The Athens area knows the struggles of rebuilding after deadly tornadoes.
Athens Police Chief Floyd Johnson said that’s why the Police Department is inviting the public to gather Friday, May 24, at noon on the east side of the Limestone County Courthouse. There will be a short commemorative service for the tornado victims and first responders in Oklahoma.
"We have been hit by deadly tornadoes in Limestone County, and we got lucky (May 17) when an unexpected tornado hit but did little damage," Johnson said. "We’ve received an outpouring of support from other communities when we’ve been hit, and we want to do the same. Anyone in the community is welcome to take a moment from their day and join us in showing our support of their struggles in Oklahoma."
Daniel Ridinger, minister at Coxey Church of Christ west of Athens, will lead a prayer.
In addition, on Saturday, May 25, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Athens Police Department at 951 E. Hobbs St., East Limestone resident Jennifer Pitts Adair will be collecting gift cards for Oklahoma’s tornado victims. Adair survived the EF 5 deadly tornado that hit Limestone County on April 27, 2011, when she huddled under blankets and pillows in her walk-in closet. When the twister passed, she and the foundation of her home were all that remained.
“This is something that's close to my heart, and I felt God pulling at me to do something when I saw those first images of the damage (in Oklahoma),” Adair said. “You may think a gift card doesn't seem like much for people who've lost everything, but that is the moment when it means the most. It's the moment that lets a survivor know that someone cares.”
Adair said victims can use the cards to buy clothes, toiletry items, toys or food.
She is working through Toomer’s for Tuscaloosa, an effort that started in Auburn to help rebuild in Tuscaloosa after the April 27, 2011, tornado outbreak. The group has become a grassroots effort to help in other devastated areas including Oklahoma. The gift cards will go to Journey Church in Norman, Okla., where a shelter has been established.
Adair’s goal is to raise $4,027 in gift card donations in memory of the deadly tornado outbreak in Alabama on 4/27.
“Let's show Oklahoma that Alabama hasn't forgotten the kindness the rest of the nation showed us two years ago,” she said.
The city plans to submit a pre-application for a Land and Water Conservation Fund grant to renovate the Kids Dugout at the Sportsplex to make it handicap accessible and improve facilities.
You can share your opinions about the plan during the Athens City Council meeting on May 28, 5:30 p.m. at the Athens Police Department.
Due to the Memorial Day holiday, the City Council meeting that would normally take place on May 27th will be moved to Tuesday, May 28th
Due to scheduling conflicts, the City Council meeting that would normally take place on Monday, June 10th has been moved to Thursday, June 6th.
Teenagers envision Athens as a city that should offer laser tag, a clothing store for male teens and an improved citizens' suggestion form on the Internet.
They also want more biking trails, sidewalks and street lights, and one group wants the school system to go to a five block schedule.
Members of the first Athens Mayor’s Youth Commission ended their term by presenting a PowerPoint to the Athens City Council and public on May 13. The presentation included their ideas for ways to improve the city.
The Board of Zoning Adjustment for the City of Athens, Alabama, will hold a regular meeting in the City Council Chambers in the Athens Police Department, at 951 East Hobbs Street, on Thursday, May 16, 2013 at 5:30 p.m., for the purpose of hearing the following applications and appeals. At this time, the applicant and all interested parties are requested to be present and will be given the opportunity to be heard.
City Administrative Offices will be closed on Monday, May 27th for the Memorial Day Holiday. Police and Fire protection will continue as usual.
The Athens Planning Commission will hold Public Hearings on the following items at their regular meeting to be held on May 21, 2013, at 5:45 p.m. This meeting will be held AT THE ATHENS POLICE DEPARTMENT at 951 Hobbs Street following a 5:00 p.m. work session.