Welcome, Alabama fans.

Each year, I enjoy meeting all the fans that come to Fort Payne and visit for Alabama Fan Appreciation Week.

Several people have come by the Times-Journal office to visit and get the DeKalb Living editions with Teddy, Randy and Jeff on the cover. Several of these people I have met throughout the years, and they always come by to see me.

I enjoyed sitting down with Teddy, Jeff and Randy and doing the interviews for DeKalb Living. The stories we told were about them and their individual passions, not just the band.

One thing I got from all of them was their love for Fort Payne and DeKalb County. These guys could have moved anywhere they wanted, but they all choose to continue to live here. They put this town on the map. Every time I tell someone I am from Fort Payne, the first thing they say is, "That’s where the Alabama Band is from."

Their songs were written about this beautiful area, and over the years hundreds of thousands of people have visited because of them. The June Jam years brought so many good times and memories. I remember my grandparents staying with us so my parents could go. I was so upset because I was too young to go, but as soon as I was old enough, I went every year. Everyone has their June Jam stories to tell.

These guys mean so much to us. We are forever grateful to them for their years of dedication to this community. I hope the fans have a wonderful stay and continue coming to Fort Payne every year.

Tricia Dunne is president and publisher of the Times-Journal. Her column appears in the paper’s weekend edition. Email: tclinton@times-journal.com.

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