Hello Hump Day, and off we go….
Weather: Clearing and cooler. The storms will finally taper off this afternoon, and somewhat cooler temperatures come in behind a cold front. Highs today will stay in the lower 70s, with lows tonight in the lower 50s. Skies will be clear Thursday, with temps staying the same. Rain chances return Saturday.
Traffic: Nothing out of the ordinary on I-65 through the Corridor X construction today.
More charges in Kimberly probe. Three more co-conspirators in the Kimberly gambling and bribery investigation have taken plea bargains from federal prosecutors. Christopher Adam McGraw, Carl Scoggins and John L. Taylor agreed to plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit federal programs bribery. McGraw and Taylor agreed to cooperate with the prosecution, while Scoggins is not. They join Daniel “Boone” Stone in reaching plea deals, while Robert Taylor is charged with conspiracy, bribery and illegal gambling, and also faces a forfeiture count. McGraw, Scoggins and the Taylors will all be arraigned in U.S. District Court a week from Thursday.
Phillips Drive temporarily closed. Gardendale Mayor Othell Phillips ordered the residential street off of Fieldstown Road closed Tuesday near the construction site of a new Dollar General store. The closure came in the wake of complaints by residents that construction vehicles were taking the long way around the loop and exiting Phillips Drive on the far side, and even blocking the street altogether. A group of residents filed a petition with the Gardendale City Council on Monday, asking that they vacate a portion of the road just behind the store site, effectively turning it into a dead-end street. Residents fear that shoppers will do the same thing the construction vehicles are doing, which would create long-term traffic problems.
Kimberly gets a crazy, big race. The Warrior Dash, billed as the world’s largest running series, has set a stop on its 2012 tour in Kimberly on October 7. The race — a cross between a traditional five-kilometer cross-country race and a souped-up military obstacle course — will be held at The Hitchin’ Post in Kimberly. Organizers expect as many as 8,000 runners, plus at least that many spectators at the event, which also includes all day rock band concerts and a fireworks show. If the projections bear out, it could be one of the largest events in north Jefferson County, comparable in attendance to last week’s Magnolia Festival.
Sports: Josh Hamilton, the Major League Baseball player whose alcohol and drug addictions — and the role of his Christian faith in dealing with them — are well documented, had the biggest night of his career Tuesday as he belted four home runs in a single game, as his Texas Rangers beat the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards. All four homers scored two runs each, with Elvis Andrus being ahead of him on base each time. He is the 16th player in MLB history to have four homers in a game, the most recent being Carlos Delgado with Toronto in 2003. Hamilton also hit a double, giving him 18 total bases for the game, an American League record.