The Tuscaloosa City Council on Tuesday evening voted in favor of a resolution to establish an entertainment district in downtown Tuscaloosa – at least for one day.

The Tuscaloosa Tourism and Sports Commission, led by Gina Simpson, had requested that a formal Entertainment District be established on April 9 – coinciding with the Druid City Arts Festival (DCAF), which is scheduled for that day in Government Plaza.

Tuscaloosa residents who want to discuss plans and concerns with Mayor Walt Maddox will have several opportunities to do just that over the coming weeks and months. Maddox will hold two public meetings, Mayor’s Morning Out and Mayor’s Night Out, for City residents at local businesses.

In a continued effort to be open, efficient and effective, these meetings give Tuscaloosa residents an opportunity to discuss plans, ideas and concerns directly with the mayor. These come-and-go meetings will not include presentations.

The City of Tuscaloosa’s floodplain management planning committee will hold an informal public meeting on Tuesday, March 1 at 5 p.m. in the City Hall Council Chambers to discuss the floodplain management plan.

The goal of this meeting is to allow interested citizens, especially those subjected to flooding or living in the floodplain, to provide feedback on the floodplain management plan. Copies of the plan will be available for review and public comments will be accepted.

Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox continues his restructuring plan at City Hall. On Friday, Maddox announced that two longtime City employees will assume new positions.

Mayor Maddox has appointed Brendan Moore as the executive director of urban development and Tera Tubbs as the executive director of infrastructure and public services. Both will begin work in their new jobs on Monday, Feb. 15.

“Tera and Brendan are proven leaders for the City of Tuscaloosa,” Maddox said. “With their energy and expertise, they will help guide us in becoming the most innovative and effectively-managed city in the United States.”

Governor Bentley on Tuesday held his annual State of the State address launching his 2016 legislative agenda and strategic plan through 2019, when Alabama will celebrate its 200th birthday.

The strategic plan has a special focus on Alabama’s most rural and under-served areas, including some in West Alabama.

Alabama’s Primary Election is next month, and if you still need to register to vote, you can do that online now. Earlier this week, Secretary of State John Merrill announced the implementation of Electronic Voter Registration in the state.

Voters now have the ability to register via the Secretary of State’s website, Once their online registration has been completed, a paperless form is submitted electronically to the Boards of Registrars in their home county.

The City of Tuscaloosa will host a free Christmas tree recycling event starting Dec. 26 through Sunday, Jan. 10.

During this free drop-off event, citizens and businesses can drop off live Christmas trees, live wreaths and live garlands in the designated area at the Curry Environmental Services facility located at 3440 Kauloosa Ave.

‘Tis the season for spending time with family and friends, and for finally revving up your holiday shopping. But as you’re making your list (and checking it twice), and running all over Tuscaloosa and Northport to make your purchases, remember: Scammers are out there, and they’d like nothing more than to take advantage of our spirit of giving.

With this in mind, Attorney General Luther Strange issued a reminder to everyone, including local residents.

“The best protection against scams and crimes of opportunity is not to be caught by surprise by scammers and thieves,” said Strange.

Identify Your Audience


Marketing is expensive.  Whether you use traditional avenues, social media or relationship marketing- it is and should be- a considered part of your overall business budget.  To get an idea of what costs look like, here is an overview of typical marketing costs.


Typical print ads cost $500 to $20,000, depending on whether the publication is local or national, the size of your ad, whether you use color and if you've negotiated a multiple-ad rate. You can spend as much as $500,000 to buy the inside front cover of some national magazines.


Radio advertising costs can range from $200 to $5,000 per week depending on your location. You will also need to factor in the cost of producing the commercial.


Billboard advertising costs roughly $1,500 to $4,000 in most small- to mid-size US cities, though it can dip as low as $250 in rural areas and can reach $14,000 or even higher in larger markets such as New York City.


Social media is not “free” either. You either have to have staff time dedicated to it (and it takes a lot of time to do it properly) or hire someone else to do it. Plus, most campaigns will not perform adequately without paid advertising through social media. If you see a viral campaign, someone-somewhere, put some big dollars behind it to make that happen.


Some of these numbers may seem high, but they include a range of business sizes.  A general rule of thumb is that it costs between $50 and $150 per hour of agency time for social media marketing, depending on agency size and complexity of the campaign.  


Launching a new Twitter account using a standard ad agency, complete with setup and outsourcing content creation/consumer interaction (all 280 characters at a time), costs an average of $2,000-$4,000 per month – and that’s just for Twitter. With that said, the total price range was $1,000-$7,500 per month.


What if you already have an existing Twitter account, but need some help to take it to the next level with an agency? Restructuring an existing Twitter account with “limited coaching” to achieve client goals is still going to cost you between $1,000-$2,500 per month, with some charging as much as $4,000 per month.


Facebook management pricing can run a bit higher than that of Twitter alone. To set up a new Facebook account and provide limited ongoing training to business partners, online PR agencies charge an average of $2,500-$5,000 per month, with some going as high as $9,000.


However, if you’d like to also do social media marketing on channels like Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and SnapChat, those additional channels can easily cost you $1,000 or more for each one that you add on.


Using a social media freelancer is typically the same cost as an agency, but you may be able to do smaller projects. On average, freelance social media runs about $50 per hour at a minimum.  

 Relationship marketing and networking also have a cost. Owner time is usually a big part of relationship marketing. Which also means that sales growth is limited by owner time. In addition, there is time spent updating contact lists, sending emails, following up on leads, going to networking groups (plus their associated fees), memberships to clubs, and expenses like business lunches and golf games. Administrative assistants can help, but their salaries (on average $41,000) are rarely thought of as "marketing" even though that is a big part of what they do. Time is money and relationship marketing is expensive in terms of time. Many business owners weave their networking time into their social life. Which is both fun and profitable. But it is limiting in terms of growth.  


Email us This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.





Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump is making another campaign stop in Alabama. Trump will hold a rally at the BJCC this Saturday, Nov. 21, at 11 a.m.

Secretary of State John Merrill confirmed Trump’s upcoming visit.

“I am confident that Mr. Trump’s appearance will be welcomed with enthusiasm, just as it was in Mobile,” said Merrill.

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Druid City Living (DCL) is Tuscaloosa, Alabama's premier community newspaper, covering the great people, places and activities of the area.



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