Resolve to Spend More Time Outdoors in 2018

Resolve to Spend More Time Outdoors in 2018

The Great Outdoors

presented by Mark’s Outdoors

The Christmas season has come and gone and now it’s New Year’s Resolution time. I encourage you to set goals for yourself and your family and hopefully make this year even better than the last. As a rule, New Year’s resolutions usually revolve around things like fitness. “Ok, this year I’ll remove all of the clothes hanging on the treadmill that I bought when I made last year’s resolution and promise to use it this year.” Or resolutions related to finance. “This year I will save a little extra cash out of each paycheck and finally taking that vacation I’ve been wanting to go on.” All of that is well and good but are we really taking full advantage of the New Year’s Resolution?

This year consider adding a resolution that involves getting outside and enjoying the great outdoors. Perhaps your outdoor resolution includes getting into or back into hunting. Good news! Your timing is great. You still have until the end of the month to enjoy hunting season and plenty of time to get ready for next fall.

Another great outdoor activity available this month is the annual Festival of the Cranes, January 13 – January 14, 2018. This two-day celebration of Sandhill Cranes and Whooping Cranes brings together experienced birders and those who would like to learn more about birding and other wildlife that live in Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge in Decatur (www.friendsofwheelerrefuge.org). Over 12,000 Sandhill Cranes along with several pairs of Whooping Cranes spend the winter each year at the Refuge. Enjoy nature walks, live raptors and refuge tours. Wear comfortable walking shoes and bring binoculars and a camera. Throughout the event, the enclosed Wildlife Observation Building will offer views of thousands of Sandhill Cranes, along with Whooping Cranes, ducks, geese, raptors, and maybe a bald eagle. There will be bleachers and spotting scopes available along with volunteers and staff members on hand to answer questions.

Need more outdoor ideas? Visit us at Mark’s Outdoors to become inspired and to be fully equipped to make the most of your time in God’s great outdoors. We will help make sure that you have everything you need to make your time outside that much more enjoyable. Happy New Year & God Bless!

– Mark’s Outdoors 

1400-B Montgomery Highway, Vestavia 35216

205-822- 2010, www.marksoutdoors.com

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Top Gifts for Your Friends & Family Who Love God’s Great Outdoors

Top Gifts for Your Friends & Family Who Love God’s Great Outdoors

Great Outdoors

Whether it’s a rod and reel, range finder or camo clothing you need help with, Joe Phillips has the scoop on the best buys. His top ten gift list includes the Shimano Curado K Reel and the G-Loomis IMX Pro 853C JWR Rod as well as the Sitka Mountain Jacket. Visit him at Mark’s Outdoors.

Struggling with what to buy for your friend or family member that loves the outdoors? The staff at Mark’s Outdoors is ready to help! Here’s a look at some of the items on their Top Ten List, specially priced for the Christmas season.

Sitka Camo Clothing. Streamlined to move like the wind while standing strong against it, the Sitka Mountain Jacket ($269.99) is imperceptibly light and minimal in bulk. It nearly disappears in your pack.

Mini-safes. Safely secure your valuables or handgun in the new Home Defender (HD) Series by Liberty Safe. The HDX-250 Smart Vault ($239) allows for quick and secure access by using our 5th Generation BIOMETRIC finger swipe technology.

For 17 years John Fuller has been helping customers at Mark’s Outdoors. He can answer any question you have about safes and help you choose the one that is right for you and your family.

Carry On. The medium duffle bag from Filson ($395) is designed to meet maximum airline carry-on size restrictions and includes interior stow pockets, so you only need one bag for all your adventures. Constructed of rain-resistant rugged twill, durable bridle leather, rustproof brass zipper and storm flap closure for added protection from the weather.

Game Camera. Bucks may be skittish and difficult to scout, but even the swiftest of deer is no match for the eye of the Moultrie M-40 Game Camera ($149.99). A lightning-fast 0.3-second trigger speed and a 100-foot flash range give you an extra set of eyes that can spot game through the trees, day or night.

For more details on these gifts and other great gift ideas see Mark’s Outdoors Top Ten Gift Ideas on-line at www.marksoutdoors.com/top-10-gifts.html  or visit us in Vestavia. We are ready to help you make the most of God’s great outdoors!

– Mark’s Outdoors

1400-B Montgomery Highway, Vestavia 35216

205-822- 2010, www.marksoutdoors.com

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Small Town America at its Best: 18th Annual Chelsea Christmas Parade

Small Town America at its Best: 18th Annual Chelsea Christmas Parade

Are We There Yet?

The Annual Chelsea Christmas Parade on Saturday December 16, 2017 offers young and old a great way to celebrate the season and experience Chelsea’s “All About Family” atmosphere.

Nothing will get you more into the Christmas spirit than the 18th Annual Chelsea Christmas Parade on Saturday December 16. “It is a tremendous family event,” explains Chelsea Mayor Tony Picklesimer. “It’s a symbol of small town America that is unfortunately going away in many parts of the country but remains an integral part of our town.” The festivities start at 9 a.m. with local entertainment at the parade grandstand positioned at the Winn Dixie/150 Chelsea Corners Way. The parade begins at 10 a.m. at Chelsea Middle School and will include music from the Chelsea High School Band, Mr. and Mrs. Claus, a showcase of students from local dance studios, area boy scouts and girl scouts, and of course professional and homemade floats with riders throwing candy to bystanders all along the route. Over 70 groups, businesses and civic organizations will participate in the parade which will conclude at the Winn Dixie where a Christmas Village will offer refreshments and other items for purchase. The parade will be followed by an open house from Noon-3pm at the Chelsea Community Center, 11101 Hwy 47, where children will have the opportunity to have their picture made with Santa and Mrs. Clause as well as the famous characters from Frozen, Anna, Elsa and Olaf. The open house will also offer face painting, bouncy houses and games.

The Annual Christmas Parade is the largest Chelsea community event of the year drawing between 2000 and 3000 people. “It gives us a chance to get our citizens together but it also gives people outside of Chelsea an opportunity to come and see what Chelsea is all about,” says Mayor Picklesimer adding that the family event fits perfectly with the city’s long-time slogan, “Chelsea is all about family.” For more details visit www.cityofchelsea.com/christmas-parade-info †

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“Golf fore Life”

“Golf fore Life”

Photo Fun

Sav-A-Life(SAL) Vestavia recently hosted a beautiful day of golf at Greystone Country Club to raise awareness and funds for the ministry. Auburn and Alabama football greats Ronnie Brown, Bobby Humphrey, John Parker Wilson, and Wesley Britt were on hand to lend their support. “It is a great opportunity for SAL to reach a different set of donors and bring awareness of this ministry. We had a lot of new faces at this year’s event so our hope is that they will be regular donors and volunteers to SAL,” explained SAL Vestavia board chair Chris Blake, www.savalife.org.

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“Bridges of Hope”

“Bridges of Hope”

Photo Fun

Jim Etheredge, Brother Bryan Mission (BBM) Director, congratulating Harry Ollinger, the head of the winning team at the Bridges of Hope Charity Golf Tournament that raised $20,000 for the mission.

Eric Gibbs points to his team coming in second by 1/10 of a point at the Brother Bryan tournament held at the Robert Trent Jones Oxmoor Valley Golf Course.

Ninety-eight golfers enjoyed the BBM Bridges of Hope tournament, www.bbmission.com.

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Great Gifts for those who Love the Outdoors

Great Gifts for those who Love the Outdoors

The Great Outdoors

Big John is ready to help you pick out the reel that will make the best Christmas gift for a friend, family member or you!

If you’re struggling with gift ideas this holiday season, the staff at Mark’s Outdoors is ready to help. Check out these great finds in stock and waiting for you.

Bright, Clear & Crisp. When you look through a set of Zeiss binoculars, you view nature in a whole new way. Mark’s Outdoors carries a full line of Zeiss binoculars ranging in price from $300 to $2000 and Mark’s specialist Bill Oglesby can fit you with the pair best suited for you. Be sure to ask about the Victory SF 10 x 42 which offers brilliant optics and an unparalleled wide-angle field of view. Its light weight, ergonomic design and dynamic fast-focus feature also allow for hours of relaxing birding without fatigue. The Victory SF is considered the new benchmark for birding and wildlife observation in the 125 year development of Zeiss binoculars.

Reel Them In. Mark’s Outdoor’ Big John has the perfect gift for any fisherman. In stock is the new bait casting reel from Daiwa, the Tatula 100 HS, which comes with a 7.3:1 gear ratio and 7 ball bearings. Characterized for being very smooth and light, this fresh water reel’s cast ability is superior to many higher priced models ($99). John can also show you a complete line of reels in stock and priced for any budget ($50-$500).

For great gift ideas and anything you need for your next adventure, remember to visit Mark’s Outdoors in Vestavia. We are ready to help you make the most of God’s great outdoors!

– Mark’s Outdoors 

1400-B Montgomery Highway, Vestavia 35216

205-822- 2010, www.marksoutdoors.com

 

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Name the New Attraction at Alabama Splash Adventure for a Chance to Receive Season Passes

Name the New Attraction at Alabama Splash Adventure for a Chance to Receive Season Passes

Are We There Yet?

Birmingham’s Alabama Splash Adventure was recently named one of the top five friendliest parks in the world by readers of Amusement Today, a national amusement industry news leader.

After recently being named one of the five friendliest parks in the world, Alabama Splash Adventure is adding a new kids slide complex and interactive play structure which will debut in May 2018 and feature 5 colorful slides. Some slides will offer gentle, yet exciting hills, while others will offer twists and turns. The slides all will empty into shallow water ensuring a safe experience for riders. The interactive play structure will offer various water features that will spray in all directions and provide a fun place for kids to cool off. The play area will feature “zero-depth” water to maximize the safety of guests. “Our guests have been requesting a new water attraction and we are listening to our guests,” says Dan Koch, President of Alabama Splash Adventure. “This new attraction will be perfect for the children and families that visit Alabama Splash Adventure, and will help us increase our waterpark capacity as we continue to expand.” In addition, the Park will add additional seating and new cabanas around the attraction so guests can stay cool.

The Park is turning to the public to decide on a name for the new attraction. A naming contest will be held and the winning entry will receive four complimentary season passes for the 2018 season. Names can be submitted at www.AlabamaSplash.com.

Here is a rendering of what the new interactive play area at Alabama Splash Adventure will look like. Submit a name for the new attraction for an opportunity to win four complimentary season passes, www.alabamasplash.com.

The new attraction marks the latest addition from the Koch family, who purchased the Park in 2014. The owners have introduced 10 new attractions as well as free Wi-Fi, free sunscreen, free parking, free tubes, and free unlimited soft drinks. The new attraction is only a part of the $10 million in capital improvements the Koch family has brought to Alabama Splash Adventure. The park is located where I 20/59 and I 459 meet at exit 110, just minutes from downtown Birmingham.  For more information on tickets, season passes and group outings call 205-481-4750 or visit www.alabamasplash.com †

 

 

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Lending a Helping Hand: Habitat for Humanity & Wells Fargo

Lending a Helping Hand: Habitat for Humanity & Wells Fargo

Mission Makers

As a part of a national effort to improve the homes of Veterans across the country, Habitat for Humanity Greater Birmingham and Wells Fargo volunteers recently teamed up to improve the homes of two local Army veterans. “We all share a common interest and passion to serve those who served our country,” said Richard Busby, Wells Fargo V.P. and Senior Community Dev. Officer in Mid South Region. “This is a tangible way to show our gratitude and bring community together.” Established in 1987, Habitat Birmingham is a nonprofit Christian housing ministry serving Jefferson, Shelby, St. Clair and Walker Counties. The organization is dedicated to making quality, affordable housing solutions available to low-income families. Learn more at www.habitatbirmingham.org

Volunteers focus on exterior repairs and painting at the homes of veterans living in Bessemer and East Lake.

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Native American Experience: Authentic, Educational & Fun!

Native American Experience: Authentic, Educational & Fun!

City Scene 

For the 8th year in a row, Aldridge Gardens in Hoover will host Whispers of the Past, Sunday October 8. Poarch Creeks from Atmore, Ala. will demonstrate authentic Pow Wow dancing.

Bring the family to Aldridge Gardens in Hoover on October 8 to experience a day discovering the culture and contributions of Native Alabamians. From 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Whispers From the Past – A Native American Experience, offers demonstrations, activities, and presentations authentic to American Indians of the Southeast. Demonstrations include authentic Pow Wow Dancing with Medicine Tail Dancers and Singers provided by the Poarch Creeks of Atmore, Ala., flintknapping/observing how real stone arrowheads were made, American Indians creating baskets from long-leaf pine needles and dolls from corn husks, and Porch Creek Indians playing Stick Ball (Modern Day Lacrosse). Hands on activities include fishing with cane poles and worms in the Aldridge Gardens Lake, beading on looms, creating a clay coil pot to take home, leaf pounding, corn grinding, artifact hunting and gourd crafting. Visitors will be able to purchase unique items including projectile points and arrowheads, Choctaw foods and crafts, jewelry and beadwork, and woven baskets. The event is endorsed by the Administration at the State Department of Education and local school districts. Admission is $12 for adults, $7 for students and free for children three and under. Off-site parking and shuttle are available at nearby Bed Bath & Beyond on Lorna Road. For more event details visit www.aldridgegardens.com or call 682-8019. †

 

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