Atlanta Senior Life - October 2022

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OCTOBER 2022 • Vol. 7 No. 10



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Contents OCTOBER 2022

Cover Story Southeastern Trust for Parks & Land founder Bill Jones celebrates a decade of new parks


Arts and Entertainment Callanwolde Fine Arts Center turns 50 8 People Gwinnett developer Emory Morsberger pitches in to help in Ukraine 10 MJCCA Book Section


Andrew Young has lived quite a story, as he and co-writer Ernie Suggs tell it 11 From emptying the family attic to dealing with “Hoarders” on TV, Matt Paxton likes cleaning up


Hanukkah Veronica shares kindness






Readers can celebrate as two local book festivals come to town


Carmen Agra Deedy has three new children’s books on the way


Journalist Bill Hendrick writes on how an Atlanta newspaper reported on the Civil War




Visit Atlanta Senior Life online by scanning this QR Code

Travel with Charlie: Where’s best to watch the leaves turn colors?


Visit Savannah for good food, beautiful buildings and the beach 24 Health


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Southeastern Trust for Parks & Land Executive Director Bill Jones and his dog Junebug at Hawk Hollow Garden in Kirkwood. (Photo by Isadora Pennington)

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OCTOBER 2022 |





Southeastern Trust for Parks & Land founder Bill Jones celebrates a decade of new parks

By Mark Woolsey


t’s a pleasant mid-September Saturday morning and for Bill Jones, something good is happening.

The founder and executive director of the Southeastern Trust for Parks




and Land is sitting on a park bench amid the Campbellton Creek Nature Park, an 80-acre oasis of towering hardwoods, riotous greenery and garden plants. Laced with nature trails, it’s in a hyper-developed area of the city of South Fulton that’s full of warehouses and apartment complexes.

Jones is working with students from a Kennesaw State University interdisciplinary science class focused specifically on the park. They’re taking photos of a demonstration garden while checking out mushrooms and various tree varieties. They’re also digging up soil samples to be tested back on campus. A group of cyclists pulls up, the back of their car carrying a clutch of sturdy trail bikes. Joggers and walkers cruise by. A new nearby bouldering course is drawing attention. And Jones is basking in it all. “We’re talking about the intersection of conservation, recreation and community,” he said of his morning chat with the college students and their professors. That “something good is happening,” is Jones’ mantra. You’ll hear it a fair number of times when you’re in his orbit.’ Talk with him about what the trust is doing, and you quickly realize that in the span of a decade, he’s become an expert in all three of the disciplines he mentions. The Southeastern Trust itself has reached the same milestone, 10 years of age, which offers the chance for the group to take a bow for its work balancing conservation and recreation, while retaining ownership of the tracts it acquires. Back in 2012, Jones, a small business owner who grew up in metro Atlanta, was attempting to chart a course bringing balance in the rest of his life.

“I went through a period of introspection, and I decided to do something to create parks,” he said. “I didn’t know how it was going to manifest itself.” He was inspired by his frequent rambles with his dogs through the Chattahoochee National Recreation Area and the realization that since boyhood, he’d always been close to walkable trails in nature. And he believes to his core that being outdoors enhances physical, mental and what he calls “relationship” health. As he began to plan, an associate steered him toward banks that had been saddled with foreclosed-on tracts of land courtesy of Great Recession and the real estate bust. Jones found some banks receptive to his pitch to take those vacant tracts off their hands. “We were solving their problems for them,” is how he puts it, saying he learned to ask the bankers to throw in extra cash for such things as property taxes and environmental studies. For several years, the trust and Jones, its only employee, focused chiefly on land acquisition. Then, with dozens of volunteer helpers Jones had recruited, the emphasis changed to creating parks where they were suitable. The first big push was to build the 210-acre Talking Rock Nature Park in Pickens County, first ensuring it was offlimits to development forever, then sketching out a network of hiking and mountain biking trails. That’s when Ken Nix connected with Jones. “Bill had a community meeting in Jasper about the park,” Nix recalls. “I introduced myself to him,” telling them he could build mountain biking trails for less than half of what the other group was charging. “We’ve been friends ever since,” Nix said. “He trusts what I say, and I trust what he says.” That ability to size people up has stood Jones in good stead, said Jessica Rossi, the acting president of

the Friends of Fightingtown Creek Nature Park, a 190-acre mountainous tract near Blue Ridge the group acquired in 2016 and which is now being developed. “I have found Bill to be very supportive and a connector,” said Rossi, a communications executive. “I have seen when he meets someone, he looks for their strengths to figure out how they can best work together to accomplish goals.” That, she said, has progressed into successful

“I went through a period of introspection, and I decided to do something to create parks,” he said. “I didn’t know how it was going to manifest itself.” BILL JONES

partnerships Jones has formed with volunteers, contractors, government officials and the community at large. She and others laud Jones’ passion and his enthusiasm, which seems unquenchable. His words bubble up and cascade like the waters in a nearby brook. His debuting of a new nature park counts among the best of times, but there’s also the not-so-good stuff: a landowner who recently cut down an acre of trees on one of the trust’s properties; those who periodically dump a load of garbage on the group’s land, then speed off. The job is complex and challenging, the environmentalist says, ranging from fundraising to wooing donors to managing volunteers, three to five stalwarts per park who do the usual heavy lifting of trail maintenance and mitigating erosion. Nix has worked to build mountain biking trials for the trust and says he doesn’t build walking corridors

“that go straight up a mountain,” but instead aims at creating gentler contours that seniors and people who are out-of-shape can handle. As director of the trust, Jones oversees nine active parks and 36 pieces of land the trust owns across Georgia, in Tennessee and in North Carolina. Some, like coast wetlands or a rocky, bear-infested region adjacent to Dollywood in Tennessee will probably never be parks. Others are getting planning and some preparatory work. The trust’s donor base has changed over the last few years he said, with banks no longer needing to unload foreclosed properties. Individual donors have stepped in with batches of land smaller than those that emerged from the financial wreckage. “People are approaching an age, and they think ‘I am at an age where I’m thinking about my legacy, and [land donations] is a good way to do [something good],” he said. As it reaches the end of its first decade, he said, the trust is seeing some notable forward momentum. Paid staff has increased from one to three. Fundraising is getting up a head of steam. An endowment fund is growing. And he’s seen other signs things are changing, too. Early on, some city and county officials were skeptical when Jones talked up plans for land donations, evidently hesitant about kids hanging out on the property, the cost of developing it, and whether they had the resources to maintain it. “Now, cities and counties are coming to us,” he says. “And nowadays, when we get pieces of land, every one of them is from people who have seen what they’ve accomplished and tell us to do our thing on their land.” The trust has created outdoor classrooms, birdwatching, and geo-caching areas. They’re planting 150,000 longleaf pine seedlings in two regions of the state. In conserving Georgia’s dwindling available land, they work on erosion and stormwater control Jones credits his wife of 26 years, Evelyn, for keeping him moving, helping him celebrate victories, and cheerleading him through tough times. He also draws strength and stimulation from disc golf and singing and playing his guitar. But conserving Georgia’s dwindling native habitat remains the overarching goal of his life.

And he maintains an unshakeable belief in the healing power of nature. “I got a letter from a woman in Jasper a couple of years ago,” says Jones. She picked up her sulking high-school-age daughter one day and thought perhaps a Talking Rock nature walk-she’d never been there might produce a brighter mood. Mom and daughter started down the trail. Daughter became intrigued by a generous array of mushrooms. She took pictures and took them to her science teacher the next day, sparking a lively classroom discussion. “The (much happier) daughter gets picked up the next day at school and asks her mother if they can go back to the park. The mom’s like,

‘heck yeah,” Jones said. Two months later, theIR motherand-daughter walks have improved their relationship. Both have toned up and shed weight. “And the daughter was saying she wanted to major in botany,” he said. Although for Jones, when he was younger, the prospect of studying the physiology, genetics and structures of plants didn’t quite measure up the simple joys of the great outdoors. “When I was in college at UGA, I got a D in botany because I kept cutting class to go canoeing. True story,” he said.

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OCTOBER 2022 |



Callanwolde marks its 50th anniversary The Callanwolde Mansion completed in 1920 is the centerpiece of the fine arts center.

Pro Prime Movers are one of the arts groups that calls Callanwolde home.

By Clare S. Richie The year is 1972, the Omni Coliseum opened to host the Atlanta Flames and Hawks, NASA launched the Space Shuttle program and Callanwolde began its next chapter. Today, the community art center serves 12,000+ people annually through art classes, gallery exhibitions, musical performances, summer camps, field trips, venue rentals, and more on its Briarcliff Road grounds. “So much is happening here on campus every day,” said Andrew Keenan, Executive Director of Callanwolde Fine Arts Center. “People come here for very specific reasons and may not know the full breadth of programming.” Rick Berman, the first Ceramics Director (1973-1980), remembers converting the basement duck pin bowling alley into a pottery studio. “We opened with five morning wheel classes, five evening wheel classes, and a waiting list,” Berman recalled. “It was a huge success and it’s been like that ever since. We developed a real family there and it just keeps getting better.” Candy Caserella, a pottery student since the late 1980s agrees. She recently purchased a Callanwolde Legacy Brick with the inscription “A place of joy.” “It’s a fabulous place to create and meet people interested in arts,” Caserella said, emphasizing the reasonably priced, high-quality instruction for beginners on up. Completed in 1920 as then CocaCola Company president Charles Howard Candler’s home, it was named for his ancestor’s “Callan” Irish castle and “wolde” for woods. In 1959, Mr. Candler’s widow donated the estate to Emory University which later passed it to First Christian Church. The church sold off 16 acres and leased the mansion to establish an art gallery. As the property deteriorated, the church put it up for sale – including the mansion, carriage house, 8



Artist Tony Ragunas recently joined the board to help raise funds for Callanwolde.

One of the many pottery classes held at Callanwolde.

gardener cottage, two greenhouses, and out-buildings. “1972, that’s when DeKalb County took formal ownership of the property,” Keenan said. “They started leasing it in 1971. It took a year to raise the money.” The Callanwolde Foundation aided by a matching grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development) raised the funds to purchase the estate. Callanwolde operates with DeKalb County as a nonprofit.

One improvement came from an unusual source. “We didn’t have classes in the summer for many years – until 1996,” Keenan said. The Italian Olympic Committee rented the mansion for its 1996 Summer Olympics hospitality headquarters and paid its rent by having air conditioning installed in the historic home. Today, the estate boasts five gas kilns, seven electric kilns, 25 throwing wheels, 12 looms, a Jewelry studio, 3,000 square

A historic image of the mansion.

feet of dance space, and a photography darkroom. Music is piped through the mansion by the original organ’s built-in pipes and ceiling panels. The grounds feature gardens, nature trails and a 550seat amphitheater. While the historic property requires constant upkeep, Callanwolde’s board is prioritizing community engagement and access. Keenan described a four-pronged approach that includes financial aid for students and programming focused on veterans, Title 1 public schools (K-12) and underserved seniors. For seven years, Callanwolde has partnered with the local Department of Veterans Affairs to offer weekly painting and drawing classes to veterans. The focus on community engagement inspired donor and artist, Tony Ragunas (, to recently join the board and help raise more funds to make Callanwolde a “city-wide resource.” “Our future is very bright,” Keenan said. “I’ve been associated with Callanwolde for 20 years [as a student, board member and executive director]. I’ve never been more optimistic. We have the opportunity to do so much more for the community.”

Gwinnett developer Emory Morsberger pitches in to help in Ukraine with food, medical and other supplies through your work with Rotary clubs. Can you tell me how all that came about?

Gwinnett County developer Emory Morsberger spent decades helping to change the face of his fast-growing and diversifying community. He spearheaded the redevelopment of downtown Lawrenceville, and promoted Community Improvement Districts, publicprivate partnerships that use selfimposed taxes to make community improvements. He now heads two Gwinnett CIDs. More recently, he’s been a changemaker on a broader and a much more urgent scale. He’s worked to help supply Ukraine and its citizens with food, medical equipment, and other essentials during their country’s war with Russia. That effort involved organizing and fundraising among Atlanta-area Rotary clubs in an effort Morsberger called a “Rotary Relay” from Georgia to the wartorn country. Mark Woolsey chatted with Morsberger earlier this year about his development and relief work. Q. I understand you got involved with the effort to supply Ukraine

A. Soon after the war began in February, a Buckhead Rotarian who wanted to do something for Ukraine reached out to his father in Romania asking what could be done. The father knew a doctor in Ukraine who was coordinating efforts with the hospitals in Ukraine. The doctor in Ukraine came up with a list of [medical] supplies that were needed. The first went over in March. I was asked to accompany the June shipment of medical supplies. Q. What made you get physically get involved? A. I had been writing checks to different charities to help Ukraine and I literally prayed about it. I said I wanted to do more than just write checks, I wanted to make a difference. And the next day [an organizer] Chris Brand said, “We are sending a shipment at the beginning of June. Do you want to go with it?” I said yes. I’m staying actively involved and am working to raise money for more shipments.

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On your own with early dementia? Looking out for someone who is? We’d like to ask you a few questions. Researchers at Emory University are conducting interviews with: ■ Adults who have mild cognitive impairment or early dementia and don’t have a spouse, partner, or adult children living in the same state ■ Adults who have been informal caregivers for someone with dementia who is not their spouse or parent

Caregiving can include:  Helping with personal needs like shopping, cooking, or rides  Helping to arrange medical appointments and care  Being a health care proxy or decision maker Interviews last about 1 hour and can be done by phone.

Q What were the challenges in getting the supplies to the folks who need them?

Continued on page 10 OCTOBER 2022 |



Continued from page 9

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pretty well.

Q. You were involved in a pretty high-profile push for mass transit A. I went there on June 8 and met some years ago. Can you talk with Romanian folks who were about that? receiving and organizing there to ship [relief supplies] across the A. I was the leader of a group called border. It’s been difficult to ship “The Brain Train.” In 2005 and stuff into Ukraine in the middle 2006, we were working to set up of the war. There aren’t flights light rail on railroad rights-of-way going in and Ukraine is on the radiating out of Atlanta. Our first Russian system of railroads. Their effort was called “The Brain Train” railroad gauges are different than because it went from downtown, the rest of the world, so you can’t where you have Georgia State and go back and forth by train. That Georgia Tech; then out to Emory leaves tractor[University]; trailers and and to Mercer “They are strong. And trucks. I arrived {University] at in Romania Northlake; then they have welcomed and spent two to Lawrenceville, the people who have or three days where you have and then in the Georgia Gwinnett evacuated from the east southern part of College; then with open arms and Ukraine, where I all the way to basically helped Athens. We put them in all kinds organize food had a lot of shipments and of facilities. They’re momentum, but handed out food shot down determined to win, and itbywas directly. Gov. Sonny they are really sticking Perdue in 2014. Q, How are the folks that you Q. Any current together.” talked with efforts along EMORY MORSBERGER holding up? that line? A. They are A. I’m working strong. And the next two years at getting a line they have welcomed the people along Jimmy Carter Boulevard and who have evacuated from the east Mountain Industrial Boulevard. with open arms and put them We’ve got the DeKalb County in all kinds of facilities. They’re portion and the Gwinnett County determined to win, and they are portion, but the two counties don’t really sticking together. talk, so we’re getting organized to actually cross the county line. Q. You talked to many refugees as well, you had said, people who Q. Why do you think seniors are had fled the war-torn parts of the more active today? country A. We grew up in the 60s and 70s A. I met with dozens of these folks with the Vietnam War and the Civil that were in all kinds of housing Rights Movement and we were situations -- almost entirely interested in what was going on women, children and older men. around us, and not counting on They were generally middle-class the government to do everything people whose neighborhoods were for us. I went to Emory, and I was getting bombed. They’re just like on the 40th anniversary reunion us. I was impressed with their committee a few years ago. We desire to keep their freedom. were being shown around by a 27-year-old girl and we got to Q. Turning to your career as a the second floor of the Emory developer and a civic leader, what Museum, and she asked if we could made you decide that there was make it down the stairs. It was like new life to be breathed into places a hot poker got stuck in people. like downtown Lawrenceville? Q. What do you do in your spare A. First of all there was a growing time? desire for my generation to be closer to small towns, and, second, A. We’ve got nine grandchildren Lawrenceville is the county seat and my wife is in grandchild of Gwinnett County, which is heaven. We love spending time the most dynamic county in the with the family. Also, I set a goal 20 Southeast. It just needed a spark, years ago of visiting every country and I was the spark. People said in the world and Turkey was I was crazy and couldn’t turn it number 104. I plan on keeping up around. I said that I was going with that as well. to do my best and it worked out


Andrew Young has lived quite a story, as he and co-writer Ernie Suggs tell it By Logan Ritchie Whether Ernie Suggs is writing the news or writing a book, he says at the end of the day, it’s all about telling good stories. Suggs, a 25-year journalist at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution who covers race and culture, is the author of “The Many Lives of

Andrew Young.” The book is a fullcolor, visual biography of former Atlanta mayor Andrew Young, known for his role in the Civil Rights movement and the fight for human rights. “The Many Lives of Andrew Young” was released in March, when Young celebrated his 90th birthday. Each chapter is dedicated

to a different story from Young’s life; from his encounters with the Nazi party growing up in New Orleans and the Ku Klux Klan in south Georgia to two transformational terms as mayor of Atlanta. Each chapter is full of vibrant memories. “He was able to kind of pinpoint that moment in his life where Continued on page 12

Writer Ernie Suggs helps explore 'The Many Lives of Andrew Young'

Continued from page 11

everything changed. With all the things that Andy Young has done, everyone forgets that he pastored a

church in Thomasville, Ga., before he met Martin Luther King, Jr., before he was a U.N. ambassador or the mayor of Atlanta,” recalled Suggs.

Young understands the importance of his legacy, Suggs said. On the tour, Suggs learns something from him every day. “It's amazing to see the reaction that he gets when he's on tour, whether it's from Black people, white people, young, old. Everyone seems to know him. Everyone seems to respect him,” Suggs said. The book took about a year from conception to publication. Because Young lived such a public life, materials for the book were easily obtained. And it helped that Suggs had written about Young extensively. “Andy Young had a really good story to tell. And if you are a halfway

decent writer, which I think I am, you figure out what the stories are and tell the stories,” Suggs said. Spoiler alert: Suggs is not “a halfway decent writer;” he’s an award-winning writer. He’s a Harvard University Nieman fellow. During his career with the AJC, Suggs has become a local resource and historian on the Civil Rights movement. He wrote a series on HBCUs (historically Black colleges and universities) and curated Black content into a weekly newsletter called Unapologetically ATL with colleague Nedra Rhone. Unapologetically ATL launched in 2021 as a project to attract Black readers. “We still need to make sure that African Americans’ voices are heard in the paper because they play a significant role in how the city and region are taking shape. Atlanta is at the vanguard of Black culture in America,” said Suggs.

Book Festival Information Andrew Young and Ernie Suggs are scheduled to appear for an author talk and booksigning on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, starting at 8 p.m. The event is scheduled for MJCCA Zaban Park, 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody. Tickets cost $20 for MJCCA members and $27 for non-members. Books will be available for purchase. Masks are optional but encouraged. For more information: bookfestival or 678-812-4005. Ernie Suggs is scheduled to appear at the Decatur Book Festival on Oct. 1 as part of a panel discussion of Georgia politics past and present. Atlanta JournalConstitution cartoonist Mike Luckovich and political reporter Greg Bluestein are also to take part in the 9:30 a.m. discussion. The festival is being held at First Baptist Church of Decatur, 308 Clairemont Avenue. Sessions are free and open to the public. Masks are required for indoor events. For more information:




From cleaning out his family’s attic to facing ‘Hoarders,’ Matt Paxton loves decluttering

By Donna Williams Lewis Matt Paxton was just 23 years old when he began to lose the family men in his life. His father passed away first. Over the next 18 months, he lost his stepfather and both of his grandfathers. “It was so overwhelming. It was like a wave, like you’re in the ocean and just trying to catch your breath,” Paxton said. “I didn’t really know I was in it until two years later and I just started cleaning everybody’s attics and cleaning up the houses. … I was missing all the men in my family, and I was still having to go through this house, and I didn’t know where to start. And I remember thinking, ‘Man, this really sucks.’” But the more he uncovered of their lives, the more he began to enjoy the process. And, after finding a family shocker in his paternal grandfather’s tackle box, Paxton was hooked. Downsizing and decluttering became his passion and his life’s work. A featured cleaner on A&E’s “Hoarders” and star of the two-time Emmy-nominated PBS series “Legacy List with Matt Paxton,” Paxton shares his downsizing and decluttering expertise in a new book, “Keep the Memories, Lose the Stuff.” Produced in collaboration with AARP, the book addresses downsizing and decluttering from a psychological perspective

and draws from Paxton’s experiences in working with thousands of people and families over the past two decades. “My [maternal] grandfather always said to me, if something sucks, do it as a job because other people will pay you to do it,” Paxton said. “Twenty-two years later, I’m still doing it, and I love it. It’s just fascinating to me.” His book outlines a manageable, realistic plan for combatting clutter, said Paxton, a Suwanee resident and father of seven in a blended family with his wife, popular minimalist life-style advocate Zoë Kim. “Everyone knows about Marie Kondo and sparking joy and all that. For my clients, that doesn't necessarily work. I mean, the reason they have a lot of stuff is because everything sparks joy. With hoarders and seniors, it’s really hard,” he said. Focusing on why you want to downsize can help you start and maintain the journey, Paxton said. “What I’ve found is that [some people] are avoiding their decluttering to avoid deciding where they’re going to go next,” he said. He encourages people to ferret out the things that really are precious to them, showcase them and share the stories of them, which is the basis of his “Legacy List” show. He’s told countless clients, “People really do want some of your stuff. They just don’t want what you want them to have.” For example, your kids probably don’t want your heirloom china, but they may be very

Book Festival Information Matt Paxton is scheduled to appear at this year’s Book Festival of the MJCCA for an author talk on Nov. 17, starting at 11 a.m. The event takes place at the MJCCA, 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody, GA, 30338. For more information: or 678.812.4005.

interested in your vintage clothing or something that has a great backstory, he says. That family shocker Paxton found in the tackle box was a wedding certificate with a backstory he’ll never forget. He found it while helping his dad’s mother clean out her house. She wanted to marry his grandfather when she was 14 years old, but her mother made her wait until she turned 16. They had been married nearly 70 years when his grandfather passed away. The wedding certificate was not theirs. It was his grandmother’s mother’s wedding certificate. After

doing some quick math Paxton tried to hide it. But his grandmother grabbed it and, in that moment, learned that her mother, who made her wait, had married at 14, Paxton said. “My grandmother,” he said, “was furious. She said, ‘I can't believe she took two years away from me.’ And I was thinking, ‘This is so sweet, that a woman that was married for almost 70 years was mad that she lost two of them with him.’ And I thought, ‘Oh my God, this is what I want in life.’”

You may be able to help This study includes screening and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). It consists of one visit lasting 90 minutes.

Are you between 50 and 65 years old?

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OCTOBER 2022 |


Opening Night

Thursday, November 3 7:30 pm

Jon Meacham And There Was Light: Abraham Lincoln and the American Struggle

Saturday, November 5 8:00 pm

NOV 3–21, 2022 Buy Your Tickets Today! Prologue Events Wednesday, October 12 7:30 pm

Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan Mad Honey: A Novel

Melissa Rivers Lies My Mother Told Me: Tall Tales from a Short Woman

Sunday, November 6 7:00 pm

Bernie Marcus with Catherine Lewis Kick Up Some Dust: Lessons from the Co-Founder of the Home Depot on Thinking Big, Giving Back, and Doing it Yourself

Monday, November 7 7:30 pm

Ira Rosen Ticking Clock: Behind the Scenes at 60 Minutes

Wednesday, October 26 7:30 pm

Michael Oren Swann’s War: A Novel

Wednesday, November 9 12:00 pm 2 Authors — 1 Program

Lisa Barr Tuesday, November 1 7:30 pm Held at The Davis Academy

Dr. Becky Kennedy

Woman on Fire: A Novel

Meg Waite Clayton The Postmistress of Paris: A Novel

Good Inside: A Guide to Becoming the Parent You Want to Be

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PM A t l a n t a S e n 9/16/22 i o r L i f e 5:10 .com

November Book Festival Events Wednesday, November 9 7:30 pm

Tuesday, November 15 7:30 pm

Julia Haart

Daughter of Paul Newman

Brazen: My Unorthodox Journey from Long Sleeves to Lingerie

Clea Newman Soderlund

Thursday, November 10 11:00 am

Wednesday, November 16 12:00 pm

Roni Robbins

Shaunna J. Edwards and Alyson Richman

Hands of Gold: One Man’s Quest to Find the Silver Lining in Misfortune

The Thread Collectors: A Novel

Thursday, November 10 7:30 pm

Wednesday, November 16 7:30 pm

Kristallnacht Commemoration

Michael F. Roizen, M.D.

Tova Friedman The Daughter of Auschwitz: My Story of Resilience, Survival, and Hope

The Great Age Reboot: Cracking the Longevity Code for a Younger Tomorrow

Saturday, November 12 8:00 pm

Thursday, November 17 11:00 am

Andrew Young and Ernie Suggs

Matt Paxton

The Many Lives of Andrew Young

Keep the Memories, Lose the Stuff: Declutter, Downsize, and Move Forward with Your Life

Sunday, November 13 12:00 pm

Saturday, November 19 8:00 pm

Wendy Brant and Julie Anne Cooper

Nyle DiMarco

Hanukkah Veronica, The Mitzvah Fairy

Sunday, November 13 7:30 pm

Nikki R. Haley If You Want Something Done: Leadership Lessons from Bold Women

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The Extraordinary Life of an Ordinary Man: A Memoir by Paul Newman

Deaf Utopia: A Memoir — and a Love Letter to a Way of Life

and More!

New authors and events being added. Check our website for a current list of events:

OCTOBER 2022 |

9/16/22 5:10 PM


A Hanukkah fairy’s tale By Kathy Dean Hanukkah Veronica was born just the way you’d think a fairy should be — from a sincere wish and an act of love. Years later, a simple act of kindness helped her to grow so she could spread her happy message to others. Once upon a time, more than a dozen years ago, a 5-year-old girl named Lucy wanted an elf, the kind that sits on a shelf. Her mother, Julie Anne Cooper, told her that,

instead of an elf, she would find her a special Hanukkah companion. While Lucy was at school, Julie Anne went into her art room. She knew that Lucy loved fairies, so, “I pulled together a bunch of fabrics and created a soft doll and named her Hanukkah Veronica,” Julie Anne said. “Hanukkah Veronica performed mitzvahs.” Mitzvahs are acts of kindness. All season long, Hanukkah Veronica would perform good deeds, surprising and delighting

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L to R: Wendy Brant and Julie Anne Cooper

Julie Anne and her husband’s three children. There might be freshly baked cookies for an afterschool treat or a special gift for them to share. The Mitzvah Fairy became a family holiday tradition.

Family tradition inspires a book Julie Anne Cooper worked with Wendy Brant in the real estate industry. The two live in the Atlanta area, and one holiday season, Julie Anne painted a watercolor based on a photograph Wendy took in Europe and presented it to her. “It was such a kind gesture, a mitzvah,” Wendy said. “Our friendship grew stronger.” While discussing art and other interests, Julie Anne told Wendy about her family’s holiday Hanukkah Veronica tradition. “I remember growing up as a young Jewish girl and how much I would have loved to have a character like this in our lives, and how much fun it would have been,” Wendy said. Inspired by the story, Wendy told Julie Ann, “I think every family might love a Hanukkah Veronica.” Julie Anne agreed, and they decided to partner and bring Hanukkah Veronica to life. They developed a plush doll and a book to tell her story.

The story of “Hanukkah Veronica, the Mitzvah Fairy” centers around Lucy, who wishes for a holiday companion. When Hanukkah Veronica arrives, not only does Lucy make a friend, she also learns the power of kindness. Wendy said that Italian illustrator Giovanni Lombardi helped bring their vision to life in the book. She also credits Rabbi Levi Mentz at the Chabad at Forsyth for his assistance with Hanukkah Veronica. “We launched a successful Kickstarter in 2021 and we

Book Festival Information Wendy Brant and Julie Anne Cooper, co-authors of “Hanukkah Veronica, the Mitzvah Fairy,” are scheduled to appear at noon on Sunday, Nov. 13, as part of the MJCCA Book Festival. They’ll appear at the Camp Isidore Alterman Main Stage at MJCCA Zaban Park, 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody. Their appearance is open to the public without charge. Books will be available for purchase at the event. For more information: bookfestival or 678-812-4005.

have been truly humbled by the response,” Wendy said. “The message of kindness and love seems to be much needed, especially now. The fact that the stories inspire an appreciation for the many cultures and traditions of the world seems to resonate with many people.”

More friends on the way Julie Anne and Wendy hope Hanukkah Veronica is the first of the series of characters that will appear in future books. Christmas Chloe, Diwali Deepa, Kwanzaa Keisha, and Halloween Hannah are currently in the works, their website says. “The characters are from around

the world. They are friends and interact, as will be seen in the second book,” Wendy said. She said these stories offer a message of peace, love and kindness, with a focus on mitzvahs as a reminder that lasting joy comes from giving to others. “The last few years have been a challenge and many people have struggled in a variety of ways, physically and mentally. As adults, in our personal lives, and even in our governments, many people seem to approach our issues with anger and fear. We have been focusing not on what we have in common but much more on our differences,” Wendy said.

What can you learn about senior living at our next event? A whole bunch.

It’s casual, easy and you’re invited.


& Learn

Thursday, October 6th • 11:30am

Join us for an informative presentation on senior living and enjoy a delicious lunch prepared by our culinary team. To make a reservation, call 404.369.7523. Unable to attend this event? Please call to schedule a personalized tour.





650 Phipps Boulevard NE • Atlanta, Georgia • 404.369.7523

OCTOBER 2022 |




Barbara and Ed Mendel

The Fagin/ Danz Family

Lisa and Ron Brill Charitable Trust

The Eva and George Stern Family

The Zaban Foundation

SILVER SPONSORS The Hyman Foundation

Sheryl S. Blechner Marcy Louza and Mike Kenig



Jewish Book Council

Proud Member of the Jewish Book Council

Official Bookseller of the Book Festival of the MJCCA

— Special Thanks to Naomi Firestone-Teeter, Suzanne Swift, and Arielle Landau — This project is supported by Georgia Humanities and the National Endowment for the Humanities and by appropriations from the Georgia General Assembly. As of September 16, 2022

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PM A t l a n t a S e n 9/16/22 i o r L i f e 5:10 .com



Two local book festivals get rolling By Joe Earle Metro Atlanta book fans can enjoy a rare treat in October as two major local book festivals host in-person public events during the month. The 17th annual Decatur Book Festival opens with a keynote address Sept. 30 before launching a day of activities on Oct. 1 that offers more than a dozen discussions of various types of books. The Marcus Jewish Community of Center of Atlanta’s 31st annual book festival is holding “prologue events,” readings and book signings on Oct. 12, Oct. 26 and Nov.1, before launching the main portion of the festival on Nov. 3. The Decatur festival on Saturday, Oct. 1, offers presentations on Georgia politics featuring Atlanta Journal-Constitution Pulitzer Prizewinning cartoonist Mike Luckovich and AJC writers Ernie Suggs and

Greg Bluestein; a discussion among mystery authors Vanessa Riley, Jillian Medoff and Samantha Jayne Allen; and panels based around a variety of other topics. The sessions are open to the public without charge. For more information: decaturbookfestical. com. The MJCCA festival hosts talks by Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan, authors of “Mad Honey: A Novel,” on Oct. 12, and by Michael Oren, author of “Swann’s War: A Novel,” on Oct. 26. Both events are scheduled for the MJCCA at 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody. Tickets for the “Mad Honey” talk cost $38. Tickets to the “Swann’s War” event cost $17-$22. The MJCCA festival kicks off Nov. 3 with a presentation by historian Jon Meacham and continues through Nov. 21. For more information:


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OCTOBER 2022 |


Catching up with Carmen Agra Deedy The beloved children’s author has three new books on the way way to not only connect with kids but help publishing houses promote their books. “I was the reading champion for public libraries,” she recalled. “I couldn’t go to any schools or libraries, so I held ‘Picture Book Fridays’ on Zoom all summer during 2020 and read old and new children’s books.” Luckily for fans of the multi-awardwinning writer, Deedy also found time to work on three new books. The first is “Wombat Said Come In,” her 15th book, about an Australian wombat who opens his borough to animals seeking shelter from a fire destroying the woodland. Coming in October from Peachtree Publishing, “Wombat” features gorgeous illustrations from Newberry Award-winning artist Brian Lies. “I’ve had an author crush on him for years, so I was thrilled when they told me was doing the illustrations,” Deedy said.

Carmen Agra Deedy at Little Shop of Stories in Decatur. (Photo by Isadora Pennington)

By Collin Kelley Decatur children’s author Carmen Agra Deedy spent the pandemic like most people: watching everything on Netflix, reading, doing jigsaw puzzles, and cooking. Deedy spent an inordinate amount of time on Facebook, hosting a nightly virtual dinner in character as a downhome, bosomy waitress named Rita. She would tell a story, post a recipe and photo, and encourage others to do the same at “Rita’s Virtual Diner.” “This went on every night for a year,” Deedy said incredulously. “It really took on its own life and became a real community. There were hundreds of people posting, and they went on to 20



private messaging, creating a cookbook and making plans to meet up in real life.” Deedy actually got COVID-19 before the virus got a toehold in Georgia, forcing her to cancel appearances to promote her last book, “Rita & Ralph’s Rotten Day.” “The book came out from Scholastic in early 2020 just before the world shut down,” she said. “Six-hundred tickets had been reserved for the launch at Decatur First Baptist Church, which was being hosted by Little Shop of Stories. The church had sponsored me as a refugee from Cuba, so it was going to be really special. It was also the first reading and signing I’d ever missed.” Of course, all the schools, libraries, and bookstores closed soon after, so all her appearances went out the window. But ever the storyteller, Deedy cooked up a

A voracious news reader and researcher – “I love researching more than writing” – the idea for “Wombat” came from a story she read about the devastating fires taking place in Australia. “Once the fires began to die down, animals were observed emerging from wombat boroughs,” Deedy said. “Portly little wombats had allowed other animals to shelter in their labyrinthian boroughs. Being a refuge, I really understood the idea of someone giving you sanctuary in a time of trouble.” Born in Havana, Cuba in 1960, Deedy and her family immigrated just after the revolution toppled the government and brought Fidel Castro to power. She was just three years old when she arrived in Decatur. While early rave reviews of “Wombat Said Come In” have leaned into the environmental aspect of the story, Deedy said she was thinking of her own personal story as a refugee. “For me, the book is about people who open their doors in times

of trouble.” “Wombat” will launch during the Decatur Book Festival on Sept. 30 and Oct. 1, with Deedy reading Saturday at 10 a.m. on the children’s stage. Find out more at Deedy will reach into her past once again next February with “Carina Felina,” a retelling of a Cuban folktale featuring illustrations by Henry Cole. “It’s a Shakespearean tragedy with a good ending,” Deedy laughed. “It’s about a parrot who falls in love with a cat.” Then, in 2024, Peachtree Publishing will release “The Peanut Man,” which Deedy said is about her arrival in Georgia from Cuba. She’s also working with Georgia Power to create a book about solar energy for kids that will be out soon. While she had to give up her nighty appearances in “Rita’s Virtual Diner,” one of the Facebook habits Deedy has kept up is the “Lost Word Society,” which is part of her author Facebook page ( carmenagradeedy). Deedy posts an archaic word and encourages followers to think up a definition, etymology, story, or haiku for a “delectable” lost word to post in the comments. Twenty years ago this month, when Atlanta Intown first profiled Deedy, she said “performing is like breathing to me… I forget myself when I’m telling stories.” Luckily, some things never change.

Carmen Agra Deedy is scheduled to take part in “Animal Antics! A Picture Book Panel,” at the Decatur Book Festival on Oct. 1. The panel also features Shanda McCloskey and Michael Sampson and is to be moderated by Shelli R. Johannes. The discussion begins at 10 a.m. on the Children’s Stage at the First Baptist Church of Decatur, 308 Clairemont Ave., Decatur. Admission is free. Masks are required.

Writer Bill Hendrick chronicles the Civil War through the eyes of an Atlanta newspaper


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Journalist Bill Hendrick visit the Cyclorama at the Atlanta History Center. (Photo by Donna P. Williams)

By Logan Ritchie As a newspaper reporter, Bill Hendrick traveled Europe and Latin America to cover stories. When he decided to write a book, however, he looked no further than the Atlanta History Center. Hendrick camped out for six months at the center in Buckhead, poring over microfilm to research how The Atlanta Daily Intelligencer, one of Atlanta’s most influential newspapers at the time, wrote about the Civil War. The Intelligencer building was on Whitehall Street in downtown Atlanta, next to a railroad depot. The newspaper was a weekly publication from 1849 to 1854, when it became a daily. When Gen. William T. Sherman marched through Atlanta, The Intelligencer was the only paper to survive because it was being published in Macon at the time. Hendrick, with historian Stephen Davis, co-authored “The Atlanta Daily Intelligencer Covers the Civil War.” It’s a study on how the city’s newspaper narrated the war's events, how the paper got the facts right (or wrong) and how editorial columns reflected a pro-Confederate point of view. The Intelligencer was one of 105 daily and weekly newspapers in Georgia during the Civil War. Editor John H. Steele used wired messages and letters from soldiers as sources, sometimes printing falsities as facts. The newspaper was notable for its staying power while other publications

suffered from inflation, enemy occupation in nearby cities, employees leaving to join the army and lack of materials. During his 30-year career at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution writing about business, science and health, Hendrick chased assignments on the Civil War. But don’t call him a history buff – he says the term is demeaning. “I did as many Civil War stories as I could, every time I had a chance. Frankly, editors probably considered me a little difficult because I asked so much,” said Hendrick, who took a buyout from the AJC in 2008. Hendrick and Davis were having lunch one day when the topic of writing a book came up. Davis has written at least four books on battles and outcomes of the Civil War. “I told Steve I was going to write a book someday about the Atlanta Daily Intelligencer, the main paper in Atlanta from 1859 till 1871. He said, ‘Let's do it together,’ and knocked out a proposal in two days,” recalled Hendrick. They each brought strengths: Davis knew about battles and strategy and Hendrick knew about journalism and human interest. “I really wanted to find out what Atlanta was like during the Civil War, and how newspapers worked in the days before typewriters,” Hendrick said. “I had procrastinated for 15 years, and I'd still be procrastinating if not for Steve.”

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Revving up for fall's leaf color spectacle TRAVELS WITH CHARLIE


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

Will this be a good year for fall leaf color in North Georgia’s mountains? Or will it be mediocre, or somewhere in between? Foresters and other experts try to predict such things based on temperatures, rainfall, and other factors, but only Mother Nature knows for sure. Actually, in my mind, there are no “bad” years for fall foliage in Georgia’s mountains. Even in years when leaf hues seem a bit subdued, they can still put on a breathtaking show on mountain slopes and in the valleys. It’s in early October when leaves of sourwoods, dogwoods, sumacs, maples, black gums, hickories, oaks and other hardwood species start sporting their first blushes of fall color. The full, vibrant glory of Georgia’s leaf color season, however, usually comes in late October and the first two weeks of November. That’s when the radiant reds, yellows, oranges and purples of fall blanket the mountain slopes and valleys, like a brilliant, colorful quilt that bedazzles the eye. If you’re planning a leafpeeping trip to the mountains this fall, you can, before you go, check on the status of the leaf color and get an idea of what you’ll see. One way to do this is by visiting the Georgia Forestry Commission’s website Beginning the first week of October, the website will provide 22



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Fort Mountain State Park Vogel State Park Carter's Lake along Ga. Hwy. 136 Along the Richard Russell Scenic Highway Fannin County, GA George L. Smith State Park View from Johns Mountain, Walker County Along the Richard Russell Scenic Highway

Photos by Charles Seabrook








weekly, detailed updates on current color conditions, which trees are sporting the best colors and the best places to go see them. If I were limited to picking just one drive to see the annual spectacle, it would be the Richard B. Russell Scenic Highway, which winds and twists 23 miles through peaks and gaps of the Southern Appalachians in the Chattahoochee National Forest. The road begins near Smithgall Woods State Park in White County and ends at Georgia Highway 180 near Vogel State Park. Along the way, it provides several turnouts, trailheads, and other spots from which amazing views of the mountains and their stunning fall colors can be seen. Particularly breathtaking is the view from Hogpen Gap midway along the drive. Thankfully, though, there are several other drives in northern Georgia from which to enjoy fall leaf color. I also like Georgia Highway 136, which starts in

Hall County and runs 136 miles through beautiful farmland to the magnificent Cloudland Canyon State Park in Dade County. Still another favorite fall color drive is U.S. 19 between Blairsville and Dahlonega. Several of Georgia’s state parks also are excellent venues for enjoying fall color --not only in the mountains, but south of Atlanta as well. In northern Georgia, the most popular parks for leaf color include Vogel, Cloudland Canyon, Amicalola Falls, Fort Mountain, Tallulah Gorge, Black Rock Mountain, Moccasin Creek, Smithgall Woods, Unicoi, Don Carter, James “Sloppy” Floyd, Red Top Mountain and Victoria Bryant state parks. South of Atlanta, they include F.D. Roosevelt, (Pine Mountain), George L. Smith (Twin City) and Providence Canyon (Lumpkin) state parks. For more information, visit


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The Atlanta Journal-Constitution is committed to facilitating conversations on the topics important to aging well in Atlanta and providing you resources to live your best senior life.

Visit us at to sign up for the newsletter and get updates. You’ll find plenty of 55+ focused content there as well as links to our previously published sections and events. Look for our upcoming special sections Oct. 2 and Nov. 6 in your Atlanta JournalConstitution print and ePaper editions.

OCTOBER 2022 |


A Weekend in Savannah

Historic city and accessible beach offer something for everyone

A view of River Street in Savannah at dusk. (Photos by Jacob Nguyen)

By Jacob Nguyen Savannah has become one of my yearly vacation destinations, especially for a long weekend getaway. Only four hours from Atlanta, the city has an amazing mix of history and seaside charm that will appeal to different interests. For this trip, I stayed in the city at Hotel Indigo on Bay Street ( It’s steps away from all the shops and restaurants along Factor’s Walk, River Street, and City Market. A River Street restaurant recommendation is The Cotton Exchange Tavern ( thecottonexchange), which has the best crabcakes I’ve ever tasted. The generous-sized cake is served with tangy remoulade and hushpuppies. Pair it with a basket of fries and you’ve got a meal. If you’re craving something sweet after the seafood, the smell of pralines drifting out of River Street Sweets ( will draw you inside to try a sample. The double Oreos dipped in dark chocolate are also recommended, or maybe get an ice cream cone with 24



Street. The former store for sailors is said to be the most haunted place in Savannah and it’s both a history lesson and full of haunted housestyle jump scares. When you’ve had enough history, head to the beach on Tybee Island. The 30-minute drive takes you over the inland marshes to the throwback beach town. Paid parking is plentiful and recently added changing booths along Strand Avenue make getting in and out of your wet swimsuit easy if you’re traveling back to the city. The Tybee Beach Pavilion and Pier is a great place to grab a snack, cold drink, and use the bathroom. At the end of the pier, you can try your hand at fishing (or watch others cast their lines) and see incredible views of the beach and Atlantic Ocean. The pier is also a beautiful place to visit at night. For a more substantial meal, get a hearty southern breakfast at Sunrise ( on Butler Avenue and if you need souvenirs, Tybrisa Street is full of shops selling t-shirts, magnets, and other beach essentials. If you’re hungry after the beach, be sure to stop at The Crab Shack ( on your way back to Savannah. Overlooking the water, Cathedral Basilica of the big outdoor dining St. John the Baptist area is shaded with trees and the seafood is unmatched. Get a big sampler platter (shrimp, snow crab, mussels, and crawfish) or if seafood isn’t your thing, they have delicious barbecue The beach at as well. Be sure to stop Tybee Island. at the lagoon to feed the baby alligators while you wait for a table, one of the many available flavors for amazing views of the towering Before I left, I also wanted to (definitely try the mint chocolate smokestacks left on top of the see inside one of Savannah’s most chip). building and the Talmadge Bridge. beautiful buildings, the 19th-century The western end of River Street Although I’ve taken several neo-gothic Cathedral Basilica of St. has recently been reclaimed and tours of the city’s historic sites, John the Baptist (savannahcathedral. its historic buildings turned into I’d never taken the nighttime org). Located on Lafayette Square, apartments, restaurants, and shops. Ghosts & Gravestones Trolley its twin spires are visible on the The unmissable centerpiece of Tour (, city skyline, and you can hear its this restoration is the JW Marriott which departs from River Street. bells ringing out over the historic Savannah Plant Riverside hotel. A tour guide talks about the city’s district. I attended a surprisingly full The former power plant has cemeteries, squares, and homes Saturday evening mass and had the been transformed into an elegant as you pass, but the best part is a chance to look around the cathedral. hotel, and even if you can’t afford tour of the Andrew Low mansion Find out more about visiting to stay there (rooms start at $500 (birthplace of Girl Scouts founder Georgia’s first city at per night) the massive lobby with Juliette Gordon Low, a haunted a giant chrome dinosaur sculpture piano, and creepy bedroom full and historic artifacts is worth a visit. of dolls) and a stop at the Perkins Or maybe head to the rooftop bar & Sons Ship Chandlery on River



Walking into autumn THINKING HEALTHY Shelly Howell is the author of “Don’t be a Wuss: Inspiration for a great life after 60.”

As we age, most of us are no longer playing competitive soccer or running marathons. Some of us were never very athletic and never formed an exercise habit. The good news is that we can start a program at any age, and walking is one of the best exercises for seniors. Walking is not only relatively easy and inexpensive, but it can also be done any time of day. If you’re a morning person, the cool fall mornings are beginning in Georgia and you’re in good company out on the streets. If you’re working during the day and need to walk later, grab your dog or a friend and get out there. According to the CDC, we should aim for 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. Why? Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health. Being physically active can improve your brain health, help manage weight, reduce the risk of disease, strengthen bones and muscles, and improve your ability to do everyday activities. It’s hard to argue with all those reasons. I sat down recently with Lois Ricci, a retired geriatric nurse practitioner and President of the Georgia Gerontology Society, to talk about walking. “Even if you have a cane, a walker, or a wheelchair, you should be walking,” Ricci emphasized.“It’s not just about exercise, the social components of a walking routine are important for seniors. You get out and meet your neighbors and make friends,” she added. Ricci was instrumental in getting

Tucker the national distinction of being an “America Walks City,” and works with the Tucker Walks organization to create events and activities for the community. The goal of Tucker Walks is to let residents know how walkable the city is. By providing information on parks, trails, and preplanned routes, they hope to inspire Tucker residents to begin walking either alone, with neighbors, or in an organized group. If you’re not used to walking, Ricci suggests starting small. “You must start by looking at your general health and consider any limitations you might have, such as pulmonary problems or muscularskeletal problems that should be taken into consideration. Talk to your doctor. But starting small and working slowly up to a half hour is a

Walking Groups in the Atlanta Area Georgia Walkers Walking Club www.georgiawalkers. Central Steppers Walking Club (Atlanta)

good goal.” Walking groups for women, seniors and many other groups are available all over the city. There are walks designed to expose you to nature, while others are in malls to keep you cool on a hot summer day. And if you can’t find one that suits you, you can create one on the Meetup website or app (www.meetup. com). Making new friends to walk with, or having a community event to plan for, can make walking more fun and give you a sense of accomplishment. While we all think about resolutions in January, fall might just be the perfect time to set a new health goal and give walking a try.

Members of Tucker Walks on a nature trail. Photo by Suzanne Borchert. d41d8cd9/central-stepperswalking-club/1732114753669805/ New Life Walkers Club (Marietta) North Cobb Hiking Club (Acworth) www.northcobbhikingclub. Cobb County & Beyond Walks Atlanta Track Club



Turkey and chicken wings paired with buffalo cauliflower and fresh pickled carrots.


Turkey Dinner

Succulent turkey breast is slow roasted, sliced, and served over our homemade dressing and covered in pan gravy, with all the fixings. Tucker Walks – Walking groups in Atlanta

Since 1985 4006 Lavista Road, Tucker, GA 30084 OCTOBER 2022 |


There still are some things better than Christmas Day FROM THE CRATES

East Lake Country Club (photos by Kelly McCoy)

Kelly McCoy is a veteran Atlanta broadcaster who writes about the days popular music only came on vinyl records, which often were stored in crates.

The Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club this year was played four months before Christmas Day. For my lady and me this tournament is better than any holiday. Being able to attend this amazing event in our prized Atlanta makes it even more special — a time when you can see 30 of the best golfers in the world playing on Bobby Jones’ home golf course. This is not going to be a detailed story about our being golf addicts because I am aware that most don’t share our enthusiasm for the

sport. But golf fan or not, every Atlantan should know about Bobby Jones, an Atlanta lawyer who was the greatest amateur golfer in the world in his day and who helped create The Masters Tournament in Augusta. If you’ve been in Atlanta for a minute, you also should be aware

of the major changes to the East Lake community and surrounding area that have benefited from the generosity of many golfers and supporters and from their hard work, strategic planning, and other ways of giving back. Each time I’ve shuttled from various parking lots to the Tour Championship

tournament at East Lake, I see new developments and refurbishing of some sweet ATL history. Not long ago, parts of area had fallen to such low depths, one might reconsider entering. But the golf club and the surrounding community have bounced back, thanks to the work of many

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Tiger Woods salutes the crowd at East Lake

Atlantans. Developer Tom Cousins’ name is always in the mix in discussions of the revival of East Lake. He’s a Major Player — and that has nothing necessarily to do with his golf game. Cousins will always be remembered for his gifts to our town. Our visit to the sacred grounds this year had us parking at the World Congress Center downtown. I can’t even begin to count the number of times I’ve visited the facility through the years. I’ve seen everything from exotic car shows to Boy Scout expos there. It’s hosted conventions for everything conceivable and national groups still come and drop a lot of coin in our town, and we thank them. You must admit it’s a confusing name for the huge place. I don’t think Congress meets there. About five years ago, I moved east about an hour away to what’s known as the Classic City. Each time I come to Atlanta, my home area for 40 years, I’m flooded with memories. While crossing Ivan Allen, Jr. Boulevard downtown, I thought of his son, Beau. Fifty years ago, as I write this, Beau and I met. Not only was he the first news director for the University of Georgia’s new radio station, WUOG, he was my news guy on an FM station. A sweet, gentle human with a great sense of humor, Beau was also the easiest person to make giggle while on the air, if you played a radio trick on him. Quite a long period of time would

pass before I found out Beau was a member of one of the most prominent families in the city. I used to joke that Beau was ATL royalty and had “more money than God,” but you’d never know it. We’d meet for lunch, and he’d sometime show up in his old pickup truck wearing a T-shirt with a non-descript logo on it. He was happiest I think while on his tractor doing earthwork on his property north of Atlanta. I have a lot of stories about this great man, and I still miss him. Beaumont died of cancer at 63. I love old Atlanta, and parts of the new. Atlanta Medical Center (the old Georgia Baptist Hospital) is going away. Peachtree Center, and parts of Little Five Points are getting architectural facelifts slash demolished for the benefits needed in today’s Atlanta. One thing for sure. East Lake Golf Course is here to stay. Spending up close and personal time with golfers such as Rory McIlroy, Scottie Scheffler, Justin Thomas, and other world class champions is not a bad day. A few years ago, we were there for a Tiger visit, too. Golf season is over now. Football season is here. As we enjoy the seasons of our lives on the calendar, enjoy our great city. There’s plenty to learn about the rich history and more about the forefathers whose names you might see these days on street signs, buildings, and landmarks.

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OCTOBER 2022 |


Author Talks, Q & A, and Book Signings November 3−21, 2022

Don’t miss one of the most highly regarded cultural events in the Southeast! Hear from, meet, and interact with the year’s most renowned authors, entertainers, thought leaders, and pop culture icons. With countless awardwinning and bestselling authors, our Book Festival is truly unlike any other.

Purchase Tickets Today:

Online bookfestival



Front Desk

Box Office

The QR Code Below


M–Th, 8 am–8 pm F+Su, 8 am–5 pm

Opens 1 Hour Before Event

Purchase Tickets at Questions? Contact or 678.812.3981.

All tickets are subject to a $1.25 Service charge. Tickets are available as either print-at-home or e-tickets. There are no will call tickets. All sales are final. Tickets and book sales are non-refundable.

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PM A t l a n t a S e n 9/16/22 i o r L i f e 5:10 .com