200 Alabama Bicentennial

Celebrating Alabama’s 200th birthday2017 2018 2019

Posted May 7, 2019

                    By Roy Clem, Executive Director of Alabama Public Television


A few years ago, I was given the honor to serve on the advisory council for Alabama's Bicentennial Commission. This opportunity has allowed me to observe Alabamians come together to celebrate our state's 200 years of history. From Mobile's giant fireworks display that kicked off the three year celebration, to Birmingham's great musical performances, to a traveling exhibit detailing the history of Alabama, to many more activities in communities of all sizes, our citizens have been honoring our past, present, and future. Every gathering has provided a wonderful experience; however, one event stands above the rest for me and I found it in Webb, Alabama. 


Webb Elementary School is a magical place where I observed dedicated teachers and school administrators bring out the best in their students. One sixth grade student, Jeremiah Hall, is the reason I had the good fortune to visit Webb Elementary on a day they were learning about our state's people, places, and history. I met Jeremiah when he was visiting the Alabama State Legislature with his classmates. Shortly after, Jeremiah started texting me about visiting his school on a special Bicentennial day. Jeremiah was patient, polite, and persistent as he encouraged me to visit Webb Elementary. 


Jeremiah was waiting for me when I arrived and immediately escorted me to the gym where students, teachers, and community members gathered together to celebrate Alabama. Storytellers, musicians, and bee keepers, joined experts in forestry, wildlife, geology, Webb history, and many other topics, to engage and inform students and visitors. 


I know that schools across Alabama are doing similar things to celebrate our Bicentennial and I hope that you take a moment to join them in the celebration. Thanks to sixth grader Jeremiah Hall, the Webb Elementary Team, and an engaged community, I am grateful for caring teachers, positive about a bright future for our state and nation, and will share great memories for years to come.


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