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Blog Posts (61)

  • RELEASE: McClellan Development Authority Receives a $653,424.12 Grant For Lake Yahou Park Paving Upgrades

    ANNISTON, Ala—The McClellan Development Authority (MDA) will be paving the drives and parking lot at Lake Yahou Park using an asphalt mixture modified with recycled tire rubber derived from tire scraps as the recipient of a $653,424.12 grant from Alabama Department of Environmental Management. The project will be contracted to Wiregrass Construction Company, Inc. and will include a six-year evaluation from the National Center for Asphalt Technology (NCAT) at Auburn University. “We are honored to be among the first in the state of Alabama to receive this grant for rubber-modified asphalt,” said Julie Moss, MDA Executive Director. “The MDA is always looking for ways to improve Lake Yahou Park, and this grant will make a huge impact in the park’s vehicle accessibility. We’re looking forward to working with Wiregrass Construction this spring and extend many thanks to ADEM for making this opportunity possible.” The technology behind this paving project offers a host of benefits for Lake Yahou Park visitors. The tire-modified asphalt is not only environmentally conscious but also boasts reduced tire wear and a quieter, safer driving experience due to improved traction. The rubber-modified asphalt stands out amongst traditional asphalt in its durability, lasting longer and withstanding potholes and cracking. “What makes this project unique is our construction approach of using two different types of asphalt on the road,” said Brandon Owens, Vice President of Operations at Wiregrass. “One side will be paved with Superpave asphalt, while the other side will be paved with Ground Tire Rubber asphalt.” By utilizing both types of asphalt on the same main drive in and out of Lake Yahou Park, Wiregrass Construction will ensure equal traffic distribution, facilitating an accurate comparison between the two surfaces throughout NCAT’s six-year study. Carolina Rodezno, Associate Research Professor from the National Center for Asphalt Technology, said, “Projects like this [at McClellan] will allow the asphalt industry to gain experience with construction and performance to add to our knowledge base with rubber modified asphalt and support future implementation efforts.” Owens added, “At Wiregrass Construction, we believe in the importance of reusing waste materials to create a more sustainable infrastructure. We are honored to be a part of this initiative and look forward to its positive impact.” The project began February 26, 2024. The full paving process will require Lake Yahou Park to be closed for approximately four weeks, dependent on weather, and advanced notice of the closures will be given on the MDA’s Facebook page.

  • Training the Best for the Worst: A Tour Inside FEMA's Center for Domestic Preparedness at McClellan

    "The 'best' are our first responders, those willing to risk their lives for the safety and security of fellow Americans. The 'worst' is man-made and natural disasters that can strike anywhere, at any time," explained Richard Brewer, Director of External Affairs at the Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP), to myself and McClellan Development Authority Executive Director Julie Moss in a large boardroom at the CDP headquarters on the morning of Tuesday, November 14, 2023. We had connected with Brewer the month before with the hopes of writing a feature piece about the CDP's national training operations which are headquartered at McClellan, but he offered something even better which we couldn't pass up—a personal tour of their campus, which began, like all organizational overviews, with an introductory presentation. The genesis of the Center for Domestic Preparedness traces back to the harrowing Sarin nerve agent attack in Tokyo by the Aum Shinrikyo terrorist cult in 1995, which spurred an overwhelming demand for civilian responder training in the United States to be prepared to handle similar crises domestically. The next year, the Nunn-Lugar-Domenici Domestic Preparedness program was started as part of the Defense Against Weapons of Mass Destruction Act, allowing first responders to train at the U.S. Army Chemical School at Fort McClellan. Brewer explained, "When the base was slated for closure, some very smart people suggested they keep training first responders here," and the Center for Domestic Preparedness was born. The CDP's presence at McClellan has not only repurposed many of Fort McClellan's claims to fame (like the Noble Army Hospital and former Chemical School buildings), but has also brought a $255 million annual economic impact to Calhoun County. Following the briefing, Brewer showed us a map of their campus, which comprises over 50 buildings spread across 186 acres and three primary training sites: the ARTC, COBRATF, and Noble Training Facility. The ARTC (Advanced Responder Training Complex), which is currently undergoing major upgrades and renovations, prepares responders to deal with commonplace hazards, including an industrial park, a mock subway station, and a simulated street scene with businesses. [Photos feature live training sessions at the ARTC on the simulated street scene and subway] The COBRATF (Chemical, Ordnance, Biological and Radiological Training Facility) is where civilian responders receive hands-on training to effectively respond to real-world incidents involving chemical, biological, explosive, radiological, and other hazardous materials. There, Gary Milner, Assistant Director of Training of the COBRATF walked us through the various training settings within the mock town of Fisherville, including an apartment, a bar, a commercial kitchen, and more. He also showed us the training bays where responders train with actual toxic biological materials and chemical agents to gain confidence in both their skills and the personal protective equipment they wear when responding to hazardous material incidents. The training at the COBRATF is the only of its kind in the nation, with advanced security measures and rigorous safety protocols that Milner says has helped sustain their long-standing record of zero exposures. [Photos feature live training sessions at COBRATF, a display of the various Hazmat suits used in training, and an aerial view of the mock town of Fisherville] Our tour next led us to the Noble Training Facility just past 11 am, when the mock hospital environment was in full swing, with nursing students, EMTs, instructors, and technical staff bustling about; yet the chaos was structured and intentional, and resembled everything about an operational hospital except for real-life patients. The setting of this specialized medical response training could not be more appropriate, as the facility was once the Noble Army Hospital during Fort McClellan's operation, serving everyone from privates to generals and their families for over 40 years. Today, the Noble Training Facility is the only hospital facility in the nation dedicated solely to training healthcare professionals in disaster preparedness and mass casualty response, featuring exercises with ambulances and role-players, involving more than 100 patients who must be triaged. [Photos feature live training scenarios at the Noble Training Facility, prop wounds/bodily fluids, and the room of training dummies] Since 1998, the CDP has trained more than 1,400,000 state, local, tribal, and territorial responders through various means, including 51 hands-on courses, 64 virtual instructor-led courses, 14 totally online courses, and several microlearning courses accessible via YouTube. Plus, all training is federally funded at no cost to the trainees. "It's an astounding experience to get this firsthand look of the state-of-the-art training taking place at the CDP training sites," said MDA Executive Director Julie Moss. "We are thrilled to know so many responders from across the United States visit our beautiful community to better protect the nation from disasters." We extend a huge thank you to Richard Brewer and Gary Milner for lending their time and sharing their expertise during our tour of the Center for Domestic Preparedness, as well as the 1,000+ CDP employees who spend each day 'training the best for the worst.' You can keep up with the CDP's training initiatives on their Facebook page, and learn more about their training opportunities at

  • McClellan Sports & Outdoors Opens with Sporting Goods Gifts for Everyone on Your Christmas List

    Just in the (Saint) Nick of time! McClellan Sports & Outdoors, the retail portion of Team Sports, is now open at 135 Exchange Ave, Anniston, AL with premiere sporting goods gifts for any age athlete, coaches, referees, and sport moms. You can find everything from golf polos, toddler sneakers, baseball bats, workout wear, backpacks, Maui Jim sunglasses, adorable earrings, and more inside their bright, spacious storefront. Team Sports' roots trace back 15 years ago to Smith's Sports in Anniston, when they first established their specialty in screen printing and embroidering team gear and uniforms. When Team Sports moved to McClellan in late 2020, the new owners knew it was the right time to finally pursue retail alongside their main services, and McClellan Sports & Outdoors was born. With a modern, wood facade and cast iron logo, the new retail store stands out from the Team Sports brand with a unique and welcoming identity all its own. "By moving here, we hope to get plugged into the community," co-owner Kristin Laymon said. "We loved the location [being] central to most of the schools in Calhoun County and being able to make those local connections." Currently, designing and printing team sports gear is the backbone of Team Sports' operations, providing uniforms for Piedmont, Alexandria, Saks, Weaver, and Jacksonville schools, among others—but Laymon hopes the retail side will help reach their audience in new, innovative ways. "We want to become the go-to place for the athletic community to get their outdoor and sporting goods needs." In the near future, Team Sports hopes to officially launch McClellan Sports & Outdoors with a Grand Opening, as well as bring in additional staff to promote and oversee the new retail venture. With the holiday season upon us, McClellan Sports and Outdoors offers the best way to both support a family-owned business and find the perfect gift for the sport enthusiasts in your life. You can find more information, by visiting or by following them on Instagram and Facebook.

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Other Pages (19)

  • Calendar | Explore McClellan

    Explore EVENTS Check the calendar below to explore events and special notices, then click any listing to expand for more details. Does your McClellan business or organization have an event coming up that needs promotion? Request to add it to our calendar and we will follow up. ADD AN EVENT REQUEST TO HOST EVENT ON MCCLELLAN TRAILS ANNUAL TRAIL EVENTS CAMPING FOR TRAIL EVENTS

  • Education | Explore McClellan

    Explore EDUCATION McClellan features an array of learning and training organizations. Expand each heading below to learn more about education at McClellan. AVAILABLE BUILDINGS AND PROPERTIES MCCLELLAN MAP BLOG DHS/FEMA Center for Domestic Preparedness The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) supports citizens and emergency personnel to build, sustain, and improve the nation's capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards. The Center for Domestic Preparedness is a subdivision of FEMA and the Department of Homeland Security. It provides advanced, all-hazards training to approximately 50,000 emergency responders annually from state, local, tribal, and territorial governments, as well as the federal government, foreign governments, and private entities, as available. The scope of training includes preparedness, protection, and response. FACEBOOK WEBSITE CONTACT Fort McClellan Army National Guard Training Center The War Department formally established Camp McClellan on July 18, 1917. The camp was named in honor of Major General George B. McClellan, General-in-Chief of the U.S. Army from 1861 to 1862. Camp McClellan was a mobilization camp used to quickly train men for WWI. Camp McClellan was redesignated Fort McClellan, a permanent post, on July 1, 1929. New construction began immediately, and the post grew rapidly and was used extensively to train soldiers for WWII. Nearly 500,000 men were trained at Fort McClellan during WWII, including a company of Japanese-Americans who helped familiarize American troops with methods used by Japanese soldiers. Many individuals and units trained here received the highest military honors and decorations during the war. Through the many years of service Fort McClellan has been home to many distinguished units and organizations including the U.S. Army Chemical Center and School, the U.S. Army Military Police School and the Women’s Army Corps Center. To meet the requirement for the Vietnam War, an Advanced Individual Training Infantry Brigade was activated in 1966, and trained more than 30,000 men. In 1995, the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Commission voted to permanently close Fort McClellan. The official closing ceremony ending Fort McClellan’s illustrious past was held on May 20, 1999. At the time of closure, Fort McClellan was home to the U.S. Army Chemical School, the U.S. Army Military Police School, the Training Brigade, and the Department of Defense Polygraph Institute. Fort McClellan was in continuous service as an active military installation from 1917 through 1999. During this period, it played an important role in shaping the history of the Alabama Army National Guard. Between the years of 1920 and 1922, the entire Alabama National Guard completed field training at Fort McClellan. In 1949, a Maintenance Training Site was established here followed by the establishment of the Alabama Military Academy in 1957. In 1965, the Alabama Guard opened a Training Site on McClellan utilizing a few of the World War II training facilities that remained. Through the years the Training Site continued to grow and in 1999, with the BRAC closure of Fort McClellan as an active component base, the Guard Training Site transitioned to a stand-alone military installation. In addition to the National Guard and Army Reserve, the Fort McClellan Army National Guard Training Center currently supports all branches of the Department of Defense. What began with approximately forty acres of land and a few World War II facilities has now grown to more than 22,000 acres and approximately one million square feet of facility space. FACEBOOK CONTACT Jacksonville State University McClellan Center Owned by Jacksonville State University, this center houses JSU's Office of Continuing Education and Outreach, Department of Emergency Management, Inservice Education Center, Northeast Alabama Police Academy, Center for Applied Forensics, and Strategic Partnerships and Special Projects. OFFICES WEBSITE CONTACT Northeast Alabama Law Enforcement Academy The Northeast Alabama Law Enforcement Academy (LEA) is one of ten law enforcement training academies in the State of Alabama certified by the Alabama Peace Officers' Standards and Training Commission. They offer training courses for new recruits to veteran officers. FACEBOOK WEBSITE CONTACT The Little Tree Preschool The Little Tree Preschool is a branch of the Learning Tree. They offer programs for developmentally disabled children to prepare them for primary school, specifically self-care skills, play skills, social skills, and pre-academic skills in preparation for kindergarten. FACEBOOK WEBSITE CONTACT

  • About | Explore McClellan

    about McClellan On March 3, 2010, the McClellan Development Authority was officially certified as a non-profit public corporation charged with the future economic development of the former US Army Fort. The MDA Board of Directors consists of five members appointed by the Calhoun County Commission, five members appointed by the Anniston City Council and one member appointed by the Governor of Alabama. Board meetings are held on the fourth Wednesday of January, April, July, and September at 9:00 AM in the MDA board room. AVAILABLE BUILDINGS AND PROPERTIES MCCLELLAN MAP DOCUMENTS MEETING NOTIFICATION REGISTRY MEETING MINUTES Julie Moss DIRECTOR Jason Odom LEGAL COUNSEL Shannon Thomas FINANCE MANAGER Jerry Maxwell LEAD GROUNDS/ MAINTENANCE Kassidy Nance MARKETING SPECIALIST Derrick Merrill GROUNDS/MAINTENANCE Administration Staff Board Jim McClellan MDA BOARD CHAIRMAN Sarah Ballard Pritchett MDA BOARD TREASURER Tim Garner MDA BOARD MEMBER Willie Duncan MDA BOARD MEMBER Jamie Jordan MDA BOARD VICE CHAIRMAN Curtis Maxwell MDA BOARD MEMBER Julie Borrelli MDA BOARD MEMBER Aaron Acker MDA BOARD SECRETARY Pokey Brimer MDA BOARD MEMBER Chris Collins MDA BOARD MEMBER JD Hess MDA BOARD MEMBER History our history Explore the timeline of McClellan's history.

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