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Bridge Celebration Delayed, Tuscaloosa Milo's Reopening

Edmund Pettus Bridge
Edmund Pettus Bridge, Selma, Ala.

There are only two and a half weeks left in the current Supreme Court session, and Alabamians are still waiting on a definitive answer regarding same-sex marriage.

Gay marriage is currently legal in Alabama, but a state Supreme Court ruling has ordered all county probate judges not to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. U.S. District Judge Callie Granade passed a ruling that would force those probate judges to begin issuing licenses, but that won’t go into effect until after the Supreme Court rules.

I recently spoke with NPR’s Legal Affairs Correspondent Nina Totenberg about the case. She says a ruling in favor of gay marriage is likely – but not certain.

“You can surmise where the court’s going on this, because they’ve let so many lower court rulings go into effect that made same-sex marriage legal. But you can’t forecast what the Supreme Court’s going to do.”

Totenberg says the Supreme Court will most likely render their verdict on same-sex marriage in the last week of June, or July 1 at the latest.

Selma city officials have pushed back a 75th anniversary celebration for the Edmund Pettus Bridge because of a scheduling concern.

City council member Susan Keith says the celebration originally scheduled for this Friday, June 19 at the foot of the bridge has been delayed to June 30.

The initial date coincided with Juneteenth — the anniversary of the end of slavery — and Keith says the celebration could have been considered hurtful or offensive.

The bridge's namesake, Edmund Pettus, was a two-term U.S senator, a Confederate general and a grand dragon in the Ku Klux Klan. The bridge was the scene of violent police opposition to a march for voting rights in 1965. Some lawmakers recently sought to change the structure's name to the Journey to Freedom Bridge, but the bill died at the end of this year's legislative session.

A popular Alabama hamburger joint is making a return to Tuscaloosa.  APR’s MacKenzie Bates reports on the grand re-opening of Milo’s in Titletown.

Milo’s Burger Shop had a location in Tuscaloosa, but the April 27, 2011 tornado destroyed the restaurant.  More than four years later, Milo’s officials decided to rebuild in a different location, at the corner of Skyland Boulevard and Highway 69.

Milo’s Chief Executive Officer Tom Dekle says they have heard the cries to bring back the regional hamburger chain to Tuscaloosa.

“We hear from them daily, letting us know how excited they are about Milo’s coming back to town which is great.  We’re thrilled to be coming back to serve our loyal customers but we’re also excited about introducing Milo’s to the new people in town.”

A ribbon cutting will be held this morning at 9:30.  The store will be open for breakfast Wednesday morning at 6.

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