Montgomery Fire Department celebrates 120 years



As the parade passes the fountain on Dexter Avenue, many of the department’s high tech command and rescue vehicles could be seen.
Photos: Brian Hodge

  The Montgomery Fire Deparment celebrated their 120-year anniversary on Friday giving the general public an opportunity to see some of the department’s command and rescue vehicles up close. The festivities began at 10:30 a.m. with a parade down Dexter Avenue. The parade was led by an antique restored horse-drawn fire wagon. The smoke rising from the top of the wagon was simulated steam from the wagon’s pump. Following this vision of the technological past, many of the department’s state-of-the-art equipment followed inlcuding a rescue boat, command vehicles and fire engines. After the parade the public was invited to lunch and a short presentation at the department’s headquarters Downtown.

  The City of Montgomery has been recognized for ensuring that the Capital City’s Fire/Rescue Department receives the best equipment, expert training and the most highly qualified personnel to provide our citizens with the best fire service possible. 

    The department says it is committed to providing efficient, effective and professional public service to all residents and to those who work in and visit the Capital City.  The department has garnered the respect of the profession and continues to set the bar as a model agency. From it’s Top ISO Rating to it’s World Champion Combat Challenge Team, Montgomery Fire/Rescue strives to be the best.

Staff report

Bruce Brannen leads Pike Road parade



Bruce Brannen and his riders led the annual parade.
Photo: Fred Marshall


      It was hot as a firecracker in Pike Road the other morning, but that’s something to be expected and planned for.  For over five decades now, the town has celebrated the 4th of July with a parade that has included everything from bicycles, horses, tractors, and even those hardy souls who enjoy walking the route, no matter the weather.  Organized by the Pike Road Community Club, the parade started at the historic Pike Road School and made its way down Pike Road to the Feed Lot.  Hundreds of people lined the parade route, and the youngsters were eager to claim the treats thrown by parade participants.

     As he’s done in the past, Pike Road legend Bruce Brannen led the parade.  Brannen is an accomplished cowboy artist, and a real cowboy.  Following Brannen were Mrs. Linda Carleton and Mrs. Betty Casey.  Casey was the winner of the Pike Road Ole Brick Award, and Mrs. Carleton was named Pike Road’s Citizen of the Year.

     Following them, it was no holds barred.  There was no telling what you might see: youngsters driving go carts, 4-wheelers, side-by-sides, vintage cars and trucks, motor cycles, and folks just walking the parade route.  For Rhonda and Foy Tatum and Kim Ellis it wasn’t their first 4th of July parade in Pike Road, and it won’t be their last.  Rhonda says that when the 4th is over, the next 4th is automatically put on the calendar.  Cindy Bisbee and Debbie Smith say that over the years, the annual parade has become part of Pike Road and is a valuable element of the town’s identity.  Later that evening, residents and others enjoyed a fireworks display at The Waters.

     Mayor Gordon Stone and the Pike Road Community Club wishes to extend its appreciation to the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office and Pike Road Fire Dept. for their service to the community and helping make the annual parade a success.

Alabama-based author and small business owner Tonya Scott Williams selected for special show “The Moth” podcast’s first ever fan-hosted episode hits on July 13



Tonya Scott Williams

Beloved storytelling nonprofit The Moth today announced that, after a nationwide search, Alabama-based author and small business owner Tonya Scott Williams was selected as the first fan to host a special episode of its ultra popular podcast in honor of the show’s 10th anniversary. Slated for release on Friday, July 13th, the special show features three stories hand-picked by Williams—one previously aired on “The Moth Radio Hour” plus two that have never been heard before— along with snippets from other pitches to host the podcast.

     “We didn’t know what to expect when we put out the call for a fan to host an episode of our podcast. There was an incredible range of entries from people around the world, but the common element in all was how passionate our listeners are — and how these stories help them connect with and understand others,” says Sarah Austin Jenness, Executive Producer of The Moth and a regular host of “The Moth Radio Hour.”

    “We ultimately selected Tonya — a warm, straight-shooting über fan, who has been convincing friends throughout the years to tune in.”

     “What I like about The Moth is that these are regular people—just like me— who are stepping up to the mic and putting themselves on the line. The Moth gives them a platform and it gives me a front row seat to listen,” explains Williams. 

    “Hosting this podcast is an opportunity that arrived at a moment in my life when I decided to start dreaming again, and this is truly a dream come true.”

   The Moth Podcast re-airs of all new episodes of The Moth Radio Hour, plus additional stories from its vast archive amassed over the past two decades. Episodes are released every Tuesday and special episodes–such as the fan- hosted one— are shared on select Fridays. Listeners can subscribe for free via iTunes, RSS, RadioPublic, TuneIn Radio, Stitcher, GooglePodcasts and other podcast servicing apps.