and a half years ago to move into a converted cargo van named “Big Bertha” and work to eliminate longstanding debt. Today, she can look back and see a big change in herself and her way of life:

“When you don’t have a home, it forces you to reconnect with people. I’m more confident . . . I’ve tackled my debt. I’ve learned how to be more self-sufficient and more accepting of challenges.”

“I don’t need that” is her new view on a lot of things she used to consider essentials.

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9 Spring shows you can see at Samford, plus The Midtown Men April 4

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Spring shows at Samford include The Midtown Men.
The Midtown Men, featuring four original cast members from Jersey Boys, will be at Samford April 4 at 7PM.

If Samford’s not yet on your list of places to catch a show this Spring, you’re missing out. Samford Arts has an incredible Spring lineup of concerts, ballet, and theatre. We’ve got all the details for you below.

If you only get to see one show this Spring, though, make it The Midtown Men. Know you want to see the show?Get your tickets for The Midtown Men now.

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Built on the backs of miners: Underground Birmingham explores the city’s past

Underground Birmingham guys and their wives looking into a mine west of town.
(l-r) Jeff Newman, his wife Janet, Josh Box, his wife April. Photo by Matthew Glasscock

Underground Birmingham and I first met on Instagram. Pictures of abandoned structures drew me in: churches, roller coasters and more. Then I started noticing the pictures of abandoned mines.

Curious, I reached out. Yesterday, two of the three guys involved and I got to talk for a good while. It rocked my world. My eyes are now open to the subterranean world that made Birmingham, long before any of us were born.

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Guide to Black History Month in Birmingham

Delfeayo Marsalis and the Uptown Jazz Orchestra will be in town for Black History Month in Birmingham
Delfeayo Marsalis and the Uptown Jazz Orchestra will be at the Alys Stephens Center Thursday, February 21. Photo from Facebook

The fact that Presidents’ Day is right in the middle of Black History Month is no coincidence. In the early 1900s, Carter G. Woodson documented the contributions of African Americans. He wanted to create Black History Week during a time when African Americans were already celebrating both Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass’ birthdays. The first Black History Week took place in 1926. The US has observed it ever since. Fifty years after its founding, it expanded into Black History Month.

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If nerd heaven was a place, it would be Kami-con. Win tickets on Bham Now’s Instagram and see for yourself.

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Kazha is one of the artists who plays at Kami-con.
Kazha. Photo from Kami-con

Wait—let me explain, Kami-con fans or curious onlookers. My home includes a Dungeons and Dragons DM and Magic and Pokemon players. We love dragon stories, Star Wars, and Lord of the Rings. So in my world, the term “nerd” is affectionate. I like this definition from Steve Kamb of Nerd Fitness: “Nerds: people who follow hobbies and pursuits outside of the mainstream.”

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Australian born Steve Merifield shares how Camp Cosby, a program of the YMCA of Greater Birmingham, changes lives

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YMCA Camp Cosby smily happy campers
Happy campers. Photo from YMCA Camp Cosby

Have you ever met anyone who’s been to Camp Cosby? I have. A bunch of them. And when they talk about the place, you know it means something to them. First, there’s all the friends. Second, there’s all the fun. Third, there’s all that they learned. And then there’s all the years they went back. Again and again.

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StoryCorps’ MobileBooth is in Birmingham for five weeks. Register now to tell your story at Railroad Park.

StoryCorps' MobileBooth is at Railroad Park from February 12-March 13.
StoryCorps’ MobileBooth is at Railroad Park from now ’till March 13. Photo by Hannah Chambley for Bham Now

For the next five weeks, from February 12-March 13, StoryCorps’ MobileBooth is in town. They’d love for you to reserve a spot today to tell your story. And even if you don’t want to tell your story, stop by Railroad Park and say hello, or check them out on the radio or online.

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9 things you need to know about the North Birmingham Community, including the Historic Bethel Baptist Church

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Bethel Baptist Church is trying to revitalize the North Birmingham community.
Rev. Dr. Thomas L. Wilder, Jr. in front of Bethel Baptist Church in Collegeville. Photo by Sharron Swain for Bham Now

If you’ve never ventured into the part of Birmingham that lies between Village Creek and Five Mile Creek, north of Norwood, we’ve got a treat for you today. We’ve done some homework so we can share with you about some of the treasures of this part of town. A little off the beaten path, the North Birmingham community has played a key part in our city’s history.

For those of you who are following along, this is the fifth in a twenty-three part series we’re bringing you, in which we help you get to know all 99 of Birmingham’s neighborhoods. So far, we’ve featured the Crestwood, Northside, Red Mountain, and Roebuck / South East Lake communities.

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Top 6 Closets by Design products we’re excited to see at the Birmingham Home Show. Plus a chance to win tickets on Bham Now’s Instagram.

Closets by Design will be at the Birmingham Home Show February 15-17. Will you?
Closets by Design’s designers demonstrating one of their closets. Photo by Lauren Bedford for Bham Now

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Once the V-day champagne and chocolate are done, head on down to see Closets by Design at the Birmingham Home Show. From February 15-17, they’ll be at the BJCC, along with a few celebrity guests. Read on to the end of this article to find out how you can win tickets to the Birmingham Home Show. Closets by Design has given us four tickets to give to lucky winners.

If you want to go ahead and get tickets to the show, without entering the giveaway, no worries.

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