Lee Sentell

A new report says travelers spent more than $13 billion in the state of Alabama last year.

The study was conducted for the state tourism agency by an economist at Auburn University in Montgomery. It says more than 25 million travelers spent a total of $13.4 billion in the state in 2016 on hotels, shopping, transportation and restaurants.

That represents an increase of 5.4 percent from 2015. Tourism Director Lee Sentell says travel spending has doubled in the state over the last 14 years.

Stan Ingold

If you ask residents of Illinois what product that state is best known for, the answer might be farm equipment. Illinois, after all, is the home of John Deere. Kentucky might point to Bourbon Whiskey, and Wisconsin is the headquarters of Harley Davidson motorcycles. The state of Alabama has a few homegrown products you might not know about.

Lieutenant Governor of Alabama

Alabama's 200th birthday is coming up, and the state is looking for someone to be in charge of the party.

Directors of the Alabama Bicentennial Commission are now accepting resumes for the position of executive director.

The vice chairman of the commission, state Tourism Director Lee Sentell, said Saturday the celebration will culminate in 2019. That's the 200th anniversary of Alabama's establishment as a state in 1819.

Alabama Music Hall of Fame

Supporters of the Alabama Music Hall of Fame have set a target date to reopen the tourist attraction.

The Music Hall of Fame board members hope to reopen the facility in Tuscumbia by Oct. 17.

State Tourism Director Lee Sentell said the date is one day before the opening of the documentary "Muscle Shoals" in Birmingham. Sentell said Oct. 17 is a tentative date that could change.