Something fast is coming to Birmingham soon, and no, it’s not Superman. 7 reasons Gigabit internet matters.

Execs at an announcement about Gigabit internet coming to Birmingham and beyond
C Spire CEO Hu Meena and Alabama Power’s VP Birmingham Division Tony Smoke. Photo by Sharron Swain for Bham Now

Faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive . . . no wait, we’re not talking about Superman, we’re talking about ultra-fast broadband internet coming soon to a fiber optic network near you. 

Mississippi-based C Spire is spearheading a mega investment into bringing tech-savvy Birmingham—and other parts of Alabama—into the tech future. Read on to find out what this could mean for the rest of us.

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Don’t miss Handel’s Messiah Dec. 20 and Home for the Holidays Dec. 21 in Birmingham. 15% off with code BHAMHOLIDAY

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ASO Chorus singing Handel's Messiah
ASO Chorus. Photo supplied

The Alabama Symphony Orchestra has two unforgettable holiday concerts that you don’t want to miss. With either of these shows, your Christmas in Birmingham will have the best soundtrack ever —you’ll definitely leave with a song in your heart.

Whether you come to Handel’s Messiah Dec. 20, Home for the Holidays Dec. 21, or both, you’re sure to leave with holiday cheer to spare. Use code BHAMHOLIDAY for 15% off tickets to both shows.

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Startup roundup: 5 Birmingham companies that could make your life better

Purilan launch at Hardware Park in Birmingham
Movers and makers at Hardware Park for the Purilan launch Nov. 20, 2019. Photo via Facebook

Anyone who’s been paying attention to Birmingham over the past few years knows that the city is fast becoming a hub of startup activity. Even Forbes weighed in, wondering whether Birmingham will be the next Silicon Valley (probably not) or Austin (possibly). To introduce you to some of the local startups worth watching, we’ve decided to start a regular startup roundup.

We hope you’ll join us and let us know about others you’re watching. For this first installment, we decided to focus on local companies that can make your life better. Keep reading for all the details.

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7 reasons to live right in the heart of Homewood at The Eastbury condominiums

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Walking the dog in Homewood
Walking the dog in Homewood. Photo by Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

Located right in the heart of Homewood, The Eastbury condominiums will make you feel right at home with easy access to all the action.

Whether you crave the quaint small-town feel of Homewood, or want to head over the hill to Southside and all it has to offer, you’ll have easy access to both from these condos starting in the $200s. Visit www.theeastbury.com to book your tour today.

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Buy local art in Birmingham this holiday season. 15 holiday markets and 3 stores to choose from.

Alabama Waldorf's Holiday Faire is a great place to buy local art in Birmingham
Katrina Turnbach and Shelleigh McVicker Buckingham or Artsy Chicks at a previous Alabama Waldorf Holiday Faire. Photo via Facebook

There’s something that feels soooooo good about buying local art and goods handcrafted by makers right here in Birmingham.

We’re spoiled for choice this holiday season with at 15 local art shows and 3 ongoing stores to check out. We’ve got all the details for you right here.

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9 ways STREAM Innovations is igniting the imaginations of young people in Fairfield and beyond

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Dr. Adrienne Starks of STREAM Innovations
This is what a scientist looks like: Dr. Adrienne Sparks of STREAM Innovations at her desk at Forge. Photo via Bham Now

You can’t spend any time with Dr. Adrienne Starks without realizing she’s on a mission. Part of that mission is to help turn Birmingham’s young people on to the thrill of discovery. She’s doing that through STREAM Innovations, a nonprofit she founded in 2015 to bring science, technology, reading, engineering, arts and math to students in her hometown of Fairfield and beyond.

Read on to find out how she’s making a difference here with STREAM and across the globe with a new ambassadorship.

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10 food allergy friendly restaurants in Birmingham

Real and Rosemary is one of the food allergy friendly restaurants in Birmingham
Delicious food at Real and Rosemary. Photo from Real and Rosemary via Facebook

Are you looking for food allergy friendly restaurants in Birmingham? Not only do these restaurants provide allergy-free foods—they serve a slice of the ordinary, a plate of belonging, and a rare opportunity to feel like a normal person in a restaurant.

Here are our top 10 picks for food allergy friendly spots in Birmingham.

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3 ways a built-in entertainment center can jazz up your Birmingham home

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Photo of Tim Meehan in front of his built-in entertainment center by Closets by Design
Tim Meehan in the home where he grew up. Photo by Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

About a decade ago, Tim Meehan inherited the Homewood home where he grew up. To update the home his parents bought back in 1957, he reached out to Closets by Design to design and build a new entertainment center.

This entertainment center helped provide the centerpiece of a home-wide renovation that’s bringing all the charm of his childhood home into 2019. Need a project done for your home? Check out Closets by Design.

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Wanted: developer for the old Banks School site in South Eastlake and Roebuck Springs. What happens now? (PHOTOS)

The old Banks site in South Eastlake has been vacant for 12 years
Developing this site could be transformative for Roebuck Springs and South Eastlake. Photo via Jeff E. Newman

For over 10 years, the 23-acre Banks school property in South East Lake and next to Roebuck Springs has sat vacant; now the City of Birmingham is taking steps to change that.

On Friday, November 15, they issued a Request for Proposals (RFP). The City’s looking for a developer who can buy the space and transform it into an asset for the whole Eastern side of Birmingham.

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Prepare for holiday travel with #protips for avoiding traffic and construction in Birmingham.

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Holiday travel in Birmingham means Thanksgiving meals with loved ones
Who wants to be stuck in traffic when you could be enjoying a Thanksgiving dinner like this? Photo via The Moellinger Family of Roebuck Springs

Maybe your 2019 holiday travel has you dashing to the airport, or maybe you’re road tripping to Grandma’s house for Thanksgiving. Either way, unexpected construction-related detours and traffic in Birmingham probably aren’t top of mind when you’re dreaming of turkey and dressing, pumpkin pie and football on the TV, right?

Thankfully, we’ve put together our best holiday travel #protips to help you get where you’re going with the least amount of hassle possible.

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No Shave November in Birmingham is all about men’s health. Enter our sweeps now.

No Shave November in Birmingham is a fun way to get everybody talking about men's health
That’s me and my husband Sean, who had to stop entering No Shave November contests at work because he always won. Photo by Sharron Swain for Bham Now

No Shave November in Birmingham means a lot of guys are putting down the razors to get people talking about some major challenges to men’s health. Enter our sweeps today by posting a picture of your beard or ‘stache on Instagram and tag @bhamnow between now and end of November. Use #BhamNowBeards. You could win a grooming kit from Freedom Soap Co.

While prostate cancer, testicular cancer and mental health aren’t the easiest topics to talk about, No Shave November makes raising awareness—and money—fun.

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We fell in love with Ikko in 5 Points South last week, and not just for the bubble tea.

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Man with fire at Ikko
Check out the fire element on full display in the kitchen at Ikko Japanese Ramen and Sushi. Photo via Bham Now

I may be one of the few people in Birmingham who hadn’t yet been to Ikko Japanese Ramen and Sushi until one cold day last week when all of that changed.

One of my fellow Bham Nowers who happens to be a wizard with photography equipment and I headed over there just after the lunch rush to see what caused other coworkers to gush about this place like a first crush.

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Ready to be the best leader you can be? Get tickets now for Momentum Conference 2020, March 11-12 in Birmingham

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Robyn Benincasa knows something about leadership. She's the headlining keynote speaker at Momentum Conference 2020.
I for one can’t wait to hear what Robyn Benincasa, the firefighter second from the left in this picture, has to say about leadership and teamwork in her keynote because she’s kind of amazing. Photo via Robyn Benincasa’s Facebook page

Alabama’s largest leadership conference, Momentum Conference 2020, is coming up March 11-12 at The BJCC, and if you’re a professional, you’ll want to be there.

Registering to attend this conference, which only comes around every two years, is an investment in your career, your network and your life that will pay off in spades. Know you want to seize the moment? Save your spot now.

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9 ways we can all support veterans in Birmingham

Vettes-4-Vets
Soldiers and supporters at a Vettes-4-Vets event. Photo via Vettes-4-Vets’ Facebook page

Today is Veterans Day, and we couldn’t think of a better way to honor our vets than to share nine ways to support veterans right here in Birmingham.

But first, if you’re a veteran, thank you for your service, and we hope you find something here that supports you or your buddies. Second, if you know a veteran (and who doesn’t?), then please be sure to share this piece with them so they and their friends can learn about all these great resources.

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5 reasons why Birmingham needs to know Brian Voice Porter Hawkins

Brian Voice Porter Hawkins at Starbucks
Brian Voice Porter Hawkins at the Starbucks Community Center in 5 Points West. Photo via Sharron Swain for Bham Now

In 2004, Brian Voice Porter Hawkins came back to Birmingham (he spent part of his growing up years in Ensley, then left for a while) and has been making a difference here ever since. From community development to art, poetry and gardening, he’s a man on a mission.

One recent foggy morning, I drove for the first time on some of the (very high / amazing / slightly terrifying) new 59/20 bridges over to 5 Points West where we met up for a coffee and a lovely chat. Here’s what I learned.

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