Coronavirus Live Updates from NPR

Community Organizer: ‘Our Protests Are Not Peaceful’

Alabama Rally Against Injustice has held several demonstrations in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd. One of the group's representatives says leading rallies week after week is emotionally draining, but necessary. The group plans to continue holding rallies until policing policies change.

First Woman To Lead The Episcopal Diocese Of Alabama

The Episcopal Diocese of Alabama will consecrate Rev. Glenda Curry as a new bishop on Saturday. She's the first woman to hold the position.

NASCAR Fans React To Confederate Flag Ban, Noose Incident

A day after a noose was placed in the garage of NASCAR's only full-time Black driver, fans at Talladega Superspeedway condemned the incident, but were mixed on NASCAR's decision to ban the Confederate flag.

Hundreds Gather In Birmingham To Celebrate Juneteenth

Cities across the state are celebrating Juneteenth, the end of slavery. In Birmingham, hundreds gathered at Kelly Ingram Park to commemorate the holiday.

Organizer: Efforts To Rename Edmund Pettus Bridge Must Be A Group Effort

A petition calling on Gov. Kay Ivey to rename Selma's Edmund Pettus Bridge has more than 120,000 signatures. We spoke with the Democratic strategist who started the online campaign.

The Murals Of Downtown Birmingham Transform Vandalized Streetscapes To Avenues Of Hope

Murals can be found on plywood throughout downtown Birmingham.


Roger James Retires From Alabama Symphony Orchestra After 35 Years

COVID-19 put an abrupt end to the 99th season of the ASO and that meant no public send-off for those who are retiring. Roger James reflects on learning to play the violin, how to keep the passion when playing familiar songs, and when to make an exit.

George Floyd’s Killing Sparks Frustration Among Birmingham’s Black Lives Matter Group

The police killing of George Floyd in Minnesota has triggered many protesters in the Birmingham area who are still seeking justice for Emantic “E.J.” Bradford, a black man killed by Hoover police in 2018. We spoke with Eric Hall, a founding member of the Birmingham chapter of Black Lives Matter.

Finding A Way Forward In Birmingham After Violence And Destruction

A Confederate monument has been removed from downtown Birmingham. The city also suffered damage to downtown buildings after protests turned violent. Rev. Thomas Wilder, who leads the church once led by Birmingham civil rights figure Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth, shares his perspective on these events and moving forward.

Historic Theatres Among Businesses Damaged During Violent Protest

Clean up is underway in downtown Birmingham after demonstrations turned violent and protestors damaged several businesses including the historic Alabama and Lyric theatres.

Protests Spread to Birmingham’s Majority-White Suburbs

A protest in Homewood remained peaceful. It was one of several planned in Birmingham's mostly-white suburbs.

Birmingham Brewery Bounces Back After Coronavirus Slows Sales

We checked back in with a Birmingham brewery owner who wasn’t sure in mid-March whether his business would survive the pandemic.

Some Restaurants Continue Curbside Service Despite Relaxed Restrictions

Gov. Kay Ivey’s updated “safer-at-home” order puts most of the hospitality industry back to work. Some business owners were quick to open their doors, but others are sticking with curbside service only.

Businesses Eagerly Reopen As Others Take A Phased Approach

On the first day many businesses were allowed to reopen since the pandemic, not all opted to jump back in.

Amid COVID-19 Pressures, Lucy’s Coffee & Tea Closes For Good

Lucy’s Coffee & Tea has been a Birmingham staple for more than 25 years. Earlier this week, owner Lucy Bonds announced she’s closing her cafe for good.

Comedians Get Extra Creative During The COVID-19 Pandemic

With entertainment venues closed because of COVID-19, local standup comedians and improv performers are having to find other ways to connect to their audiences. Some have even turned to social media to practice their craft.

Customers Resort To DIY Styles With Barbershops & Hair Salons Closed

The coronavirus pandemic forced the closure of nonessential businesses, including hair salons and barbershops. That has led some people to get creative about how to keep their hair looking good during the crisis.

Three Mini Stories To Make You Smile During The COVID-19 Crisis

There's so much news about the coronavirus it can be overwhelming. So here are three bright moments in the midst of the pandemic.

Coronavirus Impacts Revenue At Birmingham Zoo

Spring usually kicks off the busy season for the Birmingham Zoo, but not this year. Like many attractions across the nation, the zoo is closed until further notice because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Sunday Church Drive-In Style In The Coronavirus Age

Large gatherings are banned due to coronavirus, so churches can't meet as usual. One Alabama church tried a drive-in service.

New Exhibit Features Artwork From Alabama Inmates

The issues around Alabama's troubled prison system are complex, but a new exhibit featuring artwork by Alabama inmates hopes to generate a different conversation.

StoryCorps Founder Brings One Small Step Event to Birmingham

StoryCorps has provided people across the U.S. the opportunity to record and preserve the stories of their lives. Now, the organization is taking that idea to another level with One Small Step. StoryCorps' founder, Dave Isay, shares more.

Opera Birmingham’s ‘Independence Eve’ Tackles Racial Themes

Conversations about race are often fraught and complicated. A production this weekend in Birmingham tackles that topic through opera. "Independence Eve" is a contemporary work staged by Opera Birmingham.

Juliana Hatfield Sings The Police

Musician Juliana Hatfield's latest album is a cover of songs from The Police. We spoke with Hatfield about her career, how she defines success, and her earliest memories of the group.

Slow Food Movement Fuels Birmingham’s Burgeoning Bakery Scene

In recent years, several artisanal bakeries have opened in Birmingham offering a wider selection of homemade bread. But will people make an extra stop to pick up a loaf?

Amid Slow Sales, Charlemagne Records Closes its Doors

Charlemagne Records has been open for more than four decades. But at the end of the year, the store is set to close. Like many brick-and-mortar music retailers, Charlemagne has struggled with sales in the digital age.

Proposed Center for Birmingham’s Civil Rights District Draws Skepticism

A proposed $40 million development in Birmingham's civil rights district is being received with caution in some parts of the community.

Sloss Furnaces Marks Alabama’s Bicentennial with the Children’s Bell

Industrialization is a major part of Alabama’s history and perhaps the most visible reminder of that in Birmingham is Sloss Furnaces. The historic site is marking the bicentennial with an object in line with that past of iron and steel: the Alabama Bicentennial Children’s Bell.

Comedian Roy Wood Jr. Talks Alabama Bicentennial and the State’s Reputation

The grand finale of Alabama’s Bicentennial commemoration is this weekend in the state’s capital. There will be concerts and parades throughout the weekend and appearances from the state’s more notable residents. Alabama native and comedian Roy Wood Jr. is one of them.

Randi Pink’s Latest Novel Tackles Teen Pregnancy

Randi Pink's latest young adult novel “Girls Like Us” follows four teenage girls, three of whom are pregnant. The story’s set in 1972, a year before the Roe v. Wade U.S. Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion nationwide.

Birmingham Ultra Runner Competes in World Championship 24-Hour Race

Dozens of ultra runners will compete at the World Championship 24 hour race in Albi, France. One of those is Birmingham runner Micah Morgan.

Legion Field’s Future Big Topic During Magic City Classic Week

The McDonald's Magic City Classic brings bragging rights about the best band and football team. But some connected to the Classic wonder what happens to the annual matchup and Legion Field once Birmingham’s new downtown stadium is completed?