No Sleep in Helena blog celebrates 11th “Blogiversary”
By GRAHAM BROOKS / Staff Writer
HELENA–When Helena residents hear the words “No Sleep in Helena” they immediately make the connection to the popular Internet blog about all things Helena.
Helena Councilman Hal “Hewy” Woodman is the man behind the keyboard and runs the No Sleep in Helena blog, which got its start 11 years ago.
“I moved to Helena in 1999, and I first started the blog to post things about my kids and things like that in 2004,” said Woodman. “There was no newspaper in Helena and I tried writing down events and posting about them. I ended up getting a lot of positive feedback from people, so I deleted my personal posts and started doing Helena Happenings.”
Woodman holds a juris doctorate and has a background in technology and legal services work. He is currently in his second year serving on the Helena City Council.
The name “No Sleep in Helena” is derived from Woodman’s 13 years working night shift, when he would write the majority of his blog posts at night.
In the last 11 years of writing the blog, Woodman has gained many followers and become a staple in the tight-knit Helena community.
“Working night shift, I didn’t have much interaction,” said Woodman. “Now that I’m on day shift, the nicest part about the blog now is interacting with people. You feel like you’re doing a service and doing something nice for people.”
Woodman enjoys the old town feel of Helena and the community as a whole, describing it as “an environment you’d want your children to live in.”
The addition of social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter over the last 11 years has changed the way people view the blog posts in some aspect, but the concept is still the same and Woodman will continue posting in the future.
Those wishing to submit a Helena story idea for the blog can email Woodman at Nosleepinhelena@gmail.com
Woodman received an award for best blog in Shelby County in 2011 and the blog can be viewed at Helena-Alabama.blogspot.com/