As of 7/8/2011:
I have lived in the Huntsville area for 10+ years, having moved here from Maryland. There are plenty of comments in this forum both extolling the good and the bad. Every city has these. It all depends on your personal likes and dislikes, things you are looking for in a city, and your own experiences.
In my 10+ years here, I have seen a lot of growth, especially in the suburbs to the NW. If you are an old timer from the area, the presence of some suburban sprawl is probably annoying. From my perspective, it is still less than some larger cities in Maryland and Ohio. Traffic has increased quite a bit over the last few years, but again this is nothing compared to larger cities (although it might be annoying if you have lived here all all your life and like things the way they used to be. Lots of housing going up in the NW, although this has slowed somewhat here of late. Housing prices have risen accordingly, but are still cheaper than some larger cities.
As far as recreation is concerned, if you like hunting/fishing/golf, then you have come to the right place. I am not much of a night life person so I cannot comment on this. There is a local minor league baseball team, but the locals are very fervent about their college football (think Alabama vs. Auburn). Plenty of places for water activities (boating, fishing, etc). There are a decent number and variety of restaurants, but my opinion is that Huntsville is a little lacking in this area. This would also hold true for general goods and services.
The weather is quite variable. Winters are usually mild, although we did get 7" of snow once this winter (this is extremely unusual). Summers tend to be on the hot side (90+ usually). We have our share of violent weather (tornado outbreak of 4/27/11 is an extreme example). Since the way weather affects a person is extremely subjective, some will like the southern weather, others will not.
There is a great mix of people here in around Huntsville that may not be representative of the rest of Alabama (maybe 30-40 miles outside of town). There are a lot of transplants from other places due to jobs, military, etc. For the most part, I have found southern people to be friendlier than their northern counterparts, but this is a subjective comment.
There are plenty of churches in the area, mostly baptist of one strip or another. A lot of activities used to be planned around church events, but this is slowly changing here of late.
The job market has been a little better than some other parts of the country during these uncertain economic times. A vast majority of the jobs are in the technical sector. In recent times however, the job market here has been a little shaky as layoffs are starting to occur with regularity.
Yes, the drivers here are not the best. But this may be due to the influx of people from around the country as much as anything else. Contributing to this is the fact that long time residents are used to driving on roads that were much less congested than they are now. I have been all around the country, and everybody has their fair share of bad drivers.
That's about all I can think of at the moment.