Atlanta Intown - August 2022

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AUGUST 2022 Vol. 28 No. 8

Midnight Basketball

Not just a game, but an opportunity for personal growth and community building P6

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Contents AUGUST 2022

Editor’s Letter




Editorial Collin Kelley Editor, Atlanta Intown Amy Wenk Editor, Reporter Newspapers


Published By Springs Publishing Keith Pepper Publisher

Dyana Bagby Staff Writer

Neal Maziar Chief Revenue Officer

Sammie Purcell Staff Writer

Rico Figliolini Creative Director

Contributors Sally Bethea, Kathy Dean, Manning Harris, Greg Levine, Isadora Pennington, Sarah Pierre, Katie Rice, Clare Richie, Charles Seabrook, Tim Sullivan

Deborah Davis Account Manager | Sales Operations

Advertising For information call (404) 917-2200 Jeff Kremer Sr. Account Manager Suzanne Purcell Sr. Account Manager Circulation Each month, 27,000 copies of Atlanta Intown are mailed to homes and distributed to businesses in and around ZIP codes 30306, 30307, 30308, 30309, 30324 and 30329. For delivery information,

© 2022 All rights reserved. Publisher reserves the right to refuse editorial or advertising for any reason. Publisher assumes no responsibility for information contained in advertising. Any opinions expressed in print or online do not necessarily represent the views of Atlanta Intown or Springs Publishing. AtlantaIntown At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m AtlantaIntown ATLINtownPaper

Spotify AtlantaIntown


The Neighborhood Midnight Basketball Bus Rapid Transit Bridge Rebuild Midtown Park Upgrades North Avenue Plaza May I Be Excused?

6 10 10 11 12 13

Business The Future of Ponce BeltLine MarketPlace Junction Krog District Intown Stars Expands Business Briefs

14 16 17 18 20

Sustainability Above the Waterline Eco Briefs

22 23

Home & Real Estate Front Porch Gardening Boulevard Apartments Real Estate Briefs O4W Apartments

26 28 29 30 31

News You Can Eat MARTA Farmers Quick Bites Women + Wine

32 33 34

The Studio Remembering Stuart Culpepper Rodin at the High Artist Profile: Sachi Rome SCAD Art at MOWA

36 36 37 37

Get Out of Town Pine Mountain To the Lighthouses Cartersville Museums

38 42 44-46

On the Cover Our contributing photographer Isadora Pennington caught this action shot of teens playing Midnight Basketball at the C.T. Martin Natatorium and Recreation Center. Find out more about this community-building program on Page 6.

Scan to subscribe to Rough Draft, or, text DRAFT to 66866 AUGUST 2022 | INTOWN


Celebrating 20 years at Intown August marks my 20th anniversary as editor of Atlanta Intown. I can’t believe it, either. What a strange, wonderful, sometimes nerve-racking trip it has been. Collin When then-publisher Joe Hiett Kelley called and asked if I was interested in the has been editor of position, I jumped at it. I may have even Atlanta Intown wept. I was in career hell the summer of for two decades. He’s also an 2002, having been promoted to executive award-winning poet editor of a group of neighborhood and novelist. newspapers on the southside of the city. The position of executive editor came with more money and responsibility, but it also meant I was no longer writing or doing any actual editing. Instead, I drove endlessly to babysit some of the most dysfunctional reporters I’d ever met and take complaint calls. Not to mention the constant “change in direction” foisted upon us by the publisher, who wanted us to be more “feature oriented” one week and “hard news” the next. Exhausting doesn’t begin to describe it. Atlanta Intown offered me a lifeline. Not only would I have the chance to write again, but also shape the coverage and design. This was my dream job, and it still is. Along the way, I’ve made lifelong friends, worked with some of the most dedicated journalists, and met some incredibly interesting people. Not long after I arrived, I went to Cindy Wilson’s house to get a tour of The B-52’s archive and watch her rehearse with her own band. Another time, Delta Burke of “Designing Women” fame kept me on the phone for nearly an hour – blowing off several other interviews – to talk about her favorite places in Atlanta. Before I interviewed performance artist Laurie Anderson, I chatted with her husband Lou Reed. Forever foxy Pam Grier gave me one of the greatest hugs ever. I had the most delightful lunch with singer extraordinaire Candi Staton. President Jimmy Carter shook my hand and held it after seeing the old presidential campaign button on my jacket lapel. I’ve also had the great honor to meet and share the stories of countless Atlantans who have also dedicated their time and efforts to Collin with Pam Grier in 2006. our city — from politicians and non-profit leaders to artists and educators. They’ve kept me coming back to my desk — whether on West Peachtree Street, Inman Park, or now at home — for two decades. Of course, there have also been challenges. We weathered the 2008 financial crisis by being fiscally conservative and cutting expenses to the bone. We did the same during the COVID-19 pandemic. And we never missed a single issue in those 20 years – even when I was traveling in Europe and around the country publicizing my novels or poetry collections or when I was recovering from cancer. (I got the one-year “all clear” last month. Woot!) Intown has also grown and diversified over the years, too. With our “digital first” approach, news and features get to you in a timely manner via our website or social media. Our free morning newsletter, Rough Draft, has become a morning-must read for subscribers. And there’s still more growing to do and stories to tell. Our loyal readers and advertisers continue to make this possible every month. Without y’all, we’d be nothing. I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating: It has been the honor and privilege of my life to be your editor. As you read this, I’m hard at work on my 240th issue. Onward.

Editor’s Letter





PREMIER EXHIBITION SERIES SUPPORTERS ACT Foundation, Inc. Sarah and Jim Kennedy Louise Sams and Jerome Grilhot


This exhibition is organized by the High Museum of Art, Atlanta. Stephen Burks (American, born 1969), designer; DEDON, Germany, established 1990, manufacturer; The Others (Lanterns S, M, and Statue Lika), 2017, fiber (high-density polyethylene), aluminum, marble, acrylic, and LED solar panels, High Museum of Art, Atlanta, gift of DEDON. Photo by Joe Coscia.


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News � Features

Midnight Basketball Not just a game, but an opportunity for personal growth and community-building

Executive Director of Recreation Ramondo Davidson said Midnight Basketball can offer a second chance to troubled youth.

Playing Midnight Basketball at C.T. Martin Natatorium & Recreation Center. (Photos by Isadora Pennington)

By Dyana Bagby


ravon Martin, 24, slipped off his white jersey and used it to wipe the sweat from his face and neck. His basketball team, the Atlanta Allstars, trounced the SW4TS team by more than 30 points on the hardwood at the C.T. Martin Natatorium and Recreation Center.

6 AUGUST 2022 |

Martin, a second-year electrician apprentice, scored eight points, had a handful of assists and a grabbed a few rebounds during his first game in Atlanta’s Midnight Basketball summer league. The SW4TS (pronounced “Swats” and references Southwest Atlanta and Atlanta Police Zone 4) was just no match for the fast breaks and a few flashy slam dunks from the Allstars. “This was our first time playing

together as a team and feeling out our strengths,” he said. “It was fun. I gravitate toward competition.” Mayor Andre Dickens revived the Midnight Basketball League this year in response to rising crime rates across the city. Homicides are up 15% from last year, according to data on the APD’s website. Aggravated assaults increased 5% since last year, burglaries and breaking and entering are up 21%. City officials say APD data shows men in their late teens and early to mid-20s are most vulnerable to joining gangs. While crime peaks in the late night and early morning hours, Atlanta’s Midnight Basketball League begins at 7 p.m. and ends by 11 p.m. Outreach to young men even if it is before midnight is one way to try to prevent crime, according to the city. Martin praised the city and the league’s mission. “Midnight Basketball is great because it brings together a lot of males, older and younger than me, and we’re out

on the court and we’re staying out of trouble,” Martin said. “It’s a good way to release tension for whatever you got going on. It’s like a stress release for me. I lay it all out on the floor.” There are 200 young men playing on 20 teams in the summer Midnight Basketball League that runs weekly through August. Games are played Mondays and Wednesdays at the Rosel Fann Recreation Center in south Atlanta and the C.T. Martin center on the Westside. That’s double the numbers of the inaugural league held this spring. And dozens more young men want to play, said Ramondo Davidson, executive director of recreation. Some have criminal backgrounds, making it difficult for them to find jobs, for example. But they all deserve another chance, he said, and Midnight Basketball can provide that. “For many of these young men, they don’t feel like they have options continued on page 8 At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

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News RoundUp Peter Aman will serve as the Atlanta Police Department’s first chief administrative officer. Aman will oversee the communications division (911), information services, project management, fiscal management, human resources, and administrative operations.

The owners of the iconic Varsity fast-food restaurant are considering redeveloping its acres of parking lot overlooking the Downtown Connector. The Gordy has hired real estate consultant Cushman & Wakefield to find potential developers for the site at the corner of North Avenue and Spring Street.

Continued from page 6

said. “When they get into this space, that is when they have access to all these other opportunities. “We believe that if you make a mistake, you pay for your mistake and then you move forward in a more positive way,” he added. “And that is what this league is trying to establish, which is why we have all of the additional wraparound services.” Data on whether or not crime is dropping because of Midnight Basketball is really too soon to tell. Davidson said police calls around the C.T. Martin rec center dropped while the spring league was in play. The C.T. Martin center is in Atlanta Police Zone 1, which includes Ashview



or outlets and that is why they commit crimes,” said Davidson. “They don’t feel like they can get a job if they don’t have a high school diploma or a college degree. But that’s just not true.” An Amazon representative at a recent game was recruiting. The city’s WorkSource program was handing out jobs’ information. Free haircuts were available. Hot dogs were also free to players. A vendor talked to people about getting their GED. Cost to run the program is about $7,000 a week. “It’s not just about basketball. Basketball is what gets them in the building and in the space,” Davidson


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Fulton County DA Fani Willis had pledged to prosecute slumlords operating dangerous properties in the City of Atlanta. The move comes after the Atlanta City Council passed a resolution on the issue in July.

West Nile virus has been detected in mosquitoes near the Atlanta BeltLine’s southwest trail. Health officials urged people not to leave standing bodies of water and use repellent when outdoors.

Mayor Andre Dickens was on hand for tip-off at Rosel Fann Recreation Center in southwest Atlanta. (Photo by Dyana Bagby)

Heights, the Atlanta University Center, Collier Heights, Hunter Hills, Vine City, Washington Park and West Lake. APD data says robberies at the end of June 18, a week after the spring Midnight Basketball League’s championship game, fell 9% in Zone 1 from last year. Overall, however, personal and property crimes were up 22% in the zone. Dozens of midnight basketball leagues exist across the country today. But evidence the leagues help deter crime is mixed, said Volkan Topalli, professor of Criminal Justice at the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies at Georgia State University. “It’s one of those programs that sort of seems to make common sense, but actually doesn’t really have much of an effect,” he said. “The problem is that the program really only attracts the kids who want to play basketball at midnight. And so, you’re self-selecting a population of individuals who probably aren’t troublemakers to begin with.” One of the best things a program like Midnight Basketball does is bring people together to help create a community where people know and care about each other, Topalli said. “It has value in the sense that it can produce, you know, community efficacy, for example,” he said. “So if it

brings communities together, you get young people playing on the basketball courts, you get folks coming in to watch from the neighborhood — it does sort of strengthen neighborhood ties and provides kind of a social atmosphere that may have some long term … effects on crime abatement.” In an interview, Mayor Dickens said Midnight Basketball is a tool to teach young men how to resolve conflict without violence. And he stresses its importance in building community. These are key steps to stopping violence, he said. “This is about crime prevention and avoidance,” he said. Rather than seeing someone as an opponent, young men can learn to see others as friendly competition on the court and never enter into a violent altercation, he said. “This is training right here while they’re playing the game and others are watching,” he said. “They’re learning how to compete without conflict, and they also see their families and community coming together and seeing each other in a pleasant environment,” he said. “This is about building community but also about providing opportunity.” At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

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MARTA approves BRT on Campbellton Road A rendering of BRT on Campbellton Road. (Courtesy MARTA)

By Collin Kelley The MARTA Board of Directors voted July 14 to advance its plan for bus rapid transit (BRT) rather than rail along the Campbellton Road corridor. Part of a $300 million dollar transit and infrastructure investment in southwest Atlanta, the BRT line will run for six miles down Campbellton Road, connecting key destinations such as Oakland City Station, the new Greenbriar transit hub, and the

Barge Road park-and-ride, with nine planned stations along the route. The BRT line will offer rapid highcapacity transit in dedicated lanes down the center of the road and will reduce the transit travel time along Campbellton Road to 18 minutes, 35 percent faster than the current Route 83, according to MARTA. Other proposed BRT amenities include off-board fare payment similar to MARTA’s trains, level boarding platforms, electric BRT vehicles, and transit signal priority to









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Transit developments approved The MARTA Board of Directors also advanced pre-development work on two transit-oriented development (TOD) projects on the East/West Line. Master planning contracts were awarded to WSP for Indian Creek and HKS for H.E. Holmes. Indian Creek and H.E. Holmes station, which are the westernmost and easternmost points of the Blue Line, have 52 and 22 acres, respectively, for development. Development at and around these rail stations presents a significant opportunity to benefit the surrounding communities while allowing for an increase in ridership and a better overall experience for our customers,” said Greenwood. MARTA recently opened the Marchon apartments at King Memorial Station and is nearing completion on the Quill apartments at Edgewood/Candler Park Station. A senior affordable housing project will break ground at Avondale Station this fall, while 250 apartments are also planned at Kensington Station.

By Collin Kelley



live and work in this corridor will agree.” MARTA’s goal is to begin operating BRT on Campbellton Road in 2028.

Bridge rebuild on Cheshire Bridge Road finally begins

Joy Myrick


improve travel times and reliability. “This will be a gold standard BRT system, complete with stations, platformlevel entry at both doors, and dedicated lanes, very much like a rail system, but at a lower cost and with a faster construction completion time,” said MARTA Interim General Manager and CEO Collie Greenwood. “Center-running BRT also allows us to invest more money in the corridor with pedestrian and cycling amenities and infrastructure features that benefit the entire community.” Campbellton Road rapid transit was adopted as part of the More MARTA Atlanta program in 2018. However, some residents in southwest Atlanta weren’t happy with MARTA’s plan to run BRT lines instead of rail as originally proposed in the More MARTA plan, which is paid for through a half-penny sales tax and federal funding. “We did hear from some who see BRT as an inferior investment and are concerned that transit-oriented development won’t be as robust. That is simply not true,” said MARTA Board Chair Rita Scott. “BRT is a premium transit service that can be delivered faster, for less money, operate more affordably, and is much more flexible than fixed rail transit, making it the clear choice for this corridor and the best use of taxpayer money. And I’m confident as this project comes to fruition, the people who

Reconstruction of a fire-damaged bridge over South Fork Peachtree Creek that has kept a portion of Cheshire Bridge Road closed for a year is finally underway. The Atlanta Department of Transportation posted an update on social media in July stating that the bridge is expected to be Work is underway on Cheshire Bridge completed by Oct. 31. Road. (Courtesy ATLDOT) That will come as a relief to businesses and residents along the corridor, which have been impacted by the long road closure. Businesses reported a decrease in customers, while residents complained of longer commutes. A fire underneath the bridge on Aug. 4, 2021 forced the bridge to close and the structure was eventually demolished. Cheshire Bridge has been closed between Woodland Avenue and Faulkner Road ever since. The city selected C.W. Matthews as the contractor for the bridge replacement work. The ATLDOT said in its update that crews are preparing the site and assembling equipment for the installation of concrete footings for the bridge foundation. Drilling for the footings began in July, in preparation for pouring of the concrete footings in late July or early August. At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

Upgrades planned for temporary Midtown park By Collin Kelley Midtown’s 10th Street Temporary Park is getting an upgrade, including a small dog park, a climbing structure, and an area for games. According to Midtown Alliance, the upgrades to the park at the corner of 10th and Peachtree are being made possible with assistance from the Dewberry Foundation and Midtown Improvement District. The park will be redesigned into three outdoor “rooms,” including one for games like ping pong and cornhole, one with a climbable structure for kids, and one with a fenced dog park. Sculptural seating complete with colorchanging LED lighting will also be installed in the middle room of the park. Designed by Fabio Novembre for Vondom, the set comes in separate pieces that fit together

like a ribbon, creating both functional seating and a glowing sculpture that will light the structure at night. “We have all seen that functional outdoor spaces have taken on increased importance over the last two years,” said Midtown Alliance President and CEO Kevin Green. “And these spaces will be even more important as Midtown continues to come back to full strength.” Look for more public art from Midtown Heart of the Arts Studio Residents in the form of a new mural by Jasmine Nicole Williams on the building wall at the north end of the park. Midtown Alliance also worked with Lord Aeck Sargent on updates to the park. The contractor is Ruppert Landscape and the project is scheduled to commence in AUGUST 2022.

A rendering of upgrades to Midtown temporary park. (Courtesy Midtown Alliance)

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North Avenue MARTA station plaza to become ‘vibrant’ public space

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A rendering of upgrades to Midtown temporary park. (Courtesy Midtown Alliance)

By Dyana Bagby The North Avenue MARTA station plaza is going to be transformed into an inviting public space with art and programmed events thanks to a $40,000 grant. The Midtown Alliance beat out nearly 200 other submissions from around the country to receive this year’s Community Placemaking Grant from Project for Public Spaces. PPS is a New York-based nonprofit dedicated to creating and sustaining public spaces for communities to gather, also known as placemaking. The North Avenue MARTA plaza now is a plain concrete space. Thousands of transit riders come through the station daily. Within a half-mile of the station are more than 3,200 residential units, nearly 8 million square feet of office space, 1,500 hotel rooms, and 270,000 square feet of retail space, according to the Midtown Alliance. But there are no public parks in this busy area of Midtown. “It’s incredibly accessible, yet very few people spend time there because there is nothing to do or see,” said Ansley Whipple, Midtown Alliance Project Manager for Programming and Activation, in a prepared statement. “By activating it, we hope to make it recognizable as a community asset and inspire people to use it in positive ways,” Whipple said. “We also hope to enhance the public transit experience and encourage more people to ride MARTA.” PPS will work with the Midtown Alliance on the project, providing free technical assistance. PPS Director of Projects Elena Madison said the potential for the busy plaza to become a “vibrant public space” is a great opportunity for Midtown as well as MARTA, which is a partner in the project. “We were very excited by the connection and the support from MARTA and the opportunity to actually make a better public space for transit riders in that part of Midtown,” Madison said. “It’s very visible. There are lots and lots of people who ride MARTA and land in a concrete plaza. “In addition, we know this part of Midtown is a public space desert … there’s not a lot of public spaces within walking distance,” Madison said. The grant money can be used for nicer amenities, including art, and for programming, such as live concerts, Madison said. How to recreate the plaza will begin with a community engagement process expected to start next month. Plans are to come up with a concept for the plaza over the winter and put the plan into action a year from now. “We will be working hand-in-hand with the Midtown Alliance team and with MARTA on placemaking and creating a concept and then implementing it together in the plaza,” Madison said. Funding for the grant is from Niantic, a San Francisco-based software company. At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

The long, hot summer Our family vacation to the Outer Banks was in June and the weather was nearly perfect. The beach was sunny and warm with a light breeze during the day, the ocean cool and refreshing. In the evenings we wore comfy sweatshirts while we enjoyed a cocktail on the deck as the sun set. The only problem was that when we returned to the Atlanta heat, it was still June. This put me right on pace to be a cranky old man by mid-July. I’ve lived in Atlanta my entire adult life and still haven’t figured out how to navigate these swampy summers beyond running up a preposterous electric bill. I’m a glutton for punishment so I check my weather app and look past the temperature to the “Real Feel” statistic which lately has been a 3-digit monster of a number. What it ‘Really Feels’ like is I might need a shower after walking the dogs. Typically, the 4th of July offers a long weekend to look forward to at least. Tim Sullivan When I was a kid, Independence Day was Tim Sullivan is an award uncomplicated. Go to the parade, wave winning columnist who a flag, eat a hotdog. I was oblivious to writes about family life exactly what I was celebrating but hey— and thinks everything fireworks, watermelon, whatever! is at least a little funny. Unfortunately, my kids aren’t quite tim@sullivanfinerugs. as oblivious. After a slate of enormously com. consequential SCOTUS decisions, my 12-year-old, vegetarian daughter was no more likely to wear red, white and blue than she was to eat a hot dog. I’m proud of how informed and passionate they are but seriously, if actively not celebrating this current version of America, then what were we going to do all weekend? What were we going to do all month? Did I invest in a YETI cooler for nothing? I feel like I need to remind people that July is so long, hot and brutal that we Atlantans just pretend August isn’t even a summer month anymore. You know other parts of the country think this is weird, right? Don’t get me wrong--I’m on board with the collective suspension of reality that sends everyone back to school and work as if August 1st marks the beginning of Fall. Nobody can stand the thought of another month where we pretend it is pleasant to do anything outside so it’s sort of like, move along, nothing to see here! August is basically a citywide celebration of the great indoors. A post on my neighborhood Facebook page asked people to share something they’ve experienced that they think no one else in the group had done. I appreciated it because I feel like the original poster must be having a summer like mine and needed a fun thread to give them a boost. One guy shared a bag of popcorn with Mr. Rogers and someone else won Hollywood Squares. One woman made out with Dennis Rodman in Vegas and another had toilet paper passed to her under a stall by Maya Angelou. I refrained from posting about gathering my neighbor’s mail and packages because they were out of town yet again. Seemed less interesting. Speaking of social media, is everyone else in Europe or on Cape Cod for this entire month? I’m obviously doing something wrong. Kristen works from home so I imagine she could just as easily work from a more pleasant climate, but she’d have to ditch me first. I’m one of those work-from-work fossils that our grandkids will learn about on the History Channel. Plus, going somewhere nice and cool and coastal for a month sounds sort of expensive, no? I’ll just assume that is the case. Maybe someone on Martha’s Vineyard would want to trade houses with us so for the month of July so they can experience what hot pea soup feels like in atmospheric form. DM me if you know anyone like that. And don’t get me wrong, Atlanta, I love ya. Let’s just go ahead and get to the actual Fall when the rest of the country envies us.

May I Be Excused?

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Retail � Tech � Profiles

The Future of Ponce Rumors of redevelopment shake storied Ponce de Leon Avenue

A rendering of the Chick-fil-a coming to Ponce de Leon Avenue at Boulevard. (Courtesy Chick-fil-a)

By Collin Kelley A storied stretch of the Ponce de Leon Avenue corridor appears to be set for major redevelopment, threatening the future of beloved eateries and nightspots, including MJQ Concourse, Bookhouse Pub, Java Jive, and The Local. Redevelopment rumors gained traction after 8ARM restaurant announced in June that it would be closing in October after its Atlanta BeltLine-adjacent property was sold to Cartel Properties. The developer also purchased the burned-out shell of the former Paris on Ponce market. Then, VESTA Fitboxing posted on Instagram that it was moving to a new location after the entire block of Ponce from its location to the 8ARM and former Paris on Ponce building had also been

8ARM and the old Paris on Ponce building have been purchased for redevelopment by Cartel Properties. (Google Maps)

gobbled up, presumably by Cartel. A map circulating on Reddit and Twitter showed the entire north side of Ponce from the BeltLine to the Honey Bubble tea shop property would be razed to make way for new development. The Atlanta JournalConstitution reported in July that at least some of these rumors are true. Charles Kerns, who owns the popular wings and karaoke joint The Local and an adjacent property, said he is finalizing an agreement with an unnamed developer to build a mixed-use development on the land.

The AJC also reached out to a number of other developers who own property along the stretch. Selig Development said it had no development plans on the block, but longtime developer Portman Holdings said, “We are not commenting on things related to projects at this time.” Virginia-Highland Civic Association



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President David Brandenberger, told Urbanize Atlanta that it was all “conjecture at this point,” while the website noted that five parcels on the block are currently owned by five different individuals or corporations. Redevelopment concerns were ratcheted up another notch, when Chickfil-a has confirmed it will build two restaurants on Ponce de Leon Avenue less than a mile from each other. The Atlanta-based fast-food chain had already announced it would build a new location at the corner of Ponce and Boulevard, the site of a former Texaco gas station and convenience store. Chick-fil-a then confirmed to What Now Atlanta? that it will build a dine-inonly restaurant with 40 parking spaces on the site of Dugan’s bar on Ponce – a 10-minute walk from the other location. Dugan’s, a fixture at 777 Ponce for nearly 37 years, announced earlier this year it would be moving to Northlake Mall, but denied rumors that Chickfil-a was buying the property, which sits adjacent to Hotel Clermont. The inevitable redevelopment of the corridor was heralded in 2014 with the adaptive reuse of the former Sears, Roebuck & Co. building into the successful Ponce City Market, which is currently expanding with two new apartment buildings and an office building.

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At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m



BeltLine MarketPlace opens for Black small businesses

Mayor Andre Dickens was on hand for the ribbon cutting of the BeltLine MarketPlace on the Eastside Trail. (Photo by Dyana Bagby)

By Dyana Bagby More than 2 million people use the Atlanta Beltline annually. That’s a lot of potential customers for a small business owner. “There’s no marketing strategy I could have paid for that would have been equivalent to what they are offering us,” said Terrence Albritton, co-owner of Grady Baby Company & Apparel, an online company that sells Atlanta-themed clothing. Albritton’s family-run company is one of the local businesses chosen to sell its goods from colorful shipping containers standing directly on the Beltline’s Eastside and Westside trails. The businesses are participating in the first BeltLine MarketPlace, a pilot program developed by Atlanta Beltline Inc. and The Village Market. The BeltLine MarketPlace’s mission is to provide affordable commercial space to small Black-owned businesses as well as womenowned and LGBTQ-owned businesses. Atlanta Beltline spokesperson Jenny Odom said businesses are paying “an affordable/minimal rent and a percentage of their revenue for the ongoing maintenance and long-term viability of this program” based on their overall success. ABI could not yet provide what that dollar amount would be, she said. Many wealthy investors have snapped up prime real estate along the 22-mile BeltLine

16 AUGUST 2022 |

corridor. The Beltline, one of the country’s largest urban renewal projects, has attracted more than $8 billion in private development used to construct thousands of multifamily units and massive commercial and retail projects. Some of the new developments are in historically Black neighborhoods where little investment occurred before the BeltLine’s route came through. The new investments have resulted in rising property taxes, pushing out legacy businesses and residents and limiting opportunities for creating generational wealth for Black families. “The whole purpose for starting our business was to create generational wealth and create something for my children,” Albritton said. “We have looked at retail locations but with cost of rent and everything else it was just too cost prohibitive for a small business that started in our basement.” Mayor Andre Dickens acknowledged the difficulties Black business face in Atlanta at a July 13 ribbon cutting for the BeltLine MarketPlace. Standing on a small stage set up under the Freedom Parkway Bridge on the Eastside Trail, he said more than 95% of Atlanta’s Black-owned businesses are sole proprietors. He also quoted a report that said before the pandemic, Black businesses had an average value of less than $60,000. Latinx-owned businesses had an average value of $475,000 while white businesses

were valued at more than $650,000. “That is not just a wealth gap,” Dickens said. “That is a … deep gulch.” The numbers make clear that building wealth for Black families will not happen if Black businesses cannot thrive in Atlanta, he said. The BeltLine MarketPlace is one way to help advance African American prosperity in Atlanta, he said. “Small businesses are the backbone of our communities and thriving communities means thriving families and that’s what we’re all about — making sure we have thriving families in the city,” Dickens said. Clyde Higgs, president and CEO of Atlanta BeltLine Inc., said the BeltLine MarketPlace is one way the city is being “very intentional about making sure that the Beltline is a tool for our entire community.” Higgs praised Dr. Lakeysha Hallmon, founder and CEO of The Village Market, for her partnership in making the BeltLine MarketPlace a reality. The Village Market connects Black-owned businesses to community partners as a way to tackle racial wealth gap issues. Hallmon’s vision for the BeltLine MarketPlace includes ensuring local, Black-owned businesses can stay in the communities where they have always been despite surging commercial rents. These businesses deserve to share in the economic prosperity created by the Beltline, she said. “This is a day that will be inked in the

history books that Atlanta got it right, that the community got it right,” Hallmon said. “This is what happens when people get together, they collaborate, they put their genius together for a purpose far greater than all of us.” There were more than 200 applicants to participate in the BeltLine MarketPlace before the finalists were selected. They will be open on the BeltLine through November. The BeltLine MarketPlace was supported with a $750,000 grant from the Kendeda Fund.

Eastside Trail Freedom Parkway Bridge at 830 Willoughby Way NE Cococakes by Coco ( Good As Burgers ( Grady Baby Company & Apparel (

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New office complex underway in Old Fourth Ward include 130,000 square feet of new office space, three chef-driven restaurants, multiple balconies overlooking the Beltline, and a 7,000-squarefoot “public porch” on the ground floor that will feature murals and sculpture artworks. Portman purchased the 1.4 acre property in 2018 with plans to build a hotel, but that project was scrapped due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the hotel industry. Junction is also just steps away from the expanding Krog District, which is under construction on the other side of the BeltLine and will bring more offices, shops, and restaurants.

A rendering of Junction Krog District. (Images courtesy Portman Holdings)

By Collin Kelley An official groundbreaking ceremony was held July 7 for Junction Krog District, a mixed-use office building

directly on the Atlanta BeltLine Eastside Trail in Old Fourth Ward. The six-story building will sit at the junction of the BeltLine, Irwin Street,

and Auburn Avenue – with BeltLine frontage stretching from Irwin all the way to SPX Alley. The Portman Holdings project will

LIVE PERFORMANCE SERIES Portman Holdings Senior VP Mike Greene spoke during the Junction groundbreaking event.


August 21-28, 2022 Portman and city officials move dirt at the Junction groundbreaking. At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m



Intown Stars opens new location after $4 million renovation

Women’s team gymnasts warming up for floor exercise during training at Intown Stars. (Photos by Barbara Naso)

Intown Stars owner Anna Santiago and her sons with Olympic Gold Medal Gymnast, Laurie Hernandez.

A rendering of the new Intown Stars facility.

18 AUGUST 2022 |

By Clare S. Richie Intown Stars will welcome the Atlanta and Decatur communities to its new multisport facility at 421 DeKalb Industrial Way this month following the $4 million renovation of a former storage and manufacturing space. “This exciting new expansion will be done in two phases,” Intown Stars owner and CEO Anna Santiago said. “Half of the 75,000 square-foot building will open for gymnastics, parkour, camps, parties, community events, and our newest program, Intown Stars Dance. I really want this place to be about sports and bringing the community together.” On the ground floor is a fully-equipped 25,000 square foot space with natural light, fresh paint, and massive ceiling fans that will house gymnastics and parkour; the practice of traversing obstacles from one point to another by running, jumping, climbing, etc. “Parkour is one of the fastest growing sports,” Santiago said. “We cater to who is in our community – and the kids in our community clearly want something fun and different, because our parkour program has hundreds of kids on the waitlist. So, we quadrupled the size of our space to accommodate them. Parkour also brought in more boys who do parkour and gymnastics.” The ground floor also includes Intown Stars Dance’s studio complete with professional dance floors and a parent observation area. Flowing from there are more rooms for a future afterschool program, art program, and a sizable outdoor play space – where Santiago envisions a sandbox, swing set, and jungle gym.

Up on the second floor, a large parent observation lounge overlooks the gymnastics/ parkour space. Down the hall is Santiago’s office. “I wanted to be close to the parents – to talk with them and stay connected,” Santiago said. There are also four different studios on the second floor available to rent for classes, events, and parties and named for constellations: Big Dipper, Little Dipper (more of a meeting space), Orion (with a kitchenette), and Polaris (with lots of windows and natural light). Santiago wants the studios to serve as a business incubator, recalling the challenges she faced 10 years ago when she was newly divorced and needed a place to teach gymnastic classes. “I want to offer up those spaces for other entrepreneurs, to start or scale a business,” Santiago said. Over a decade, Santiago has built Intown Stars from a tiny program in a neighborhood church Sunday School room into one of the largest gymnastics centers in the southeast, with 80 employees and 1,700+ children coming through every week. A success Santiago graciously shares with her core executive team. “Anna engages her employees in a shared mission - to build leaders - among themselves and the students,” explained Damon Vance, owner of Relevance Building Solutions, who led the new multi-sport facility construction and is Santiago’s business partner. For example, Chief Operations Officer Brittany Baker, started as a gymnastics coach in 2017 and runs the day-to-day operations as Santiago’s “right-hand woman”. “The best moments are when the children are begging their parents not to leave,” Baker said. “As long as that keeps happening, Intown Stars will keep growing as a leader in youth sports for Atlanta.” That growth includes being home one of the largest gymnastics teams in the Southeast. “Georgia hasn’t seen a world-class gym with so much variety and diversity for competitive gymnastics, let alone sports across the board,” said Ashley McCracken, Intown Stars Gymnastic Teams Director. “One of the reasons Intown Stars has been able to thrive is Anna’s ability to be flexible and adaptable with how the business provides services to the community, based on its needs, Vance said. “This new, larger space is critical to that.” Projected to open in 2023, the second phase on the north side of the building will feature 10 batting cages, a large space with professional court flooring for a roller rink, and sports like basketball and volleyball plus a strength and conditioning center. “For an entrepreneur, having this huge space to create in – it’s like being in a candy store and told you can have anything you want,” Santiago said. Learn more at At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m


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Northwestern Mutual, in partnership with gener8tor, has announced the addition of five tech startups to its Black Founder Accelerator program, including PruuvnTM, led by Founder and CEO Bryan Hobbs. PruuvnTM is an Atlanta-based credentialing and data trust company that leverages blockchain technology to develop tools to empower the gig economy. The Black Founder Accelerator program provides promising Black entrepreneurs’ startups with a $100,000 investment, a 12-week business training program and access to venture capital partners and Northwestern Mutual mentors. Other startups added to the program are Xcellent Life of Lexington, Tn., PageDip of Boulder, Co., SnapRefund and Stimulus, both based in Philadelphia, Pa. Find out more about PruuvnTM at


Selig Enterprises has completed 500 Chattahoochee Row, the 70,000-squarefoot adaptive reuse office building at The Works on the Upper Westside The office building, designed by Square Feet Studios and constructed by Dakota Contractors, was originally a 1950s-era warehouse but has been reimagined as flexible office space. MacDermid Graphic Solutions, an Atlanta-based flexographic and printing solutions company, has already relocated to the building, occupying 45,000 square feet. Selig also signed Bread N Butter Content Studio, which will move into a 6,160-square-foot space later this year. 500 Chattahoochee Row is the second office building at The Works. Other office tenants on the property include postproduction company Uppercut; biopharmaceutical communications firm Conisus; and entertainment company iHeart Media. The Bread N Butter lease brings the total office space leased within phase one of The Works to 75%.

Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta has ranked among the nation’s top pediatric hospitals for 2022-2023 on the U.S. News & World Report Best Children’s Hospitals list. Four of Children’s Healthcare specialties were ranked in the top 10: the Cancer, Gastroenterology and GI Surgery, Nephrology, and Urology programs. Another four specialties were ranked in the top 20: the Orthopaedics, Neurology and Neurosurgery, Pulmonary and Lung Surgery, and Cardiology and Heart Surgery programs. The report ranks hospitals for excellence in outcomes, program structure and national reputation in 10 pediatric specialty areas. Go to for details. ◄The Council for Quality Growth will honor Carol Tomé, Chief Executive Officer of United Parcel Service, with its 33rd annual Four Pillar Award. The award recognizes an outstanding individual who demonstrates the ‘Four Pillars’ of leadership – Quality, Responsibility, Vision and Integrity – and exemplifies the Council’s mission of promoting balanced and responsible growth. Tomé will be presented with the award on October 20 at the Georgia World Congress Center. “I’m honored to receive the 2022 Four Pillar Tribute and accept it on behalf of 534,000 UPS-ers, who move our world forward by delivering what matters,” said Tomé. More info at Ponce City Market development firm Jamestown is renovating a former warehouse complex at 1435 Hills Place on the Upper Westside into a creative office and lab space called Allied Studios. According to Urbanize Atlanta, Jamestown has signed Anduril Industries, a defense technology company, for a 180,000 square foot space in the development. Allied Studios consists of four buildings (including one on Chattahoochee Avenue) spread across 11 acres with about 224,000 square feet total. Anduril plans to invest $60 million in a new manufacturing and research facility at Allied Studios that will create more than 180 jobs over the next three years.

Ponce City Market is now home to Souk Bō’hēmian, a Black-, womenand queer-owned retail shop offering ready-to-wear fashion, home goods and handmade accessories. Founded as an online shop in 2016 by Atlantabased best friends and business partners Morgan-Ashley Bryant and Vanessa Coore Vernon, Souk Bō’hēmian’s first brick-and-mortar location aims to introduce new and different cultures to the Atlanta community. The store is located on the second floor of the Central Food Hall. Check it out at

20 AUGUST 2022 |

At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m


Engel & Völkers Atlanta #1 in Atlanta

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1585 S Ponce De Leon Avenue #MH2 6 Bed | 6.5 Bath Offered at $2,350,000

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©2022 Engel & Völkers. All rights reserved. Each brokerage independently owned and operated. All information provided is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed and should be independently verified. If your property is currently represented by a real estate broker, this is not an attempt to solicit your listing. Engel & Völkers and its independent license partners are Equal Opportunity Employers and fully support the principles of the Fair Housing Act.

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Recycling � Resources � Lifestyle

Energy resilience near the Arctic Circle

Iceland’s Blue Lagoon with the geothermal plant in the background. (Photo by Sally Betha)

Above the Water Line Sally Bethea Sally Bethea is the retired executive director of Chattahoochee Riverkeeper and an environmental and sustainability advocate.


he water was deliciously warm and welcoming as I eased my jetlagged body into the pearly Blue Lagoon, rich in silica and other minerals. In the distance, I could see steam billowing from the geothermal power plant that provides the water source for this luxury spa: a nice side benefit from the industry that has helped transform Iceland into one of the most energy-resilient countries in the world. While a spa like the Blue Lagoon is a modern-day development, Icelanders have enjoyed soaking in geothermally warm, even hot, water since the nation’s

22 AUGUST 2022 |

settlement by Viking explorers in the 9th century. The cultural tradition continues today. There are nearly fifty natural hot springs and hundreds of geothermally heated swimming pools for the country’s population (370,000)—and increasing numbers of tourists. On a trip to Iceland with my family in early July, we found a spectacularly beautiful country that conveys a sense of calm and community. Preparing for the trip, I read about the island nation’s history and characteristics: the tough resilience of Icelanders; commitment to equality, inclusion, and justice; love of literature and storytelling; strong education and health systems; lack of violent crime; and responsive government. Yes, the winters are long and very dark; the weather is chilly even in the summer; and you can expect fiery, volcanic eruptions somewhere in the country every four to five years, on average. However, the much-proclaimed health and happiness of its residents seem to outweigh these “inconveniences”—at least to Iceland’s proud, hard-working people.

Geography and Geology In Thingvellir National Park, we walked through the rift valley that marks the crest of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge: the (mostly) underwater mountain chain located mid-ocean along the floor of the Atlantic. This seam in the Earth’s crust separates massive slabs of solid rock known as the North American, Eurasian, and African tectonic plates. Slowly, they move—along with the continents that ride them—a fact that was finally accepted by scientists in the 1960s. Created fairly recently, geologically speaking, from eruptions over a hotspot of molten rock, Iceland is the only place in the world where it’s possible to stand on dry land between two continental plates— as we did in Thingvellir. Here, the North American and Eurasian plates are drifting apart an inch every year. (Geophysicists have compared this to the rate that fingernails grow.) I’m still pondering our experience at this natural wonder, where we viewed gorges, fissures, and waterfalls created by extreme subsurface geologic mayhem.

Last year, a volcanic eruption about twenty-five miles southwest of Iceland’s capital city, Reykjavik, lasted for six months and drew hundreds of thousands of tourists to view the glowing magma and lava flows. It was the sixth volcanic eruption in the country in the past two decades. With a mixture of disappointment and relief, we didn’t feel a single tremor during our time in the country.

From Fossil Fuels to Geothermal At the turn of the 20th century, Iceland was one of Western Europe’s poorest countries, dependent upon peat and coal for its energy. Until the early 1970s, the largest share of the country’s energy consumption was derived from imported fossil fuels. In its isolated location— thirty miles below the Arctic Circle—the country needed a stable and secure domestic energy source to avoid oil price fluctuations caused by crises in the world energy markets. Innovation, transparency, At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

public engagement, and a solutions-based mindset focused on local resources led the way. Today, Iceland is the world’s largest per capita producer of green energy and electric power. Its residents enjoy a high standard of living. Eighty-five percent of the country’s primary energy supply comes from domestic renewable resources: hydro (glacial rivers and waterfalls) and geothermal (underground steam and hot water). The main use of geothermal energy is for space heating, distributed to buildings—including ninety percent of Icelandic homes--through extensive networks of pipes. Fresh vegetables are grown through the cold, dark winters in geothermally heated and lighted greenhouses, as the power of volcanoes is transformed into tomatoes, lettuce, peppers, and mushrooms.

Embracing Innovation and the Future Despite its small size, homogeneous population, and vast geological assets, Iceland offers a model—certainly inspiration—for how to make a swift transition from fossil fuels to sustainable power sources. Its transportation and fishing industries still rely primarily on oil; however, electric vehicles are booming. Seventy percent of new cars in Iceland are EV or hybrid.

Responsive, in the 1990s, to the needs of its economy and its people, the government moved quickly to expand its renewable portfolio with funding (research and exploration) and incentives for homeowners and energy-intensive industries. No incrementalism. No (apparent) deference to well-funded fossil fuel lobbyists. No single individual, like coal baron and U.S. Senator Joe Manchin, to thwart change to put hefty profits ahead of prosperous, healthy lives for future generations. Instead, the country employed a seemingly open, solutions-oriented approach to do what appeared to be best for everyone: big business and small farmers. While local conditions determine which renewable resources are most efficient and cost-effective, Iceland’s success story is impressive. It is remarkable for such a small nation with limited financial resources at the time it made the bold (some might say risky) decision to move away from fossil fuels. A green transformation continues to unfold as Iceland’s leaders embrace change and innovation. Winters may be long and dark, but the country’s future looks bright with cheaper power costs, energy security, and a growing economy. As has been the tradition for more than a thousand years, communal hot springs continue to bring Icelanders and visitors together to calm body and mind.

The Georgia Conservancy appointed Virginia Harman as the new Chair of the Georgia Conservancy’s Board of Trustees. Harman currently serves as a partner attorney at McRae, Smith, Peek, Harman & Monroe, LLP in Rome. As a civic leader, Harman has served as chair of and current member of the Legal Counsel Section of the Georgia Bankers Association, as well as Chair of the Board and legal counsel for nonprofit Cancer Navigators, Inc. She is also active in supporting the local free legal clinic for U.S. veterans and local animal rescue initiatives through the North Georgia Animal Partnership. She has served on the Georgia Conservancy Board of Trustees since 2019.

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Inspired by Earth Day, three friends have launched Root Local to raise awareness and visibility for sustainability issues ranging from maintaining Atlanta’s tree canopy to recycling, clean air and clean water. While Atlanta boasts several organizations that address certain of these specific issues, Root Local aims to become a central organization that connects them all. The organization will spend the next three years creating a foundation for collective impact, including: ■ Convening the environmental nonprofits, government agencies, community members, businesses, schools, community groups and philanthropists. ■ Identifying priorities and opportunities with the group, as environmental needs will change over time. ■ Educating communities on impact and engagement strategies and connecting them with organizations doing direct service environmental impact work. For more information about Root Local, visit At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m


Your National Park Needs Your Help! BOWMANS ISLAND




Actor, activist and author Jane Fonda will be the keynote speaker at Greenbuild 2022 on Nov. 2 in San Francisco. She will share her 50+ year journey of advocating for the health and longevity of the planet. Most recently, Fonda started Fire Drill Fridays in 2019 in partnership with Greenpeace to protest government inaction on climate change and authored “What Can I Do? My Path from Climate Despair to Action.” Registration for the event is open now at

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Trends � Development � City Living

Front Porch mixed-use project breaks ground on Auburn Avenue

City officials break ground on the Front Porch project on Auburn Avenue (Photo by Dyana Bagby)

By Dyana Bagby


tlanta’s historic Auburn Avenue will see its first new construction in over a decade with a development that includes affordable housing, retail space for local entrepreneurs, an arts and culture venue, and an urban community garden. The nonprofit Historic District Development Corporation is building the 100,000-square-foot project named Front Porch. The project is in the Sweet Auburn Historic District on the same street where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was born. Sweet Auburn is also remembered as the community where Black businesses and entertainment venues thrived during the Jim Crow era but has experienced disinvestment and neglect for decades. Mayor Andre Dickens said at a July 6 groundbreaking the new development was a milestone for an area where much of the city’s history is rooted. “This is the first project of this magnitude in the last 15 years that we’re about to break ground, and it should be transformative,” Dickens said. “I’m proud of the work being done here and I’m happy to be a part of revitalizing a very vital neighborhood.”

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A rendering of the Front Porch project.

The roughly $30 million Front Porch project includes construction of new buildings on a vacant lot and renovating several existing retail spaces. Front Porch will include 45 apartments rented at or below 80% of the area median income, which is $54,000 for a single person. There will also be 16 for-sale condominiums, with four sold at 120% AMI. HDDC is trying to raise $700,000 by the end of the year so it can sell more affordable condos at 80% AMI. The

apartments and condos will be permanently affordable, according to HDDC. HDDC is also renovating existing retail units into affordable pop-up spaces for local entrepreneurs and creating an artist co-working space. A rooftop space with a community garden for tenants and the neighborhood is also part of the project. The Haugabrooks Funeral Home will be transformed into an arts center and gallery as part of the Front Porch development. Invest Atlanta, the city’s development

authority, approved $3 million in Eastside Tax Allocation District grant funding to help subsidize the affordable housing as well as affordable commercial spaces. Khaliff Davis of the national Reinvestment Fund, a nonprofit lender and community development financial institution, said his organization was proud to be the primary financial backer of the project. He praised Front Porch as a “holistic community-centered development that will serve as a beacon for the historic district for years to come.” But HDDC faced many hardships in gaining financial backing, he said. “I personally witnessed the HDDC team navigate the many systemic and institutional practices that have historically limited the growth and sustainability of Black communities.” Nathaniel Smith, founder and Chief Equity Officer for Partnership for Southern Equity, a community partner on the project, said the lack of philanthropic support for developments along Auburn Avenue is jarring. “There is not one foundation in this city that provide philanthropic dollars to support this development,” he said. “Let that sit for a moment. “We have got to change more than just the sticks and breaks that are required to develop projects like Front Porch,” Smith said. “We have to change the values that consistently reinforce this injustice. We have to disrupt that, but the only way that we can disrupt it is if we work together,” Smith said. “I see this development as an opportunity to create what I call a new renaissance for the Sweet Auburn corridor.” Cheneé Joseph, president and CEO of HDDC, acknowledged the difficulties faced to make Front Porch a reality. She said her organization, founded more than 40 years ago by Coretta Scott King to protect the birth site of Martin Luther King Jr., has been overlooked by investors. “But we continue to fight for who we are, how important this community is, and how important that we are to the future,” she said. “Please do not forget that the reason we have a beloved community is because of Sweet Auburn. Let’s never forget where it all started.”

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IOFFICE N TOW N Intown Luxury Specialists


2022 BELTLINE CONNECTORS CIRCLE SUPPORTER! The Beltline is near and dear to our hearts, and we are thrilled to announce that The Intown Office has become a proud 2022 Beltline Connectors Circle Supporter! The Atlanta Beltline is an incredible project that is dedicated to helping the community by creating better health, housing, jobs, art, education, parks, and so many others. We are thrilled to be a part of the journey through The Beltline’s transformative years, and to help and support this amazing community.

Meet Pam Hughes

WHY DO YOU LIKE BEING A REALTOR? I have built up a wonderful client base and most of my clients are friends or we become friends. I love working with them at different times of their lives and helping their children whom I often knew when they were babies.

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How to grow a kid’s interest in gardening The Environmental Gardener Greg Levine

co-executive director of Trees Atlanta, describes himself as happiest when his hands are in the dirt.

Columnist Greg Levine’s nephews learn the joys of gardening.

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You have to love August. It is the last really hot month and the kids are headed back to school. While the garden is stable with little for you to do (most of the plants that were going to die have done so), it is still a good place to get your kids connected to nature without even leaving home. Some kids have a natural affiliation for the garden, but others need some enticement. I don’t have kids myself but have no shortage of nephews and nieces. I have successfully pushed the gaggle to get their hands in the dirt, and they are better for it. It might take some work to get them started but getting your kids to garden is helping to ensure healthier adults. Here are a few ideas to grow a child’s interest that will also pull them away from the poison of their iPhone. With fall just around the corner, prepare a small area in the sun and plant some easyto-grow fall vegetables and herbs. At the age of five, I grew corn in a cup and peanuts in some cotton in a small clear plastic box. I remember watching the nut sprout and the root grow until it filled the box, begging to be planted. The experience comes to mind

whenever I think about being a kid. It is imprinted on my brain, and a gardener I will always be. Creating a raised bed with cedar or stone can be the starter project to get the kids working in August. Then prepare the soil and pick out some plants. Growing plants by seed is exciting for kids. Watering daily, waiting for the plants to sprout, and harvesting make an unforgettable experience. A few of the easiest winter vegetables to grow by seed are arugula, cilantro, carrots, and beets, and they can be eaten from top to bottom. Most kids will try these vegetables if they help grow them, thus developing healthy eating habits. Playing in the dirt (and even eating it) has its merits, but making compost is the ultimate starter drug for gardening. As a five-yearold, nephew Sam thought it was some kind of magic. In a way, who can argue that it isn’t? Turning your waste into black gold to make all your plants grow faster and healthier? Pure magic. There are so many ways to start composting. Keep a compost container on your counter or in the fridge to be dumped regularly in a larger bin outdoors. Turn the compost regularly, add some leaves, grass, and presto! Beautiful compost. You can also create a worm bin or just a giant compost pile that your kids can turn monthly. Exercise, reducing waste, and a little magic make for a healthier body and future. Plan to plant a tree. Yep, planting is my answer to most everything. Planning ahead builds excitement and can be as fun as the actual planting. Kids know we need more trees to make a healthier planet. They need a way to fight the hopelessness that gives too many people the excuse to do nothing. Kids can actively make a difference by finding a location for a tree, researching for the right species, being resourceful in finding the said tree, and finally planting it with the family this winter. As the decades go by, that tree will continue to grow and remind them that they can make the change they want to see in the world. Care, thoughtfulness, and investment help to develop a healthier mind. Getting your kids out in the garden benefits them in so many ways. To your own benefit, you’ll create unique memories to look fondly upon for decades, just like the trees your kids helped you plant. At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

O4W residents raise concerns over Highland, Boulevard project By Dyana Bagby Traffic and amount of parking space are the top concerns raised by residents living near a planned apartment complex and grocery store at the busy intersection of Boulevard NE and Highland Avenue in Old Fourth Ward. At a recent meeting of Fourth Ward Neighbors, community members met virtually with representatives of Atlanta’s Fuqua Development and Northwood Ravin, based out of Charlotte, N.C. The two real estate companies have teamed up to redevelop about three acres adjacent to the popular Freedom Barkway dog park. The area is notorious for heavy traffic as motorists travel along Highland Avenue and Boulevard to get on the Downtown Connector. Both are also major corridors

that cut north-south and east-west through Old Fourth Ward. Adding hundreds of apartments and more retail will clog the streets, said members of the group. “How are you going to minimize sort of what I call the traffic chaos?” Fourth Ward Neighbors President Tom Boyle asked. A traffic study would be done after the rezoning application is approved, said Julie Sellers, attorney for the developers. Building new sidewalks on Highland Avenue as part of the development would improve connectivity and create a more pedestrian-friendly environment, she said. The property, with just Desperate Housewares vintage furniture store and house on it, is prime real estate as development continues to emanate from nearby Ponce City Market and the Atlanta

Beltline’s booming Eastside Trail. The project would include about 53,000 square feet of commercial space. An unnamed grocery store is planned as part of the project. The number of apartments is now closer to 285 or 290 rather than 301 as depicted in an earlier site plan. Parking has also been reduced from more than 700 spaces for residential and retail to about 600. The parking would be surrounded by the apartment building. The number of spaces proposed is higher than what city code requires, but is the number needed to “find the right balance” to accommodate retail and residential, Sellers said. “This is certainly an urban mixed-use community that does not have surface parking lot,” Sellers said.

One resident who lives near the planned project described this area as one of the most “walkable, bikeable and transit-friendly parts of the city.” Hundreds of parking spaces would prohibit Old Fourth Ward’s vision of becoming a neighborhood less reliant on cars, he said. Another person pointed out Krog Street Market had fewer than 80 parking spaces. One person suggested the developers revise its plans for a large grocer that needs more than 100 parking spaces to a bodega or Savi Prosions market that would need fewer than 20 spaces. Sellers said besides a grocery store, the project would include neighborhoodscale retail like those at Madison Yards on Memorial Drive, another Fuqua development.

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Construction is underway on a 28-story, 350-unit luxury apartment building at 1441 Peachtree Street in the Midtown Arts District. A joint venture between Atlantic Residential, FIDES Development, Capital City Real Estate and Mitsui Fudosan America, the building is expected to be complete by June 2024. Residents will have an easy walk to the High Museum of Art, Atlanta Symphony Hall, Alliance Theatre, Museum of Design Atlanta, and more. Pershing Point Park is across the street and the Arts Center MARTA station is also a quick walk. An internal sky bridge will lead to both individual and collaborative co-working spaces, a state-of-the-art fitness center, wine bar and lounge, private dining area, pool with sundeck, and a rooftop bar and lounge with skyline views. There will also be two restaurant spaces in the lobby. The residences will feature studios, one, two, and threebedroom floor plans, many with balconies or terraces. Interiors include gourmet kitchens with upgraded appliances, LED lighting packages, and other finishes found in high-end condo buildings.

REAL ESTATE BRIEFS The close out of Empire Crosby in West Midtown has been announced by Empire Communities. The 69-unit townhome community, located at the corner of Huff Road and Booth Street, sold out in under two years. Empire Crosby was one of the first of four Intown communities launched by Empire in Atlanta. Empire has launched three new intown communities: Empire Stein Steel in Reynoldstown, Empire Zephyr in Chosewood Park, and Empire Longreen in West Midtown. Learn more at

Boehmig, CEO and President, and Jenny Pruitt, Executive Chairman, hosted a celebration of Juneteenth and the journey of inclusion and diversity with more than 200 people at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights recently. Agents, staff, vendor partners, industry leaders and dignitaries attended the gala.

▲Shirley Gary, owner and CEO of Engel & Völkers Buckhead Atlanta and Engel & Völkers Atlanta North Fulton, has been named Georgia’s Number One Individual Agent for sales volume, and she is the top performer of three Georgia Realtors in the category of Transaction Sides in the 2022 REAL Trends + Tom Ferry: The Thousand List of the top 1,000 real estate sales professionals in the U.S. Gary was also ranked Number 11 Nationwide for both volume and transactions closed nationwide. For more info, go to buckheadatlanta. ▼Co-Founders of Atlanta Fine Homes Sotheby’s International Realty David

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partnered with Atlanta-based start-up Presso to install an on-demand, selfservice dry-cleaning machine. It is the first apartment community in the world to offer this technology to residents. Go to or allresco. com to learn more.

Briarcliff Mansion, the historic 1922 home of Coca-Cola heir Asa Candler, Jr., in Druid Hills will be transformed into a senior living community. The property’s owner, Emory University, announced in July that Galerie Living hopes to break ground on the project by next year, or possibly in 2024.

The Daily Report has announced Harry Norman, Realtors as one of the Georgia Legal Awards 2022 Diversity Initiative honorees. Ashoo Sharma, the Vice President and General Counsel at Harry Norman is being recognized in the awards. As a woman of South Asian descent, Sharma recognizes the extreme importance of diversity in the workplace, believing that, “alone we can do so little, together we can do so much,” and in that spirit, she has made it her primary goal to make Harry Norman, Realtors a model for diversity and equality in the workplace. The Daily Report will host their 2022 Legal Awards to announce the winners on June 23 at Flourish. Get details at Broadstone Upper Westside, a luxury apartment community by Alliance Residential Company, includes 314 studio, one- and two-bedroom apartment units in a seven-story building at 2167 Bolton Drive NW, and offers a long list of amenities. Last month, Broadstone Upper Westside

Engel & Völkers Atlanta has launched sales for Downing Park, a boutique community with 20 homes located in the historic Druid Hills neighborhood. Engel & Völkers Atlanta will lead sales and marketing for the project with the first released homes already being 20% reserved. Adjacent to Freedom Park Trail, Candler Park, and Olmsted Linear Park, the development includes 11 villas, two manor homes and six condos. Home sizes range from 1,500 to over 5,000 square feet and pricing starts at $1.6 million. The community is being developed by Reed & Co. working with M. Crisler Designs for interior design, TSW as the land architect and Eberly Associates for the site planning. Visit for more info. At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

50-unit apartment building planned on North Avenue By Dyana Bagby An Atlanta developer wants to build a 50-unit multifamily project on North Avenue near Ponce City Market and the Atlanta Beltline. AAI Development recently filed plans with the city to build a 7-story building with 50 units at 495 North Ave., next door to the Novel O4W apartment complex. The site is also adjacent to an Amoco gas station and convenience store at the intersection of Boulevard and North Avenue. A single-family residence occupied by a security company on the property would be razed for the new building. The developer notes on its website that the project, set to be built next year, is less than a 5-minute walk from Ponce City

Market. Ponce City Market stands along the Atlanta Beltline’s popular Eastside Trail and is near the Historic Fourth Ward Park. The application says the units would be broken up into 13 studio units, 18 one-bedroom units, 13 two-bedroom units and six three-bedroom units. To meet Beltline Overlay zoning requirements, the developer says it would rent 15% of the units (or nine units) for those making at or below 80% of the metro Atlanta area median income. The AMI for metro Atlanta is $96,400, according to the federal government. A single person making $54,000 is making 80% AMI. Affordable rents would range between $1,350 for a studio, nearly $1,500 for a one-bedroom and $2,005 for a two-

bedroom, according to the application. Market rate rents would go for $2,300 for a studio to $5,200 for a three-bedroom unit. The project is almost directly across the street from a planned 195unit apartment building announced by Braden Fellman Group at 536 North. The ground floor of that building would be a space for the current owner of the property, Atlanta Teachers Credit Union.

Courtesy AAI Development




Photo by Shane LaVancher

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Restaurants � Wine � Events

Preserving Tradition Burundian women ready to move to new farm at Indian Creek MARTA station The Umurima farmers from Burundi are, from left, Halieth Hatungimana, Janne Nyibizi, Everine Nyandwi and Ana Marie Mukeshimana. Standing behind them is interpreter Joseph Minani. (Photos by Dyana Bagby)

By Dyana Bagby


he four women gathered around a tall bush in the middle of the small farm across the street from the Avondale MARTA station. Clusters of ripe blueberries were hidden beneath some leaves. They picked a few and popped the sweet fruit into their mouths. “Oooh! Ooooh!” said one woman, chuckling, and filled her hands with as many blueberries they could hold. Her friends did the same, chatting excitedly with each other. The women are from Burundi, a small East African country. Through an interpreter, they said they all learned as young girls how to farm. The food they grew was cooked for family meals. Farming was also a way to support their families. “Farming in our country is the first thing we do … it is our first job,” Halieth Hatungimana, 63, said. “If we didn’t farm, we wouldn’t have food or clothes.” “If you don’t farm, how do you put food in your belly?” said Everine Nyandwi, 57. Ana Marie Mukeshimana, 48, said

32 AUGUST 2022 |

The Burundi women pick blueberries at the small farm where they’ve grown food for 12 years.

because girls couldn’t go to school in Burundi, they farmed instead. “It gave us a living,” said Janne Nyibizi, 60. The women moved to the U.S. in 2007 after they were forced to flee Burundi due

to civil war and the genocide in neighboring Rwanda. When they resettled in Clarkston and Stone Mountain, they asked locals where they could grow their own food. That question led to the formation of the local nonprofit Global Growers Network Inc.

Everine Nyandwi tastes a ripe blueberry.

In late 2009, Global Growers found a piece of vacant land adjacent to the East Decatur Station commercial development near the Avondale MARTA station. The group made a deal with the property owner to pay $1 a month for the site to build a farm for the women, known as Umurima, to honor their Burundi heritage. “The reason why that first property was so helpful for this group of farmers is they don’t drive,” said Robin Chanin, co-founder and executive director of Global Growers. “Having a farm on the MARTA line made farming possible.” For the past 12 years, the Umurima have planted and harvested grains, onions, chard, kale, collard greens, peanuts, beans, and blueberries from the small plot of land. The women also grew favorites from their home country, such as cassava, a root vegetable like yuca, and muchicha, an amaranth green. They grew the food for their families and sold some to local markets. During this time, Global Growers expanded to create a network of farms and gardens throughout metro Atlanta that are used by hundreds of international families At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

new to America. Last year, the owner of the farmland let the Umurima and Global Growers know that hundreds of apartments, a grocery store and other stores are going to be built around East Decatur Station. The Umurima are now harvesting the last crops to grow at the site. “The farm was good,” Nyibizi said. “I feel we accomplished a lot here.” The women did not want to stop farming, however, so Global Growers again went to work searching for land. “One of the ways we’ve looked for land over the years is very old school, which

an area identified as food insecure by the USDA and this partnership with Global Growers Network will support these refugee families and food equity in the surrounding communities,” Greenwood said. Chanin said Global Growers’ license agreement with MARTA, which is free like those issued for Soccer in the Streets, is planned to last five years. In July, MARTA’s board of directors issued a request for proposals for a transit-oriented development at Indian Creek. The board also selected a master planner for the project. The ideal plan would incorporate

German discount grocer Lidl will open its doors to shoppers on Aug. 17 at its newest store in Kirkwood. The 30,000 square-foot store in the Parkview Station shopping center, 1855 Memorial Drive, will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony before the store opens at 8 a.m. The first 100 customers will receive a gift card ranging from $5 to $100 each, according to a Lidl press release.


Gigi’s Italian Kitchen will take over the space in Candler Park now home to Gato, which closed July 23. Find out more at their IG @gigisitaliankitchen. ◄TKO, a Korean American street food concept, is set to open its first brick-andmortar location in East Atlanta’s Southern Feed Store later this summer. Find out more on IG @tko_thekorean1. Buckhead restaurant The Betty has earned Wine Spectator’s prestigious Award of Excellence in the 2022 Restaurant Awards. Make a reservation at Hodgepodge Coffeehouse closed its Reynoldstown location in July, stating on social media that its team had been “spreading themselves too thin trying to keep all three shops operating.” Hodgepodge locations in Decatur and East Atlanta will remain open, while plans have been scrapped for a fourth location in Summerhill. Find out more at ►Capella Cheese, a modern take on the traditional cheese shop, is now open at 255 Ottley Dr. in Armour Yards. More details on IG @capellacheese. Longtime Atlanta lesbian bar My Sister’s Room has moved from 12th St. to the former Publico space 1104 Crescent Ave. in Midtown. More details at BeltLine cocktail bar The James Room will open a second location in Buckhead Village featuring a rooftop lounge later this summer. Get updates at

At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m






the farm into the new development, Chanin said, but that possibility is uncertain. What is certain is Global Growers’ intention to continue connecting diverse farmers to land so they can grow food in sustainable ways, sell the food at markets to bring in income for their families, and increase consumption of culturally familiar foods, Chanin said. Earlier this year, the organization acquired 23 acres in Conyers to serve as a “flagship” farm. Fifteen to 20 small farms are planned to operate on the land, all led by diverse growers, Chanin said. “Global Growers is on a pathway to land ownership following 10 years of developing farms and gardens on leased land with our talented grower network, most of whom face current and historical barriers to land access,” she said. “Together, we are creating a model of land stewardship that will drive community wealth building while also preserving and sharing important cultural traditions.”


is using Google Maps and just scanning green space,” said Robin Chanin, cofounder and executive director of Global Growers. “I spent some time looking at the MARTA rail corridor, following it, and I am just looking for patches of green,” she said. “And at the end of the line at Indian Creek I said, ‘What’s that green space in the corner of the parking lot?’” In June, MARTA announced it is partnering with Global Growers to establish a farm for the Umurima in that corner of the parking lot Chanin saw via Google Maps. The women will grow food for their families, and their produce will also be sold at MARTA Markets at West End, Bankhead, College Park, H.E. Holmes, Five Points, Doraville, and Kensington MARTA stations. “When we heard about this farm being uprooted and that those who tend to it are MARTA riders, we knew we wanted to help,” said MARTA Interim General Manager and CEO Collie Greenwood in a written statement. “Indian Creek Station is located in


Tickets are on sale for Taqueria del Sol and Fox Bros BBQ’s Foxeria del Sol Hatch Chile Fest on Aug. 21 at The Works. Proceeds benefit children’s brain cancer charity Hogs for the Cause. Tickets are available at by searching for the event.


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Gas prices got you down? Here’s a guide to wines under $25 Women + Wine

Katie Rice & Sarah Pierre Rice owns VinoTeca in Inman Park and Pierre owns 3 Parks Wine Shop in Glenwood Park..

You would have to be living under a rock if you haven’t noticed that you’ve been paying more for everything these days. With inflation hitting a 41-year high, there is no way to avoid the 9.1% increase in consumer prices. Groceries, transportation, and rent are really squeezing Americans’ wallets and putting our country at risk for another major financial crisis. Wine is no exception to this price increase.

Thinking outside the box Sarah had the opportunity to talk with Samantha Sheehan, owner/winemaker of Poe and Ultraviolet Wine, while she was in town. With prices on the rise for everything, we wanted to see how this directly affected Sheehan’s wine pricing and how she manages to keep wine costs consistent. “Our costs have been steadily going up for at least the last five years,” Sheehan said. She added that this is a direct result of labor going up in the vineyards, which she is happy to pay. more in labor. “It costs $500 more per ton to farm organically, and we get about 50 twelve-bottle cases per ton, which is almost one dollar more per bottle of wine.” Having an organic wine isn’t the only factor affecting the cost of production. Sheehan is battling the rising costs of shipping. It came as a bit of a surprise to us, but the cost of glass has not increased, it’s the soaring costs of shipping due to gas prices. Some wineries have resorted to putting their orders in a year and a half in advance just to save on glass and shipping prices. Who knows when the freight costs will normalize, so winemakers like Sheehan must think outside the box. Unlike many other winemakers, Sheehan has managed to never increase the cost of her Ultraviolet Wines. “I’ve always tried to get creative with where we can cut costs that don’t affect quality,” she said, noting she’s using a different fermenting vessel (bottle vs. tank) to help reduce the cost. “It’s really all about the quality of wine that goes in it.”

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Sheehan also uses a lighter bottle for her Ultraviolet Cabernet. Not only is the glass less expensive, but the lower weight saves quite a bit on shipping while reducing their carbon footprint. We wish more brands focused on the quality of the wines over the packaging. However, after our discussion with Sheehan, we realized that consumers’ purchases are highly influenced by packaging. Design, weight, and materials used to package a product are what drive a person to make a purchase. During times like these when the cost of goods is at an all-time high, maybe consumers will shift their mindset on expensive packaging in exchange for a better, less expensive product overall.

Less can be more As wine retailers, many of us carry the huge responsibility to keep our products affordable for our guests. That means that as wine prices increase, retailers have to be the final decision maker before it reaches the buyer. Does this wine warrant the price? The best part about shopping at an independent wine shop is finding a $15 bottle of wine and it ends up being the best $15 bottle of wine you’ve ever had! Here’s our list of “ballin’ on a budget” wines under $25 to drink this summer.


of orange, honeydew, coconut, a touch of vanilla, squeezed lime, and vibrant acidity. Imported by Martine’s Wine. Average retail price: $15.

Rosé 2021 Château Guilhem Pot de Vin Rosé, Languedoc, France: Each year when this rosé is released, it seems to get better and better. Barely pink in color, it’s just the right amount of fruit, texture, and acidity. All the flavors you want in a dry rosé are present in Pot de Vin: bursting notes of strawberry, watermelon, and tangerine. Average retail price: $16.

Red Ercole Rosso, Bianco, Rosato, Moscato d’Asti, Pet Nat, Piedmont, Italy: Everyone’s favorite one-liter bottle. Always under $20 and always reliable. These wines were made to be food-friendly, peoplepleasing, and great for large gatherings. Can be found at most retailers and markets in Atlanta. Imported by The Piedmont Guy. Average retail price: $16.

you bring to a dinner party when they say they are preparing Orzo Salad with feta and Spiedini di Agnello. Average retail price: $17. 2019 Skinner Grenache, El Dorado, California: The perfect summer chillable red. To say we’re obsessed is an understatement. The wine is extremely aromatic and silky on the palate. Notes of raspberry, cranberry and pomegranate. Granite and a hint of herbal qualities. It’s juicy and easy drinking. Average retail price: $19. Mary Taylor Wines: Atlanta owes many thanks to Carson Demmond, owner of Rive Gauche Distribution Company, for bringing Mary Taylor Wines to the Atlanta wine scene. Every single wine that Mary Taylor produces under her label are winners. Keep an eye out for the Anjou Red, Costières de Nimes, and the Douro Red Blend. Average retail price: $17.

2020 Poe Ultraviolet Cabernet, Napa Valley, California: If you’re looking for a cabernet you can chew, this is not the one. Sheehan is using restraint in its greatest form. This is the cabernet

Poe Wines Ultraviolet Sparkling Rosé NV, California: You don’t need to be celebrating to drink a bottle of sparkling wine. As a matter of fact, just getting through the workday these days feels like a reason to celebrate. Winemaker, Samantha Sheehan knocked it out of the park with this sparkling rosé that has notes of white flowers, rose petals, juicy ripe strawberry and raspberry, and grapefruit zest. Average retail price: $23. 2021 Avinyo Petillant Blanc, Catalonia, Spain: Calling all beach bums. This is the wine for you. It’s dry, aromatic, floral, and tropical. Notes of lemon peel and salinity. The best part: it’s effervescent and low in alcohol! Enjoy on a warm summer day while hanging at the pool or doing yard work. Average retail price: $18.

White 2021 Terres Blonde Chardonnay, Vin de France, France: Sorry, not sorry. You will change your mind about chardonnay once you try this one. Buttery, nope. Oaky, far from it. Creamy, never. Vanilla apple pie, we wish, but no. When you sip Terres Blonde Chardonnay, you immediately taste notes

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Arts � Culture � Music

‘The Voice of God’ A tribute to beloved Atlanta actor Stuart Culpepper By Manning Harris Editor’s Note: Atlanta actor and voice artist Stuart Culpepper died of natural causes at age 84 on June 26. The beloved thespian appeared in many stage shows, films, and his voice – dubbed “the voice of God” for its deep, authoritative power – could be heard in countless advertisements. He also appeared on tv and in films – most notably “In the Heat of the Night” and the movie adaptation of Ernest Gaines’ novel “A Lesson Before Dying.” Former Theatrical Outfit artistic director Tom Key described Culpepper as one of “Atlanta’s finest actors” in a tribute on social media. Here, our theatre critic Manning Harris reminisces about his former teacher and friend.


tuart Culpepper was a true Renaissance man of Atlanta theatre — actor, director, teacher, writer, and friend. I first met Stuart in the early 1970s, shortly after I moved to Atlanta. I read in Creative Loafing that acting classes were being given at the Callanwolde Fine Arts Center. I’d been interested in acting since childhood and had performed in plays all through college, so I drove over to Callanwolde and enrolled in a class taught by Stuart. I liked him immediately; Stuart had

an easy-going, charming way about him with a twinkle in his eye and put all his adult students at ease as he assigned us scenes or monologues. He also had “the voice.” You may know that Stuart Culpepper was one of Atlanta’s most successful voice-over actors ever and was famous for having “the voice of God.” No one who heard him sing the praises of Ellman’s “diamonds and gold jewelry” on the radio could forget him. In my opinion, he was every bit as impressive a voice-over artist as Morgan Freeman; the timbre of both actors is similar. I knew that Stuart was a truly fine theatre and film actor also, but I only

saw him in two shows that I recall. One was a production of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” (before the film came out) as a part of Atlanta’s Winter Play Season at the now-defunct Peachtree Playhouse. This production was electrifying and justly became a legend. Some years later, I saw Stuart play the lead role of Dodge in Sam Shepard’s Pulitzer PrizeStuart Culpepper winning drama “Buried Child” at the 14th Street Playhouse. Stuart was magnificent, as was the play. He owned the stage; it was a thrilling evening of powerful yet funny theatre — unforgettable. On a personal note, I was teaching high school, but I decided to take private

voice-over lessons from Stuart. These were fun and enlightening. I remember being impressed by his vast collection of classical recordings, especially opera. Stuart was not a singer, but he loved and appreciated the beauty of the human voice. And he loved performance — period. One of our most exciting times together was trekking to the Omni to see the Rolling Stones in 1975. The Stones were at their peak; I remember when it was over, he said, “Manning, this was theatre — pure and simple.” And it was. Another time, Stuart confided in me that in the 1960’s he spent some time in New York. One evening at a party he met the young Barbra Streisand, who was appearing in “Funny Girl” on Broadway. Stuart and Barbra had a nice chat; Barbra asked him if he had seen her show. He replied he couldn’t get tickets; and she said, “I can take care of that.” And she did; he also got to visit her backstage after the show. I happen to be a longtime Streisand uberfan; I was and am mightily impressed. Stuart Culpepper was a huge force in the arts in Atlanta for a long time. As the years went on, we didn’t see each other very often, but I will always treasure our friendship, what he taught me, and the many fun times we had together. The arts community in Atlanta has lost a true giant.

Rodin exhibit coming to High Museum By Collin Kelley A major exhibition of the work of iconic French sculptor Auguste Rodin is coming to the High Museum of Art this fall. “Rodin in the United States: Confronting the Modern” — on view at the High from Oct. 21 to Jan. 15, 2023 — follows the artist’s rise to eminence in America due in large part to the collectors, critics, and curators who helped make it happen. The exhibition will feature 70 works, including “The Thinker,” “The Kiss,” “Bust of Saint John the Baptist,” bust of “Katherine Seney Simpson (Mrs. John W. Simpson),” and “Monument to Balzac” on loan from galleries from around the country. “Though now holding pride of place in major American museum collections, and renowned for its distinctive aesthetic,

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it’s perhaps only in the last 40 years that Rodin’s work has become recognized as among the greatest achievements in Modern art,” said Rand Suffolk, the Nancy and Holcombe T. Green, Jr. director of the High. “This exhibition takes the audience on a journey, as Rodin’s reputation builds, declines, and rises again. It’s a fascinating story, illustrated by many of Rodin’s most striking and beautiful works.” Rodin first gained significant attention in the United States in 1893, when the Metropolitan Museum of Art made the first acquisition of his artwork by an American institution. That same year, he made his controversial debut at Chicago’s World’s Columbian Exposition with three marble sculptures, which were quickly judged too provocative and moved to a private space that was only accessible by request. As the exposition progressed, however, the censorship propelled public interest in his work.

Rodin’s “The Kiss”

This notoriety sparked an early-20thcentury collecting frenzy, promoted by noted philanthropist Katherine Seney Simpson, avant-garde performer Loïe Fuller, and collector Alma de Bretteville Spreckels, among others. The exhibition

Rodin’s “St. John the Baptist”

details the intriguing confluence of these Rodin enthusiasts and the roles they played in generating interest in his art. Get tickets and more information at At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

Safe from Harm

Sachi Rome’s art embodies magic and value of Black life By Isadora Pennington “The pieces that I create are a coping mechanism,” says artist Sachi Rome. “They are a way for me to manifest a space where I truly can feel safe without threat.” Characterized by expressive features conveyed via bold colors, the abstract portraits of African America faces in her works evoke a sense of tranquility, strength, and mysticism. For Rome, the paintings are not just a means of creative expression. They are also a form of rebellion. Rome seeks to create safe spaces in her work, places where being Black is celebrated and supported. Within her painting, there is a sense of connection to that which is sacred and, in a departure from her experience as a Black woman in America, a distinct lack of prejudice and hostility. “American existence is traumatic. The news constantly reminds you of all the dangers that everyday society holds for life in Black America. My everyday experiences remind me that I must pay attention to my world or it may destroy me and those I love. I can’t lose sight of America’s history.” As a parent to two Black sons growing up in a time when Black people are at risk of serious harm or death for, well, just about anything, she is acutely aware of the dangers of existing while Black. A few years ago, Rome was involved in a project that highlighted Black people who were unjustly killed by police. She highlighted Koren Gaines and Atatiana Jefferson, two women who were killed within the supposed safety of their own homes. The project had a profound effect on Rome who couldn’t stop thinking about their stories for months. Rome wanted to believe in an America where it would be safe to exist while Black. “The direction of my work expanded to include not only portraiture but to encompass the space that these entities resided in. It became a wider conversation

about existence. To truly breathe, free and be at peace. It did not exist in the world that I physically lived in so I created a metaphysical space where freedom and safety could be guaranteed.” In Rome’s world, being Black is not only acceptable but celebrated. There are connections to the sacred realm that is beyond the reach of human politics and prejudice. Sachi Rome “Repetitive, radiating circles are one of oldest symbols in human existence,” explains Rome, who says the shape represents connection, time, and energy. “I use the radiating circles as markers to illustrate the connection of history and memory. Sprinkles of diamond dust flash like falling stars highlight and embody the magic and value of Black life and existence.” Rome credits the build-up of texture and rich color to inspiration from Louis Delsarte, someone she studied under at Morris Brown College. She also experienced some critical losses: her grandfather, a coach who was a father figure to Rome, as well as some students she knew. Grief overwhelmed and confused her, and through that darkness she began developing her style and artwork which has continued to evolve to this day. Using acrylics, Rome utilizes unique tools to build texture and convey movement. Instead of paintbrushes, she might use a spatula or a credit card. She adds elements such as diamond dust and gelatin plate printing onto paper that she then collages. Working from her imagination rather than a photograph, her portraits evolve organically with every mark. “The work relies on instinct, trust and serendipity. I truly believe that the universe guides my hands, and I am just channeling the essence of energy of those that seek to have presence in this space.” For more information, visit

SCAD permanent collection on display at Meals On Wheels Atlanta By Isadora Pennington Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) and its president and founder, Paula Wallace, have contributed a selection of more than 50 artworks to Meals On Wheels Atlanta (MOWA) for their new Midtown office and the adjacent 1705 West venue space. The works, which include paintings, sculptures, textiles, and photography, were created by 14 notable SCAD alumni and were hand-selected by President Wallace and SCAD’s Chief Operating Officer Glenn Wallace. All exhibiting artists are represented by SCAD Art Sales, the university’s in-house art consultancy and curatorial studio. “This SCAD collection complements the positive energy and meaningful work of MOWA by imbuing their handsome offices and events spaces with the joy of fine art,” explained President Wallace. “SCAD and Meals on Wheels Atlanta share a heart for the underserved of this wondrous city. Glenn and I wanted to do something special for our friends at MOWA to thank them for their important work.” The donation of these artworks to MOWA also exemplifies the mission of SCAD SERVE, a community service design studio that seeks to uplift local communities with design-driven solutions to the critical needs such as food, shelter, clothing, and environment. MOWA is a notable local organization dedicated to helping seniors in need through donations of prepared foods, pantry staples, and even pet food and supplies. Serving more than 1,800 meals per day throughout metro Atlanta, MOWA ensures seniors can remain independent with aid that goes above and beyond meals. They also offer education, socialization, a sense of community and belonging. “The incredible generosity of President Wallace throughout the years is punctuated in this art exhibition that celebrates our new venue, 1705 West, and captures the essence of MOWA’s mission,” MOWA CEO Charlene Crusoe-Ingram said in a press release. “The artworks and their SCAD creators are a reflection of our colorful city, the seniors we serve, and our staff who deliver food, compassion and care that our aging neighbors urgently need.” Featured artists include: ■ Trish Andersen (B.F.A., fibers, 2005) ■ Aliyah Salmon (B.F.A., textile design, 2018) ■ Kent Knowles (B.F.A., painting, 1997;

At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

SCAD alumni Trish Andersen and Aliyah Salmond working on a yarn mural for Meals on Wheels.

SCAD painting professor) ■ Marcus Kenney (M.F.A., photography, 1998) ■ Abigail Chase Miller (M.A., sculpture, 2019) ■ Adrienne Dixon (B.F.A., painting, 2011) ■ Brandon Sadler (B.F.A., illustration, 2009) ■ Chris Skeene a.k.a. Blockhead (B.F.A., photography, 2006) ■ Ayana Ross (M.F.A., painting) ■ Dan VanLandingham (M.F.A., painting, 2011) ■ Tim Kent (B.F.A., painting, 2014) ■ Hasani Sahlehe (B.F.A., painting, 2015) ■ Michael Porten (M.F.A., painting, 2012; B.F.A., illustration, 2004) ■ Lauren Coggins-Tuttle (M.F.A., painting, 2012) AUGUST 2022 | INTOWN



Mountains � Beaches � Daytrips

Panoramic Pine Mountain Outdoor fun, historic sites, and Callaway Gardens make for a perfect weekend getaway

The view from Dowdle’s Knob at FDR State Park (Photos courtesy Explore Georgia)

By Collin Kelley

The town of Warm Springs ( takes its name from the nearby springs – 88 degrees Fahrenheit and full of minerals – that edge Pine Mountain. Creek and Iroquois Indians used the springs to heal their sick and wounded, and in 1832, David Rose built the area’s first resort around them. The town’s original name was Bullochville, and today, tight alleys lead visitors to Old Bullochville, a reconstructed homage to Warm Spring’s past, found behind Bulloch House and the many shops on Broad Street.

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gar, and lake sturgeon. It’s also used to recover species that are listed under the Endangered Species Act and restore freshwater fish habitats. The hatchery includes a public aquarium and visitors’ area with walkways amid a beautiful, natural environment. Looking for a place to stay? Hotel Warm Springs ( in downtown was built in 1907 but has retained its historic charm with the addition of modern conveniences like wi-fi, plus a full southern breakfast in the third-floor dining room. And if you’re still hungry, the famed Bulloch House Restaurant (bullochhouse. com) on Broad Street serves up Southern food like your grandma used to make. Hotel Warm Springs

A mountain getaway usually means heading to North Georgia, but why not head south instead? Pine Mountain and nearby attractions like Callaway Gardens, President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Little White House, the historic towns of Warm Springs and Manchester are perfect for a weekend away from the city. Located about 80 miles south of Atlanta, Pine Mountain is both scenic and activity-filled whether you’re an outdoor or history enthusiast. There’s also plenty in the way of accommodations, from resorts to campgrounds.

Warm Springs

A waterfall at FDR State Park.

Warm Springs gained national recognition in 1924 when President Roosevelt visited the area to treat his polio-related paralysis. The springs are no longer open for public use, but they are used therapeutically by the Roosevelt Warm Springs Institute for Rehabilitation, founded by FDR. Since the invention of the polio vaccine, the institute provides Vocational Rehabilitation programs for people with disabilities. A touch pool allows visitors to feel the warm spring waters and learn about its history. Also be sure to check out the Warm Spring National Fish Hatchery, which was established in 1899 to restore and manage fish such as striped bass, alligator

Little White House Built in 1932 when he was governor of New York, the Little White House (

became FDR’s home while he visited the area to take advantage of the springs. The people he met and the experiences he had in Warm Springs prompted some of his programs once he became president, such as the Rural Electrification Administration. In 1945, while posing for a portrait, FDR suffered a stroke and died shortly afterwards. The “Unfinished Portrait” is one of the many exhibits in the museum, as is his 1938 Ford convertible with hand controls. The Little White House has been carefully preserved much as FDR left it. Visitors are welcome to visit the home, museum, and pools.

F.D. Roosevelt State Park and Manchester Georgia’s largest state park ( is set among the Pine Mountain Range. The 9,000-plus acre park offers more than 40 miles of trails, winding through pines and hardwood trees, over creeks, and past small waterfalls. Dowdell’s Knob offers a breath-taking view. It’s a spot where FDR was known to sometimes picnic and ponder national and international issues. He was so fond of the spot that a brick oven was installed for Continued on page 40 At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

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A butterfly at the Cecil B. Day Butterfly Center at Callaway Gardens. Continued from page 38

barbecues. The overlook now features a life-size sculpture of the president gazing out over the mountains. Dowdell’s Knob is located just of State 190, a winding and scenic roadway that begins just south of Manchester and takes you all the way to Callaway Gardens. There are plenty of places to stop and stretch your legs as well as snap more of those fantastic views from atop Pine Mountain. Speaking of Manchester, it’s a fine example of a mountain town with a

delightful main street full of shops and the historic President Theatre, originally built in 1935 as a movie house. It was restored with the help of a grant from the Fox Theatre Institute and is now home to regular community events, theatre productions, films, and more. A fun fact for the literary-minded: Manchester is the hometown of bestselling author Stuart Woods, who fictionalized the city as Delano for his novel “Chiefs.”

Hot air balloon festival at Callaway Gardens.

Callaway Gardens Founded in 1952 and set on nearly 7,000 acres, Callaway Gardens ( has become a favored weekend getaway spot, especially for golf lovers and nature enthusiasts. One of the main attractions is the giant Cecil B. Day Butterfly Center, which has the distinction of being the largest enclosed tropical conservatory in North America. Thousands of butterflies from 50 different species flutter over a vast array of flowers and plants. There are also 10 miles of walking and

biking paths, the white sand Robin Lake Beach and two 18-hole golf courses. Regular events are held, such as the annual Labor Day weekend hot air balloon festival and Fantasy Lights, which see the gardens decked out in millions of twinkling bulbs for the holiday season. An array of accommodations are onsite, including The Lodge, villas, cottages, and the more affordable Mountain Creek Inn. You won’t go hungry either, with sevent restaurants and bars to choose from, including the down-home southern delights of Country Kitchen located inside the rustic Callaway Gardens Country Store.

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Georgia lighthouses stand as icons of the state’s rich maritime heritage Travels with Charlie

Sapelo Island Lighthouse

Tybee Light

Charles Seabrook

Veteran Georgia journalist Charles Seabrook has covered native wildlife and environmental issues for decades. For “Travels with Charlie,” he visits and photographs communities throughout the state.

British Gen. James Oglethorpe founded Georgia in 1733. Three years later, he oversaw the building on Tybee Island of the colony’s first lighthouse. Oglethorpe saw the crucial need for lighthouses to safely guide ships, laden with people and goods, through Georgia‘s treacherous coastal waters. Eventually, over more than two centuries, 15 lighthouses came to dot Georgia’s 100-mile-long coastline. Five still stand. Like lighthouses everywhere — more than 400 in the United States — Georgia’s five remaining lights represent a rich, maritime heritage. They’re admired not only for their great beauty, but also for the trove of history they represent. They all tell their own tales of fierce wars, marauding pirates, lost ships, and rescued sailors. They have withstood hurricanes, destructive erosion and cannonballs raining down during raging battles. Today, Georgia’s lighthouses add a coastal charm and remain as symbols of hope and safe haven. Three lighthouses — Tybee Island, St. Simons and Sapelo -- still serve as navigation aids. From the tops of them, glorious views can still be had of salt marshes, estuaries, maritime forests -- and the restless ocean itself. Here’s more information about Georgia’s five lighthouses (from north to south along the coast): At the mouth of the Savannah River is the Tybee Island Light, Georgia‘s oldest lighthouse — and tallest at 145-feet tall. The striking black-and-white tower remains one of America’s most intact lighthouses, with all its historic support structures — including lighthouse keepers’ cottages — still on site. The lighthouse and museum are maintained by the Tybee Island Historical Society and open to the public. The 46-foot-tall Cockspur Island Lighthouse, sitting on a tiny isle two miles south of Tybee Light, is Georgia‘s smallest lighthouse. Made of Savannah gray brick, the current structure was built in 1857 to mark the Savannah River’s south Channel. No longer functional, it’s now a part of the Fort Pulaski National Monument on Tybee, managed by the National Park Service. It’s closed to the public, but good

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St. Simons Island Lighthouse

views of it can be had from an overlook trail at the national monument. With bold red and white stripes, the 100-foot-tall Sapelo Island Lighthouse is perhaps Georgia’s most beautiful light. Built in 1905, it replaced a previous structure damaged by hurricanes and the Civil War. By 1934, with ship traffic in the area declining to a trickle, the Sapelo Light was deactivated. It has been fully restored and is open to the public through special tours. Near the lighthouse is another light, a so-called Range Front Light, one of few such structures remaining in the country. Although it’s not considered a lighthouse itself, mariners used it with the Sapelo Light to position their ships and plot a safe course into the harbor. The original St. Simons Island Lighthouse was destroyed during the Civil War and replaced in 1872 with the current 104-foot-tall tower. The beautiful lighthouse was electrified in 1934 and automated in 1953. Maintained by the Coastal Georgia Historical Society, it’s still operational and open to the public. The 60-foot-tall Little Cumberland Island Lighthouse was built in 1838 to mark the entrance to St. Andrews Sound and the Satilla River in Camden County. Later deactivated, it and the surrounding area are now privately owned and closed to the public. However, the top half of the lighthouse can be seen from Jekyll Island’s south end.

Cockspur Island Lighthouse

Front Range Light, Sapelo Island

Little Cumberland Island Lighthouse

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Museum Town: Cartersville showcases art, science & automobiles

When They Run With Freedom artist Benjamin Jacob Nelson or Ahn-Hia-Ohm mixed media (Photo by Donna P. Williams)

Ranch, a hands-on experience and interactive children’s gallery. “The museum has become an important attraction since opening in Cartersville, being the world’s largest permanent exhibition space for Western art, and it is the largest museum of its kind in the Southeast,” said Grace Adams, director of marketing at Booth Western Art Museum. With 120,000 square feet of space, the Booth is a great size to see in a day, but offers more than enough to make additional trips worthwhile, Adams said. “Temporary exhibits are changed every three to four months in four

By Kathy Dean The Tellus Science Museum building winks through a cluster of tall trees along I-75 near Exit 293. It hits the eye like the prow of a proud ship. The building hints at the treasures displayed within it, and other treasures in Cartersville, a city less than an hour’s drive north of Atlanta that has collected a cluster of unusual museums. “Cartersville is home to … some of the Atlanta area’s most interesting museums,” said Meredith Dollevoet, sales and marketing manager at the CartersvilleBartow County Convention & Visitors Bureau. Things really started, Dollevoet said, when a group of local business owners got together and decided they needed a place to show artworks they had gathered to the public. “The Booth Museum was opened in 2003 as a way to share their art collections with the community and to provide educational opportunities,” she said. That was just the start. The group formed the non-profit Georgia Museums, Inc., and in 2009, opened the Tellus Science Museum as an expansion of a building then known as the Weinman Mineral Museum. Other museums followed, with Georgia Museums now responsible for the Bartow History Museum and a related entity that operates the Grand Theatre in downtown Cartersville. The latest addition to the group’s collection, the Savoy Automobile Museum, opened in December 2021. The gathering of museums draws tourists and attention to the city. In fact, Smithsonian Magazine included Cartersville as one of the 15 Best Small Towns to Visit in 2022. “In a nutshell, Cartersville became Georgia’s Museum City because a group of generous businessmen wanted to give back to the community through their love and appreciation of art, history, science, education, and now, cars,” Dollevoet said.

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Director of Marketing at the Tellus Science Museum. “The Weinman Museum was one of the few options teachers had for geology field trips for students,” she said. “However, the 9,000-square-foot museum could not accommodate the high demand for educational activities. Eventually the museum was turning away more students than they were able to serve and that’s when the decision was made to expand the museum and the services we offer.” It has grown to 120,000 square feet with four permanent galleries: The Weinman Mineral Gallery, The Fossil Gallery, Science in Motion and The Collins Family My Big Backyard. Some of the most popular exhibits are an 80-foot-long Brontosaurus and a replica 1903 Wright flyer. Tellus also houses three special exhibit galleries, a fossil dig, and gem-panning interactive exhibit, as well as a 120-seat digital planetarium and an observatory that features a state-of-the-art 20-inch telescope. “The museum became a Smithsonian Affiliate shortly after opening in January 2009,” Redd added. For more, visit

Savoy Automobile Museum

A 1955 Chevy Bel Air at the Savoy Automobile Museum.

Apollo I Replica, Credit Tellus Science Museum

Booth Western Art Museum The Booth Museum, named for Sam Booth, a friend and mentor to the founders, boasts a permanent collection of the art of the American west, Civil War art and presidential portraits and letters, allowing visitors to “See America’s Story” in paintings, sculpture, photography and artifacts. The Booth also features Sagebrush

galleries, resulting in 12 to 15 exhibitions per year, the most in any Georgia art museum,” she said. For more, visit

Tellus Science Museum The Tellus Science Museum is an expansion of the former Weinman Mineral Museum, according to Shelly Redd,

Inside the 65,000-square-foot Savoy Automobile Museum, visitors are invited to roam a Great Hall and four exhibition galleries that showcase automobiles of different makes, models, and eras. There is also a state-of-the-art theatre with stadium seating for nearly 300 guests that includes an ultra hi-definition video panel wall, measuring 17 feet by 33 feet, and a turntable stage for rotating vehicles. The museum’s permanent collection rotates periodically; it includes a 1932 Rolls Royce 20/25, 1953 Kaiser Dragon and 1957 Chevrolet Corvette. The museum’s name seemed predetermined. “When developing the land, a 1954 Plymouth Savoy car with a tree growing out of it was unearthed. As if by fate, it was the only vehicle uncovered,” Dollevoet said. “This famous Savoy car is on permanent display outside the museum in all its rusted glory.” The Savoy has a 37-acre campus, and there are plans to build an outdoor pavilion for use with events on the showgrounds. Current and upcoming exhibitions include: “Pirelli: The Story of a Company,” through Sept. 4, with a collection of cars that don Pirelli tires, including Formula One, Ferrari and Lamborghini; “FrontRunners,” through Oct. 2, featuring record-breaking Indy roadsters from the 1950s and 1960s; and “Big Blocks,” Aug. 2-Dec. 4, showcasing “the big and bold from an iconic era in American automotive history.” In addition to exhibitions, the Savoy hosts events. On Aug. 13 at 2 p.m., the 1968 Steve McQueen film “Bullitt” will be shown at the Savoy’s theatre. For details, visit At l a n t a I n t o w n Pa p e r. c o m

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Booth Museum director hit the trail to learn job Seth Hopkins

By Kathy Dean Seth Hopkins, the Booth Museum’s first employee, helped the museum take root and flourish from the moment it was conceived. Hopkins, now the Booth’s executive director, also headed up the

team that developed the Tellus Science Museum and re-envisioned the Bartow History Museum. Originally from Maine, Hopkins earned a journalism degree from Syracuse University and embarked on a career in radio and TV news. He worked in several


Georgia markets, including Columbus and, finally, Cartersville, where he worked for a family that collected Western art and had enjoyed a good deal of business success. Then, at the end of 1999, Hopkins said he had his “Y2K moment” when his boss announced that he was starting an art museum in Cartersville, and told Hopkins, “You’ll run it.” Hopkins says he responded: “I don’t know anything about art, and I’m not sure I can even spell museum.” But, at age 32, he took the challenge and ran with it. Since it took more nearly three years to build the Booth Museum, Hopkins spent that time researching what it takes to assemble a collection, create exhibitions, and generally run a museum. He also traveled through the American West to acquaint himself with its culture, history, and art. That was a real highlight, he said, asking “How many people get to visit Yosemite National Park for their job?” Hopkins also hit the books and took courses in museum studies, Western history, and art history at five universities before settling on Oklahoma University.

There he earned his master’s degree, and his thesis on the Western art of Andy Warhol became a national traveling exhibition in 2019. “I am very proud,” he said. “Despite some COVID setbacks, the exhibition, called “Warhol and the West,” visited four major venues and the companion book received several awards.” The Booth now is the largest museum of its kind in the Southeast. It has received a range of awards through the years, including Best Art Museum by USAToday Readers’ Choice 10Best awards program in 2020, 2021 and 2022. The nonprofit that runs Booth Museum, Georgia Museums, Inc., (GMI) recently added Savoy Automobile Museum to its collection. Hopkins stepped down as Executive Director of GMI to focus on the Booth, where his crash course in museums began. “I was already stretched thin among the three museums, and with a fourth on the horizon, I knew it was important to have a new leader for GMI,” he said. “Then I could turn my full attention back to the Booth.”

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Atlanta Fine Homes, LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each franchise is independently owned and operated. Intown Office: 1555 Peachtree Street NE, Suite 100, Atlanta, Georgia 30309.



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©2022 BHH Affiliates, LLC. An independently operated subsidiary of HomeServices of America, Inc., a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate, and a franchisee of BHH Affiliates, LLC. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of Columbia Insurance Company, a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate. Equal Housing Opportunity. All information is believed to be accurate but is not warranted and subject to errors, omissions, changes, or withdrawal without prior notice. If your home is currently listed this is not intended as solicitation.

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