Good morning, West Alabama! It is Friday May 24, 2024.

For most people not taking off today, the long Memorial Day Holiday weekend begins after work. Officially the holiday weekend begins at midnight tonight and runs through midnight Monday night.

To many, this weekend is nothing more than the unofficial start to the summer vacation season, a time for travel, boating and grilling out.  But paraphrasing the Southeastern Conference's mantra, "It just means more". In this case far more. It is a time to show gratefulness for those men, women and in some cases children who have sacrificed their lives, their future, for our freedom.

So, whether you are traveling, grilling out in the backyard or just kicking back and watching baseball keep in mind you are able to do what you want because others were willing to put themselves in harm's way and lose their life for ours.

At times the holiday weekend could be rainy and stormy, but it will not be a washout. Click HERE for the details.

The Forecast:

A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms before 10am, then a chance of showers and thunderstorms after 1pm. Partly sunny, with a high near 90. Light south wind becoming southwest 5 to 10 mph in the morning. Chance of precipitation is 40%.
Showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly before 10pm. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 70. South wind around 5 mph becoming calm in the evening. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 91. Calm wind becoming southwest around 5 mph in the afternoon.
Saturday Night
Mostly clear, with a low around 72. Calm wind.
Mostly sunny, with a high near 93. South wind 5 to 10 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph.
Sunday Night
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 1am. Partly cloudy, with a low around 72.
Memorial Day
A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 1pm. Mostly sunny, with a high near 91.
Monday Night
A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly before 1am. Partly cloudy, with a low around 68.

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Topping the News:

Dante Bender will serve life without parole following a guilty plea to capital murder charges in the 2022 death of Tuscaloosa native and Meridian PD Officer Kennis Croom. Bender shot Croom in front of his own children as Croom, who was off duty at the time, responded to a domestic disturbance call.

Croom's father, Dr. Kelvin Croom told news partner ABC3340 that his son may be gone but his legacy of helping other lives on through a scholarship foundation to assist youth with college.

Tuscaloosa's Memorial Day will be commemorated at Veteran's Memorial Park in front of University Mall on Monday Morning. PARA will join the Tuscaloosa VA Medical Center and The University of Alabama Office of Veteran and Military Affairs to jointly host the ceremony next Monday at 9:00 a.m.

Lieutenant Colonel Stephen Kaye, a Green Beret whose decades of service earned him the Combat Infantry Badge, Master Wings, The Legion of Merit, three Meritorious Service Medals, and the Bronze Star, among others will be the keynote speaker.

In the event of inclement weather ceremonies will be relocated to the sports atrium of the VA building on Loop Road.


If you are traveling over the Memorial Day weekend you are one of 43-plus million doing so according to Triple-A. With so many people on the highways, many headed to the Alabama coast and state waterways and lakes, ALEA’s Reginald King is reminding us that troopers will be enforcing safety laws on the roads and waters with a high officer presence.

King also reminds us that it is illegal to drink alcohol and operate a boat just as much as it it to get behind the wheel of a vehicle while impaired. Additionally, everyone in a boat must be wearing a life vest.

3.3 million will also be flying and currently all flights out of Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International are on time.

The J-R Smucker Company plant and distribution center in McCalla is expected to be opened before the end of the year. Construction of the giant $1.1 billion facility on Old Tuscaloosa Highway was delayed a year due to a fire at the construction site.

Some 750 people will be employed at the company that produces JiF Peanut Butter, Smucker's jams and jellies and Twinkies among other foods.


Vance Police is asking for help locating a woman who was last seen by family and friends in Tuscaloosa in February. In a Facebook post VPD identified the woman as 39-year-old Brittany Fay Hardin, who they say is not believed to be in danger but is wanted for questioning. She is described as around or just over 100 pounds and standing five foot, six inches tall.


A new partnership has been formed for the $80 million Saban Center on Tuscaloosa's riverfront. NOAA’s National Water Center on the UA campus is joining with Saban Center's STEM education program to provide water literacy.

Water scarcity and quality is become a major issue as extended droughts annually impact large portions of the U.S. and other countries leading to massive wildfires.





From the City of Tuscaloosa: In observance of Memorial Day, City Hall will close at 4 p.m. and 311 will close at 5 p.m. today and remain closed on Monday, May 27. Normal hours will resume on Tuesday, May 28.

Garbage, trash and recycling collection will also be delayed one day next week.

  • Monday routes will be collected Tuesday, May 28
  • Tuesday routes will be collected Wednesday, May 29
  • Wednesday routes will be collected Thursday, May 30
  • Thursday routes will be collected Friday, May 31

For questions, please call Tuscaloosa 311.


In Northport: City offices will be closed on Monday, May 27th in observance of Memorial Day.

Citizens who normally have their garbage, trash, and recycling picked up on Monday will be serviced on Tuesday, May 28th instead. No other routes will be affected by the Holiday. Tuesday's, Wednesday's, and Thursday's routes will be collected on their normal day.



Topping Sports News:

The NCAA and the nation’s five biggest conferences, which includes the SEC, have agreed to pay nearly $2.8 billion to settle a host of antitrust claims, that sets the stage for revenue-sharing directly to athletes as soon as next year.

Critics of the settlement believe academics are being pushed aside by money.


The University of Alabama Softball team (36-17 overall, 10-14 SEC) has a golden opportunity to silence critics and to set the college softball world on its ear as they begin play against the Lady Vols (43-10 overall, 19-5 SEC) this afternoon in the Knoxville, TN NCAA Super Regional.

With a conference low 53 extra-base-hits this season, the Crimson Tide has been a weak hitting team for most of the year and has depended on pitching to keep them in games.

14th ranked Bama is fresh off one of the best offensive performances in the Tuscaloosa regional last weekend and hopes to continue the hot hitting at 3rd ranked Tennessee this afternoon.

First pitch is at 3:00pm Tuscaloosa time.


From UA Athletics:  Filip Planinsek made history Thursday becoming the first Alabama men's tennis player in program history to reach the semifinals at the NCAA Singles Championships. No. 29 Planinsek used an exciting three-set victory to top No. 15-ranked Cooper Williams of Harvard, 6-4, 1-6, 6-4, and advance into the top four.


From UA Athletics: The second day of the NCAA East Prelims featured the beginning of the women's competition at Kentucky's Outdoor Track and Field Complex. Women's 10,000-meter distance runner Hilda Olemomoi punched her ticket to the NCAA Championships behind a 32:53.64, second-place finish. The feat marks the second-straight year that the Trans-Nzoia, Kenya, native has advanced to Nationals in the 10,000-meter run.


Have a safe and blessed Memorial Day Holiday Weekend and remember those who sacrificed their lives for us.

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