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my Alpharetta M Y

H O M E • M Y

F A M I LY • M Y

S E L F FALL 2017

Check Out Our Special Section On Topp. 26Teachers Date Night Ideas, Food Faves, and Health & Happiness

Smile Specialists

Dr. Ambre A. Kragor and Dr. Farah Kar bring fun and innovation to orthodontics p. 24

Meet Your Neighbors Outstanding Orthodontists, a Firefighter, and a Storyteller

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21

Fall Fun Calendar

Scarecrow Harvest, Alpharetta Food Truck Alley, and More p. 16-17

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my Alpharetta

From the Editor Help with math project? Check. Get the kids to rehearsal on time? Check. Review homework? Check. With school underway, there are basic tasks that need to be completed. And as the parent, it’s your responsibility to make sure that everything gets done. But sometimes, things fall through the cracks and you just can’t possibly do it all. That’s when standout teachers like the five we’re featuring in this issue come into play.

We asked and you answered. And thanks to your top teacher nominations, we can see why your children are succeeding in more ways than one.

M Y H oca O MteEand • M Y F A M I LY • M Y S ELF ers, an Adv e Family Life Music Lov SPRING 2017 dor Celebrat an Ambassa ngs p.19 in Sandy Spri d in the ’Hoo g Good

PMylusHome & Garden • My Health & Happiness • Doin Spring

FALL 2017

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PM 8/26/16 5:12

Fun Calendar

ART DIRECTOR Dona Halliday

Date Night Ideas, Food Faves and Ways to Give Back

GRAPHIC DESIGN/PRODUCTION Miguel Velázquez

myBuckhead

Check OutCamps THESE cool Summer p. 18

Meet Your Neighbors

Y H O M E • M

M Y Fitness Spinners, a Tennis Icon and a Remodeling Pro

21

PSumm lus er Fun My

M Y F A M I LY •

MEDIA CONSULTANTS – PRINT/DIGITAL Candace Bivins cbivins@atlantabestmedia.com

S E L F

SUMMER 2016

Home & Garden t • My Health & Happiness • Doing Good in the ’Hood -ou Pull Calendar

Kim Cooper kcooper@atlantabestmedia.com

1

Concerts, Farmers Markets, Fireworks and More p. 16-17

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my Alpharetta

Meet Your Neighbors

M Y HEntrep • M Y wear O M Ereneur A Chef, a Sports er Add an Interior Design

F A M I LY • M Y

19

and ead Pull Energy of Buckh to theOut and Save!

S E L F

Good in PMylusHome & Happiness • Doing Sum mer & Garden • My Health Fun Calendar

Jim Speakman jspeakman@atlantabestmedia.com OFFICE MANAGER Gail Sawyer

Meet Your Neighbors

my Intown

A Wellness Entrep reneur, a Closet Guru and Add to the Energy a Fitness Travel Guide of Alpharetta Home & Garden

17

Y HOME•M

MY

MY FA M I LY •

• My Health & Happin

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Pull Out and Save! ver_0716.indd

Susan Lesesne slesesne@atlantabestmedia.com Amy Smith asmith@atlantabestmedia.com

the ’Hood

Date Night Ideas and Food Faves

P lus My

Dawn DeSantis ddesantis@atlantabestmedia.com

SUMMER 2016

Concerts, Firewo Farmers Marke rks, ts, and More p. 14-1 5

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EDITORIAL/SOCIAL MEDIA ASSISTANTS Wyndi Kappes Annie Paschal

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Annual Azalea Festival, Taste of Marietta, Easter Egg Scramble, and More p. 16-17

1

CONTRIBUTORS Stacy Moser CatMax Photography

SELF

SPRING 2017

in the ’Hood

Spring Fun endEggarHunt, CalEaster

6/30/16 4:58 PM

INTERN Alana Tinsley

An Tour ATL Burger Week, More of Kitchens and p. 12-13

, Date Night Ideas Food Faves and Ways to Give Back

Meet Your Neighbors

-preneurs

s, a Pair of Paleo A Jake-of-all-Trade r Seeke and a Treasure

17

PMylusHome & Garden • My Health & Happiness • Doing Good in the ’Hood

bestself Atlanta’s “go-to”

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September 2016

bestselfatlanta.co

beauty and happy

living!

PM 2/22/17 5:57

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Lash Out!

Scattered Understa nding ADHD p. 59

What’s the Flutter Eyelash Trends? on p. 25

SPECIAL SECTION

Best Cause

For print, web, email and digital advertising information, contact us at: 80 West Wieuca Road, Suite 115 Atlanta, GA 30342 (404) 303-9333 x15 FAX (404) 303-0030

atlanta

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Meet the 2016 Masters of Makeover

From Hungry to Healthy: Wholesom e Wave Georgia p. 72

Give-Back Guide

From Mommy Makeovers to Amazing Fitness Transformations p. 31

Community Volunteer

Opportunities p. 73

Best Bites

Healthy Eats and Treats p. 18

Prostate Cancer Stay Informed,

|

CE PA Healthy S ByStay Mark

MY

W. McCord, MD

p. 69

The Truth About the Flu

By Scott Cutro, MD p. 71

Going back to the farm

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Mary Blackmon N T ATLA NTA M E Shines a E Farm O Von P Rlight I M Spot ers p. 52ngs

TO SEARCH FOR 100s POPULAR TOPICS OF

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4

ASSOCIATE EDITOR Alex McCray

my East Cobb

EXPERT CONNEC T

Laura Janelle Downey, Managing Editor

MANAGING EDITOR Laura Janelle Downey

Meet Yooursr Neighb

We salute those making a difference. From providing an extra word of encouragement to sparking the imagination, Alpharetta kids are pushed to new heights thanks to magnificent mentors like these! If your favorite teacher wasn’t highlighted in this issue, share more about him or her on our @MyAlpharetta Facebook page. We’d love to hear how this person is influencing your child’s life. And as always, if there are other people, places, and events happening in Alpharetta that you want to share, email me at: editor@atlantabestmedia.com.

ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER David Leonard

Fall Fun Calendar

Read p. 26 to find out why Language Arts teachers like Jordan Kohanim are changing lives both inside and outside of the classroom. I knew a couple of extraordinary educators myself. My high school yearbook adviser, Ms. McQuade, not only helped me perfect the art of writing captions but she also spent quality time getting to know me as well. And when I was working on my master’s degree, Dean Hawkins believed in me when I didn’t even believe in myself.

FALL 2016

Pull Out and Save!

Festivals, stain the Rock Cha cert, Con Happenings7 Halloween 16-1 and More p.

MyEC_001_COVER_0417.indd

S E L F

PUBLISHER Patti Stephens

SELF

Y•MY FAMIL

•MY HOME

FA M I LY • M Y

FOUNDER Sherri Adair

my Sandy Springs MY

H OME•MY

IS PRESENTED

BY

AM 6/20/17 11:26

Inquiries and submissions regarding advertising and editorial should be directed to the address above. Atlanta Best Media does not knowingly accept false or misleading advertising or editorial content, nor does Publisher assume responsibility should such advertising or editorial appear. Readers are encouraged to notify Publisher when they suspect false advertising. Atlanta Best Media reserves the right to edit editorial for clarity and space availability. No content i.e. articles, graphics, designs and information (any and all) in this publication may be reproduced in any manner without written permission from Publisher.

PHOTO BY ARTEMUS JENKINS.

Dear Alpharetta Neighbors,

MY

R.indd 1

001_COVE

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C NTENTS

Meet Your Neighbors Firefighter

Raul Castillo loves saving lives. A fireman by day and owner of CrossFit Verus by night, he’s the consummate hero. p. 21

Storyteller

Kate T. Parker

Gary Rossington, the original guitarist for Lynyrd Skynyrd, has called Alpharetta his home since 1997.

Dr. Ambre A. Kragor and Dr. Farah Kar talk passion, patients and more at BB Braces Braces. p. 24

Hey Alpharetta 4 Editor’s Letter

’Hood Goodness

Oh My!

16

Hello, Alpharetta Neighbors!

11

13 FALL 2017

Smile Shapers

My Home & Garden

The Best for Your Nest

9

On the cover (L to R): Dr. Ambre A. Kragor and Dr. Farah Kar put a vibrant spin on orthodontics at BB Braces Braces. Photography by CatMax Photography. CatMaxPhotography.com

6 MyALPH_006-007_TOC_0817.indd 6

Fall Events Calendar

Enjoy the ‘Hood

26

Top Teachers

30

Food Faves

My Health & Happiness

Look Good, Feel Good

’Hood Winks

Nod to Your Neighbors

We salute the people who are making a difference in our schools and community. Tried and True or New to You

PHOTOS COURTESY OF (LEFT AND RIGHT) CATMAX PHOTOGRAPHY; (MIDDLE) SOCIAL FOTOFLY; (BOTTOM MIDDLE) CHIC EVOLUTION IN ART, PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOHNNY PEARMAN.

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’Hood Winks Nod

to

your

neighbors

DATE NIGHT IN ALPHARETTA Find design inspiration at the 2017 NARI Tour of Remodeled Homes, which takes place from 10am to 4pm on Sept. 16. Take this self-

Rendezvous with your one and only for an evening of creativity at one of Art & Beyond’s Paint and Sip classes. 8560 Holcomb Bridge Rd. ArtAndBeyondStudio.com

guided tour through a variety of homes featuring the best in kitchen, bath, and whole-home remodeling. Plus, speak with

Get into the fall spirit at the annual Scarecrow Harvest with more than 120 decorated lifesize scarecrows, crow cornhole lawn games, and hayrides. On Sept. 30, enjoy

family-friendly entertainment, music and food

Sample house-brewed and imported craft beers with your sweetie at

The sounds of country, blues, and Americana will fill the streets of Historic Downtown Alpharetta at the Wire & Wood Alpharetta Songwriters Festival on Oct. 6-7. On Friday, get a free three-hour music preview of what the fest will offer. While there, grab your tickets for Saturday. Historic Downtown Alpharetta. WireAndWoodAlpharetta.com

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Hop Alley Brew Pub. Pair libations with gastropub eats like garlic truffle fries. 25 S. Main St. HopAlleyBrew.com

with your neighbors. Historic Downtown Alpharetta, across from City Hall. Alpharetta.Ga.US

my

Cozy up with your cutie at Crú Food & Wine Bar. Here, sip on three two-ounce pours from some of the establishment’s most popular wine flights—rosé, chardonnay, and cabernet. 300 Avalon Blvd. CruAWineBar.com

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PHOTOS COURTESY OF (TOP LEFT) NARI ATLANTA; (BOTTOM LEFT) WIRE & WOOD ALPHARETTA SONGWRITERS FESTIVAL, PHOTOGRAPHY BY RUSSELL CARTER; (MIDDLE) ANDREW SCHWARTZ; (TOP RIGHT) CITY OF ALPHARETTA, PHOTOGRAPHY BY JONATHAN PHILLIPS.

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nest

Q:

What can I do now to increase my home’s value in the future?

A: Expanding outdoor living space is a trend with a great return on investment. Add a custom kitchen, fire pit or comfy seating area to gather around. —Allison Kloster, team leader of The Kloster Group at Harry Norman, REALTORS HarryNorman.com

No need to travel the world to see exquisite international art. Stop by Chic Evolution in Art to find a showstopping piece for your home, like this 58-inch tall metal sculpture from Estella Fransbergen. It is made with pheasant feathers, sawdust, and nonorganic materials. 29 Milton Ave. Chic-Art.net

The parents of two active boys reached out to Ann Wisniewski of AJW Designs, Inc. for help with their Alpharetta home. They wanted furnishings that could withstand lots of wear and tear. To enhance the longevity of the family room, the principal interior designer used indoor/outdoor fabrics on the couch, chairs, and rug, making them stain resistant and more. AJWDesignsInc.com

Looking to spruce up your table setting? Allison Schrade at Alpharetta Flower Market offers quick tips to create your own fall floral centerpiece: • Make sure all the flowers are no taller than nine inches so guests can easily converse over the arrangement. • Use foraged greenery, like magnolias and nandinas, from your backyard to start a base and then highlight with focal flowers such as orchids from your local florist. You can also accent the arrangement with fruits like pears and bittersweet berries. 100 N. Main St. Natures-Rainbow.com

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PHOTOS COURTESY OF (TOP LEFT) BEKEL HOME + DESIGN; (MIDDLE LEFT) AJW DESIGNS, INC., PHOTOGRAPHY BY CHRISTINA WEDGE, CHRISTINA WEDGE PHOTOGRAPHY; (MIDDLE RIGHT) CHIC EVOLUTION IN ART, PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOHNNY PEARMAN; (BOTTOM RIGHT) ALLISON SCHRADE.

their 3,000-square-foot studio, Bekel Home + Design. When you want to make your space trendy, Beth says, “Add crisp neutrals like soft grays, whites, and creams, and incorporate accessories with pops of color.” 30 N. Main St. BekelHome.com

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60-MINUTE MIMOSA OXYGEN FACIAL at the LifeSpa inside Life Time Fitness. While it may not begin or end with a mimosa, this facial includes VivierSkin’s Vitamin C Scrub and is designed to cleanse, hydrate, combat antiaging, and rejuvenate. 855 N. Point Pkwy. LifeTimeFitness.com

Congratulations to Alpharetta athlete Kevin Carbone (pictured right). As a kid, he bonded with his dad, Jerry, over creating projects in their backyard. Thanks to his creativity, Kevin, 21, entered AMERICAN NINJA WARRIOR’s Obstacle Design Challenge with an invention called the WING NUT (pictured right). He is the first athlete to compete on an obstacle he designed. After a SUCCESSFUL RUN AT THE DAYTONA BEACH QUALIFIER on season nine of the NBC show, he continues to focus his energy on making it to the national finals in Las Vegas on Sept. 4. NBC.com/American-Ninja-Warrior my

FALL 2017

PHOTOS COURTESY OF (TOP LEFT) FOTOS BY FOLA, PHOTOGRAPHY BY STEVE SOGUNRO; (BOTTOM RIGHT) AMERICAN NINJA WARRIOR— “DAYTONA BEACH QUALIFIER”—KEVIN CARBONE (PICTURED), PHOTOGRAPHY BY MYRON LUZNIAK/NBC.

Breathe in relaxation and exhale stress at AvalOM every Wednesday at 6pm through October 25. Each COMPLIMENTARY BARRE OR YOGA CLASS is presented by a variety of studios and stores, including Flywheel Sports, Lululemon, Club Pilates, and Athleta. 2200 Avalon Blvd. ExperienceAvalon.com

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Want a Fireplace or Fire Pit? Keep These Tips in Mind Create Your Perfect Outdoor Space with Belgard

Gas, Wood or Hybrid A gas fireplace or fire pit is simple to start, without any mess or smoke, and can be placed closer to the house. However, some people think that burning wood is one of the primary reasons to even have a fire feature. For the best of both worlds, consider a wood-burning option with a gas starter. Placement A fireplace or fire pit will instantly become the focal point of your outdoor

design. Be sure its placement is balanced with other large design elements. You’ll also want to consider wind patterns that may cause smoke issues. And remember, leave ample room for seating. Style and Materials Belgard offers several options for fireplaces and fire pits to fit your style. Above-ground fire pits can be constructed from a variety of materials, such as brick, natural stone, and concrete blocks. The Weston Stone Universal Kit is available in five popular color blends developed to complement the most Belgard paving stone and retaining wall types. Belgard also offers the Bordeaux, Brighton, and Bristol series of fireplaces, ensuring homeowners can select an option that fits the design of their residence. For more design tips, download an Idea Book from Belgard.com or call 877- BELGARD to find a contractor to bring your vision to life.

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FALL 2017

Autumn in Atlanta is the ideal time to spend outside with family and friends, enjoying the crisp fall air and cool evenings. And there’s no better way to bring everyone together than by gathering around a fire. A fireplace or fire pit is a beautiful addition to your outdoor living space, adding an elegant yet functional feature that the entire household will appreciate. If you’re contemplating adding a fireplace or fire pit to your backyard, consider these design and style recommendations first.

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my Fall Events Cale Enjoy concerts, fundraisers, festivals, food and more!

G. AUAUG. 10

AUG. 10 Girls Night Out: Late Summer Celebration

Alpharetta Food Truck Alley

PHOTOS COURTESY OF (ALPHARETTA FOOD TRUCK ALLEY) CITY OF ALPHARETTA, PHOTOGRAPHY BY ANGIE HENDRIX; (ALPHARETTA MAYOR’S CORPORATE CHALLENGE 5K RACE) ROTARY CLUB OF ALPHARETTA; (MONSTERAMA CON) MONSTERAMA CON, PHOTOGRAPHY BY GEEK BEHIND THE LENS; (SCARECROW HARVEST) CITY OF ALPHARETTA, PHOTOGRAPHY BY JONATHAN PHILLIPS; (WIRE & WOOD ALPHARETTA SONGWRITERS FESTIVAL) WIRE & WOOD ALPHARETTA SONGWRITERS FESTIVAL, PHOTOGRAPHY BY RUSSELL CARTER.

Old Roswell Street 5-9pm Free entry, food prices vary Taste a variety of sweet and savory treats from some of the city’s most popular food trucks. Alpharetta.Ga.US

1082 N. Point Cir. 6:30-8:30pm $69 Learn how to prepare flank steak, fingerling potato salad, and blueberrypecan shortcakes. SurLaTable.com

AUG. 19

AUG. 19

AUG. 24

Earth, Wind & Fire and CHIC ft. Nile Rodgers

Touch-A-Truck

Alpharetta Mayor’s Corporate Challenge 5K Race

Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre at Encore Park 8pm Tickets start at $25 “Let’s Groove” tonight! Boogie the night away with these classic ’70s bands. VZWAMP.com

Wills Park 10am-2pm Free Future firemen and women will experience a real-life fire truck and other vehicles including dump trucks, motorcycles and more. AwesomeAlpharetta.com

SEPT. 22

SEPT. 29-OCT. 1

SEPT. 30

Superstar Saxophonist Kenny Garrett Live

Monsterama Con

Alpharetta Brew Moon Oktoberfest

The Velvet Note 7:30-9:30pm $59 Grammy-nominated artist Kenny Garrett performs hits from his latest album, “Pushing the World Away.” TheVelvetNote.com/Kenny-Garrett

OCT. OCT. 1

10th Annual Polo for Parkinson’s 1140 Liberty Grove Rd. 2-5pm $50 for adults, $5 for kids Chow down on ’Cue Barbecue while watching a rowdy game of polo. Don’t forget to wear your favorite fascinator! PoloForParkinsons.com

MyALPH_016-019_CALENDAR_0817.indd 16

5750 Windward Pkwy. Times vary Prices vary From films and books to comics and art, we’re sure you’ll be scared with all things horror. MonsteramaCon.com

Did You Know? In 2014, Outreach

magazine named North Point Ministries the largest church in America.

2 Park Plz. 5-9pm $35 Get your coworkers and friends to join you for this 5K that starts at City Hall. AwesomeAlpharetta.com

Milton Avenue 6:30-11pm $10 per person Bring a chair and savor craft beer, wine, and tasty foods from some of the city’s top restaurants. AwesomeAlpharetta.com

WHAT GUITA FOR LYNYR SKYNYRD HAS CALLE ALPHARETTA HOME SINCE 1

OCT. 6-7 Wire & Wood Alpharetta Songwriters Festival Downtown Alpharetta 5-10:30pm $40 in advance, $45 at the gate Get a free three-hour music preview of what the fest will offer on Friday. Snag tickets for Saturday’s lineup while you’re there. WireAndWoodAlpharetta.com

7/24/17 1:44 PM


alendar Part of the movie

“Parental Guidance” was filmed in Alpharetta. Its Little League Baseball scene took place at Ocee Park.

SEPT. SEPT. 6

Let’s Get Crafty

T GUITARIST R LYNYRD KYNYRD S CALLED ARETTA HIS SINCE 1997?

FIND ANSWER ON TABLE OF CONTENTS

1202 North Point Cir. 3:30-5:30pm Free Girls ages 8 and up can make a craft at the store. The best part? It’s free! AmericanGirl.com

AUG. 11

AUG. 16

Honeywood

Summer Dinner Party: Morocco

Matilda’s Music Under The Pines 8:30-11pm $20 online, $25 at door Bring your own picnic and enjoy tunes by this five-piece jamgrass band. MatildasMusicVenue.com

Salud! Cooking School at Whole Foods Market Avalon 6-9pm $55 Flavors of Morocco come to life with lamb meatballs, grilled rib eye, and lemon couscous. WholeFoodsMarket.com/Service/ Salud-Cooking-School-4

SEPT. 14

SEPT. 16

Noon to Night: Fall Fashion Benefit at Avalon

2017 NARI Tour of Remodeled Homes

Avalon Boulevard 6-10pm $50 general admission, $150 VIP Atlanta celebrities and children from Bert’s Big Adventure will strut their stuff. ExperienceAvalon.com

Locations vary 10am-4pm $20 in advance, $25 day-of tour Find design inspiration on this selfguided tour through a variety of homes featuring the best in kitchen, bath, and whole-home remodeling. AtlantaRemodelingTour.com

SEPT. 30

SEPT. 30

Scarecrow Harvest

Wine and Dine in Big Sur

Milton Avenue 10am-2pm Free Get into the fall spirit with over 100 scarecrows at this family-friendly festival. Alpharetta.Ga.US

4305 State Bridge Rd. 7pm $55 Take a trip to the West Coast with wine, scallops, halibut, and spiced carrot cake. Publix.com/Recipes-Planning/ Aprons-Cooking-Schools

OCT. 7

OCT. 20

Family Reunion Workshop

Chukkar Farm TGIF Concerts: Atlanta Dance Party

Did You Know?

1140 Liberty Grove Rd. 8-10pm Tickets start at $15 Bring your own picnic and two-step the night away. AtlantaPlaysItForward.org

established on

5750 Windward Pkwy. 10am-1pm Free Learn how to plan the best family reunion ever. AwesomeAlpharetta.com

MyALPH_016-019_CALENDAR_0817.indd 17

The city of Alpharetta was December 11, 1858.

FALL 2017

Did You Know?

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Meet

my Alpharetta Businesses

20,000 Leagues scuba and aquatics opened in April 2017. As they say, “When you walk through our doors, you become our Dive Buddy, not just a customer”. They feature a full service Scuba Shop offering quality Scuba education from beginner through Dive Pro. Their 6 staff instructors have average teaching experience of 10 years to ensure your safety and comfort. They offer guided dive excursions to local, regional and international destinations, scuba equipment sales and service, tank fills and equipment rentals. 20,000 Leagues Scuba and Aquatics – “Dive Buddies for Life” For more information, call 770 752-0002 or visit 20000leaguesscuba.com

i9 SportS provides youth sports leagues, camps and clinics for boys and girls ages 3 -14 in North Fulton & Forsyth, GA. Sports include flag football, soccer, basketball and baseball. At i9 Sports, we believe every weekend is an opportunity to both entertain your family and teach your kids how to play the game. Let us show you the difference the i9 Sports Experience makes. Find your i9 Sports program today by visiting i9sports.com. Call 678-731-9009 or email branda.peterson@i9sports.com.

Opening in July 2017, the new Valhalla ResoRt hotel is the first, one-of-a-kind luxury resort located in North Georgia. Nestled at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Valhalla is an all-suite adult getaway with the ambience of European elegance and rustic-contemporary design. Valhalla guests are invited to enjoy world-class dining, play a round of golf, indulge at the Solasta Spa & pool, tour local wineries, or just take in the breathtaking mountain views from their private balconies or roof-top Sky Bar. Warm, Southern hospitality, personalized service, and attention to detail allow Valhalla guests to fully experience this prestigious, regal retreat. Call 706-878-2200 or visit Valhallaresorthotel.com

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PROF I L E

Raul Castillo

F I R E F I G H T E R • C R O S S F I T T E R • F AT H E R

By Stacy Moser

Sometimes making a mistake can spark a life-changing decision. That’s what happened to Raul Castillo, firefighter and now owner of CrossFit Verus in Alpharetta. “I was about 10 years old and was outside playing with matches,” he explains. “I accidentally started a small brushfire and, luckily, the fire department got there in time to put it out before any real damage was done.” His parents sent him to the firehouse to observe firefighters in action to serve as an important lesson. “I was hooked,” he says. “I never wanted to be anything else after that—I wanted to be a firefighter.” When Raul, his wife, Cynthia, and son, Nicholas, landed in Alpharetta, they wanted good schools and solid sports programs like swimming and tennis. “We thought Alpharetta was perfect.” Raul took on the job of firefighter at Alpharetta’s Fire Station 82 soon after he arrived. He says of his close relationship with his coworkers, “My shift is every third day for 24 hours. For 10 years, I’ve literally spent a third of my life with these guys—they are my brothers.” He says he’s passionate about what he does. “When someone dials 911, their day has clearly gone south. Then we show up— my challenge is to stop the negative impact of what happened to them. Whether I’m pulling people from a burning building or helping a kid with a bee sting, I try to make it better.”

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WHETHER I’M PULLING PEOPLE FROM A BURNING BUILDING

[

Raul doesn’t stop there, though. Part of his job is to stay in shape—now he’s opened his own studio, CrossFit Verus, in Alpharetta. “I love what CrossFit training did for me and what it does for my clients. When they succeed, they change mentally, as well as physically. They walk with a greater sense of confidence,” he says. “We’ve had some amazing transformations.” He chose the name CrossFit Verus because, “In Latin, verus means ‘true, proper and real.’ We promote good form in order to reduce injury potential. What makes us different is our low-key supportive approach. I help people find their motivation.” When he’s not saving lives or working out, Raul takes his family to Crust Pasta & Pizzeria for bruschetta. CrossFitVerus.com

MyALPH_020-025_PROFILES_0817.indd 21

my

FALL 2017

PHOTOGRAPHY BY CATMAX PHOTOGRAPHY.

OR HELPING A KID WITH A BEE STING, I TRY TO MAKE IT BETTER.

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PROF I L E

Kate T. Parker P H O T O G R A P H E R • S T O RY T E L L E R • M O T H E R

By Alex McCray

Growing up, Kate T. Parker was not pretty. Nor did she have any desire to be. “Pretty was a girl in a dress, with her hair brushed and a smile on her face. I was rarely that girl when I was young,” Parker says. She was the kind of girl who, at the age of 7, concluded that her nearly waistlength hair was hindering her soccer career and requested a matching haircut to her brothers. Parker’s parents kindly obliged. She reminisces, “They always made me feel that who I was, just as I was, was enough.” After having her daughters, Ella, 11, and Alice, 8, the self-taught photographer began incessantly snapping photos. “The images that were the most meaningful to me were the ones where the girls were being themselves—whatever that was at that moment: dirty, feisty, silly, sassy, or funny,” she says.

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STRONG IS THE NEW PRETT Y: A CELEBRATION OF GIRLS BEING THEMSELVES

IS A COLLECTION OF OVER 175 STRIKING, ORIGINAL PHOTOS BY PARKER.

This past spring, the series morphed into a book. In “Strong Is The New Pretty: A Celebration of Girls Being Themselves,” 8-year-old Sadi hugs a snake, Faith endures the loss of her parents, and more. The book is a collection of over 175 striking, original photos by Parker—each image exalting an aspect of its subject’s personality. She recently visited Alpharetta for a book signing at Avalon. “It was great to do an event so close to home, especially since so many local girls are part of the book and could come out to that event,” Parker says. “I love Avalon. My kids always want to eat at Antico Pizza Napoletana and we love to shop or go to the movies.” Parker has been a part of the area for 19 years, saying, “We are in a part of Roswell that is basically across the street from Alpharetta and we love it here. It is home.” KateTParker.com

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my

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PHOTOS COURTESY OF (KATE PARKER) PHOTOGRAPHY BY SOCIAL FOTOFLY; (BOOK) EXCERPTED FROM “STRONG IS THE NEW PRETTY” BY KATE T. PARKER (WORKMAN PUBLISHING). COPYRIGHT© 2017.

Those photos sparked an idea. “I wanted my girls to know that those images that captured their true personalities showed their beauty,” professes Parker. She began taking similar photos of the girls around her, including some from Alpharetta, as a part of her Strong Is The New Pretty photo series. In 2015, it went viral and led to collaborations with Athleta, Kellogg’s, and the TV network Oxygen.

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PR OF I L E

Ambre A. Kragor, DDS, MS Farah Kar, DDS, MSc, MS, FRCD BRACES BRACES By Alex McCray

I

t’s not every day you meet dental experts like Ambre A. Kragor, DDS, MS, and Farah Kar, DDS, MSc, MS, FRCD. Growing up in Seattle, and Toronto, respectively, unconventional experiences led the two to orthodontics.

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For Farah, it was putting to use her bachelor’s degree in fine arts, and architecture-focused master’s degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology that sparked an interest in orthodontics. “I helped my brother and others design their practice and realized the field of orthodontics is awesome. I decided to change careers and go into a profession where I could be around people and use my artistic skills,” Farah says.

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Today, at BB Braces Braces in Alpharetta, the two are excited to represent a changing approach to orthodontics and growing number of women in the dental profession. According to the American Dental Association, 30 percent of dentists are female but an even smaller percentage are orthodontists. “I feel like the change is not

MyALPH_020-025_PROFILES_0817.indd 24

PHOTO COURTESY OF CATMAX PHOTOGRAPHY.

A poor childhood left Ambre without access to dental care. She was finally able to get her severely damaged teeth repaired at age 17, when she could pay for it herself. In 2004, local orthodontist Dr. Alan Carr decided to take on her case for free. When she asked how she could repay him, he offered her a part-time job at his office. Ambre recalls, “That was what developed my love for orthodontics.”

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only gender-based but also generational,” Farah explains. She adds, “Every smile is unique and should suit your face. It’s a very different approach to how people were trained 30 to 40 years ago.” They utilize the latest technology such as X-ray machines with the least amount of radiation emission as well as a premier bracket system by American Orthodontics to provide unparalleled care. Patients love this because the compassionate staff at each of the eight BB Braces Braces metro-Atlanta locations help them achieve the smile of their dreams at an affordable price. And while the Alpharetta location has only been open a few months, word is quickly getting out about the impressive 2,000-square-foot practice. The team also strives to create an environment that’s relaxing and downright fun—when is the last time you heard “Everybody Dance Now” playing at your orthodontist’s office? Ambre notes, “Almost every orthodontist you go to is well trained, but not every orthodontist has that fun factor.” Watch your favorite show on a flat-screen TV above your head while the doctors go to work on your smile. And thanks to a special connection with the Atlanta Braves, you can snap a picture of your little one in the mini Braves-themed Volkswagen car. All BB Braces Braces offices are proud orthodontic sponsors of the team. When Ambre and Farah aren’t dressing up to celebrate Halloween at the office or posing for selfies with patients, they love embracing Alpharetta’s culinary delights. Rumi’s Kitchen in Avalon is a Farah favorite. “There’s Nothing Bundt Cakes across the street from us. So I eat that every day,” Ambre admits with a laugh. What they both love is the strong sense of community that echoes through the area.

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ways BB Braces Braces makes us smile by going above and beyond for its patients and the community.

Orthodontists Ambre A. Kragor and Farah Kar are passionate about leadership mentoring, especially in young women. “I would have never become an orthodontist if it wasn’t for a female faculty member at the University of Minnesota. She was the only faculty member in my school’s entire orthodontics department that answered my emails and invited me to do research with her. She believed in me,” Farah says. Now, she and Ambre pay it forward by regularly inviting high school and college students to shadow them.

They understand and respect that oral care is deeply personal. Farah reveals, “A lot of patients who come here tell us that we are undoing damage from horrible previous experiences.”

3  THE TALENT ED TEAM AT BB BRACES DR. AMBRE BRACES, WHI A. KRAGOR, CH INCLUDES DR. FARAH KA (L TO R) LINDS A FRIENDLY R, ASHLEY FA AND FUN EN EY DILLARD, RMER, AND VIRONMENT TALISHIA PA FOR THEIR PA RKS, PROVID TIENTS. E

MyALPH_020-025_PROFILES_0817.indd 25

Customizable treatment plans can be designed to improve aesthetics and function. Farah has advanced training to handle difficult cases such as failed Invisalign, craniofacial anomalies, impacted canine recovery and more.

my

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PHOTO COURTESY OF (BOTTOM LEFT) CATMAX PHOTOGRAPHY.

5215 Windward Pkwy., 770-763-7923, Braces-Braces.com

Say Cheese!

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Top Teachers Make The Grade Standout Educators Receive An A-Plus For Their Commitment To Our Kids By Stacy Moser

O

n a refrigerator magnet near you: “When teachers enjoy teaching, kids just know.” Isn’t that the truth? Think back to your years in school and your mind probably stops at a handful of teachers who clearly were there because they enjoyed inspiring you to do your best—to push past your fears and try. We talked to these highly effective Alpharetta teachers to find out how they communicate their inspiration to students. (And their students just know.)

Jordan Kohanim

Kimberly Askew

Austin Green

Northview High School 9th–12th Grade Honors Language Arts Teacher and Debate Team Coach

Rivers Academy 9th–12th Grade Sociology Teacher, Advanced Placement Psychology Teacher, and College and Alumni Information Adviser

Milton High School 12th Grade Advanced Placement Economics Teacher

comfortable with being uncomfortable. Learning is about growth.

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it would be: Get

That means it may not be easy; your efforts may not immediately yield the results you expected ... but stick with it. Continue to burn with curiosity. Try, fail—and try again. Adventure awaits!”

26 MyALPH_026-029_TEACHERS_0817.indd 26

Although Rivers Academy includes grades four through 12, Kimberly Askew finds she connects with the high schoolers the most. “I

have a special place in my heart for students going through ‘stuff’ outside of school,” she says. “I worry about students who hold back when expressing their personal opinions. If students cower when expressing themselves, I wonder if a person or situation makes them feel their beliefs are wrong or unimportant. If so, it’s not OK with me. I’m compelled to help them.” She explains that how her students treat one another is crucial, too. “I encourage them to embrace a perspective other than their own.”

Austin Green says of his AdvancedPlacement® (AP) economics classes, “A major goal of AP classes is that they should be accessible to all students.

I love seeing students who have never set foot in an AP course take my class—and not only take it, but enjoy it and be successful in it, even if it was tough.” Part of his strategy to appeal to struggling students is to approach the subject with a sense of humor. “I let my students eat in class, but I’m notorious for taking some of their food. I call it a classroom tax. I figure this is economics, so they are learning about taxation!”

PHOTOS COURTESY OF (L TO R) JORDAN KOHANIM; PORTRAITS BY MARY ANN PEGG; CALVIN & ROCHELLE CUMMINGS, PHOTOGRAPHY BY ENDLESS MEMORIES STUDIOS.

Curiosity is a driving theme in Jordan Kohanim’s classroom. “I learn with my students. If I’m not curious, why should they be curious? High school students have so much interest in complex notions. They question everything.” She says she encourages students to examine the world around them constantly—from every angle. “If I could give my students any advice,

7/25/17 11:53 AM


Elkins Pointe Middle School 9th Grade Literature and Composition Teacher, 8th Grade English Language Arts Teacher Adam Hardigree, nominated in 2017 for Teacher of the Year by the Fulton County School System, says his goal is to use his love of literature to inspire kids to think differently. “There is a moment during a lesson— usually when you’re bringing it all together—when there is absolute quiet in the room and you just know that this is the moment that the students got it and made a discovery,” he explains.

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he is motivated to turn things around for kids who seem bored. “Those kids are me back in middle school. I constantly found a way to get into trouble simply because I was bored.”

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Susan Ahmad Lake Windward Elementary Kindergarten–5th Grade General Music Teacher, 4th–5th Grade Chorus Teacher Susan Ahmad has brought the joy of music to her students for the past 29 years. She provides them with a place to belt it out without fear of judgment. “We break down the walls, so everyone can be themselves,” she says. “I worry about students who aren’t accepted by their peers. I

look for their hidden talent and offer them a way to express it. I’ve had whole classes fall silent as a student

performed, because the class didn’t think he could do it. I have parents who can’t believe their child sang alone onstage or who say their child can’t wait for music day. Their hugs and excitement are priceless to me.”

my

Young Rembrandts

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FALL 2017

HEADSHOT PHOTOS COURTESY OF (TOP TO BOTTOM) ADAM HARDIGREE, PHOTOGRAPHY BY CADY STUDIOS; SUSAN AHMAD, PHOTOGRAPHY BY LIFETOUCH.

PHOTOS COURTESY OF (L TO R) JORDAN KOHANIM; PORTRAITS BY MARY ANN PEGG; CALVIN & ROCHELLE CUMMINGS, PHOTOGRAPHY BY ENDLESS MEMORIES STUDIOS.

Adam Hardigree

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Contact Laura Vandewiele to learn more:

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We treasure curiosity. Questions are not a nuisance, they are essential to learning.

ARE YOU CURIOUS? Ask us questions and see what a Mount Pisgah education can do for your child. Call 678.336.3400 for more information or visit mountpisgahschool.org Follow us

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my Food Faves Tr i e d a n d t r u e o r n e w t o y o u

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1. Kona Grill inside Avalon serves up innovative recipes by Head Sushi Chef David Lam. Try the Picasso Roll, which features yellowtail, jalapeño, sriracha, and a Japanese spice called togarashi. 5100 1st St. KonaGrill.com

3. In the mood for a sweet libation? Try the Blackberry Buck at Village Tavern Alpharetta. Served in a copper mug, this drink features a combination of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey, simple syrup, FeverTree ginger beer, and muddled blackberries. It’s BERRY ideal for a night out! 11555 Rainwater Dr. VillageTavern.com

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4. Grab a bite at Wildflour. This lunch-only spot offers a menu filled with soups, salads, sandwiches, and desserts. Dive into a buttery lobster roll and then finish off with a mini éclair filled with cream and glazed with chocolate. 5815 Windward Pkwy. WildflourAtlanta.com 5. Celebrating its 11th anniversary and the release of a new prime steak menu, Milton’s Cuisine & Cocktails now offers up beefy selections from local meat distributor Revere Meat Co. Cut into a 35-day aged filet mignon or a 60-day dry-aged bone-in NY strip. Pair fare with a side of Smoked Gouda Mac n’ Cheese topped with tasty applewood bacon. 800 Mayfield Rd. MiltonsCuisine.com my

PHOTOS COURTESY OF (1) KONA GRILL; (2) THE EL FELIX, PHOTOGRAPHY BY ANDREW THOMAS LEE; (3) VILLAGE TAVERN; (5) MILTON’S CUISINE & COCKTAILS, PHOTOGRAPHY BY BLENCOE & CO.

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2. Flautas, more commonly known as taquitos, are made to order at The El Felix. Savor shredded chicken rolled up in crispy golden corn tortillas with lettuce, sour cream, melted queso, and avocado salsa atop. This Mexican classic goes perfectly with The El Felix margarita. 1130 Avalon Blvd. TheElFelix.com

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My Alpharetta Fall 2017  

Meet your neighbors: Dr. Ambre A. Kragor and Dr. Farah Kar, orthodontics at BB Braces Braces. Raul Castillo, firefighter and owner of Cros...

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