Gulf State Park Pavillion

Three of Alabama's beaches were recently awarded the title of "superstar beach" in the Natural Resources Defense Council's 24th annual "Testing the Waters" report.

From a list of hundreds of contenders, the NRDC ranked only thirty-five national beaches as consistently outperforming the others because their 2013 readings did not exceed previous standards by more than two percent between 2009 and 2012. In addition, this year's "superstars" also did not exceed the EPA's new, more stringent water quality thresholds, or "Beach Action Value (BAV)" by more than two percent in 2013.

And now, without further adieu, the awards for the 2014 Superstar Beaches in Alabama go to: 

The Gulf Shores Public Beach in Baldwin County
The Gulf State Park…

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BBQ TRADITION in Orange Beach

Forty-eight years ago, in 1966, an Orange Beach tradition, the annual Orange Beach Fire and Rescue "Cookout on the Coast," was born.

In the early years, pork was slow-cooked over open stone pits, and firemen used shovels to rake the coals and turn the meat in the heat of the summer sun and flames. A bit later, the Department commissioned the largest available custom grill on three axles from Klose BBQ Pits in Houston, Texas. This is the same behemoth you would see belching out fragrant smoke in front of the Community Center on Canal Road today. 

On June 14, 2014, I sat down and talked with Lt. Craig Stephenson, Orange Beach Fire Marshal, about the fundraiser. He spoke with pride about how the event draws people from…

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