Birmingham’s Charlemagne Record Exchange is 42 years old. Here’s why we love it.

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Who hasn't browsed the used records at Birmingham's Charlemagne Record Exchange?
Southside’s Charlemagne Record Exchange has been Birmingham’s favorite used record store since 1977. Photo by Sharron Swain for Bham Now

How many people in Birmingham first fell in love with the vibe of record stores at Charlemagne Record Exchange?

Since 1977, Charlemagne has been a haven for recorded music and those who like to trade it. It’s hosted countless famous musicians, and introduced generations the joys of recorded music.

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Gatos and Beans, Alabama’s 1st cat café, opening August 1 in Avondale. Mural photos!

(l-r) Stephen, Kelli and Adrian Steward—just a few of the family members pouring all the love into Birmingham’s first-ever cat café. Photo by Sharron Swain for Bham Now

Back in February, Bham Now brought you the story of Gatos and Beans, Alabama’s first-ever cat café. Today, we’re excited to tell you that it’s opening soon!

Read on for all the details, including mural photos and a special 12 visits for the price of 10 pre-opening offer.

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Anybody want to work in the old Greyhound Station in downtown Birmingham?

The old Greyhound Station in downtown Birmingham has been vacant for quite some time.
This long-vacant building will soon be home to offices. Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now

If the idea of prime office space right in the heart of downtown with awesome street-level parking lot sounds good to you, you might want to keep an eye on the old Greyhound Station.

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Cool down at these 14 splash pads—45 minutes or less from Birmingham. Including one for dogs!

The splash pad at the Liberty Park Athletic Complex on Sicard Hollow Road is a hidden treasure.
The splash pad at the Liberty Park Athletic Complex on Sicard Hollow Road is a hidden treasure. Photo from Vestavia Hills Parks and Recreation Facebook page

I’m not sure when splash pads became a thing, but I sure am glad they did. Sometimes you just wanna go play in water without having to get *in* the water.

To help you stay cool this Summer, we found a baker’s dozen splash pads within 45 minutes’ drive of Birmingham, plus one for dogs. Because dogs get hot, too!

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10 community gardens in Birmingham bring fruit, veggies, pollinators and joy (PHOTOS)

East Lake Community Garden is at East Lake United Methodist Church in Birmingham.
East Lake Community Garden sits right between the East Lake United Methodist Church playground and the surrounding urban landscape. Photo by Sharron Swain for Bham Now

Community gardens dot the landscape of Birmingham and its surrounding areas. In addition to welcome patches of green, they also bring healthy food, community, education, habitat for pollinators and joy.

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What to do when you see a snake: an interview with Birmingham yoga naturalist Dana Coker Gale

Dana Coker Gale and I talked about what to do when you see a snake.
Dana (r) holding a snake with her friend Virginia (l). Photo by Dana Coker Gale

Dana Coker Gale is crazy multifaceted—and, she loves snakes. Yoga teacher, fisherwoman, costume-wearer, model, lover of reptiles and amphibians, and mama are just a few of her many talents.

Lately, she’s been adding “amateur naturalist” to the list, so I reached out to talk to her about what to do when you see a snake.

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Got a couple hours to spend in downtown Birmingham—how ’bout a self-guided walking tour of Morris Avenue? (PHOTOS)

Morris Avenue's cobblestones date back to . . . the late 1960s.
Morris Avenue’s cobblestone streets harken back to earlier days, even though they were apparently added in the late 1960s as this became the state’s first historic district. Photo by Sharron Swain for Bham Now

Got a couple hours to spend in downtown Birmingham? How ’bout a self-guided walking tour on Morris Avenue. If you haven’t been there lately, you might be surprised by the changes.

The other day when our home internet was out, my kids and I hopped in the car and headed down to see what we could see. Here are 10 things we found.

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Human trafficking in Birmingham: it’s not what you think. What it is and what we can do to stop it.

The Junior League of Birmingham's anti-trafficking committee is working on human trafficking in Birmingham.
Panelists at a January 30, 2019 public roundtable on trafficking as part of Human Trafficking Awareness Month. Photo from JLB

Until I started on this story, I didn’t know much about human trafficking in Birmingham. I’d heard that I-20 was a big trafficking highway. But I always associated that with kidnapping and Amber alerts. Once I started talking to people, I learned a lot of things that surprised me.

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8 fun factory tours in and around Birmingham, including Cahaba Brewing’s Taproom Tour

On the Golden Flake factory tour in Birmingham, you can see this half-truck. It's kind of cute.
Why yes, that’s a half Golden Flake potato chip truck attached to the side of the building. Photo by Sharron Swain for Bham Now

Who’s ever been on a fun factory tour in or around Birmingham? If you’re looking for something fun to do, whether with the fam, the biz or with visitors, we’ve got you covered. Read on for all the juicy details.

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Get a sneak peek at renderings for under the 59/20 bridges. 6 things you need to know.

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One idea of what it could look like under the 59/20 bridge when all is said and done.
One idea of what it could look like under the bridge when all is said and done. Rending from 59/20 Bridge Facebook page

Right now, while the highways are undergoing a complete renovation, it’s hard to imagine what will go in under the 59/20 bridges. But even as motorists and pedestrians marvel at the ever-changing cityscape, the people behind the scenes are busy planning some pretty cool features. If you thought we were just getting new bridges out of the deal, you’re mistaken.

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8 reasons we love Birmingham’s Southside community, including Rojo’s birthday party

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Rojo Birmingham in Southside is about to celebrate its 17th birthday.
Rojo Birmingham celebrating its 11th birthday. June 15 it turns 17! Photo from Rojo Birmingham’s Facebook page

It’s fair to say that most folks who’ve spent any time in Birmingham have probably spent some time in Southside. Whether it’s restaurants and bars you’re after, religious institutions brimming with history or sports or parks you’re looking for, Birmingham’s Southside community has all this and more.

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Organized garage = happy Summer. Closets by Design’s 4 steps to your dream garage.

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Closets by Design dream garage with awesome places to hang your bikes.
Ahhh, everything in its place. Photo from Closets by Design

Now that Summer’s here, Closets by Design has a feeling you might be thinking about your dream garage. Aren’t you wishing you’d cleaned out your garage back in the Spring?

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6 things to know about the Birmingham Disco Amigos. Is anyone in this city having more fun?

Birmingham Disco Amigos at Pride.
The Birmingham Disco Amigos at the Pride Parade. Photo from Facebook

If anyone in the Magic City is having more fun than the Birmingham Disco Amigos, you’re gonna have to prove it to me. From the moment my kids’ Cub Scout troop followed them in the Homewood Christmas parade, I’ve had a secret fangirl crush on the whole operation.

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